Gentry (R) and Keller (D) Work Together

Nate Gentry
News NM - Senator Tim Keller (D-17) and Representative Nate Gentry (R-30) introduced legislation to add predictability to state of New Mexico agencies' rule-making and regulatory processes. HB 34 would impose a standard set of rule-making requirements on all New Mexico agencies and would give New Mexico businesses greater certainty as to what would be required of them when they choose to invest in New Mexico. 
Tim Keller
Under the current regulatory structure, any executive agency can alter licensing and permitting processes as they see fit and as many times as they like. Because of this, the "rules of the game" are different for nearly every entity that touches state government. This bill would standardize procedures such as public comment periods, appeal methods, fee structures and response requirements. “Providing regulatory certainty is a big step in the right direction to making our state a better for businesses and for the public. This bill creates a framework for consistency based on best practices and bi-partisan common sense.”
"Too often, New Mexico agencies change the rules of the game and, because businesses are not clear about what will be expected of them, they chose to invest in states where the regulatory environment is more predictable," said Gentry. "I am confident that this legislation will reduce the amount of risk businesses face and will encourage more investment in our state." The bill is the outcome of a year-long task force comprised of business, environmental, legal and community members and has been previously endorsed by the New Mexico Association of Commerce and Industry, and Conservation Voters of New Mexico. New Mexico is the last state in our country that does not follow this standard.


Stock Market Flat in 2011

NewsNM note (Spence) - The primary objective of the Federal Reserve Board's near zero interest rate policy is to keep borrowing costs low for the federal government. The policy has a fatal flaw. It robs savers and bond buyers of a decent rate of return. The effects of a zero investment return policy has had a significant impact on the broad stock market. Yesterday the Standard and Poors 500 index finished the year of 2011 virtually exactly where it started. It lost 0.003 percent in 2011. Below is my column from earlier in the week regarding the economy, politicians, and the Fed's policy signals.
The Fed Will Signal When the Economy is Recovering
Ben Bernanke
There is a politician proof way to determine if the U.S. economy is really improving. It is better than listening to the coming pre-election chatter. Simply keep an eye on the Federal Reserve Board’s interest rate policy, especially if you are relying on interest income to pay your bills. The Fed’s actions will speak much louder than all politician words.
The Fed’s current policy is to force all savers to settle for virtually no return whatsoever on their savings. And with the Fed’s near zero interest rate policy, which has been in place since 2008, we have the facts we need to understand exactly what people in possession of relevant economic data think of the U.S. economy. The Fed has been keeping rates low for what it thinks are good reasons. It is going out of its mind trying to “help” a rotten U.S. economy.
Still, Fed watchers hear Chairman Ben Bernanke regularly extol the virtues of a low interest rate policy in his speeches. When he does so it is important to realize that low rates do not help most people who need to borrow or lend. Few citizens and very few small businesses can take advantage of 1-2% interest rates. Only the federal government, huge publicly traded companies, and well-reserved home owners using Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac enjoy the fruits of borrowing at low rates. By and large, small businesses and individuals daring enough to borrow, and willing enough to risk going into debt, are forced to shoulder the burden of 6-8% commercial loan rates, if not higher. And regulator-weary community bankers are routinely forced into a policy of being not very willing to lend to anyone who truly needs money even at 6-8%. Naturally the Fed does not spend much time talking about these realities or the fact that savers are getting the shaft. They would have us believe low rates are a magic economic tonic for our economy.
There is more. Most banks, contrary to popular belief, are actually losing money on short term deposits, thanks to a miniscule overnight Fed Funds rate which is also determined by the Federal Reserve Board.
The year 2012 offers Americans great certainty. It is a virtual certainty that Democrats will blame all bad news related to the economy on Republicans. It is also quite certain Democrats will try to simultaneously take credit for any good news on the economy. On the other hand, the GOP will most certainly downplay any improvements in the economy. And the GOP will surely blame the Democrat’s policies of big government-run healthcare, banking, green energy “investments,” and affordable energy disinvestments, for our terrible economy and high unemployment rate.
The bottom line for truth seeking Americans is pretty simple. The Fed will let us know when sustained job creation and the prosperity associated with real economic expansion takes hold. It will be when the Federal Reserve, not politicians seeking affirmation, shows appropriate confidence by changing its interest rate policy. In the meantime, if you, like millions of Americans haven’t benefitted over the last three years from the near zero interest rate environment created by the Fed, don’t assume the country is back on the right track, no matter what any politician tries to tell you. Politicians are master manipulators. Fed monetary policies offer the closest thing to the truth about what the government’s data tells us about a rebound in our economy.


Sanchez Answers Thomas Cole Column

John Sanchez
By John Sanchez - This is a response to Mr. Cole’s piece in the Albuquerque Journal on December 28, 2011 regarding my role as Lieutenant Governor. To begin, I entered public service by serving as a Trustee (Councilman) for the Village of Los Ranchos from 1997 to 2000. Serving at the local municipal level has shaped my conviction that all service is most effective when it is delivered locally. Also, his take on the differences between former Lieutenant Governor Diane Denish and me is only partially correct. While some elected officials go out of their way to promote themselves through press releases, social media or other means, the true measure of public service is the work that goes on behind the scenes.
After the election in November of 2010, I toured all 33 counties and conducted over 100 individual meetings with business leaders, elected officials and private citizens. We proceeded with the hard and fast work of setting up a new office and preparing for the 60 day legislative session all before the 18th of January. I presided over the State Senate, met with legislators, helped to push Governor Martinez’s bold agenda and most importantly, made myself accessible to the citizens of New Mexico with an open door policy. Read rest of column here: News New Mexico