New Mexico Legislature seeks greater spending amid pandemic

Jan 12, 2021

Credit KUNM

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Leading New Mexico legislators are proposing a 4% increase in state general fund spending that would devote new resources to health care and public education amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The detailed budget proposal was announced Tuesday by Democratic and Republican members of a lead budget-writing committee.

Legislators are also proposing cost-of-living pay increases for state workers and public school employees and a bailout of the state's indebted unemployment trust fund to avoid future payroll tax increases.

Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham is suggesting 3.3% increase in spending without blanket pay raises. Economists are predicting a rebound in state government income on top of multibillion-dollar financial reserves.