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NAME: Sandra Jeff
POLITICAL PARTY: Democratic
OCCUPATION: Former Legislator
RELEVANT EXPERIENCE: (No response)
EDUCATION: (No response)
CAMPAIGN WEBSITE: (No response)
1. If the revenue downtown continues, I am open to targeted spending cuts and/or revenue enhancements. Our state can’t continue to tax and spend, and expect a different outcome. Everyday citizens, including local governments, are expected to live within their means; the Roundhouse is no exception.
2. I have previously voted to support a one-time increase (2013-SB 214) in the minimum wage to $8.50 per hour. I don’t agree with any attempt by either party to politicize minimum wage increases as a divisive wedge issue like abortion or gay marriage . I’m also strongly supportive of local control and communities who have increased the minimum wage at the local level, rather than waiting on Santa Fe or Washington, D.C. to act. Any action to increase the minimum wage should be from the local grassroots-level, not top down.
1. If the state’s revenue downturn persists, would you favor trimming state spending or increasing taxes as a primary response? Please specify which cost-cutting or revenue-generating measures you would prefer.
2. Do you support or oppose raising New Mexico’s minimum wage, currently $7.50 per hour? If so, by how much?
3. Do you support or oppose the current policy of including student achievement as part of teacher evaluations? If you support the policy, what percentage of the evaluation should achievement account for.
4. Do you support or oppose legalizing recreational marijuana use in New Mexico?
5. Current state law requires early-grade reading intervention. Coupled with that, do you support or oppose legislation that would automatically require some third-graders without adequate reading skills to repeat the grade level?
6. To provide more money for early childhood programs, do you support or oppose taking more money out of the state’s largest permanent fund on an annual basis? If you are in support, what sort of accountability measures would you favor?
7. Would you support or oppose the creation of a state ethics commission that publicly releases complaints and holds open hearings?
8. Do you support or oppose making New Mexico a so-called right-to-work state, by changing state labor laws so that nonunion employees would not have to pay union fees as a condition of employment?
9. Do you support or oppose banning abortions after 20 weeks in New Mexico?
10. Do you support or oppose a law banning coyote-killing contests? Do you support or oppose banning trapping and poisons on public lands?
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?
12. Do you support or oppose a change that would earmark the state’s existing vehicle excise and gasoline tax revenue for state road projects?
13. Do you support or oppose allowing retired law enforcement officers to return to work while still collecting pension benefits to shore up department staffing, if the program protects the solvency of the retirement fund?
14. Do you support or oppose opening the state’s primary elections to voters who aren’t affiliated with either major political party?
15. Do you support or oppose expanding the state’s three-strikes law for repeat violent offenders?
16. Do you support or oppose enacting a “cooling-off” period before former lawmakers could lobby the Legislature?
17. Do you support or oppose passing a law that would allow local governments to impose curfews on minors under the age of 16?
18. Do you support or oppose archiving webcasts of all legislative meetings for public access?
19. Do you support or oppose establishing a salary for legislators?
20. Should public employees, including teachers, be prohibited by law from serving in the Legislature? Please explain.
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.
3. I support a comprehensive evaluation for teachers, which truly measures their impact on student achievement. I support an evaluation system that is based on multiple measures, rather than one high-stakes test given one time a year. I also support piloting an evaluation system, rather than sticking with a status quo, which really has not helped our children.
4. Because of New Mexico’s dire economic situation, we should not exclude any potential source of revenue generation in our state. For example, Colorado has had remarkable success with marijuana legalization, which has substantially increased funding for education, public safety, and infrastructure. Decriminalization of marijuana possession has substantially reduced the social and public costs upon taxpayers as well. Other states have enacted similar legislation and it’s worth examining what works and doesn’t work.
5. (No response)
6. (No response)
7. Yes. Based on my experience, the current process is extremely political and tainted by political agendas/vendettas rather than doing what is right.
8. Across the state and even in my area, union membership has significantly declined, even in the absence of right-to-work laws. At this point, unions need to be competitive, innovative, and provide value to their membership and employers who have to pay higher wages. Several members of my family have belonged to unions and I realize the importance of unions. At this point, I am neither in favor nor opposed to changing state labor laws.
9. As a Navajo/Diné woman, reared in our culture and traditions, life is very precious and sacred. In the very rare instance that this issue would be voted on, I would support banning abortions after 20 weeks.
10. This is not a major issue in my area or even a statewide issue. However, killing coyotes for fun or sport seems pretty stupid. In my area, persons have a right to defend their cattle, horse, and sheep from anything (including coyotes) that will kill their animals.
11. (No response)
12. The state gasoline excise tax has remained flat/unchanged for many years and is running out of money. In particular, the state gas tax pays for critically needed highway and infrastructure improvements, and does not go into the general fund for politicians to play with. Raising the gas tax a penny or two will make a huge difference to pay for greatly needed highway construction and maintenance projects that have an economic impact on our state.
13. Support. At this point, there is a critical shortage of law enforcement officers. Retired officers bring in existing training and experience that can’t be found elsewhere, unless there is a huge infusion of new officers. Rural communities face even greater challenges in hiring and recruiting officers.
14. Support. New Mexico’s closed primary system does a tremendous disservice to all citizens who aren’t affiliated with either party. Our current system is big slap-in-the-face to our democratic system when we literally exclude people who aren’t registered with either party.
15. Three-strikes laws typically failed in other states, while imposing huge social and political costs on taxpayers because persons convicted for minor crimes were given punitive prison sentences. This issue warrants further study, including specific violent crimes that warrant increased penalties.
16. (No response)
17. Support. Local governments and citizens, not Santa Fe, should have the ability and flexibility to make laws and decisions for what they think is best for their citizens at the local level.
18. Support. What do we have to hide? I strongly believe that we need to be more transparent and open with our citizens.
19. (No response)
20. All persons, excluding felons, should have full access to the ballot and ability to run for office, including serving in the Legislature. As long as they take leave, and not receive any special pay/benefits, I don’t see why prohibitions should be allowed.