I can’t spare this man – he fights
This was said after Shiloh in April, Grant fought one of the bloodiest battles in the West and came out less well. President Lincoln fended off demands for his removal. There have been a lot of columns written about the fights in Wisconsin, Indiana, and Ohio between the GOP Governors and the Dems in their state legislators. One thing to remember is the GOP has the majority in the state legislature of these midwestern states. In New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez has had to contend with a state legislature with Dems in the majority. In spite of this she has had some successes. You can read a scorecard of what passed and what failed here.
The legislative achievements include:
- save nearly $111 million by requiring state workers and educators to pay more into their pensions while the government reduces its payroll contributions by a similar amount.
- assign schools the grades of A to F based on student achievement and other factors, such as high-school graduation rates
- cap at $50 million what New Mexico can pay out each year in rebates to qualifying TV and film projects through the state’s film-production tax credit
- an expansion of Katie’s Law, which will allow law enforcement to collect DNA samples from suspects who have been booked on felony charges
- tax exemptions for locomotive fuel, in a bid to attract a Union Pacific refueling hub to the state
The legislative failures include:
- prohibit driver’s licenses issued to illegal immigrants
- requiring teachers to hold back third-graders who lack basic reading skills rather than allowing them to move along to the next grade
- reinstate the death penalty in New Mexico
- require voters to present photo identification
Governor Susana Martinez had originally wanted a $45 million cap film-production tax credit, and the $5 million difference may be enough to prevent her signature. She has 20 days to sign the bill into law. This issue is an interesting one. A couple of quotes…
Some of the movies that have been bribed to locate in New Mexico would have been made in New Mexico anyway. That part of the subsidy is a total waste. Most of the movies that have come to New Mexico for the subsidy would otherwise have been made in other states. New Mexicans may not care if the citizens of those states lose out, but inevitably those other states respond with subsidies of their own and New Mexico gets beggared along with everybody else.
“Governors and legislatures should call ‘cut!’ on cynical efforts to kill forward-looking incentive programs for film and TV production, in New Mexico and in all other states,” Richardson says.
“Cynical” is an odd word to describe people (and there aren’t many) who want deeply indebted state governments to stop forgoing billions in tax revenue in the futile effort to entice the movie business to make its next western in Erie, Penn., or wherever.
Did you watch the Oscars on Sunday? Did that look like a crowd in need of a government subsidy?
and one more…
This race to the bottom does nothing except reduce tax revenue for everybody. The figures used to justify these subsidies (Movies bring a billion dollars a year into our economy! Movies create 5,000 jobs for our great state!) are almost certainly bogus.
Governor Susana Martinez held true to her pledge to shrink the size of state government.
According to information provided by the State Personnel Office, the size of the state payroll has dropped by 498 classified employees and 99 exempt employees since Dec. 30, 2010, when former Gov. Bill Richardson left office.
Some might contend that she has not been able to win enough in New Mexico. She could use some help with GOP wins in the New Mexico state legislature in 2012. If that happens then she will win more. No matter what happens we can’t spare this woman – she fights.