Your New Mexico Government

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New Mexico is one of the fastest-warming states in the country, according to a 2016 report issued by the Union Of Concerned Scientists. In this year’s legislative session several bills addressing climate change were introduced by lawmakers. Not all of the measures were rejected. They didn’t all pass, either.  KUNM caught up with environmental reporter Laura Paskus from New Mexico PBS about the urgency of climate change problems in our state and how local elected officials are responding .

taberandrew via Flickr CC

Storefront lenders offering payday loans or title loans are a quick way to get money for people who are often in dire straits financially. And it can be a slippery slope when the interest rate on these loans can be as high as 175 percent in New Mexico. Around the country, other states have passed laws to make those rates lower. But a bill that would have capped that rate at 36 percent here didn’t make it through the legislative session. KUNM’s Khalil Ekulona spoke to Fred Nathan, a proponent of the bill and the executive director of Think New Mexico.

New Mexico PBS

After months of protests against racism and police brutality, legislators passed a bill late Tuesday night that ends qualified immunity in state court, allowing police officers and other local elected officials to be prosecuted for civil rights violations. The state Senate voted in favor of the New Mexico Civil Rights Act shortly after midnight, and if amendments are approved by the House, it will head to the governor for signature. KUNM’s Khalil Ekulona spoke to Jeff Proctor of the Santa Fe Reporter about this and other measures aimed at police reform.

sonja langford

 

Things are definitely moving fast and furious in the Roundhouse, as you would expect with only 4 and half days left in this year's session. 

New Mexico PBS

A busy weekend in the Roundhouse, capped off by yes votes for Medical Aid in Dying and Mandatory Paid Sick Leave measures. But, the big news of the weekend was the lack of action on cannabis legalization, as both of the remaining bills did not come up for discussion in the Senate Judiciary Committee. One of those bills was actually pulled from consideration just minutes before the meeting. And, of course, all of the proposed measures are up against the clock, with time set to run out on this year's session at noon on Saturday.

New Mexico PBS

 

If you are interested in the most inner workings of state government, today's Your NM Government update is just for you! The work Wednesday in the Roundhouse was somewhat overshadowed by technical problems with the virtual proceedings. But a lot of the business that was considered had to do with how the sausage is made, so to speak. Here's a quick rundown of what we talked about in today's update:

New Mexico PBS

 

 

And then there were 2 --- cannabis legalization bills. At least that's the way things seem to be shaping up in this 2021 Legislative Session. 

New Mexico PBS

Every 10 years after the census, the New Mexico state Legislature redraws its districts. While redistricting is always a contentious and often partisan task, this year, the drama is being felt by both parties. On Saturday, a compromise was reached: An independent committee would offer three to five maps that lawmakers choose from—and can change—before sending one to the governor. This clears the way for the bill to hit the Senate floor. KUNM spoke with Gwyneth Doland of New Mexico PBS to get a breakdown of the situation.

New Mexico PBS

 

 

New Mexico PBS

 

 

Another busy week in store for the session, and today also marks the second to last Monday of the 2021 Legislative Session. Lawmakers will definitely have their hands full in these last days, with plenty of high profile measures still to decide.

Naybeel Sayed

 

One of the big stories to come out of the Roundhouse yesterday actually involves Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham. State Auditor Brian Colon announced that he was moving ahead with a special audit of the Governor's discretionary fund, after local reporting discovered more than $13,000 in groceries, liquor purchases and dry cleaning over a six-month period in 2020. A group of Republican lawmakers also requested the audit in a letter to Auditor Colon. The Governor's office has said the purchases were appropriate but may have been excessive at times.

New Mexico PBS

Thanks for joining us again for this short legislative update, coming to you straight from my garage! We're working on our floors right now, so the usual spot in the closet was taken today. Another busy day in the Roundhouse, including another long night in the House. That will likely continue for the rest of the session as the pattern now is to start the daily House Floor sessions at 4:30pm. The Senate Floor sessions are happening starting around 11am. And, of course, committee meetings are still in play throughout the day as well.

New Mexico PBS

A definite potpourri of legislative topics for you today, starting with an update on proposals to deal with the learning loss caused by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. We also talk about some movement regarding predatory lending practices in New Mexico, which spurred several hours of debate yesterday in the Roundhouse.

Mr.TinDC / Flickr

 

For 109 years since the Legislature was founded, New Mexico has not had an African American State Senator. In 2021, that changed when Harold Pope Jr. of Albuquerque took his seat representing the 23rd District. KUNM caught up with the freshman Senator and Air Force veteran to ask about what motivated a life of service and where he sees New Mexico's future.

New Mexico PBS

The week started off with some legislative drama, both on the Senate Floor and in committee. We run down some of the big news, including a potential compromise on efforts to reform how the state handles the once a decade process of redistricting. NMPBS Executive Producer Kevin McDonald runs down some of the key highlights from Monday and previews some of the scheduled committee discussions for today. How is the session going for you this year? What do you think of how both chambers are handling public comment. We want to hear from you!

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Stephanie Fitzgerald / Creative Commons

Today, Your NM Government launches daily updates on the 2021 Legislative session, now in the home stretch. The week started off with some legislative drama, both on the Senate Floor and in committee. We run down some of the big news, including a potential compromise on efforts to reform how the state handles the once a decade process of redistricting. NMPBS Executive Producer Kevin McDonald runs down some of the key highlights from Monday and previews some of the scheduled committee discussions for today. How is the session going for you this year?

Cannabis Tours via Wikimedia / Creative Commons https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0/deed.en

Cannabis is the topic. As part of the continuing coverage from Your New Mexico Government it is time for an update on the legislative session at the Roundhouse. To discover more about the Cannabis legislation under debate at the state Capital, KUNM's Khalil Ekulona sat down with Juile Ann Grimm, editor for The Santa Fe Reporter.

NASA Global Climate Change / Public Domain

As much of the country suffers from the polar vortex that has brought record lows and winter storms, legislators at the Roundhouse are examining the Climate Solutions Act. House Bill 9 looks at New Mexico’s issues with climate change while implementing economic reform in addressing the state’s energy consumption. For Your New Mexico Government’s continuing coverage of the legislative session KUNM’s Khalil Ekulona spoke with Laura Paskus from New Mexico PBS.

Laura Paskus / NM PBS

Your New Mexico Government is continuing its coverage of everything that happens at the Roundhouse with an interview of Laura Paskus from New Mexico PBS. Paskus talks about the Clean Water Act, SB 86, which proposes regulations on oil & gas companies in regards to produced water. And she tells us all about the Climate Solutions Act, HB 9, which looks to find solutions to the climate change issues New Mexico is facing, while using those efforts to boost the state's economy.

Eva Avenue


We get into what money really is. We take a dive into a bill that looks to create a public bank. We talk with a member of a financial innovation group about how universal basic income has helped businesses during the pandemic. We grapple with student loans. We hear the journey of how difficult it is to start a business as a pandemic is raging. And we have a talk with the secretary of workforce solutions about where the jobs are going to be.

Arianna Sena / KUNM


Coronavirus has infiltrated the Roundhouse, where New Mexico’s legislators are in the early weeks of a 60-day session. Since mid-January when the session began, at least three people in the capital have tested positive for the virus, including one GOP lawmaker. On Friday, Democratic House Speaker Brian Egolf announced new rules, restricting participation in committee meetings to Zoom, and closing the House floor to most lawmakers. KUNM spoke with Matt Grubs from New Mexico PBS.

taberandrew via Flickr CC

Small, fast loans often lead to a cycle of ever-deepening debt, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Lawmakers in New Mexico are considering whether to regulate the industry here further during the 2021 legislative session. Senate Bill 66 would cap the rates and fees so that they're in line with national averages with the aim of helping people in jeopardy avoid a pit of debt they can't climb out of. KUNM caught up with reporter Jeff Proctor to talk about the effort.

Felicia Montoya, Markus Wall, Kema

Millions of people around the U.S. have already voted early. Simultaneously many people are preparing to fill out their ballots, but are concerned with how they will deliver them, and, more importantly, if their vote will be counted. So many questions. Here at NoMoNo, we are going to dig deep to find answers for you. Episode 11 is all about preserving and exercising your right to vote. We talk with New Mexico's secretary of state, the president of the Albuquerque chapter of the American Postal Workers Union, a national election law expert, activists who protecting voting rights for underserved communities—and voters.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

The crew at NoMoNo headquarters takes a look at where we’ve been since the pandemic started, reflecting a little—hard to find time to do it when we’re all stuck in an unending news cycle. But hopefully, this is a pleasant look back if you’ve been hanging in there with us. We want to thank all of you who listened to the show when it was Your New Mexico Government back in March—you know, 1,000 years ago.

Megan Kamerick / KUNM

New Mexico is among the ten states with the highest increase in unemployment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, meaning many people have lost health insurance coverage as well. The state says no one should have to pay for testing and treatment related to the coronavirus, but some people are still being charged for that care. KUNM’s Khalil Ekulona spoke with New Mexico Superintendent of Insurance Russell Toal about how the state is trying to help.

Glenn Ford

Let's Talk New Mexico 5/7, 8a: Behind each coronavirus-related death is a human who was loved, who lived a complex life, and who leaves behind a unique legacy for their family, friends and community. This week on Let's Talk New Mexico, we're taking time to memorialize four New Mexicans who died from COVID-19. We'll hear about their joys, their hobbies, their contributions, and how they'll be remembered by their loved ones. How are you dealing with the overwhelming human impact of the pandemic? What brings you comfort amidst the daily flood of case numbers and outbreak data? If you want to share, email LetsTalk@kunm.org or call in during the show at (505) 277-5866. 

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