HB 192 “Five Feet for Bicyclists” Passes Senate with Amendment; Goes Back to House

Update: Literally while writing the post below, the NM House “concurred” with the Senate version of HB 192, and it has moved on to the Governor’s Desk for signature into law. Huzzah!

hb 192 house concurrence

 

If you missed the debate in the Senate yesterday regarding House Bill 192 and want to see it, BB is going to save you a ton of time by directing you to 1:25 p.m. on this archived video.

Be advised, you might not like all your see/hear.

After some questions from Senators Ingle, Muñoz, Sapien, and an amendment from Senator White, HB 192 (with White’s successful amendment screengrabbed below) passed the Senate 29-12 and now goes back to the House for a vote including the amendment.

Questions from Senators to co-sponsor Senator Wirth (who is, by the way, approximately 1.7 trillion times more patient and nice than I am) revealed a mix of misunderstanding with regard to cyclists’ concerns (e.g., debris in bike lanes), complete failure to grasp the concept that drivers might have to actually slow down, and inability to treat a deadly situation in a serious manner. Readers are encouraged, but not that encouraged to watch/listen to these questions.

hb 192 senate discussion
Senator Wirth, with infinite patience, responds to a question from Senator Sapien

Senator White’s amendment pertains to the common disbelief that any cyclist should be afforded the right to ride in the driving lane if a bike lane exist.

handwritten amendment
Handwritten amendments are so quaint, yet one wonders when the Legislature might move a bit closer to at least the 20th Century. 

 

While Senator Wirth kindly pointed to “the extent practicable” in Senator White’s amendment, and treated it as “friendly,” there’s a ton of wiggle room in interpreting “practicable” and issues like debris in the bike lane were, it must be said, swept under the legislative rug.

Yes, and BB is highly disturbed that nobody in the New Mexico Senate seems capable of spelling the word “separate.” “Seperate” appears all the time, including on “the big board” with current legislation and sponsoring legislator(s) face(s). There ought to be a law…

With less than 24 hours left in the Session, BB sees HB 192 on the Concurrence Calendar for today in the House, but doesn’t know if it’s come up for discussion at this writing. In fact, there’s a darn good chance that concurrence has been approved while writing this post. Too many things going on all around, NM Legislature included.

I think we all need a weekend. the Legislature’s won’t start until Noon tomorrow. I propose that ours start right this second.

 

 

 

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