Today, Governor Susana Martinez applauded the New Mexico House of Representatives for passing HB 111, legislation that will increase penalties for public officials who are convicted of corruption by preventing those individuals from doing business with the state, requiring them to forfeit their public pensions, and providing stronger prison sentences for public corruption offenses. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Nate Gentry (R-Albuquerque), passed with bi-partisan support by a margin of 41-26.
"The first and only job of public officials is serving taxpayers -- not using their position for personal benefit," said Governor Martinez. "Removing pensions and prohibiting corrupt officials from doing business with the state will send a strong message that we will not tolerate those who put their own gain ahead of the responsible use of taxpayer dollars. I applaud the House of Representatives for working across party lines to help confront public corruption and I urge the Senate to act quickly on this legislation so we can work to restore New Mexicans' trust in their leaders."
"When a public official is convicted of corruption, they should be held accountable by returning their pensions to taxpayers and being barred from receiving state contracts or doing any other
business with the state," added Rep. Gentry. "This is a common-sense, bi-partisan policy that
will help to rebuild confidence that elected officials, state leaders, and public employees are
working on behalf of the public rather than using taxpayer resources to benefit themselves."