The New Mexico State Council of Machinists held their second meeting of 2023 this past weekend in Ruidoso, N.M.
Delegates from across the state, and in a variety of industries, gathered to hear reports on issues affecting each of their respective lodges and were joined by Zoom appearances from Congresspersons Melanie Stansbury and Gabe Vasquez. Delegates were informed in real time by the Congresspersons of the ongoing debates around continuing to fund the federal government and avoid a shutdown, which would impact many of the New Mexico IAM lodges working on our bases and military installations.
“The New Mexico State Council of Machinists and Aerospace Workers are beginning to see the fruits of their labor when it comes to engaging with our elected officials in Washington, D.C., and Santa Fe,” said New Mexico State Council of Machinists President John Dyrcz. “Our State Council delegates have been hard at work during this term modernizing our bylaws, codifying our endorsement practices, and interacting with federal and in-state lawmakers. I am proud of each of the delegates who are using their talents to improve our processes and create the State Council they want to see.”
Also rolled out at the State Council meeting was the introduction of a new legislative scorecard (House and Senate) for individual members of the New Mexico legislature. This tool provides valuable insight into how often state representatives and senators are voting in alignment with labor priorities and values. Local 794 President and Directing Business Representative Ashley Long and NMSC President John Dyrcz both had a hand in its inception in their respective roles with the New Mexico Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO.
“I applaud the effort of the New Mexico State Council of Machinists,” said Western Territory General Vice President Gary R. Allen. “They are nonstop in their effort to fight for a brighter future for all of New Mexico and I am excited to see what their collective tenacity will achieve.”
State Council President Dyrcz also provided an update of what to expect from the upcoming 2024 legislative session and the Council took action to calendar their next meeting in Santa Fe at the same time for a lobbying opportunity. The state budget-focused 30-day session is set to begin in January 2024, and New Mexico State Council delegates will engage with advocacy around issues like paid family leave, the banning of captive audience meetings, and other items which improve the lives of working New Mexicans and union members.
Delegates to the State Council meeting also raised roughly $1,000 through raffles and drawings, which will be donated to various IAM philanthropic efforts including the MNPL, the MNPL Education Fund, Guide Dogs of America/Tender Loving Canines, and the 41st Grand Lodge Convention being planned by the IAM Eastern Territory.