SANTA FE — Gov. Susana Martinez signed the state budget (House Bill 2) Monday, which as a result of persistently low oil and gas prices, reduces spending in the current fiscal year by roughly $31 million and reduces the base budgets of most state agencies for Fiscal Year 2017 as well (by a total of roughly $53 million).
The $6.2 billion budget increases spending in target areas – including education, public safety agencies, and Medicaid. Under the spending plan, state police officers, correctional officers, and some teachers will receive compensation increases.
The budget largely preserves spending on education reform initiatives and funds both the new “Students Work” internship portal and the Rapid Workforce Development Fund to recruit businesses to New Mexico that need a highly trained and specialized workforce. And as more funding is provided to pay for the cost of Medicaid expansion, the budget also directs the Human Services Department to take a number of steps to reduce Medicaid spending and the pace with which Medicaid costs are growing.
For more information, please click here to read Martinez’ lengthy signing message. Martinez also acted on House Bill 311, a companion bill to the state budget (the HB 311 signing message is available here).
Additionally, Martinez also signed House Bill 105, sponsored by Rep. Jim Smith (R-Albuquerque), which creates uniform standards for electronic campaign finance reporting from candidates, lobbyists, and political committees. This will improve accuracy, consistency, and transparency in New Mexico’s campaign finance system.
“I’m proud to sign this bill into law because it will provide much-needed improvements to our campaign finance reporting system,” Martinez said. “Establishing uniform standards for electronic reporting will make our system more accurate and transparent, and allow for more New Mexicans to more easily access this information.”
Martinez also signed legislation that allows small New Mexico communities to utilize local closing fund dollars on key retail projects, which have previously been excluded from accessing these economic development funds. House Bill 139 was sponsored by Reps. Jason Harper (R-Rio Rancho) and Stephanie Garcia Richard (D-Los Alamos).
“Our closing funds are a valuable resource for recruiting new business to our state, and helping those already here grow and thrive,” Martinez concluded. “This bill helps our communities recruit businesses so they can expand and hire more New Mexicans.”
Martinez also signed the following legislation: House Bill 249 — Conform Income Tax Due Dates with Federal Law [MESSAGE]