Dear Edit or:
KOB reported on Aug. 30, 2011, that Governor Martinez has called a 30-day special legislation session for the decennial redistricting. She added two items on the special session agenda. The legislators are being asked to consider eliminating drivers’ licenses for illegal immigrants and elimination of social promotion for third-grade pupils who are not reading at grade level.
Senator Garcia stated that the addition of these two topics was unreasonable and could not be decided in the 30-day session.
One would assume most legislators have already discussed these items with their constituents or in caucuses, or in one, or more, of the myriad of committees that the Legislature has established.
Redistricting is a regular occurrence every 10 years after the census is completed. This issue should be no surprise. The drivers’ license issue has been considered before and is frequently in the news. This issue should be no surprise. Pupils’ performance in reading has been a major topic every year. This issue should be no surprise. It is only logical that each legislator should have a pretty good grasp of the importance of each of these topics. Why should it take 30 days, or as Senator Garcia stated, more than 30 days to make a decision on these three items?
There are only three decisions any legislator must make on any of these issues; yea, nay or abstain, Thirty days should be ample time to make a decision.
We make multiple decisions daily that affect our lives, our families, friends and even our communities. Should we expect less from or elected leaders?
If the legislators cannot make three decisions in 30 days, there are three questions for the citizenry.
1. Are these legislators up to the task for which they were elected?
2. Are these legislators worth the per diem and perks/benefits they are receiving?
3. Have we elected persons of sufficient competence to determine the legislation that affects all the citizens of New Mexico?
Should we continue to bear the consequences of inaction, bureaucratic stalling, legislative posturing and lack of legislative service? Just imagine if there were an emergency in our state. Could, or would, the legislators be able to make a decision in a timely manner?
Our cities and counties need decision makers, not procrastinators, to represent us in Santa Fe.