Legislative Session Update 2/26/2021

Legislative Session Update 2/26/2021

  • Post published:February 26, 2021
  • Post category:News

Some wins to celebrate:

SB 176 General Appropriations Act of 2021Sen Munoz. Great for business. This bill includes an appropriation of $300 million to the state Unemployment Insurance Fund. NMBC estimates the state needs a minimum of $750 million to cover the federal debt and keep the fund solvent, but this is at least a start and we appreciate it.

HB 95 Water Administration and Planning ChangesRep Romero. Anti-business. This bill complicates, not helps, water use in our state. There were numerous issues with this bill, and we’re happy to tell you it was TABLED in House Agriculture & Water Committee. Read NMBC’s letter here.

HB 110 Phased Minimum Wage Increase, Rep Roybal-Caballero and Ferrary. Anti-business. The bill would further increase New Mexico’s minimum wage to $15/hour. This received a different kind of action/non-action when the bill received no motion to pass or table. So, it will remain in the House Commerce and Economic Development Committee until such time as action is taken. Read NMBC’s letter here.

HB 162 Public Employee Retirement Board Changes, Rep Anderson. Say what? This bill would move from an elected board to an appointed board, which may be a good thing until you see how the board would be appointed: 6 seats from unions, 1 from the Speaker, 1 from the Senate Pro Temp, 1 from the Governor, 1 alternating between NM Assoc. of Counties & NM Municipal League, Finance Secretary and State Treasurer (who is specifically blocked from voting?). We are happy to report this bill was tabled in House State Government, Elections and Indian Affairs Committee. 

The Bad:

HB 20 Healthy Workplaces ActRep ChandlerRubioElyRoybal Caballero and Sen Stewart. Anti-business. The financial burden for employers caused by this bill will force many to reduce hours, job openings, or worse, to close their business entirely. This bill passed out of House Judiciary and is headed to the full House for a vote.

Coming up:

HB 148 Unemployment Contribution Rate ChangeRep Chandler. Anti-business. This bill would increase UI tax rates 200-300% or more. This bill is in House Appropriations and could be heard soon. Take action to voice your opinion here. 

HB 268/a Coronavirus & Workers’ CompRep Hochman-Vigil, ChandlerDixon, and Ely. Anti-business. This bill would destroy the state Workers’ Compensation (WC) system allowing people to make a claim for the Coronavirus, regardless of where infection occurred, because it cannot be proven. This law could bankrupt some of the independently managed WC funds. The bill will be heard Friday, 8 am, House State Government, Elections and Indian Affairs Committee.
 
NMBC will continue to fight for smart business legislation until the last minute of the session and keep you updated via our website, newsletter and social media as often as possible. If you have questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to reach out and give us a call or email.