NEW MEXICO (KRQE) – House Bill 139 is heading to the house floor. That bill could change the way courts assign fines.

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HB 139 would require criminal and traffic courts to consider a convicted person’s ability to pay before imposing a fine. The goal is to avoid placing heavy financial burdens and further debt onto low-income New Mexicans. The bill would also expand community services that focuses on lowering the likelihood of re-offenses, such as job training, education and rehab programs. It would also increase monetary credit from community service.