Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Not Everyone is Applauding the Veto

Don't tax my tortillasWhile Gov. Richardson's veto of the food tax won accolades from several -- including Lt. Gov. Diane Denish and New Mexico Voices of Children, not everyone was happy.

State Senate Majority Michael Sanchez, D-Belen, released the following statement:

“I am surprised that the governor has decided to take this action. Had he indicated three weeks ago that he would not support the legislation we would have taken a different approach. He was involved every step of the way. At no time during the special session did he raise any objections. He was very clear about what he wouldn’t support which is why the legislative and executive compromise we crafted didn’t include an income tax increase or a requirement that all corporations pay their fair share of taxes.

“The governor’s veto today puts the state’s financial future at even greater peril. His approach to balancing the budget relies heavily on general fund reserves and federal stimulus money. While this may work in the short-term and carry him through the end of his term, these are one-time revenue sources. Unless the economy drastically improves, the next governor will have to take action to raise recurring revenue for our state’s budget or make cuts that will impair services to New Mexicans.

“This action is unprecedented in the state’s history. The legislature will look at all appropriate action if it determines the governor has overstepped his veto authority.”

UPDATE: Richardson spokesman Gilbert Gallegos just sent the following response to Sanchez's statement:

“If Senator Sanchez wants to defend the tax on food, that’s his prerogative.”