Category Archives: Governance

Schools have so much more responsibility than education

Welcome to the school year and all the issues our schools have to contend with besides educating New Mexico’s children. Such as what has is required if a student needs to take a pill. Even if you have had children … Continue reading

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If New Mexico decides to pay legislators a salary

  The notion that New Mexico should pay legislators a salary has been discussed many times. In 2016, a constitutional amendment was proposed to establish a salary, but wasn’t passed. Some observers think we’d get a better quality legislature. Maybe. … Continue reading

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Get out of your silos and talk to each other, government!

The Children, Youth and Families Department (CYFD) is forming a joint child safety strike force with the State Police. After a widely publicized announcement, they’ve even had a meeting! This was initiated after a seven-year-old girl was found to have … Continue reading

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Use data to analyze criminal justice

For years I have wondered whether our criminal justice system makes sense. I think first about my own safety. Does our system make me safer? Does it prevent crime? Does it make prudent use of my tax dollars? Is it … Continue reading

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The complications of tax policy

Tax policy can make your head spin. Where tax policy intersects with healthcare policy, complicated further by insurance, the picture gets even more confusing. Two recent speakers talking about New Mexico tax policy chose to focus on the same example: … Continue reading

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Don’t trust any politician with too much power

We New Mexicans don’t trust our politicians. That is built in to our history and the structure of our government. Some years ago I started wondering why we elect not just a governor but several independent statewide officials: attorney general, … Continue reading

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When we’re broke, what should we cut?

New Mexico Secretary of Agriculture Jeff Witte, on a TV interview show recently, mentioned the state’s veterinary diagnostic laboratory. He was particularly proud that it is located adjacent to important facilities of the state Department of Health so that there … Continue reading

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Some administrative savings work better than others

If I were planning to run for the legislature, my list of priorities would look a little different from those you usually see. Instead of reciting the usual passionate platitudes about education and economic development, I would talk about saving … Continue reading

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Lessons to learn from our Johnson administration

In the early days of Gary Johnson’s governorship, I had occasion to be at the State Capitol talking with some of his new appointees. “Oh,” one of them said to me, “so you work for the Department of Labor.” He … Continue reading

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Laws should never be unamendable

Unamendable: a law that cannot be changed, no matter how problematic it has become. Think about that. An “unamendable” provision of the New Mexico Constitution has finally been amended. This was the provision that required school board elections to be … Continue reading

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