David J. Simon

Senate District 10

Affliation: D

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City: Los Ranchos

Would you vote for the creation of an Independent Ethics Commission to provide oversight of the executive and legislative branches of government in New Mexico? Yes. NM is one of seven states without an ethics commission; we must exit this group. I’ll help end weak ethics practices and corruption through creation of a carefully designed commission and passage of other ethics laws that ensure accountability.

What measures would you take to make New Mexico state government transparent, accessible and accountable to the public? Creation of an ethics commission; limit the “revolving door” of legislators turned lobbyists; increase public on-line access to information and citizen access to the legislative process; limit the excessive role of money in politics.

Would you give permission to the Legislative Council Service to make publicly available the final amounts you personally allocate to various capital outlay projects? Yes. The current obstacles to the public getting this information easily is unacceptable. All 112 legislators should immediately approve release of their capital outlay allocation information and it should be posted on-line in an easily searchable format.

If you think reform of the capital outlay system is needed, how would you reform it? If you don't think reform is needed, give us your reasons. Yes. NM has a dysfunctional system for funding public infrastructure. We should better prioritize statewide and concentrate more in projects that invest in economic development and critical infrastructure, create jobs, and that get done. Good bills have been introduced. A bi-partisan council with diverse representation is one good approach.

Does New Mexico need to invest more in early childhood development? If you think it does, in your opinion what is the best way to invest? If you don't think New Mexico needs to invest more, tell us why. Yes. This is should be one of NM’s highest priority investments. I run a high-quality pre-K program for 100 children ages 8 weeks to 5 years old. Pre-K funding has grown, but it is not adequate. I support expanding access to public and privately-run pre-K programs, and better parent support programs.

What measures would you take to improve the state's long-term economy? NM’s challenges will be better met when the economy is robust and growing. NM needs to support oil & gas, but accelerate the transition to clean, renewable energy; support small business; nurture an “innovation economy” and emergent technologies; invest in education; and protect our natural resources, water, cultural heritage, and quality of life that is our “natural capital.”

Would you support the legalization of cannabis for adult recreational use in New Mexico? Why or why not? Yes, but only if legalization includes regulating and taxing cannabis and preventing its access to young people. Decriminalization/legalization has the potential to relieve some burdens and costs in our policing, judicial and penal systems. Additional scientific research on cannabis may yield more medical uses and benefits.