Arguably the most important person in the Roundhouse Tuesday wasn’t the Governor Martinez, House Speaker Ken Martinez or Senate Majority Leader Michael Sanchez.
For one day and one day only, the spotlight was on Sen. Jerry Ortiz y Pino, D-Albuquerque.
As I’m typing this, Ortiz y Pino is running the Senate Public Affairs Committee, a committee charged with determining a number of high profile bills all in one night.
Here’s a short list of what’s up for debate:
- Spaceport liability legislation
- Gun show background checks
- Driver’s licenses for illegal immigrants
- Forfeiture of vehicles when driver’s license is suspended or revoked for DWI
- Public hearings for fatal officer-involved shootings
It’s possible all of these won’t get handled, but that’s an impressive list nonetheless.
It comes from time ticking down in the session. Several of the House bills are now in the Senate (and vice versa) and as lawmakers scramble to get things done, committees will simply start getting packed.
SB 41, introduced by Sen. Sander Rue, R-Albuquerque, could prove a big help to the Children, Youth and Families Department.
If an emergency placement of a child is necessary, the bill gives CYFD the ability to make an emergency instant background check on any person potentially designated to take care of the child. That would help ensure the emergency home is a suitable one for that child as quickly as possible.
Sen. Rue’s bill passed the Senate floor overwhelmingly and is now over in the House.