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Democratic Caucus name Sen. Mimi Stewart majority whip

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SANTA FE – Members of the New Mexico Senate Democratic Caucus met Jan. 15 to select the senate majority whip.

The Senate Democrats chose Sen. Mimi Stewart, D-17-Bernalillo, as their new majority whip. Stewart served as a representative in the House from 1995-2014 and has served in the Senate since 2015.

“I appreciate...

Jeff changes party registration to Libertarian, eyes Secretary of State position

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Former State Representative and former State Senate candidate Sandra Jeff can now add one more “former” before her name: former Democrat.

Jeff updated her voter registration to the Libertarian Party Thursday afternoon at the Bernalillo County Clerk’s Office with the intention of running for Secretary of State.

“I want to stop corruption, and I feel that I have every right to work with the constituents within the state of New Mexico to bring forth a new horizon because that is what is needed in this state in order for us to move forward,” Jeff told NM Political Report.

Jeff represented House District 5, which includes a large portion of the Navajo Nation in New Mexico, for...

2017 top stories: Ten vetoes overturned

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Gov. Susana Martinez saw ten bills she vetoed instead become law this year. Not because of any legislative action, but instead because a court ruled she failed to follow the state constitution when vetoing the bills.

During the legislative session, Martinez vetoed many bills, but Democrats in the Legislature felt ten were improperly vetoed. The Legislature voted to sue Martinez over those ten, saying she failed to explain why she vetoed the bills, violating the state constitution.

A judge agreed.

“It’s telling how some in the legislature love running to the courts when they know they don’t have the support to override a veto,” Martinez spokesman Joseph Cueto said in an...

Workforce Solutions settles year-old wage theft suit

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A worker’s rights coalition and New Mexico’s Department of Workforce Solutions (DWS) settled a year-old lawsuit alleging the state agency failed to adequately investigate or take action on wage theft claims.

The settlement agreement outlines policy and procedural changes the state department will make. Wage theft claims against employers, for example, will now be investigated regardless of the dollar amount involved. The coalition accused DWS of avoiding  action on claims worth more than $10,000 and advising employees to instead file a lawsuit against their employer.

DWS also agreed to implement a more comprehensive process for workers to file claims against employers who fail to...

Most recent audit reveals state still has problems distributing disaster money

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SANTA FE – Another audit turned in months after it was due reveals the state Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management still has problems with finances and management—some of which date back years—but is showing some signs of improvement.

The 2016 audit was publicly released in late October when State Auditor Tim Keller sent a letter back to the department’s secretary, M. Jay Mitchell.

The independent audit reveals 14 significant problems, some of which were also found in previous years’ audits.

NM Political Report requested an interview with Mitchell or the department’s Chief Financial Officer, Sarah Peterson. The public information officer could not make...

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