Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Democrats in House Tax Committee nix transparency bill

I wrote this story earlier this session about this bill to put state expenditures online. Well, sometime last evening, the House Taxation and Revenue Committee voted on a party-line vote to table the bill, according to the Senate Republican Office. The Senate had unanimously approved the measure.

The bill sponsored by Sen. Sander Rue, R-Albuquerque, would have created a searchable, online budget database that would have started with the 2011 fiscal year.

"We wanted to demystify the state budget and bolster public confidence in their government. The purpose of this legislation is to invite the public to the negotiating table," he said in a statement.

"By allowing all New Mexicans to read actual budget items, we allow the public a greater understanding and voice in future budget processes," he said. "Now that this bill is tabled in the House, it will take at least another year to get the public this easy access to their budget."

The Democrats voting against the bill, according to the release, were

Rep. Edward Sandoval
Rep. Jim Trujillo
Rep. Ernest Chavez
Rep. Nathan Cote
Rep. Roberto Gonzales
Rep. Sandra Jeff
Rep. Ben Lujan
Rep. Rodolpho Martinez

Republicans who voted for the bill were:

Rep. Janice Arnold-Jones
Rep. Anna M. Crook
Rep. Keith Gardner
Rep. William Gray
Rep. James Strickler
Rep. Thomas Taylor

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