New Mexico State Auditor Tim Keller
SANTA FE — New Mexico State Auditor Tim Keller was selected from a national competitive field as a finalist for the New Ideas Challenge, for the innovative report Money on the Sidelines: Report on Unspent Fund Balances.
The report explores how much public money in New Mexico sits unspent in various accounts throughout hundreds of state agencies. In total, the report uncovered $4.2 billion in allocated dollars that not yet been spent. Many of the funds are allocated to job-creating infrastructure and water projects that remain uncompleted due to red tape, matching funds or conflicting priorities.
Two honorary chairs of the national selection organization, Developing Exceptional American Leaders (NewDEAL), Gov. Jack Markell (Delaware) and Sen. Mark Warner (Virginia) announced the finalists.
“I am honored that we were a selected as a finalist for the New Ideas Challenge and will continue to champion innovative policy analysis in New Mexico,” Keller said. “The report identified critical balances in state agencies. As our state copes with revenue shortfalls and ever-increasing public spending needs for infrastructure and education, it is critical that these dollars move into our economy as soon as possible. Our aim is to bring transparency to this important fiscal information in an effort to inform policymakers about the status of state resources.”
The New Mexico Office of the State Auditor also announced the second edition of the report is slated to be released during the first quarter of 2016.
This is the second annual New Ideas Challenge sponsored by NewDEAL, and was developed to give recognition to intelligent, reasonable solutions that are being developed and tested by state and local leaders across the country. At a time of national gridlock, this network of leaders is offering applied solutions from the front lines of government.