- We need to invest in New Mexico’s future now; we need to invest in our kids
ALBUQUERQUE – Rep. Javier Martinez, D-Albuquerque and Rep. Antonio “Moe” Maestas, D-Albuquerque have introduced House Joint Resolution 10, the Early Childhood Education Constitutional Amendment.
If passed, this constitutional amendment will give New Mexicans the opportunity to decide whether our state should invest in early education and kindergarten through 12th grade.
“We have one of the largest and fastest growing educational funds in the country,” Maestas said. “A 1 percent increase in the annual distribution would increase early education $150 million a year without raising a dime in taxes, especially when our children’s well-being is ranked 49th in the nation. We cannot expect to end the generations of poverty and dysfunction if we do not give our children the support they need.”
“We cannot continue to inadequately fund the education of our children and expect to see different results,” Martinez said. “We continuously rank at the bottom of the list for child well-being, while our land grant permanent fund continues to grow every year by a significant amount. The 2003 constitutional amendment that permitted an additional investment into our children’s education has expired, and our kids are paying the price. We need to reinvest in our future; we need to invest in New Mexico’s children now.”
The proposal calls for an additional .5 percent increase for grades kindergarten through 12th to address the funding gap they now face. It also calls for a 1.5 percent increase of funds for early education. If passed, the constitutional amendment will then head to the voters in 2016.