Friday, October 16, 2009

Special Session Pushed Back Until 2 pm

Gov. Bill Richardson just announced he's not calling the special session of the Legislature until 2 pm Saturday.

SANTA FE – Governor Bill Richardson, after meeting this evening with legislative leaders, announced he will issue a proclamation on Saturday at 2 p.m. – marking the start of the special session to deal with the budget shortfall.

“Gov. Richardson had a productive meeting with legislative leaders and discussed their latest budget proposal,” said Gilbert Gallegos, a spokesman for the Governor. “Gov. Richardson will present a counter-proposal to legislators on Saturday before the start of the special session.”

Gov. Richardson will meet on Saturday with Democratic and Republican caucuses in the House and Senate before the start of the session.

Uh oh. We know what he means by "productive meetings"

Trip Jennings of The New Mexico Independent wrote about the latest proposal from legislative leaders:

A handout distributed to legislators detailed a plan that would net roughly $630 million in savings, coming close to addressing an estimated $660 million shortfall in the budget year that ends July 1. It would cut $74.3 million from state agencies, $90 million from K-12 public education and $32 million from higher education.

It does not appear to cut state workers’ salaries by a 2.5 percent, or raise taxes, as other scenarios have suggested.

Pushing the session back to 2 means the legislators won't be meeting until the tea party protesters and gay-marriage demonstrators have gone home.