Imagine if someone paid a large sum out of your bank account, and when you asked what the payment was for you were told it was confidential, mind your beeswax, and to check back in six months.
For years that’s what the state of New Mexico has been doing with your tax dollars when it comes to paying out settlements for lawsuits and tort claims against the state and its employees. And that’s what the state of New Mexico will no longer do thanks to a unanimous Senate (38-0) and a unanimous House (70-0).
Sen. Sander Rue, R-Albuquerque, spearheaded Senate Bill 64, which “removes the 180-day delay in releasing public records concerning claims against governmental entities and it replaces it with the right to inspected records more immediately.” The bill is headed to Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, whose administration has championed releasing such information.
Meanwhile, a small portion of the Senate suffered a black eye earlier this month when KRQE News 13 reporter Rachel Knapp was kicked out of a Senate Conservation Committee meeting because she hadn’t sought permission to film.