New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez has certainly had a busy first five days in office thus far.
The Nation’s first Latina governor went ahead with many executive orders just after she took the oath of office.
Gov. Martinez first prohibited state agencies, departments and boards from hiring lobbyists. In a release from the governor’s office, it stated that the order ensures that taxpayer dollars are not spent to have lobbyists represent state entities and leave it to the hands of the elected and appointed officials.
So this brings to question, in theory this order is good; however who is really looking out for the will of the people. Is it our friends in the fourth estate? Journalists, Bloggers, etc? or is the average New Mexico stuck fending for themselves? That is for you, my readers to decide.
In sticking with transparency of government requiring state agencies and employees to cooperate with Federal Investigations.
Okay, this one made me scratch my head just a bit. Last time I checked they were suppose to at some level. I gather “Auntie” Susana is really trying to actually push corruption out of Santa Fe, whether or not that will actually happen is another story all together.
In sticking with our them of the week which seems to be government transparency and open government, Gov. Martinez signed an order to all-in-all responsibly exercise the use of the claim of executive privilege when it comes to responding to Inspection of Public Records Act (IPRA).
In the release from the governor’s office the order the order ensures greater transparency and openness in the process used by the public and the press to access public documents, clarifying that the new administration does not intend to use executive privilege to unjustifiably block the public’s view of the activities of state government.
Okay folks, we have it in writing now….lets just remember this when she invokes it.
And of course, lastly we cant forget the state DNA Lab and its equipment move first to Santa Fe and then back to Albuquerque at her order. She also announced a key initiative that she plans to push during the upcoming legislative session the expansion of Katie’s Law to all felony arrests.
In addition, Martinez announced her plans to push for a key initiative in the upcoming legislative session – the expansion of Katie’s Law to require that DNA samples be collected from those arrested for any felony offense in New Mexico.
Named after Katie Sepich, a New Mexico State University (NMSU) student who was brutally attacked, raped and murdered in 2003, Katie’s Law requires the collection of DNA samples of those arrested for certain types of felony crimes, predominantly those deemed to be more violent in nature.
“Keeping the state’s DNA lab in Albuquerque is absolutely the right thing to do,” Governor Martinez remarked. “It will ensure the integrity of key evidence that will help take criminals out of our communities and bring justice to victims.”
“As a former District Attorney, I also know that the collection of DNA evidence is a critical public safety tool, and expanding Katie’s Law to include DNA collection from those arrested for all types of felonies will save lives and protect our children and families in the future.”
Martinez was joined at the news conference by Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry and Jayann Sepich, Katie’s mother. As District Attorney, Martinez prosecuted and convicted Sepich’s killer.
I am honored to stand with Governor Martinez as she announces that the center will be moved back to Albuquerque where it belongs,” Mayor Richard J. Berry said. “I thank her for her leadership. Our Governor knows the importance of this law more than anyone. As a prosecutor, she has tried and convicted numerous felons whose DNA was collected at this center.”
Jayann Sepich voiced strong support for Martinez’s proposal to expand Katie’s Law. “DNA evidence was used to convict my daughter’s killer, and by expanding DNA collection to those arrested for all felony offenses, I’m confident we can prevent similar crimes in the future,” she said. “I am grateful for Governor Martinez’s work on behalf of victims. This proposal would
increase the safety of New Mexicans while improving our ability to convict those who harm others.”
So my question related to this one, how does this get paid for? Certainly cutting the positions of two chefs at governor’s residence isn’t going to.
In a release from the governor’s office, The Martinez administration will be saving 55 percent over what the Richardson administration spent. That savings you may ask, only $178,862. Can you say that was the yearly salary of maybe just one official appointment during Richardson’s eight years in office.
You will be relieved to know that she retained a short-order cook and a housekeeper, one less thing to do on her list.
“Tax dollars should not be wasted on a stable of chefs at the Governor’s residence,” said Governor Martinez. “This is a prime example of wasteful spending that exists in state government.”
Martinez said that at a time when New Mexicans are struggling and are being forced to make their own household budget cuts, there is no justifiable reason to budget two chefs for the governor.