State legislature finds rough sledding at the Roundhouse

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Politics > Many of the bills don’t make it out of committee

By The Staff

It’s been a busy week for Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard (D-Los Alamos, Santa Fe, Sandoval and Rio Arriba) with its ups and downs.
Efforts to stop drunk driving and protect the rights of victims suffered a huge blow in the House Transportation and Public Works Committee Thursday.
House Bill 10, a package to target repeat drunk drivers, was tabled in committee.
The action came on the same day the bill’s sponsors were honored by Mothers Against Drunk Driving.
Along with Garcia Richard, sponsors of the bill, Elizabeth “Liz” Thomson (D-Bernalillo), Rep. Tim Lewis (R-Sandoval), as well as Speaker W. Ken Martinez (D-Bernalillo, Cibola, McKinley, Socorro, San Juan, Valencia), were given MADD’s “Legislative Champions” award.
“We heard the committee’s concerns regarding treatment and rehab,” Garcia Richard said. “But we feel there is urgency to this bill to close some of the loopholes that exist in current law. This is a huge disappointment.”
“I’m extremely disappointed the bill didn’t go through,” Thomson added. “This is legislation that has been scrutinized and passed the House last year on a vote of 67-0. Our goal is to prevent more people from being injured or killed at the hands of someone who has been drinking and driving.”

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