New Mexico’s legislative session enters the homestretch

Politics - Government

The 60-day legislative session is in the homestretch with just 10 days left. Tuesday, KRQE News 13 took a look at the biggest issues debated this session and whether or not they’ll become law.

The Democratic-dominated legislature has focused on several key issues: gun control, minimum wage and even marijuana. One of the biggest focuses has also been on education.

“I hope that what we do for education, the parents, the children, the educators, the administrators in public schools would appreciate the path forward that we have taken on behalf of all of our children,” said House Majority Leader Rep. Sheryl Stapleton, (D) Albuquerque.

The House and the Senate have identical bills to fund and structure in education. Both bills (SB 1 and HB 5) have moved into the other chambers. House Republicans have challenged the amount being spent, while Democrats argue it’s necessary to meet a district court ruling.

Another big focus has been on raising the minimum wage. A Senate bill that would increase it in phases from $9.25 to $11 per hour by 2022 is making its way through the Roundhouse.

And of course, one of the most debated issues of the session: gun control.

“We’ve got gun laws going everywhere in this session,” said Senate Minority Leader Stuart Ingle, (R) Portales. “And there was one that passed the Senate that’s basically totally ineffective.”

Several gun control bills have been introduced. One calling for background checks on private gun sales passed both chambers.

The fight to legalize marijuana is gaining support from both parties. A Republican Senate bill is still moving through their chamber’s committees. A House bill backed by Democrats has made it’s way to the House floor for debate.

Lawmakers said there’s a lot of work to cover before the session ends. 

A bill that would remove the state’s abortion ban has also passed the House floor and is making its way through the Senate.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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