Thanks to oil and gas, NM will again have a massive budget surplus

The Legislative Finance Committee anticipates a significant fiscal boost in the coming years, with projections indicating a staggering $3.5 billion influx into the state’s coffers for the upcoming budget year thanks to the oil and gas industry, which New Mexico Democrats ravenously want to kneecap with anti-energy policies. While some of this windfall will be directed toward bolstering “rainy day” funds, policymakers are already formulating strategies to allocate the remaining funds, ranging from tax reform to healthcare initiatives, during the forthcoming legislative session.

Amid this financial abundance, the legislature’s focus extends to throwing billions more into the “Early Childhood Trust Fund,” which uses taxpayer cash to bankroll “free” daycare. State Sen. Pat Woods (R-Curry, Quay, and Union Counties) contends that certain programs have reached a point of overfunding. He aims to redirect these surplus resources towards future-oriented endeavors, asserting, “We have so much money in the program right now that we are not able to, we are about to the maximum, of what we can employ for state government… we can’t produce much more programs.”

Meanwhile, the topic of tax reform emerges as a priority for New Mexico House Republican Minority Leader Ryan Lane. He highlights the discrepancy between the state’s high personal income taxes and the existing surplus, emphasizing the need for comprehensive tax legislation that could ease the financial burden on working-class taxpayers. Lane’s perspective underscores the opportunity to enhance the financial well-being of New Mexico’s residents.

For state Democrats, higher education looms as a pivotal focus. This financial windfall is regarded as an unprecedented chance to strengthen educational initiatives while also safeguarding resources for leaner budgetary years. 

State Sen. George K. Muñoz (D-Cibola, McKinley, and San Juan), the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, praised the prospect of maintaining consistent education funding and extending opportunities like the opportunity scholarships for accessible and free education. Muñoz underscores the fiscal potential that enables these progressive steps.

State Rep. Nathan Small (D-Doña Ana County), chairman of the House Appropriations and Finance Committee, aligns with the extravagant education-centric approach of his colleagues. He advocates for more money to be thrown into education. Small’s vision encompasses broader improvements in the state’s overall healthcare framework, particularly emphasizing the need to enhance behavioral healthcare services.

Small notes, “Substance use treatment, investments in health care, investments to expand reimbursement, so that there are more health care professionals who can see and serve New Mexicans.”

As policymakers prepare to convene for the upcoming legislative session, allocating these massive funds remains a critical discussion. The potential to address a spectrum of issues, from education and healthcare to tax reform, holds the promise of enhancing the well-being of New Mexico’s citizens and the state’s overall trajectory.


11 thoughts on “Thanks to oil and gas, NM will again have a massive budget surplus”

  1. Not for long, MLG and her comrades will spend it faster than it is pumped from the ground. And it does not matter how much money is there, with all their stupid laws, NM will always be last, unless we vote these ungodly and evil people out of office.

  2. Does everyone here see the hypocrisy of this report. The witch and her “green agenda” hates oil and gas. I funds all her stupid programs but she makes it expensive for us to use. What a bunch of crap.

  3. So WHY are state agencies increasing fees for things like concealed carry and security instructors by more than 100% with little to no warning? (rhetorical question, that).

  4. How is it possible that a state with so much wealth is last in all the measurements of well being? The money must be getting skimmed off by the government some how, like the way casino money is. They would have to cover the entire state with solar panels to generate even half the amount of energy the oil and gas wells produce.

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