Skip to main content

Election Reform Bills Proposed to Bring City of Albuquerque into Compliance with State Law

2018 Local Election Act requires City to adjust elections.

September 29, 2018

Today, Mayor Tim Keller alongside the Albuquerque City Clerk and Albuquerque City Council members announced election reform bills to be considered by City Council that would bring the City into compliance with the recently passed State Local Election Act.

In 2018, the New Mexico Legislature passed and the Governor signed the Local Election Act which was aimed at consolidating elections. Under the new law, the City must amend its election process in order to comply with State requirements that went into effect July. In addition, the City is required to conduct a special election to give residents of Albuquerque an opportunity to vote on a petition that garnered the required signatures to amend the city charter.

“While we need to bring our City into compliance with the new state elections law, this is also an opportunity to make some reforms to our elections process to make voting more accessible,” said Mayor Tim Keller. “These bills will simplify the timing of elections, make public financing more accessible to a wider pool of candidates, and close up some campaign finance loopholes.”

“We’re taking steps to protect the integrity of the City’s election process by providing transparency and fairly enforcing and administering public finance and election laws,” said City Clerk Kay Duhigg. “These improvements will not only ensure we are in compliance with State changes to election law, but also improve the system overall for voters and candidates from all walks of life.”

The City Clerk is proposing an election reform package with three primary components:

Election Date

  • Moves elections to November as the State Local Election Act and consolidates elections with the County.
  • Adjusts terms start dates to January to account for changes in the election dates.

Public Financing Reform

  • Makes public financing more competitive and accessible, so a wider pool of candidates have an incentive to reduce the influence of money in local elections.
  • Enhances accountability and oversight related to public financing requirements.

Election Code Reform

  • Ensures good governance and transparency by closing campaign finance loopholes. 
  • Clarifies rules and expectations for candidates and voters.