New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez has signed a bill alongside the state’s budget package that will require new campaign finance disclosures and could create an opportunity for open data developers that track lobbyists.
The new law requires lobbyists to file a disclosure each time they spend more than $100 to influence elected officials. The law also created uniform reporting standards for these data which will make open data efforts easier to manage.
Prior to this law, campaign finance disclosures did not have to be filed online making it difficult for the public to keep track of who might be influencing local politicians. For the first time the state will require disclosures to be filed electronically, and from now on the Secretary of State will be tasked with managing that information such that it is searchable and downloadable online.
The measure has the support of campaign finance reform advocacy organization Common Cause as well as a bipartisan group of lawmakers.
“I’m proud to sign this bill into law because it will provide much-needed improvements to our campaign finance reporting system,” Governor Martinez said. “Establishing uniform standards for electronic reporting will make our system more accurate and transparent, and allow for more New Mexicans to more easily access this information.”