Q&A: House District 45 Carmichael Dominguez
- NAME: Carmichael A. Dominguez
- POLITICAL PARTY: Democrat
- OCCUPATION: Retired State Employee – Cartographer
- CITY OF RESIDENCE: Santa Fe
- RELEVANT EXPERIENCE: 4 Years Board of Education. 12 Years City Councilor City of Santa Fe. Planning Commission 6 Years. Tiera Contenta Board of Directors, Zona del Sol Board of Directors, New Mexico Wildlife Federation Board of Directors, NALEO (National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials Board of Director) Board of Directors, various other commissions and committees.
- EDUCATION: AAS Santa Fe Community College – Drafting Technologies
- CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: dominguez4nm.com
1. What steps should the Legislature take to ensure New Mexico has a balanced budget amid falling oil prices and an economic downturn prompted by the coronavirus outbreak?
New Mexico needs to re-examine its spending and make sure it’s as efficient. A hiring freeze should probably be initiated. In the long term, New Mexico must diversify its economy to become less reliant on oil and gas. We must demonstrate that we have a trained and qualified work force.
2. What more, if anything, should the Legislature do to address a court ruling that found New Mexico is failing to provide a sufficient education to all students?
New Mexico has made important fundamental changes in education; however, New Mexico has not made substantial change. We should reduce at-risk student teacher vacancies. This lawsuit will help hold legislators accountable and demonstrate the state of New Mexico’s commitment to equity in our public-school districts.
3. What changes, if any, should New Mexico make to its gross receipts tax code?
New Mexico needs gross receipts tax reform and should evaluate certain deductions and exemptions that would make up for the money lost to tax cuts without impacting the portions distributed to local governments. There is an economic benefit to some deductions and others are just giveaways.
4. Do you support or oppose legalizing recreational marijuana use in New Mexico and taxing its sales?
Yes, I support the legalization of recreational marijuana and taxing its sales.
5. In recent years, New Mexico has steadily increased spending on early childhood programs, such as home visiting, prekindergarten and child care assistance, and created a new early childhood trust fund. Do you support or oppose a constitutional amendment that would withdraw more money from the Land Grant Permanent Fund to increase funding for early childhood services?
I support the creation of the Early Childhood Trust fund that appropriates $320M in fiscal year 2021 for early childhood education. I also would have supported House Joint Resolution 1, that would allow voters the opportunity to decide if $76M from the investment fund should be used for programs.
6. Do you support or oppose opening the state’s primary elections to voters who aren’t affiliated with either major political party?
Nearly a quarter of voters in New Mexico cannot participate in primary elections. I support opening primary elections to voters. There are 34 other states who allow open primaries and New Mexico should do the same. The percentage of “Declined to State” voters has increased. Everyone’s voice should be heard.
7. Do you support or oppose repealing a long-dormant 1969 state law that outlaws abortion, except in limited circumstances?
New Mexico had the opportunity to tell the world that we would not allow archaic legislation to hurt and penalize women – I support legislation that repeals laws, like the 1969 law, that fails to protect and defend women. We need to protect and support women’s access to healthcare.
8. Would you support a merit-based evaluation system to determine how the state spends its capital outlay funding? Should each legislator be required to disclose which projects he or she funded?
Yes, each legislature should be required to disclose which projects they funded. This is taxpayer money and they should know how projects were selected and why. In general, a merit-based evaluation system should work; however; New Mexico taxpayers need to be reassured that independent evaluation committees will be evaluate.
9. Do you support or oppose requiring lobbyists to disclose which bills they advocate for or against?
Yes, lobbyists should disclose which bills they advocate for or against. Transparency is essential.
10. New Mexico is highly reliant on the oil and natural gas industries to generate revenue to fund state programs, as evidenced by recent oil boom and bust cycles. What are the things you would do to diversify the state’s economy and revenue base?
It is my strong belief that New Mexico needs to diversify its economy by demonstrating that we have a strong, well trained workforce to support good, clean and well-paying industries. This means we must continue to support education and technical training education as well. Our future depends on it.
11. Do you support or oppose updating the current prohibition in the law on assisted suicide in order to allow aid-in-dying under certain medical circumstances?
I support aid in dying legislation and support updating the current prohibition in the law.
12: Would you support or oppose a moratorium on fracking? And should the state impose additional renewable energy mandates as a way to address climate change concerns?
I support a moratorium on issuing new permits for hydraulic fracturing. New Mexico should continuously study these impacts. New Mexico should expand renewable energy mandates and work with local government on addressing our climate crises.
13. What steps should the Legislature take to address crime and improve public safety?
New Mexico should make sure that public safety is properly funded. New Mexico should encourage the use of community policing to prevent crime and provide support for our officers like treatment for post-traumatic stress. All these programs need to be prioritized and adequately funded.
14. Do you support or oppose the practice of legislative budget-writing committees holding closed-door meetings during the crafting of state spending bills?
I oppose the practice of closed-door meetings. Especially meetings that mandate how taxpayer money will be spent. Taxpayers should be able to participate in the process of how their money gets spent. Just like in question 8, taxpayers should be able to understand how and why their money is spent.
1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state or federal tax liens?
2. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?
3. Have you ever been arrested for, charged with, or convicted of drunken driving, any misdemeanor or any felony in New Mexico or any other state? If so, explain.