There are a number of proposals are already pending and it is anticipated that more will be introduced prior to Thursday’s bill introduction deadline. Following is a summary of the bills currently pending that RSOL has identified as “high priority, ” especially for anyone required to register as a sex offender or a family member. In addition to what we were already working on, Rep. Yvette Herrell introduced HB 446 (the big SORNA bill) that will bring New Mexico into compliance with the Adam Walsh Act (AWA).
Representative Yvette Herrell (R) introduced HB 48 a few days ago. The legislation is somewhat similar to HB 179, a proposal that she sponsored last year, except that the legislation has far wider ramifications.
This legislation would:
· Retroactively add six new offenses to New Mexico’s list;
· Reduce the amount of time for reporting changes from 10 days to 3 days;
· Change the frequency of reporting and retroactively impose increased registration periods for those under the old law; and,
· Retroactively impose the duty to register on anyone ever convicted of a sex offense, regardless of the date of conviction, if the person is still alive.
This is a high priority for RSOL because this is very dangerous piece of legislation for the following reasons:
(1) the governor has indicated that it is a high priority for her to see enacted; and,
(2) the obvious constitutional issues with the retroactivity of the proposal.
Awaiting first hearing in the House Consumer and Public Affairs Committee.
Update on pending legislation:
Sponsored by Representative Nate Gentry (R). The is a high priority for RSOL because the legislation would prohibit any person required to register pursuant to New Mexico’s Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA) from accessing social media, instant messaging, or chat rooms. Current Status: Was heard in House Consumer and Public Affairs Committee (CPAC) this past Tuesday. In response to criticism by RSOL and concerns expressed by Rep. Gail Chasey, Rep. Gentry agreed to narrow the scope of the legislation. RSOL is pleased that the “Substitute” bill is narrower than the original version but still has constitutional concerns. We are working with the sponsor in an attempt to find language that will further narrow this proposal even further.
The next step is that the bill will be schedule for a hearing in the House Judiciary Committee.
Sponsored by Representative Alonzo Baldonado (R). The legislation would extinguish parental rights for those convicted of any form of Criminal Sexual Penetration (CSP) in cases where a child was conceived, regardless of whether the crime was perpetrated by force. In other words, any person that engaged in consensual sex with an individual below the age of consent would have no parental rights if this becomes law.
The bill received a “do pass” in House Consumer and Public Affairs and is now awaiting a hearing in the House Judiciary Committee.
Sponsored by Representative Tom Taylor (R). The legislation adds the offense of Electronic Solicitation to the list of offenses that will require the imposition of an indeterminate five to twenty year sentence, and requires that the offender pay for his/her own Risk Assessment. The bill has not been scheduled for its first hearing yet.
Is assigned to the House Health Government and Indian Affairs Committee (HHGIC) awaiting its first hearing.
Sponsored by Senator Phil Griego (D). This bill is a major revamp (84 pages) of the children’s code that contains a dangerous provision buried deep inside. There is a list of aggravating circumstances that could be used to remove a child due to abuse or neglect. One of the “aggravating circumstances” that would permit a finding of abuse or neglect would be if a parent is registered or ever had to register as a sex offender. This provision could be used as a reason to take your kids away! This is obviously the most serious civil rights threat to date.
The bill is in the Senate Public Affairs Committee (SPC) scheduled for its first hearing on Tuesday February 11th.