Overview of New Mexico Legislature

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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) - The New Mexico Legislature at a glance:

THE START:

The 2014 Legislature convenes at noon on Tuesday. It’s formally called the second session of the 51st Legislature

THE FINISH:

The session, as required by the state Constitution, adjourns after 30 calendar days - at noon on Thursday, Feb. 20. The governor has 20 days after adjournment to sign bills passed during the last three days of the session. That deadline is March 12.

THE MAKEUP:

The House has 70 members: 37 Democrats and 33 Republicans. The Senate has 42 members: 25 Democrats and 17 Republicans.

PAY:

The New Mexico Legislature is not salaried. Members receive $159 a day during the session to reimburse them for expenses.

THE AGENDA:

Under the state Constitution, the session is limited to the budget, revenue measures and proposals placed on the agenda by the governor. Constitutional amendments also can be considered. Approving a budget to finance public education and general government programs is a must-do assignment for lawmakers. Lawmakers also are expected to debate proposals to legalize marijuana, raise the minimum wage, finance capital improvement projects and boost spending on early childhood education programs.

There were 653 bills introduced in 2012, the most recent 30-day session. Of those bills, 77 were passed by the Legislature. The governor signed 64 measures into law and vetoed 13.

POLITICS:

Republican Gov. Susana Martinez is up for election and five Democrats, including two state senators, are running against her. Members of the House are up for election, but Senate terms run through 2016.

LEARNING MORE:

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