ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Kind of spooky when you read the morning weather forecast for Santa Fe on Feb. 14 and it says in red letters: “Record high temperatures Saturday.”
It used to be that I might have thought nothing more than, “Spring’s coming. Time to get out of here.” Especially with less than a week left before the Legislature’s adjournment. But these days, deep into a drought, I’m wondering whether these New Mexico lawmaker folks should be talking more about water.
Legislators and the governor already seem to be suffering from some kind of dehydration.
They don’t have a state budget yet, which is what they gathered here to do in the first place. The Senate has given up on the House and is starting to draft its own with adjournment of the 30-day session nearing at noon on Thursday. Gov. Susana Martinez’s office apparently has been involved in negotiations all along. Before things fell apart in the House, here was our report on that.
“We’re not going to wait on the House any longer,” Senate Finance Committee John Arthur Smith, D-Deming, told the Journal’s Dan Boyd earlier this week.
In my imagination, I see a bunch of people up walking around with divining rods, trying to figure a way out of a thicket of standoffs.
The efforts of teachers and early childhood program advocates this year are as intense as I’ve even seen. Oversight of public education in general is one of the issues. Here’s our most recent story on the early childhood money. And, of course, the budget also is involved.
Wheelspinning or not, the Capitol will be humming into the weekend.
Educators will be rallying here Saturday after a union-organized march from the Plaza. Also, on Saturday, we’re hearing that the House Education Committee will be taking up the controversial third-grade reading, or social promotion, issue.
The high temperature Saturday is expected to be 64 degrees. And the weather folks say it will 55 when everybody heads for the doors on Thursday.
Meanwhile, the expression on farmer/lawmaker Stuart Ingle’s face in the Eddie Moore photo above seems to speak volumes about the 2014 session of the Legislature so far.