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Open government is key to honest government

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When government fails, it’s the rare public official who says, “Oops. My fault.”

That’s human nature, particularly for officials in the public eye who may have to run for office again. No one wants to be held directly responsible for letting the public down.

Case in point is the recent catastrophe in Texas, when...

You should be afraid of the dark

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All of my elementary aged grandchildren sleep with a nightlight because, like their parents a generation ago, they fear the dark. Although the flip of a switch can confirm that no monsters lurk in the shadows, better to keep a small light burning to cut through the darkness. What you cannot see fuels worry, distrust and general unease.

Sunshine Week starts Sunday, March 14, an annual reminder that at least in terms of government conduct, citizens should never outgrow their fear of the dark. Launched nationwide in March 2005, Sunshine Week educates the public about the importance of open government and the dangers of excessive and unnecessary government secrecy. It was organized by the...

Families should come before corporate profits

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What should have been a routine laparoscopic surgery to remove my gallbladder, changed my life. Forever. That’s why I’m speaking out about the need for the Legislature to pass a law to put patients before healthcare corporations.

When I went in for my operation, the surgeon made a mistake. He misidentified—and then severed—one of the ducts coming out of my liver. But we didn’t know that at the time.

I went from the operating room to the intensive care unit and then back to the operating room for emergency surgery. No one knew what was wrong.

They opened me back up and cleaned out at least four liters of digestive fluid that had spilled into my body cavity. They...

Pass the Medical Debt Protection Act!

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I couldn’t breathe. My chest felt like it was on fire. I thought I was having a heart attack. And I was terrified.

Alone in my car, on my way home to my kids after work, all I could do was react. I instinctively drove the two miles to Rehoboth McKinley Christian Hospital. They admitted me right away.

It wasn’t a heart attack; it was gallstones, but the hospital didn’t have the right equipment to treat me.

I needed to be transported to Albuquerque.

After receiving pain medication, I wasn’t coherent. I was scared and still in so much pain. The billing people came in to see me. All I remember is them saying to sign here and sign there. I did.

Then I was rushed more than 100...

House Bill 92 ensures safe drinking water remains a priority in New Mexico

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In New Mexico, approximately 1.9 million people rely on public water systems to provide a safe and reliable supply of drinking water to our homes and businesses. But how do we know if our community drinking water supply is safe to drink? The simple answer is that our drinking water supply is tested regularly to ensure that it complies with state and federal regulatory standards. Without regular testing, local drinking water utilities would not learn of a known or potential health risk in a timely manner.

Water analysis at certified laboratories can often cost several thousand dollars per year for one small community water system. In 1993, the New Mexico Legislature enacted a law that...
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