My Turn

Opinion: To lawmakers and the governor: a call for moral legislation and policies

By Chuck Doughty and Jim Schultz
Posted 2/28/19

From our faith, our intellect and our conscience, we ask you to address five areas that cry out for corrective action by the 2019 New Mexico Legislature:Economic: Escalating and extreme …

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My Turn

Opinion: To lawmakers and the governor: a call for moral legislation and policies

Posted

From our faith, our intellect and our conscience, we ask you to address five areas that cry out for corrective action by the 2019 New Mexico Legislature:

Economic: Escalating and extreme inequity

Environment: Climate threats, drought, renewable energy

Health care: State plan, women's health, birth control, abortion care

Immigration: Human rights, civil liberties, compassionate treatment

Education: Fully funded high-quality education and early childhood

Please consider these moral perspectives as you debate and vote on legislation:

• People have a right to share in the common resources of the earth that belong to all of us, and a right to a fair return on their labor, including a livable wage.

• As stewards of our planet, posterity has the right to inherit a habitable world, not one despoiled by climate change or lacking air that's fit to breathe or water to drink.

• A cruel government immigration policy that rips refugee children from their mothers' arms is un-American and cannot be abided.

• Quality affordable health care for all is a right for all.

• Quality education for all is the birthright of every child.

We ask you to support bills to address these issues and defeat any proposals that perpetuate injustice and poverty, such as a tax on food.

Economic Justice:

HB 31: Phased in Minimum Wage raises the minimum wage to $10 immediately and to $12 in 2022.

HB 150: Installment and Small Loan Changes adds consumer protections to payday loans.

SB 183: Working Families Tax Credit doubles the Working Families Tax credit.

HB 6: Tax Changes eliminates a variety of tax giveaways including the 50 percent deduction for capital gains taxes.

HB 160: Requirements for Childcare Assistance raises income levels for parent co-payment.

HB 18: Child Income Tax Credit provides a child tax credit of $25 to $175 per child, depending on income.

Environment, Climate Change, Land and Water:

HB 28: Resource Sustainability & Security Act directs every state agency to develop and implement a climate resilience and sustainability plan.

SB 489: Energy Transition Act with needed amendments will facilitate the transition from coal to renewable energy.

HB 210: Community Solar Act allows individuals to buy energy from locally developed solar arrays.

SB 186: Oil Conservation Division Powers & Duties increases penalties for gas and oil spills to be comparable with neighboring states.

SB 275: Increase Renewable Portfolio Standards. increases the existing RPS to 50 percent renewable energy produced by NM utilities by 2030 and 80 percent by 2040.

HB 206: Environmental Review Act defines the duties of state agencies to conduct environmental reviews and prepare environmental impact statements for all development and construction projects.

SB 374: Local Choice Energy Act allows local jurisdictions and tribes to develop, produce, distribute and sell renewable energy.

Health care:

SB 279 / HB 295: Health Security Act requires the completion of a fiscal study of the Health Security Plan.

HB 416 / SB 405: Medicaid Buy in Act provides greater access to quality, affordable health care.

HB 51: Decriminalize Abortion rescinds a 1969 statute making abortion illegal in NM.

Immigration:

SB 196 / HB 195: No Resources for Federal Immigration Law benefits our immigrant neighbors.

HB 141: State Disclosure of Sensitive Info protects immigrants (and others) from having the federal government harvest information that could be used to identify an immigrant.

Education:

HJR 1: Permanent Funds for Early Childhood allocates an additional 1 percent from the Permanent Fund for early childhood education.

A longer version of this letter was signed by 35 Taoseños and distributed to the governor and all 112 legislators.

Chuck Doughty and Jim Shultz live in Taos.

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