New Mexico

New Mexico

The effort to force Bernalillo County Treasurer Manny Ortiz into a recall election failed to gather enough signatures.

It was always a long shot, given that roughly 82,400 signatures were required. By contrast, it takes only about 14,000 signatures to propose legislation in Albuquerque through a petition initiative.

George Richmond, who describes himself as a good-government activist, said he collected fewer than 5,000 signatures.

He did succeed, of course, in calling attention to problems within the treasurer’s office.

Read More: here

After failing in Albuquerque, two groups promoting a ballot initiative to reduce penalties for possessing small amounts of marijuana appear likely to succeed in Santa Fe.

City Clerk Yolanda Vigil said Wednesday that ProgressNow New Mexico and Drug Policy Alliance are “extremely close” to getting the required number of valid petition signatures to force a vote on the issue.

The groups came up short in their initial attempt to get the initiative on the November general election ballot when they submitted 7,126 signatures July 15. Only 3,569 of those signatures were found to be valid, and the groups need at least 5,673 signatures from registered voters in the city to qualify.

Bernalillo County Treasurer Manny Ortiz faced two hours of stern questioning when he took the stand during his recall hearing Thursday.

But he had some good news afterward: The county’s Legal Department and Elections Bureau say it would take 82,436 signatures to force Ortiz into a recall election, far more than his opponents had expected.

The treasurer’s testimony came in a hearing before state District Judge Alan Malott.

Opponents of Ortiz are asking Malott to allow them to start the signature-gathering required to trigger a recall election. They’re trying to show “probable cause” that Ortiz committed malfeasance or misfeasance in office.

A KOB4 News report reveals that all but $50 supporting a measuer on the Albuquerque ballot came from Redflex, the camera maker who stands to profit if the measure passes. City politicians are defending the company’s actions, while civil rights supporters say the company shouldn’t be taking money from citizens. Retired police sergent Paul Heh asks:

Why do we even have these when we pay police officers to do the same job and your rights aren’t violated?

Yesterday, Citizens in Charge Foundation sent out a joint press release with the Rio Grande Foundation highlighting the poll results of New Mexico voters on their support for initiative & referendum:

New Mexico’s teacher’s union is circulating a petition to protest an increase in their personal pension contributions. Pension contributions increased by 1.5% this year in an attempt to solve state budgetary problems. The union has suggested raising taxes on New Mexico workers to pay for the pension increase.

Read the story from the New Mexico Independent

You have Referendum rights, whereby citizens can suspend a statute passed by the Legislature by collecting enough petition signatures to place the statute on the statewide ballot for a decision by the voters. Voters do not enjoy any process for Initiative.


See the results of a poll on support for statewide initiative & referendum here.


Mon, Feb 16 by Anonymous

In 1910 statehood was just around the corner, and New Mexico voters
elected delegates to a convention that drew up a constitution for the
proposed new state.


Mon, Feb 16 by Anonymous

State Balloting Process

Mon, Feb 16 by Anonymous

Article IV
Sec. 1. [Vesting of legislative power; location of sessions; referendum on
The legislative power shall be vested in a senate and house of
representatives which shall be designated the legislature of the state of
New Mexico, and shall hold its sessions at the seat of government.
The people reserve the power to disapprove, suspend and annul any
law enacted by the legislature, except general appropriation laws; laws
providing for the preservation of the public peace, health or safety; for

Ballot Qualifications & Schedule

Mon, Feb 16 by Anonymous

Voters would be asked to extend legislators’ terms from two years to four years under a bill that nearly 60 members of the House co-sponsored last week.

The measure raises an issue in perennial discussion over the past decade, with backers saying less-frequent elections would mean less time spent raising money to run for office.

“It would take half the money out of it,” said Rep. Hugh Holliman, a Lexington Democrat and the House majority leader. “We start the session, spend our first year here, and then we spend the whole second year campaigning.”