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February 14, 2023

Updated: Jan 26


Today marks the beginning of Week 5 of the 56thLegislature’s first session.

As of this morning a total of 1,006 Bills, Memorials, and Resolutions have been filed.

Since my last roundup 10 bills have passed the house:

HB 9/a: Unlawful Access to Firearm by Minor

The firearm owner liability bill where you could be criminally charged for someone else's actions with your gun. The bill adds a new section to the Criminal Code to make it unlawful for a person to keep or store a firearm in a way that negligently disregards a minor’s ability to access the firearm and the minor thereby accesses the firearm and displays it in a threatening manner or causes harm.

Unfortunately, there is NO legal definition of the term “negligently”. For example, if a sidearm is in your nightstand drawer and it is taken will you are sleeping “Are you Negligent?”. According to this legislation, Yes!

With no exception for “consent” or “authorized use” of firearms to offer protection from criminal liability, this measure could have a chilling effect on youths accessing firearms to engage in activities such as hunting, 4-H shooting sports or competitions or ROTC activities.

In addition, this bill removes the protection from peace officers, armed forces or national guard should a minor gain access to their firearm with or without consent.

Key fact: This bill was brought the legislature by Albuquerque Democrats after the measure was voted down by their commissioners.

This bill passed the house on a 37 – 32 vote. Seven democrats joined house republicans in attempt to stop this terrible piece of legislation.

HB 75/a: Chiropractic Services Insurance Coverage

Prohibits insurers from imposing a copayment or coinsurance on chiropractic physician services that exceeds those imposed for primary care services. Applies to health insurance policies, health care plans, certificates of health insurance and health maintenance organization contracts. If chaptered, this legislation will take effect on January 1, 2024.

This bill passed the house on a unanimous 64 – 0 vote.

HB 78/a: Aviation Fund GRT Distribution Sunset

Changes two monthly distributions from the General Fund to the State Aviation Fund; doubles one from $250,000 to $500,000 and, for the 0.046% distribution, strikes the June 30, 2031 sunset date.

This is a good bill that provides funding to local airports to provide the required match for FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) Funding.

This bill passed the house unanimously.

HB 90: Controllable Electronic Records

Amends the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) to address emerging technologies, provide updated rules for commercial transactions involving virtual currencies, distributed ledger technologies (including blockchain), artificial intelligence, and other technological developments. The amendments span almost every article of the UCC and add a new article addressing certain types of digital assets defined as “Controllable Electronic Records” (CERs). The amendments provide new default rules to govern transactions involving the new technologies and clarifies the UCC’s applicability to mixed transactions involving both goods and services. Also contains some miscellaneous revisions unrelated to technological developments but providing needed clarification.

This bill passed the house unanimously.

HB 44: Federal Home Loan Banks

Amends the Insurance Code to establish certain rights and obligations of Federal Home Loan Banks (FHLBanks) relating to secured claims on an insurer subject to delinquency proceedings. Provides exceptions for the transfer of money or property involving an FHLBank agreement except when done with intent to hinder, delay or defraud a creditor.

This bill passed the house unanimously.

HB 125: School Dual Credit Task Force

Dual credit task force to be appointed by July 1, 2023 to examine current course offerings, dual credit enrollment practices, faculty hiring practices, student support services, credit transferability and barriers to increasing dual credit participation. To report findings and recommendations to the Governor, LESC and the Legislature by January 1, 2024.

This bill passed the house unanimously.

SB 6: Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon Fire Recovery Funds

The purpose of this legislation is to provide immediate financial assistance to local governments and other political subdivisions (county, incorporated city, town, village, water district, acequia, etc.) who were impacted by the Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon fire in order to repair damaged infrastructure.

Requires the Local Government Division of the Department of Finance and Administration to provide zero-interest loans to political subdivisions that have been approved by FEMA for grants to replace or repair infrastructure damaged by fire, flooding, or debris flow from the Hermits Peak-Calf Canyon Fire. Appropriates $100 million (GF) to the Local Government Division for use in FYs 2023 and 2024 for these loans.

This bill passed the house unanimously.

HB 131/FS: Prosthetic & Custom Orthotic Device Coverage

Amends the Insurance Code to require parity in insurance coverage for expenses related to prosthetics and custom orthotic devices. Requires reporting. (Floor Substitute retains intent of original bill and expands upon it to prohibit unfair trade practices on the basis of disability.)

This bill passed the house unanimously.

HB 31/a: No Publication Required for Name Changes

Removes two requirements imposed on a petitioner in a change-of-name proceeding: no longer will the petitioner have to file a notice with the proof of publication; the proof of publication alone will be sufficient. For petitioners under the age of 14, gone is the notice requirement to both legal parents in circumstances where the petitioner-applicant’s personal safety is in jeopardy, in which event the petition shall be sealed and only opened by court order upon a showing of good cause or at the petitioner-applicant’s request.

Testimony on the floor conflicts with testimony in the committee

This bill passed the house on a party line vote 43 – 24 with the exception of one Sandoval County Republican.

HB 62 Limit Car Sale Locations & Sellers

Amends the Motor Vehicle Code to change limits on casual (nondealer) motor vehicle sales by someone other than an automobile dealership. The bill would limit the sale of vehicles by a person who is not a dealer to a maximum of four vehicles in a calendar year. Requires that the person (private seller) legally possess the vehicle title prior to the sale. Violators are guilty of a misdemeanor that is punishable by a fine of $300 or by imprisonment of not less than 30 days or both.

This bill passed the house with 4 democrats in opposition.

Email: rpettigrew@randallpettigrew.com

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