Senate Rules OKs webcasting expansion
The Senate Rules Committee gave its approval today to legislation that would expand the number of cameras used in webcasting from the Senate floor.
Senate Resolution 1, sponsored by Majority Leader Michael Sanchez, D-Belen, passed without opposition and now heads to the Senate Public Affairs Committee before it can be voted on by the full Senate.
Currently, Senate floor webcasting includes one camera placed at the back of the chamber. The rule change would allow the installation of additional cameras to give viewers a more complete view of the chamber.
Approval of the resolution came after several activists spoke in favor of the legislation. Senate President Pro Tem Tim Jennings, D-Roswell, complained that the other branches of government aren’t being pushed to join the Legislature in webcasting public meetings.
“If it’s good enough for one branch, it’s good enough for all branches,” Jennings said. “… I don’t understand why we just don’t webcast every court and webcast every cabinet meeting.”
Executive branch cabinet meetings are not public meetings under state law because they’re not subject to the New Mexico Open Meetings Act.
Two other pieces of legislation that would expand webcasting are awaiting hearings in the Rules Committee but have not yet appeared on the committee’s schedule. Chair Linda Lopez, D-Albuquerque, has not responded to my question about when they will be scheduled.
Griego’s resolution would expand audio and video webcasting to include Senate committee meetings held during sessions. Steinborn’s memorial would expand webcasting to include interim committee meetings.
A prior version of this posting incorrectly stated that Sanchez’s bill is now headed to the Senate floor.
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