Our tax structure is filled with special breaks, and has become so complicated that it is scaring outside businesses away and making it hard for people to start their own. We need to figure out what works, what doesn’t, and eliminate those that don’t so taxes can be lowered on everyone. This will create a better environment for job creation. We also need to make sure that we have the local infrastructure available to create good jobs. That’s why economic development has been a priority for Bill’s outlay money. He has funded such projects as the movie backlot on Las Cruces’ west mesa and pools for a shrimp hatchery at NMSU.
Schools should constantly strive to improve, but we need to work with our teachers to make things better for our kids; not cast them out. As a proud product of the public schools, Bill has defended our teachers and wants us to work with them to make our schools the best place possible for our kids to learn. He also believes strongly in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math education and is currently working on a plan to help stimulate interest in these vital areas in our students and teachers.
The word “drought” shouldn’t be used here any more; the lack of rain and snow over the past few years should be treated as our new normal. And if we don’t figure out how to produce more water and use what we have more efficiently, there will be serious trouble ahead for our community and state. Bill supported funding for the NMSU Water Resources Research Institute to create a water budget for the state, and translate their research in to law. He has also participated in water conferences of statewide experts to fund ways of moving forward intelligently.
Bill has made funding public safety a priority for his District. He helped lead the effort to get funding for the construction of a new 911 building, and worked with Senator Mary Kay Papen to complete funding for flood control in Tortugas and to completely re-build the Fire and Police building in Mesilla.
New Mexico has too much sun, wind geothermal access, and land to not be a leader in the development of new types of energy for the nation. Bill has constantly supported projects that stimulate this type of energy growth, and has authored legislation to make it easier for transmission lines to be built that will allow New Mexico to export new sources of power to other areas of the nation.
In a democracy, if people don’t have trust in their government then the system cannot work. The state must do a better job reducing the amount of money necessary to run for office, increasing the transparency of both officeholders and campaign donors, and encouraging increased citizen participation. Bill has introduced bills limiting the time of elections, and will continue to look for innovative ways of making regular people the focus on politics.
New Mexico has one of the highest rates of uninsured citizens in the country. Bill supported the creation of the New Mexico Health Exchange, and has walked the walk in using it to get his own insurance. He has also authored legislation requiring insurance companies to standardize their cards and have electronic data transfer to cut down on mistakes and therefore save doctors and patients money.
One of the proudest things Bill has done was work with Doña Ana County Clerk Lynn Elinns in marrying same sex couples. No one should be discriminated against based on who they love, and Bill will always back laws that protect people’s rights to live in happiness without fear of being treated differently for who they are.
Sensible Drug Policy
Bill authored legislation to study Colorado and Washington as they begin their experiment in legalizing marijuana. If things go well, he will be authoring a bill to do so here in New Mexico. He has also fought hard to protect patients with medical marijuana from being arrested by the Border Patrol.