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Desertrat56

Letters From Teresa Leger Fernandez

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Desertrat56
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Dear Friends,

It was wonderful to hear directly from so many of you during my telephone town hall this week!

We had over 5,000 people call in. If you missed it, you can listen to it HERE . Thank you for sharing your questions and concerns, and calling my office afterwards with even more questions. 

This week, I also had the amazing opportunity to speak with a passionate young constituent and address some very important concerns she raised in her letter to me.

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Here’s a snapshot of what we’ve done this week.

Working for New Mexico

This week, the House passed the Equality Act to finally ensure that LGBTQ+ Americans live free from discrimination. 

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On Thursday, I anchored a Congressional Progressive Caucus Special Order Hour on increasing the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. This increase is an important step to give working families the dignity they deserve for the work they perform for our communities and our economy.

In addition to hearing directly from constituents, I finished up my meetings with Mayors and County Commissioners from across my district - from our eastern borders, to our northwest quadrant, from our beautiful northern mountain villages to our larger cities of Santa Fe and Rio Rancho.  We used the stories of hardship and need in our diverse communities in our advocacy for the American Rescue Plan. The bill responds to those stories of need with action. 

Legislative Corner

As we send this, I am preparing to go debate on the House floor in favor of the American Rescue Plan .  

This week, I backed a resolution designating the week of Feb. 28th as National Tribal Colleges & Universities Week. 

Additionally, I co-signed a letter with Senator Ben Ray Luján to investigate issues we’ve heard regarding veterans getting access to the vaccine through the VA in New Mexico.

I also cosponsored a range of bills to support our communities:

  • WATER Act to address access to clean, safe, and affordable drinking water in America. 
  • George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to hold police accountable, end racial profiling, change the culture of law enforcement, and build trust between law enforcement and our communities by addressing systemic racism and bias to help save lives.
  • DISCLOSE Act to require organizations spending money in federal elections to disclose their donors.
  • Citizenship for Essential Workers Act to provide millions of hardworking, undocumented immigrants with a pathway to earned citizenship.
  • LGBTQ Business Equal Credit Enforcement and Investment Act to help facilitate fair lending to strengthen economic opportunity across the country.

 

Constituent Services

SMALL BUSINESS PAYCHECK PROTECTION PROGRAM LOANS 

The Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) is back! The Biden Administration is giving businesses with fewer than 20 employees and sole proprietors a jump on the PPP loans from Wednesday, February 24 through Wednesday, March 10, 2021. 

Apply at sba.gov today!

President Biden has also announced additional program changes to make access to PPP loans more equitable.

A helpful video from CO- with the U.S. Chamber on this round of PPP. Neal Bradley answers many questions that local business owners may have.

SMALL BUSINESS PPP LOAN RESOURCES 

General information from the SBA on PPP  y en Español.  

SBDC New Mexico is a wonderful resource for small businesses across New Mexico. They provide one-on-one guidance, as well as online workshops on applying and qualifying for all SBA loans, including the PPP.

For those looking for a lender, the SBA has a list of approved lenders in New Mexico .

NM FREE COUNSELING HOTLINE (1-855-NMCRISIS) 

It’s especially important to take care of our wellbeing during these trying times. The New Mexico Crisis and Access Line is a mental health hotline available to anyone in New Mexico that needs it. It’s answered by professional counselors 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year.

 

As always, please contact my office if you need help with a federal agency. Our caseworkers are here to help! 

 

Sincerely,

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Teresa Leger Fernández

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Wistman

Terrific.  Thank you.

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Tatetopa

Well, maybe I shouldn't make a comparison, but.....  When people ask what a legislator, especially a Senator, can do in a state of emergency to help constituents, I would point to Teresa.  That is a lot more productive for the people she represents than flying off to Cancun.   Rather than public servants I think some Congress people just want to be  Twitter and FOX stars.  Too lazy to work and too Chickensh** to steal.

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DieChecker

And yet the "cages" are now back open and occupied.

Maybe there's less inmates, but are you any less in a "cage" if its 8x8, or 20x20?

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DieChecker
Quote

LGBTQ Business Equal Credit Enforcement and Investment Act to help facilitate fair lending to strengthen economic opportunity across the country.

I'd not heard of this. How do they determine who is LGBTQ, and how they were discriminated against? This reminds me of the whole cake shop thing. 

Obviously there's going to be some bigoted lending officers. But, at least where I live, there's a mortgage company and a bank on every other street corner.

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Tatetopa
3 hours ago, DieChecker said:

And yet the "cages" are now back open and occupied.

Maybe there's less inmates, but are you any less in a "cage" if its 8x8, or 20x20?

Yep and its still wrong, or did you think it was right before?

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Autochthon1990
5 hours ago, DieChecker said:

And yet the "cages" are now back open and occupied.

Maybe there's less inmates, but are you any less in a "cage" if its 8x8, or 20x20?

I'm not fond of the cages, but they're what we use in mens shelters and ****, and it's a rural area. What was /heinous/ was the treatment of families via separation. So while one isn't /ideal/ but might be the best option in some areas, the other is /an atrocity/

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and then
7 hours ago, DieChecker said:

I'd not heard of this. How do they determine who is LGBTQ, and how they were discriminated against? This reminds me of the whole cake shop thing. 

Obviously there's going to be some bigoted lending officers. But, at least where I live, there's a mortgage company and a bank on every other street corner.

Well, they'd better damned skippy get in line and never refuse a member of that community or the Feds will crush them.  Using a coordinated, corrupt tag team of government and media, NOTHING will stand in their way for long.  Ain't it grand?

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and then
2 hours ago, Autochthon1990 said:

What was /heinous/ was the treatment of families via separation.

Those separations were also done under the Tan Messiah.  I agreed with it then as well.  These people show up in groups, no proof that these children are even related.  Just for the sake of trashing the BOM, you folks seemed more than happy to allow those kids to stay in the custody of potential traffickers just for the sake of your politics.  THAT is the reality.  

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Autochthon1990
1 hour ago, and then said:

Those separations were also done under the Tan Messiah.  I agreed with it then as well.  These people show up in groups, no proof that these children are even related.  Just for the sake of trashing the BOM, you folks seemed more than happy to allow those kids to stay in the custody of potential traffickers just for the sake of your politics.  THAT is the reality.  

Dude, they're behind chain link fence. You can watch them like a hawk the entire time they're in there while a DNA test is pending. If there's suspicious activities going on, you can tug them apart, just don't do it by default. 

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preacherman76
13 hours ago, Autochthon1990 said:

Dude, they're behind chain link fence. You can watch them like a hawk the entire time they're in there while a DNA test is pending. If there's suspicious activities going on, you can tug them apart, just don't do it by default. 

Wow I mmm I well, I agree. 
 

So we should be starting the impeachment trial right away. 

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Myles
15 hours ago, Autochthon1990 said:

Dude, they're behind chain link fence. You can watch them like a hawk the entire time they're in there while a DNA test is pending. If there's suspicious activities going on, you can tug them apart, just don't do it by default. 

I don't think they are staffed enough to have people watching everyone all the time.  You would think the people would learn to bring the proper paperwork with them.  

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Desertrat56
9 minutes ago, Myles said:

I don't think they are staffed enough to have people watching everyone all the time.  You would think the people would learn to bring the proper paperwork with them.  

If they are fleeing for their lives maybe "bing the proper paperwork" is impossible.

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Myles
2 minutes ago, Desertrat56 said:

If they are fleeing for their lives maybe "bing the proper paperwork" is impossible.

I can understand that, but I don't think most just ran out the door.   

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DieChecker
On 2/28/2021 at 10:05 AM, Tatetopa said:

Yep and its still wrong, or did you think it was right before?

I'd prefer they didn't come here illegally at all. Getting caught makes you a criminal. I believe they should be treated humanely, but a fenced compound with small rooms seems ok to me.

Like Autochthon said, its different if its separated children, or just adult men.

Regardless, Biden is stuffing people in there.

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Tatetopa
33 minutes ago, DieChecker said:

I'd prefer they didn't come here illegally at all.

I would prefer that too.  But we get to choose how we respond, not what other people do.  I would prefer that children and parents be reunited.  Biden administration can brag about reuniting 100 kids with their parents, but according to news, there are still about 500 out there  that have not been reunited.

I think of us as a nation of citizens with a certain continuity of government.   It is not sufficient to say, "Well, that was the last administration." I don't think that counts as an excuse.

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DieChecker
Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, Tatetopa said:

I would prefer that too.  But we get to choose how we respond, not what other people do.  I would prefer that children and parents be reunited.  Biden administration can brag about reuniting 100 kids with their parents, but according to news, there are still about 500 out there  that have not been reunited.

I think of us as a nation of citizens with a certain continuity of government.   It is not sufficient to say, "Well, that was the last administration." I don't think that counts as an excuse.

I dont think it's a good excuse either. But I think at the same time condemning one party isn't a good idea either. Not that you're doing that, but it is very common.

I'd read that despite the pounding Trump  got regularly, millions had been spent on investigations here, in Mexico, and Central America, to try to find missing parents. Many of these kids showed up in the US without their parents. 

Edited by DieChecker

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Tatetopa
29 minutes ago, DieChecker said:

I dont think it's a good excuse either. But I think at the same time condemning one party isn't a good idea either. Not that you're doing that, but it is very common.

Amen to that.  I hunger for policies and ideas that we can debate and weigh.  I hate the cults of personality. In 200 years, you would think we would be mature enough to be certain of our principles and pick the leader that best represents those.  Of course that isn't reality though.

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DieChecker
9 hours ago, Tatetopa said:

Amen to that.  I hunger for policies and ideas that we can debate and weigh.  I hate the cults of personality. In 200 years, you would think we would be mature enough to be certain of our principles and pick the leader that best represents those.  Of course that isn't reality though.

Unfortunately, "empires" rise, fade, and fall. Political extremism and extreme divisiveness, is often a sign of the fading of a nation from the pinnacle. 

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Desertrat56
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Dear Friends,

It was a busy week serving you in the House of Representatives! 

This week, we passed the American Rescue Plan to bring us one step closer to recovery, crush COVID-19, and get our economy back on track. This lifeline for the American people acknowledges the complexities of the issues we face and addresses them head on. It delivers immediate relief, puts money directly into our local economies and helps those most vulnerable.

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I had the pleasure of meeting with some of the New Mexico National Guard troops who have protected our nation's Capital since the insurrection and are working hard to keep us safe. I continue to be thankful for the work they’re doing and the opportunity to hear their stories. 

Here’s a snapshot of what we did this week. 

Working for New Mexico

This week the House passed H.R. 1, the For the People Act! I spoke on the House floor and on the House steps this week in favor of protecting and strengthening our democracy. 

Voting should be a celebration, not an endurance event where voters have to wait hours just to access the ballot box. HR 1 shines the light on dark money, makes it easier to vote, and addresses corruption. The right to vote is an essential step to making progress on the issues that American support. 

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I proudly advocated for the expansion of the Child Tax Credit as a part of the American Rescue Plan. New Mexico is one of the poorest states in the country regarding child poverty. This legislation will add $1,000 to the existing credit and will help lift out of poverty about 50% of children living in poverty in our State. Our children are our future, and we must invest in them because it is morally right, compassionate and will yield benefits for decades to come.   

You can view my interview with KOB about the Child Tax Credit HERE  

To protect our precious landscapes, I proudly voted for the Protecting America’s Wilderness and Public Lands Act this week. This comprehensive conservation legislation would protect 1.5 million acres of public land and 1,200 miles of pristine rivers!  

Legislative Corner

This week, I joined my colleagues in passing two other major pieces of legislation. 
  • For the People Act, a comprehensive voting rights and democracy reform package to fight big money in politics, make it easier to vote, protect  voting rights, hold elected officials accountable, and end extreme partisan gerrymandering. 
  • The George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to hold police accountable, end racial profiling, change the culture of law enforcement, and build trust between law enforcement and our communities by addressing systemic racism and bias to help save lives.

I also cosponsored the following bills: 

  • Biliteracy Education Seal and Teaching Act (“BEST Act”) to help states create and implement a Seal of Biliteracy program that encourages and recognizes high school students who achieve proficiency in both English and at least one other language - Shout out to the New Mexico Association for Bilingual Education for leading on this!
  • Build America's Libraries Act to repair, modernize, and construct library facilities in underserved and marginalized communities - libraries from Santa Fe to Clovis will benefit from these funds. 
  • American Dream & Promise Act to enable U.S.-raised immigrant youth, our  “Dreamers” to earn lawful permanent residence and American citizenship. It also includes protections and a path to citizenship for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients and Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) beneficiaries. I’m helping the Congressional Hispanic Caucus secure votes for this and our other immigration bills.
  • Do No Harm Act to protect religious exercise while ensuring religious freedom is not used to erode civil rights protections particularly for LGBTQ people.
  • Abortion is Healthcare Everywhere Act to repeal the Helms Amendment and expand abortion and comprehensive healthcare access globally.
  • Bipartisan Background Checks Act to keep communities safe and require that every sale of a firearm include a background check. 
  • Enhanced Background Checks Act to extend the initial background check review period from three to 10 days. 
Additionally, I signed on to a letter by Representatives Grijalva and Kirkpatrick urging the Biden Administration to consult with border communities regarding construction of the southern border wall. It includes requests to develop a meaningful environmental mitigation plan for the borderlands with local stakeholders (including Tribal leaders) and immediately cancel all border wall contracts. It also calls for a commitment to forego any new contracts and construction activities.

Constituent Services

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I am excited to announce we are taking submissions for the 2021 Congressional Art Competition! Our district is full of creative and talented young artists. I encourage all eligible students to get involved and let their talents and creativity shine through their art. 

This is open to all 7th-12th grade students in New Mexico’s Third Congressional district. Applications must be submitted directly to francesca.dipalma@mail.house.gov by April 30, 2021.

 

As always, please contact my office if you need help with a federal agency. Our caseworkers are here to help! 

CALL US AT 505-428-4680

To stay up-to-date on the work I’m doing for New Mexico, follow us on Facebook , Twitter , Instagram .

Sincerely,

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Teresa Leger Fernández

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Desertrat56

 

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Dear Friends, 

This was such an amazing week for New Mexico with the confirmation and swearing in of New Mexico’s daughter, Deb Haaland as Secretary of the Interior! 

She takes to the Department of the Interior a fierce voice borne of resilience and the love of community and of our earth which she inherited from the 34 generations of New Mexican women before her. 

She will be a strong voice to protect our public lands and to build new economic opportunities.

Working for New Mexico

This week, we passed important legislation to protect women. On Wednesday, I joined my colleagues to pass a bill to strike the deadline for the ratification of the Equal Rights Amendment, affirming women's equality and an equal future for all.

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We also passed the Violence Against Women Act. The protections of this bill are a matter of life and death for New Mexicans.  

I worked to pass two amendments in this bill. They will help prevent suicide amongst survivors of sexual assault and recognize that our diverse communities need to receive culturally relevant legal aid and outreach programs.

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You can view my floor speech HERE .

was thrilled that this week, we took steps to protect our immigrant communities! Immigrants feed us, care for us, and inspire us. It was past time that we passed the American Dream & Promise Act as well as the Farmworkers Modernization Act this week. I joined the debate on this bill as well, and you can see my remarks below. 

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You can view my floor speech HERE .

Finally, we know that New Mexico small businesses are the heart and soul of our local economy. I voted to extend the Paycheck Protection Program application period though May 31, 2021 so that our small businesses have the time they need. 

Over the next many weeks we will be holding seminars to help our businesses and organizations access the funds that the Rescue Plan provides.  We will announce the dates on this newsletter and on my website and social media.

Legislative Corner

This week, I I also joined my colleagues to co-sponsor:

  • The COVID-19 Hate Crimes Act to provide greater oversight and guidance for State and local law enforcement agencies to review COVID-19 hate crimes.
  • The Resolution Condemning All Forms of Anti-Asian Sentiment as Related to COVID-19 to call on law enforcement to investigate reports of crimes against the AAPI community and denounce the anti-Asian sentiment and the safety and well-being of all Americans during these times
  • The Equal Pay Day Resolution to recognize March 24th as Equal Pay Day.
  • Medicare for All to ensure that health care is affordable and accessible for everyone, everywhere.

I also signed on to a couple of letters on issues I feel strongly about, including:

  • A letter to the administration outlining key priorities for women and families to be included in future recovery or infrastructure packages and ensured the mention of our Native sisters.
  • A letter to OMB opposing lowering the threshold for Metropolitan Statistical Areas from 100k to 50k. This would mean that Santa Fe and Farmington would lose their status as MSAs.
  • A letter to the administration in support of wildfire science funding.
  • A letter to DOI in support of President Biden restoring and expanding Bears Ears National Monument.

Constituent Services

CONGRESSIONAL ART COMPETITION

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We are still taking submissions for the 2021 Congressional Art Competition! Our district is full of creative and talented young artists. I encourage all eligible students to get involved and let their talents and creativity shine through their art. 

This is open to any high school student in New Mexico’s Third Congressional district. Applications must be submitted directly to francesca.dipalma@mail.house.gov by April 30, 2021.

IRS - GET MY PAYMENT TOOL

The American Rescue Plan's direct stimulus checks have already started going out!

If you have any questions or want to know when you'll receive your payment, check out the IRS Get My Payment tool.

As always, please contact my office if you need help with a federal agency. Our caseworkers are here to help!

CALL US AT 505-428-4680

To stay up-to-date on the work I’m doing for New Mexico, follow us on Facebook , Twitter , Instagram

 

Sincerely,

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Teresa Leger Fernández

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