After years of debate between the Governor’s office and the legislature, Senate Majority Whip Tim Keller (D-17-Bernalillo) has introduced Senate Joint Resolution 9 to create an ethics committee through constitutional amendment.
“We have tried this for over ten years,” said Sen. Keller. “It’s something that the public has always demanded, but the legislature and Governor have never been able to agree, so it’s time the voters make this happen themselves.”
A poll done by the Albuquerque Journal in 2007 found 90 percent of voters supported more stringent ethics laws, which included restrictions on lobbyists and creation of an ethics commission. A recent 2013 poll by Common Cause New Mexico also revealed that high percentages of voters (79 percent) believe corruption is a problem in New Mexico government.
The bipartisan committee would perform the duties of handling ethics violation complaints and investigate conduct complaints of state officers, employees, state contractors and lobbyists.