VOICES OF LOS ALAMOS NEWS
Former State Sen. Dede Feldman will speak about the bills in the current legislature that would enact the ethics commission amendment during the monthly meeting of Voices of Los Alamos on Monday.
The meeting runs from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. at the Unitarian Church, 1738 N Sage Loop.
New Mexicans voted to create “a seven-member state ethics commission tasked with investigating alleged violations of ethical conduct by state officials, executive and legislative employees, candidates, lobbyists, government contractors, and others as provided by law.”
Two bills are being considered in the current legislature that would enact the ethics commission: HB 4 and SB 619.
The Independent State Ethics Commission would do the following:
- Oversee the conduct of state officers, public employees, contractors and lobbyists.
- Serve as a resource for officials to get guidance on issues and provide ethics training.
- Investigate complaints alleging violations of standards of conduct, campaign finance reporting requirements or other disclosure requirements.
- Adjudicate complaints that are found to have enough evidence to proceed to a hearing.
- Have the authority to issue subpoenas and compel witnesses.
- Impose fines and sanctions where violations are found.
- Forward complaints with potential criminal implications to the appropriate agencies.
- Conduct its work in public to the extent permitted by the enabling legislation.
Feldman represented the North Valley of Albuquerque from 1997-2012 in the state senate where she served as chairman of both the powerful Public Affairs Committee and the interim Health and Human Services Committee. She is best known for health care legislation (including measures to control health insurance premiums and create a brain injury services fund, as well as ethics and campaign finance reform (public financing of PRC and judicial races, limits on campaign contributions).
Feldman is a former journalist, adjunct professor of Political Science at UNM and currently trains aspiring leaders, reformers and candidates, and the author of the books Inside the New Mexico Senate: Boots, Suits, and Citizens and Another Way Forward. More information on both books and ordering information can be found at http://www.dedefeldman.com.