Democratic leadership lays out plans for 60-day legislative session

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SANTA FE, N.M. – On Tuesday, the new Democrat leadership in the House laid out their priorities for the session.

One of the top priorities for speaker Javier Martinez is to address challenges facing the state Legislature. He wants to see funding for dedicated paid staff, paid lawmakers, and changes to the length of the sessions. 

By doing that, he says, the state can really get the necessary work done. Community safety is another priority. 

Martinez says they want to focus on gun violence prevention efforts, gun safety, and a bill that he says already has bi-partisan support that targets organized retail crime. 

He says crime needs to be an all hands-on deck approach. That means focusing in on the root causes of crime. 

He says they want to ensure that New Mexicans have access to critical resources, healthcare, and behavioral health.

Martinez says the state’s record revenues will help make it happen. 

“We feel comfortable with the budget proposals that we’ve seen so far. Obviously, the hard work begins today at noon, in terms of negotiating with the fourth floor, the senate, the house finance committees. But we’re very much looking forward to it because that’s what the people elected us to do,” said Martinez. 

He says not only are there record revenues but historic levels of reserves. He pointed to the Legislative Finance Committee proposed budget that calls for the creation of even more of those funds to tuck that money away for the future.