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Author: State Representative Larry Scott, Hobbs, who is a member of the House Taxation and Revenue Committee

Some time ago I wrote an op-ed article complaining that I and my Republican colleagues were not being consulted or even informed of the planning underway to resolve the state's imminent budget crisis. Nothing has changed in the intervening period. Despite the fact that we are mere weeks away from the rumored call for a special session, there have been no proposals advanced by the administration. There is a growing concern that the lack of transparent action dealing with these budget issues may have motives more aligned with flattening the political fallout curve than flattening the virus impact curve. What's going on in Santa Fe?

By Senator Pete Campos

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought heartache and pain to all. In New Mexico alone, cases of COVID-19 have exceeded 6,000, with nearly 300 fatalities and close to 2,000 cases officially designated as recovered. The state is short nearly $2 billion in next fiscal year's budget. Thousands of New Mexicans are unemployed or working without necessary personal protective equipment. Unemployment, isolation, extreme work environments, illness and death have created a sense of uncertainty and surreality. But New Mexicans are resilient. We have the mental strength and resourcefulness to both weather this storm and learn from it.

Power The Future Statement on Michelle Lujan Grisham’s Endorsement of Joe Biden

Albuquerque – The Joe Biden for President campaign announced the endorsement of New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham on Friday. The following is a statement from Power The Future’s Western States Director, Larry Behrens about the endorsement:

By Carla J. Sonntag
President and Founder, New Mexico Business Coalition

The Governor's early response to the coronavirus slowed the spread and saved lives. Two months later, however, we've learned much more about COVID-19, how to manage it, and the much lower than anticipated mortality rates. We now know that COVID-19 is something that can be effectively handled while allowing life to continue.

To better understand where New Mexicans stand on the handling of COVID-19, NMBC conducted an open survey of over 1,100 participants. The results:

By Paul J. Gessing

New Mexico is among the most tightly shut down states in the entire country. This is according to the website Wallethub, which has been ranking the various US states on how "open" or "closed" they are.

New Mexico was tied with Washington State as the 44th most open or, with the inclusion of Washington, DC, 7th least open. There is a clear partisan divide among the "openers" and "closers." Until you hit Ohio, the 14th most "closed" state all of the "closers" are led by Democrats. And, while Wisconsin (with a Democrat governor) jumped to the top of the list of "open" states thanks to a judge's order, it is not until West Virginia, the 14th most-open state that we see a Democrat-run state among the most open.

[Editor's Note: Be sure you read the instructions at the BOTTOM of the absentee ballot. I plan to wear a mask and vote in person.]

Author: Representative Cathrynn Brown, Carlsbad

Did you receive an "Application for Absent/Early Voter Ballot" in the mail this week? I did, and I want to caution every absentee-minded voter to be careful when filling out the application. The form is poorly arranged, and the instructions are not clear or consistent.

This is an important document, and we should not question at the end, "Did I do it right?"

MAY 13, 2020 By Patrick M. Brenner of the Rio Grande Froundation

Whether it's projected tax revenues or emails from constituents to County Commissioners, the Rio Grande Foundation is passionate about open government and regularly files public records requests. New Mexico has solid sunshine laws on the books and good case law to support our right to know: "Recognizing that a representative government is dependent upon an informed electorate, the intent of the […] Inspection of Public Records Act is to ensure […] that all persons are entitled to the greatest possible information regarding the affairs of government."

Author: House Republican Whip, Rod Montoya (Farmington)

Speaker Brian Egolf and House Appropriations and Finance Chair Patty Lundstrom have recently stated that no one could have predicted New Mexico's unfolding budget crisis. In reality, House Republicans predicted a looming budget crisis during the Legislative Session in February. We pointed to falling oil prices and I personally questioned what economic consequences the coronavirus pandemic posed.

Nonetheless, the Governor and the Democrat-led legislature continued undeterred on a record spending spree, setting the stage for the budget crisis we now face. Democrat leaders not only increased the state budget by 20% over the last two years, they also passed the largest tax increase in state history to sustain their irresponsible spending.

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Editor's Note

Check out Pets to Adopt. The High Desert Humane Society has some new cats and dogs up for adoption.

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