Q&A: House District 17 Candidate Kimberly Kaehr-MacMillan

  • NAME: Kimberly Kaehr-MacMillan
  • POLITICAL PARTY: Republican
  • OCCUPATION: Stay at home homeschool mom
  • CITY OF RESIDENCE: Los Ranchos
  • RELEVANT EXPERIENCE:
  • EDUCATION: High school: New Mexico Military Institute
  • College: New Mexico Highlands University B.A. special education
  • CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: electkimnm.com

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?

The legislature needs to work within a reasonable budget that is not based on projected revenue or relying on reserve budgets. The fall of oil prices and the economic downturn of the economy has shown that we need to make a budget that is responsible for New Mexico.

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?

Our education budget should be focused with more money being sent to classrooms and student development. This will help each student get the education they deserve.

What changes, if any, should New Mexico make to its gross receipts tax code?

Tax law should be changed to be more like our neighboring states who have more robust economies than ours. Our tax system makes it more difficult for New Mexico businesses to be competitive out of state and makes it harder to attract businesses to New Mexico.

Do you support or oppose legalizing recreational marijuana use in New Mexico and taxing its sales?

I do not believe the legalized use of recreational marijuana is a good policy for New Mexico. I would need to see evidence of the benefits and effects of such a policy on other states.

Do you believe changes should be made to the emergency powers held by a governor during a pandemic or other time of crisis. If so, do you believe such powers should be expanded or reduced and in what specific ways?

I believe the powers of the governor should be reduced in a pandemic or crisis. The executive branch of the government should not be making decisions without input from the legislative branch. Our government works best with checks and balances.

Do you support or oppose repealing a long-dormant 1969 state law that outlaws abortion, except in limited circumstances?

Oppose. I believe life begins at conception.

Do you support or oppose enacting a new state law that would allow police officers and other public officials to be sued individually by abolishing the defense of qualified immunity?

Oppose.

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?

Any use of money from the Land Grant Permanent Fund must be considered carefully as this money should not be used unless it is an emergency. You can’t keep using Land Grant money for a permanent recurring expense. I would support finding other sources of revenue to support early childhood education programs.

What changes, if any, should New Mexico make to its election laws and primary system? Do you support or oppose opening the state’s primary elections to voters who aren’t affiliated with either major political party?

It would be better to encourage voter education and participation. I would be interested in reviewing legislation that would allow for more voter participation in our primaries.

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?

I believe capital outlay money should be spent in a way that is most beneficial to the state. Each legislator should be required to disclose what projects they fund.

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 steps should the state take to diversify its economy and revenue base?

Change GRT to make New Mexico more business friendly. We need to encourage business to come to New Mexico to diversify our tax base.

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?

Oppose. No, the state should not impose additional mandates.

What steps should the Legislature take to address crime and improve public safety?

New Mexico must address the bail reform amendment that has turned our criminal justice system into a revolving door for criminals.

Do you support or oppose the public’s right to inspect footage taken by cameras worn by law enforcement officers? Under what circumstances, if any, should police video be withheld from the public?

Support. Crime victims, people reporting a crime, and confidential informants’ privacy must be protected.

Members of New Mexico’s business community contend some state laws and regulations need changing so the state can better compete with Texas and Arizona when it comes to attracting companies. What steps do you believe should be taken to improve New Mexico’s economic competitiveness?

Our tax system must be restructured so that we can compete with surrounding states. Education and crime must also be addressed.

Personal background

1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been the subject of any state or federal tax liens?

No

2. Have you ever been involved in a personal or business bankruptcy proceeding?

No

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.

No

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