2018 State Legislature: Lawmakers send omnibus crime bill to governor’s desk | LAMonitor.com

By Milan Simonich
The New Mexican
New Mexico legislators rolled five different crime bills into one, then sent the measure to the governor Wednesday in what they called a bipartisan move to make communities and prisons safer.
State senators approved the plan, House Bill 19, on a vote of 32-2. The measure already had cleared the House of Representatives on a 66-1 vote.
Now the bill moves to Republican Gov. Susana Martinez for her consideration.
Martinez herself pushed a number of crime bills during the 30-day legislative session, including an unsuccessful attempt to reinstate the death penalty.
The omnibus crime bill approved by the House and Senate is a collection of lower-profile initiatives. One part of the bill, initiated by House Minority Floor Leader Nate Gentry, R-Albuquerque, would increase penalties for convicted felons who possess a firearm.
Sen. George Muñoz, D-Gallup, voted for the bill but said it would do no good unless prosecutors pursue these cases. Muñoz said neither state nor federal prosecutors did an adequate job when a felon in his community shot two dogs and possessed some 70 firearms.
Another part of the bill focuses on helping jails and prisons screen inmates for health problems and signing up eligible prisoners for Medicaid before they are released.
— Read on www.lamonitor.com/content/2018-state-legislature-lawmakers-send-omnibus-crime-bill-governors-desk

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