Monday, May 07, 2012

Senator Sanchez Announces $23.5 Million State Grant for Los Lunas High School Construction

On May 4th, Senate Majority Leader Michael S. Sanchez (D-29-Valencia County) announced today a $23.5 million grant from the state Public School Capital Outlay Council for the first of two construction phases to rebuild 75 percent of Los Lunas High School.

“The Los Lunas community has worked closely with the school district and the state to develop a new facility that will offer our students and teachers a first rate learning environment now and in the future,” Senator Sanchez said. “It’s been an effective team effort, with the state providing 80 percent of the construction funding, contingent on local matching funds of about $5.9 million.”

Construction is expected to begin in early June, with the demolition of half the high school, and the construction of two new multi-story buildings. New facilities will include a cafeteria and kitchen, classrooms, science lab, vocational lab, computer lab and offices. Existing buildings will be renovated to include new fire protections systems, plumbing and electrical systems, along with new interior walls, ceilings and floors. This first phase of construction will be completed by late fall of 2013.

A second construction phase, to replace most of the remaining facility, will begin in early 2014 for completion by summer 2015. The current gym, auxiliary gym and performing arts center will be preserved.

“The current high school campus has had ten or eleven additions and renovations over the years,” said Senator Sanchez. “As a result, program design and the use of space at the high school weren’t optimum, which this design and construction will correct. The new facility will be safer and more functional…and will deliver the educational program that our community determined that it needs.”

The new high school will have classroom space for 1,500 students in grades 9 through 12, while the core of the campus will be built to accommodate 1,800 students. Current enrollment is 1,358 students.

May 7, 2012 at 01:29 PM in Democrat, Economy, Populism, Education, Jobs, NM Legislature 2012 | Permalink | Comments (1)

Friday, April 06, 2012

SWOP Mailers in the News (Again)

Abq%20journal%20griego%20mailerSince January, SWOP and our friends at the Center for Civic Policy have communicated directly several times with New Mexicans about Senate Bill 9, which addresses corporate tax loopholes. Prior to the session, we sent mailers to constituents of key legislators who sit on powerful legislative committees, to let their legislators know that they supported the bill. In a victory for New Mexicans, SB9 passed the NM Legislature this year, requiring "big box" corporations to pay income taxes on profits made in New Mexico. Unfortunately, though, Governor Susana Martinez vetoed the bill.

To follow up on the session, we communicated with the constituents of the legislators who didn’t listen on SB 9, when it mattered most. One of those legislators, Sen. Phil Griego, voted ‘no’ on passing it out of the Senate Corporations Committee which he chairs. Griego has voted ‘no’ many times before, making the bill dead in the water once it made it to his committee, year in and year out. This year, enough legislators voted to let it pass on to the floor, despite Griego’s efforts. When SB 9 made it to the floor, Griego himself voted for it. We felt it was important to let his constituents know how Griego voted in committee. It’s a story not only about SB 9, but about the important steps in the journey of a bill becoming law. It’s important for New Mexicans to know not only the positions their legislators take in very public floor votes, but also in crucial votes being made in committee rooms.

Once again, the Albuquerque Journal decided to highlight our educational efforts in an article about whether or not nonprofits should have the right to speak freely about public official’s actions on key policy issues. Unfortunately, the article leaves out our history of public education, year in and year out. But it does point out the clear legal victory we achieved in 2010, when a federal appellate court upheld our right to free speech. SWOP has been sending out educational mailers to New Mexicans almost every year throughout our history, and our membership has always supported these endeavors. Transparency in government will always be opposed by elected officials who carry water for large corporations, and we appreciate your support in our right to educate New Mexicans.

April 6, 2012 at 08:48 AM in Current Affairs, Education, NM Legislature 2012 | Permalink | Comments (2)

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Treatment Center Funding Announced

Capital outlay monies going to treatment facility. With so much negative press about capital outlay these years, here is an example that should be highlighted as excellent pork! It is surprising the Governor did not line item veto it. DFNM wrote a peice about this project back in September, follow this link.

Huge kudos to Senator Michael Sanchez and the other Democrats who helped this project get passed and funded. Voting matters. Remember the "in again out again" republican Rep. David Chavez is challenging Senator Sanchez for his Valencia County seat. We must retain Senator Sanchez.

Press release in it's entirety:

The fight against substance abuse is getting much-needed financial assistance from the state thanks to two appropriations obtained during the recently completed legislative session. Senator Michael S. Sanchez (D-29-Valencia County) announced $5 million was included in the capital outlay bill for phase two construction of the Henry Perea Center for Wellness and Recovery in Los Lunas. Also, $750,000 was included in the general appropriations bill for operations of the program.

The Center is a multi-faceted program designed to be the state lead in treating persons from throughout New Mexico with the most severe disorders of addiction and mental illness, and those who have had frequent contact with the criminal justice system. The innovative program incorporates an emerging national trend to “treat not incarcerate”.

“Severe addictions and mental illness have caused devastating health, economic, educational, and social effects in communities throughout New Mexico. The Center is a positive and important step in breaking the cycle of substance abuse and subsequent criminal activities,” said Senator Sanchez. The Center currently provides out-patient substance abuse and mental health services to over 800 residents of Valencia County and that number is increasing by 90 new customers each month, according to Noel Clark, managing partner at the Center.

Clark noted, “Senator Sanchez’s effort will assist us in expanding this capacity to extend out-patient services to 125 new customers from throughout the state each month. The capital outlay funding will allow construction of a residential in-patient treatment facility for women and children. The new facility will give the unique opportunity for a mother to be with her children during her time in treatment. This treatment approach will help children bond or re-bond with their mother following a difficult time of family dysfunction due to substance abuse.” He added, “Senator Sanchez recognizes the negative impact substance abuse has on our communities and continues to champion efforts to attack this problem.”

Last year’s capital outlay bill included $5 million for the same project. However, a filibuster in the final hours of the legislative session effectively killed the bill and any chances for this project to begin. “It is unfortunate that this project had to wait a year,” said Senator Sanchez. “But we are pleased that phase two will soon move forward so that New Mexicans who are unable to get needed treatment in their own communities can be served by this facility.”

March 29, 2012 at 10:47 AM in Addiction, Drugs, Alcohol, NM Legislature 2012 | Permalink | Comments (1)

Friday, March 23, 2012

Civic Engagement Effort Fosters Values of Transparency, Accountability and Fairness

It’s a truth that should be self-evident – but it cannot be restated often enough.

New Mexicans deserve transparency and accountability – especially when it comes to votes cast on vital issues by their elected lawmakers. Typically, however, legislative decisions on complicated issues like tax policy fly under the radar of media scrutiny and public perception.

The last legislative session offers a perfect example with the historic effort to close that monstrous corporate tax loophole which allows out-of-state Big Box retailers to avoid paying income tax on the massive profits they earn in our state.

The Monstrous Corporate Tax Loophole

To be clear, calling it historic is not a nod to hyperbole. The bill to eliminate this massive corporate tax giveaway (Senate Bill 9 – the Corporate Fair Tax Act) succeeded in passing both houses of the New Mexico legislature this year after eight previous attempts over the last decade had met with failure. In fact, those prior bills usually failed because they were killed in the committee process.

Two committees in particular have proven to be a particular problem.

Tax reform bills must run what at times seem to be two impassable gauntlet -- the Senate Corporations and Transportation and the House Business and Industry Committees. And always, a phalanx of corporate lobbyists are posted at these gauntlets, standing guard to protect entrenched power and privilege. Their inordinate influence at the Roundhouse can make them into something akin to an extra-constitutional “third house” of the legislature.

But this year was different. These obstacles were surmounted and the bill passed! This was a landmark event and a time for celebration.

For this was the year legislators that got the message from their constituents – an newly informed citizenry who understood the fundamental value at stake in this fight – it was the value of basic fairness for New Mexico families and for our local businesses who had been placed at a competitive disadvantage.

Oh, and let’s not fail to mention that SB9 actually cut taxes for New Mexico business corporations and that it was a net job saver as well?

For every one job created by a big box retailer like WalMart, 1.4 jobs are lost to existing local businesses that downsize, according to a University of California-Irvine study.

Alas, the celebration was short-lived, for on March 6th SB9 crashed into the last redoubt of corporate power and influence – the Governor’s office. On that day Governor Susana Martinez vetoed SB9. Once again, New Mexico was left as one of the only remaining Western states to still permit itself to be taken advantage of by corporate greed.

What this means, of course, is that the fight for tax justice will go on a little longer. Rest assured that the bill will be coming back in the 2013 legislative session.

Check your mailbox

Ccp flier sb9 front 001
And this is precisely why constituents of a number of New Mexico state legislators are this week receiving post-session follow-up educational mailers that explain the fate of Senate Bill 9 and how their particular senator or representative voted on the bill, and encourage them to engage these lawmakers in a continued dialogue about tax policy and budget priorities.

New Mexico’s Center for Civic Policy (CCP) and the SouthWest Organizing Project (SWOP) have proudly partnered to produce these mailings. Our two organizations share a core mission that obligates us to educate the public about policy issues that impact their lives and to foster greater civic engagement with the policy-making process and elected officials.

Ccp flier sb9 back 001
This effort is part of our ongoing commitment to civic engagement.

Prior to the legislative session, CCP and SWOP distributed another set of educational mailers to the districts of legislators who sat on those key committees that would hear and vote on SB9. To say that we were overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response to those pre-session mailers is an understatement. Those mailers contributed to generating hundreds of constituent phone calls to legislators during the session. And those phone calls made a difference.

We learned an inspiring lesson. Civic engagement (aka democracy in action) works! Legislators responded. Senate Bill 9 passed.

Civic Engagement Works

Democracy is never easy. It requires eternal vigilance and careful attention. And a constant learning and re-learning.

Another lesson worth relearning is that we must never forget that most legislators are seriously well-intentioned individuals who do care about the common good. New Mexico’s unpaid citizen legislators make considerable sacrifice to serve.

Nevertheless, we cannot stress enough the importance of our lawmakers hearing from their folks back home on the issues that impact the everyday lives of working families – because if they don’t get that call, the only voice they will hear at the Roundhouse when it’s time to vote is that of the corporate lobbyist whispering in their ears.

The incentives to do the wrong thing are ever-present. And sadly, herein lies another essential lesson.

All too often we see lawmakers succumb to lobbyist pressure (not to mention the inducement of campaign contributions). Thus, they take the easy way out. And it’s this go-along-to-get-along S.O.P that enables bad outcomes when it seems like nobody back home is really paying attention to the fuzzy policy details and that nobody really cares.

However, we’re pleased to report that people do care. And on the issue of the out-of-state, corporate tax loophole, polling released by the Green Chamber of Commerce shows that 70% of New Mexicans care a great deal!

The people just need accurate and complete information. And, above all, they need that spark of an idea that helps them realize that their participation can actually make a difference. Then they will act.

Maez-Gibson is chief executive officer at the Center for Civic Policy, and Garduño is co-director at the SouthWest Organizing Project.

March 23, 2012 at 06:23 AM in Corporatism, Jobs, NM Legislature 2012, Public Policy, Taxes | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

ProgressNow Ranks Worst Gov Martinez Vetoes of NMLEG 2012!

Veto stampWorst Vetoes of 2012 Announced

War on women comes to NM with veto of women’s health program.
Veto of job funds cuts deep in struggling small towns.

After the legislature passed the first bi-partisan and unanimous budget in recent memory, Governor Susana Martinez exercised her veto power to kill off programs for women’s health, nursing home safety requirements, Main Street job creation and even her own reading coaches.

ProgressNow New Mexico completed an exhaustive review of more than 5,700 lines of the final state budget to identify the most egregious vetoes issued by the governor.

"If you are poor, female or sick, don't look to this governor's budget for any help," says Pat Davis of ProgressNow NM.

A few examples of the worst vetoes of 2012:

  • After promising in her State of the State address to protect access to nursing homes for seniors, Martinez eliminated a requirement that those state-run facilities strive to eliminate “abuse, neglect and exploitation” of residents.
  • After calling for funding for “reading coaches” to help children develop this critical skill, she line-item vetoed language requiring that money appropriated for this purpose be used for just that.
  • A veto of funds from the Judicial Nominating Commission, charged with vetting judicial nominees, comes less than a year after three state judges resigned in high-profile bribery, DWI and sex scandals.
  • Martinez continues the Republican war on women by eliminating funding for women’s health.

And the worst veto of 2012 goes to...

  • Martinez eliminated an appropriation for the “Main Street Program” creating local jobs in 22 communities from Artesia to Albuquerque. The program created almost 600 jobs and spurred millions in private investment in local communities last year and was expected to do the same in 2013 before the veto.

Martinez also vetoed legislation calling for CYFD to reduce the wait time for poor families to obtain early childhood education and child care assistance, food for the homeless and poor, money to help coordinate statewide athletic and extracurricular activities for school children (state sports playoffs), library programs teaching adults to read and HIV/AIDS prevention for more than 22,000 at-risk New Mexicans.

“With a balanced and unanimous budget, the governor did not have to exercise a single veto to achieve a balanced budget,” says Pat Davis, Executive Director of ProgressNow NM. “ Instead she chose to cut health care for women and Main Street job programs. Her vetoes expose her true values, and they aren’t in line with New Mexican values.”

"These vetoes are almost laughable if the consequences weren't so serious.  With a balanced budget in hand, what could possess anyone to eliminate food programs for the poor and not ask nursing homes to prevent abuse and neglect?"

The full list as well as links to the vetoes and links to the budget are available at ProgressNowNM.org

March 7, 2012 at 06:07 PM in NM Legislature 2012, ProgressNow New Mexico, Susana Martinez | Permalink | Comments (1)

NM Green Chamber Expresses Disappointment with Governor Martinez' Veto of Senate Bill 9

Green chamber of commerceThe New Mexico Green Chamber of Commerce expressed its deep disappointment with Governor Martinez' veto of a measure to close a tax-loophole that allows "big-box" companies to claim their profits in states that don't have corporate income tax. New Mexico is the last Western state that allows "big-box" companies to use this loophole to avoid taxes and shift the tax burden onto the backs of Main Street business.

Senate Bill 9 (SB9), sponsored by Senator Peter Wirth of Santa Fe, was approved by a bi-partisan vote in the 2012 New Mexico State Legislature, after nearly a decade of attempts. Martinez' veto means that New Mexico small businesses will continue to pay more in corporate income taxes than their out-of-state "big box" competitors.

"Vetoing SB9 keeps New Mexico owned businesses at a disadvantage against big-box stores," said Doug Zilm, NMGCC member. "As a grocery store manager, who pays his fair share of taxes because I'm part of this community, I'm terribly disappointed the Governor would protect this tax loophole for out-of state corporations. I'm worried that the Governor doesn't support the small businesses that support New Mexico."

Small businesses across New Mexico compete every day against out-of-state corporations and across the nation, small businesses have generated 65% of net new jobs over the last two decades. Whereas according to a 2007 study by UC Irvine, Clark and Cornell University, for every 1 job created by a store like Wal-Mart, 1.4 jobs are lost as existing businesses downsize or close.[1]

On Monday more than 50 small businesses submitted a letter to Governor Martinez asking her to sign SB9 (http://library.constantcontact.com/download/get/file/1104335014834-205/NMGCC+Letter+to+GovMartinez.pdf)

If signed into law, SB9 would have lowered taxes on all corporations and mandated that out-of-state corporations with retail spaces more than 30,000 square feet in size report their combined earnings from all subsidiaries for tax purposes. Without mandatory combined reporting, many choose to file at alternative corporate addresses in states with no corporate taxes.

[1] www.newrules.org/retail/neumarkstudy.pdf by David Neumark (University of California-Irvine), Junfu Zhang (Clark University), and Stephen Ciccarella (Cornell University), IZA Discussion Paper No. 2545, Jan. 2007

March 7, 2012 at 11:54 AM in Business, Corporatism, NM Legislature 2012, Susana Martinez, Taxes | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Susana Martinez Stands with Large Out of State Corporations over NM Small Businesses

New Mexico Small Businesses and Families Disappointed In Governor’s Choice to Coddle Out-Of-State Corporations By Continuing Unfair and Unsound Tax Giveaway.

Today, Governor Susana Martinez vetoed Senate Bill 9, the “Corporate Fair Tax” bill, sponsored by Senator Peter Wirth of Santa Fe. As approved by both legislative chambers, the bill would have closed a loophole for "big box companies," lowered corporate income taxes, and leveled the playing field for New Mexico small businesses.

Lalo draws susana alibiThis cartoon sketch run in the Alibi April 2010 drawn by Lalo Alcaraz, could not be more true about Martinez. The Queen and her jesters outside the Roundhouse castle walls. Perfect image.

In a not so surprising but very disappointing move today Governor Martinez choose to favor big-box stores like Walmart and BestBuy over our NM stores like Baillos and many other NM businesses. In her statement she distorts the meaning of the bill which was discussed and vetted within the 30day session. Please read the bills history here, right from the legislative website, you can read what each committee did to the bill as far as amendments and who voted for the bill. It was a huge success to have this bill go through to floor votes in both the house and senate and pass in each chamber.

After nearly a decade of legislative attempts, the bill was approved by a bi-partisan vote in the 2012 New Mexico State Legislature and had been sitting on the Governor's desk for signature. Senator Wirth has been introducing the bill for the nearly decade. Senator Wirth deserves much appreciation from NM business's and citizen's for his relentless fight for tax fairness. He knows the history of the bill and can respond back to the opponents constant trickery of try this try that. Peter Wirth calmly says, "Good idea that was in the version in year 2008. And the republicans did not agree with that suggestion then." (paraphrasing). In Senator Wirth's statement of disappointment over Susana vetoing this good legislation. Senator Wirth says he will continue to fight for this bipartisan tax reform in future legislative sessions.

We are being taken advantage of

Film no jobs susanaNew Mexico is the last Western state that allows “big-box” companies to use this loophole to avoid taxes and shift the tax burden onto the backs of Main Street businesses. Thousands of calls were directed to the Governors office from her own citizens requesting her to sign this fair tax legislation. She has shown her true cards with this veto folks. She is not for small business. She is not for the struggling businesses and families in New Mexico. Martinez and every legislature who did not sign onto this bill is NOT for NM period. Pic to right by NM film sindication.

These large companies go to great extremes to not pay taxes in the community they are selling in. Wal-Mart, for example, created a holding company in Delaware for the purpose of transferring income in order to avoid income tax liability under New Mexico law. http://www.santafenewmexican.com/Opinion/myview/My-View--Michael-Mellon-Wirth-s-tax-bill-presents-dilemma-for-g

On Thursday, March 1, 2012, a coalition of community organizations submitted 5,000 signatures of New Mexicans urging the Governor to sign SB9. http://www.abqjournal.com/main/2012/03/01/north/gov-pressured-on-tax-measure.html

On Monday, March 5, 2012, the New Mexico Green Chamber of Commerce delivered a letter from 52 local businesses from around the state urging Governor Martinez to sign Senate Bill 9. http://www.nmgreenchamber.com/ChooseSmallBiz.

The SB9 also Lowered Taxes

A poll by Project New America demonstrated 70% of New Mexico voters support closing tax loopholes for out-of-state corporations while lowering the corporate income tax for all businesses that pay their fair share of taxes.

http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs071/1104335014834/archive/1109437937206.html

The NM Green Chamber of Commerce released this video outlining the impact of SB9 on small businesses: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0OSa4g9dPoA&feature=youtu.be

March 6, 2012 at 06:42 PM in Corporatism, NM Legislature 2012, Peter Wirth, Susana Martinez, Taxes | Permalink | Comments (4)

Martinez Vetoes SB9; updated with Senator Peter Wirth Statement

From Gov press release:

Governor Martinez also vetoed Senate Bill 9, a tax increase on an arbitrarily-chosen set of retailers that would kill jobs, pass higher prices on to consumers, and drive business out of the state.

"While proponents of this legislation may have had a few particular corporate targets in mind when pushing for this tax increase, the result would be much broader and raise taxes on businesses like grocery stores," the Governor said. "Increasing taxes on grocery stores, clothing retailers, and home improvement stores, while choosing to cut taxes for a different set of corporations - such as large banks, casinos, payday loan companies, or any other large corporation that pays corporate income tax - is not only misguided and arbitrary tax policy, but it's also not the way to foster economic growth in New Mexico."

“I’ve stated repeatedly that if this bill makes New Mexico less competitive, raises taxes, and drives up the cost of items that families and businesses buy every day, I would veto it – and it does just that,” the Governor concluded.

Senator Peter Wirth’s Statement on Veto of SB 9

I am extremely disappointed with the Governor’s veto of Senate Bill 9.  New Mexico businesses are the big losers today.  This was a chance to lower the top corporate tax rate and begin the process of fixing our tax code which is a mess.  Instead, the Governor sided with out-of-state “big box” retailers, letting them continue to avoid paying their fair share of New Mexico’s corporate tax.

Tax reform will not be easy.  The broad support for Senate Bill 9 shows that New Mexicans and New Mexico businesses want tax fairness.  I am committed to continuing a bipartisan tax reform discussion in future legislative sessions.

 

March 6, 2012 at 04:29 PM in NM Legislature 2012, Peter Wirth, Susana Martinez, Taxes | Permalink | Comments (1)

Tik Tok (not just a Ke$ha song!) Sign SB9 Susana!

From ClearlySK:

Let's talk a little about the Governor's role after the legislative session!

Contact the Gov and tell her you want SB9 to get passed!
Online: http://www.governor.state.nm.us/Contact_the_Governor.aspx
On the phone: 505-476-2200

March 6, 2012 at 11:04 AM in Corporatism, NM Legislature 2012, Susana Martinez, Taxes, video | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, March 05, 2012

52 NM Small Businesses Urge Governor Martinez to Sign SB9

Still no firm clear direction or information (only rumors) on what Susana will do with the SB9 bill which was passed this session and is waiting for her signature to become law. The law proposed is clear; you either support big box stores like Walmart to not pay their fair share of taxes to our state OR you support our local businesses who are paying their fair share of taxes to this state.

Many organizations are pushing for this tax fairness bill that has been being introduced in the Legislature for almost a decade. This important bill finally passed the Legislature, it is a no brainer that it helps the people of New Mexico, let's see which side of history our Republican Gov comes down on.

Below is the most recent release from The New Mexico Green Chamber.

Green chamber of commerce

Revenue Neutral Bill Closes Loophole for "Big Box" Stores and Lowers Taxes for Small Business

Today the New Mexico Green Chamber of Commerce delivers a letter from 52 local businesses urging Governor Martinez to sign Senate Bill 9, which will close a loophole for "big box companies," lower corporate income taxes and level the playing field for New Mexico small businesses.

"Small businesses from Alamogordo, Las Vegas, Las Cruces, Silver City, Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Taos are asking Governor Martinez to support their business and sign this bill," said Allan Oliver CEO NM Green Chamber of Commerce. "New Mexico small businesses are major job creators in our state and need a level playing field to compete with "big-box" stores."

SB9 Video.m4v www.nmgreenchamber.com/ChooseSmallBiz

Text of the letter is below:

Every day, New Mexico's small businesses compete with "big box" stores. But the playing field isn't level. "Big box" companies can claim their New Mexico profits in states that don't have corporate income tax, such as Delaware. New Mexico is the last Western state that allows "big-box" companies to use this loophole to avoid taxes and shift the tax burden onto the backs of Main Street businesses like mine.

Over the past 17 years, the small business community has generated 65% of net new jobs across the country.* For every $100 spent at a local business like mine, $45 returns to our community, compared with only $14 from big-box stores.* While big box stores on average cost taxpayers $468 per 1,000 square feet, small businesses generate a net annual surplus of $326 per 1,000 square feet.*

After nearly a decade of attempts, a bi-partisan vote by the New Mexico State Legislature approved Senate Bill 9 (SB9) to level the playing field for New Mexico's small businesses against "big box" stores like Wal-Mart, Home Depot and Best Buy. That legislation is now sitting on Governor Martinez' desk for signature.

We, the under-signed small business owners of New Mexico, respectfully urge Governor Martinez to sign SB9 into law, lowering our taxes and leveling our playing field against out-of-state "big box" corporations.

Click here to view PDF of letter with signatures. View the letter on our website: http://www.nmgreenchamber.com/

March 5, 2012 at 07:59 PM in Corporatism, NM Legislature 2012, Peter Wirth, Susana Martinez, Taxes | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Communications Workers of America (CWA) Launches Website to Urge Gov. Martinez to Sign SB9

Citizens of New Mexico can visit new website and urge Governor Martinez to sign legislation ensuring that out of state corporations pay their fair share in taxes.

Susana 001Today, the Communications Workers of America (CWA) launch www.OhSusana.org, a website where New Mexico’s citizens can urge Governor Susana Martinez to act in the interests of New Mexico small business owners and workers by signing SB9 – the Corporate Fair Tax Bill. The popular bipartisan bill will boost revenue by changing the state’s tax code to ensure multi-state corporations doing business in New Mexico pay their fair share of corporate income taxes. This legislation has also been endorsed by the Albuquerque Journal.

“Our state misses out on tens of millions of dollars in revenue every year—revenue that every other western state currently collects—because big out of state corporate interests maintain a lockjaw grip on the capitol.  Susana Martinez has an easy opportunity today to change that balance of power and give New Mexico small business an opportunity to succeed.  She should level the playing field so that every business, not just businesses incorporated only in New Mexico, pays state income tax to benefit our municipalities, schools and roads,” said Michael O’Reilly Proprietor of Pranzo Italian Grill in Santa Fe.

"Small Business owners in NM are paying income tax on their profits, while out of state based corporations who compete with them day in and day out are allowed to avoid taxes on their profits,” said Herb Cohen, former small business owner of Steaksmith in Santa Fe. “This is unfair to all who support our state's needs and it makes local small business less competitive in the process."

New Mexico is the only western state to operate under an imbalanced tax structure which allows corporations to use a tax loophole to avoid paying taxes.  This loophole also puts small businesses in an untenable position of having to compete with big box stores while being forced to pay taxes that the big box stores- like Wal-Mart- are not.  The SB9 bill would level the playing field for small businesses.

“Governor Susana Martinez has the opportunity to stand with hundreds of thousands of New Mexico small business owners and workers,” said Miles Conway, CWA NM. “We hope that she puts the interests of New Mexico above those of corporate lobbyists.”

Governor Martinez has until March 7 to sign or veto SB9.

Visit www.OhSusana.org to learn more about why Gov. Martinez should sign SB9.

February 29, 2012 at 11:18 AM in Corporatism, NM Legislature 2012, Susana Martinez, Taxes | Permalink | Comments (2)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

2/28: Senator Wirth and Representative Egolf to Hold Town Hall

Peter wirth waphSenator Wirth and Representative Egolf to hold Town Hall to discuss the 2012 legislative session, capital outlay and redistricting.

State Senator Peter Wirth (D-Santa Fe) and State Representative Brian Egolf (D-Santa Fe) have scheduled a town hall meeting with residents of their districts.

  • Tuesday February 28th from 6:00 to 8:00 pm at the Santa Fe Farmers Market Pavilion, 1607 Paseo de Peralta in the Santa Fe Railyard.

“Representative Egolf and I look forward to updating our constituents on the 2012 legislative session, capital outlay and redistricting,” Wirth said.

Senator Wirth and Representative Egolf have made district meetings a regular part of their legislative duties, and both underscore their importance.

“These meetings are one of the most important things we do,” Egolf said.  “They are a way for us to better understand individual and neighborhood concerns, while discussing the best way to proceed on legislative issues.”

Wirth represents State Senate District 25.  Egolf represents State House District 47.  Since their districts overlap, they work together whenever possible in addressing issues of concern to Santa Fe residents.

February 26, 2012 at 01:17 PM in Brian Egolf, Events, NM Legislature 2012, Peter Wirth | Permalink | Comments (0)