Senate approves open committee meetings

By Kate Nash/The New Mexican After more than 10 years of trying to open conference committees, new members of the Senate may have made the difference.

Open conference question comes to state senate

By Kate Nash: The Santa Fe New Mexican To open conference committees to the public or not? That seems to be a key question before the state Senate this session, one that’s nearing a vote on the chamber’s floor. The Senate is considering two measures to allow the public and the media into conference committees, […]

Bills would make government more transparent

By Kate Nash: The New Mexican The public would have better access to and could gain more understanding of the state government under several bills making progress this session. Certain committees that are now closed would be open while government documents would become public sooner under the measures originating in the House. The House Appropriations […]

FSA community applications sought

CNJ Staff Farmers, ranchers and other agricultural producers have until Aug. 1 to nominate eligible candidates to serve on local Farm Service Agency county committees, according to a news release from the U.S. Department of Agriculture agency. FSA county committees make decisions on commodity price support loans, conservation programs, disaster programs, employing county executive directors […]

Officials putting water on agenda

By Andy Jackson: CNJ staff writer Record gas and oil revenues left the state with a bloated budget and some area officials agree this is the year to fund a solution to New Mexico’s water woes. Portales Mayor Orlando Ortega visited the state capitol Saturday and lobbied for a permanent water trust fund, alongside other […]

State government should open meetings to public scrutiny

Freedom Newspapers Some of New Mexico’s state senators took a step toward sunshine Friday when they endorsed a bill to open the Legislature’s conference committee meetings to the public. The bill has support from many Democrats and Republicans as well as media organizations, including the New Mexico Press Association, and the state’s Foundation for Open […]

Effort under way to open conference committees

The Associated Press SANTA FE — An effort is under way to open up what goes on behind closed doors in legislative conference committees. “Other public bodies have done this, and they’re still able to get things done,” said Sen. Dede Feldman, D-Albuquerque, sponsor of a measure to make conference committees meetings public. Conference committees, […]

Committees to impose enrollment fee

by Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist Republican majorities on the House and Senate veterans’ affairs committees have voted to impose an enrollment fee of at least $230 a year on 2.4 million veterans — one of every three now eligible to use VA healthcare. Those targeted are in priority categories 7 and 8, meaning they are […]

Lottery bill hits hang up

By David Arkin A bill that would allow more students to access the Lottery Scholarship may be in trouble. Legislation that would permit students who graduate from high school to sit out a year before going to college and still qualify for the popular Lottery Scholarship may get stuck in committee, according to its sponsor. […]