New Mexico Legislature opens doors to pre-filed bills

The New Mexico State Capitol, known as 'The Roundhouse.'

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) – New Mexico lawmakers are getting their first opportunity to file bills for consideration ahead of next year’s regular legislative session.

The Legislature began accepting “pre-filed” bills on Thursday in advance of a 60-day session.

Lawmakers convene on Jan. 17 to resolve a budget deficit linked a downturn in the oil and natural gas industry and consider a wide variety of policy initiatives. Lawmakers are honing proposals to crack down on reckless driving, increase funding for childhood education and shore up state finances by legalizing and taxing recreational marijuana, to name just a few anticipated initiatives.

Democrats will outnumber Republicans 26-16 in the Senate and 38-32 in the House of Representatives. Second-term Republican Gov. Susana Martinez has yet to unveil her priorities. She has steadfastly opposed any tax increases.

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