The fear, expressed early on in the session, that history could repeat itself seemed closer to becoming an actuality as legislators embarked on the final week of the special session on Monday with no redistricing plans ready to be seen by Governor Susana Martinez.
The legislature last took up redistricting in 2001. After meeting for 17 days, legislators and then Republican Governor Gary Johnson were unable to come to an agreement, which caused the state courts to decide on the state House and congressional redistricting maps at a cost of $3.5 million to taxpayers. That money went to attorney’s fees to settle the disagreements.
A frustrated Rep. Candy Spence Ezzell, R-Roswell, said lawmakers seem to forget that they are in session on the taxpayer’s dime. “We have enough funding where we can be holding other committees at the same time as we are killing time.”