New Mexicos Budget Deficit

Prevalent in recent intelligence are legion narratives of provinces trying to cover with budget shortages throughout the on-going economic recession, while still seeking to keep much needed services for their occupants. In New Mexico, freshly elected governor, Susana Martinez has been plagued with an estimated 450 million dollar budget shortage. She is challenged with how she will pull off this budget crisis by cut downing the shortage without raising revenue enhancements, cutting instruction and wellness attention, or dunking into New Mexico ‘s lasting fund.

In the 2011 New Mexico State of the State reference, Governor Martinez was really clear in indicating out her feeling of one of the cardinal grounds the province is in fiscal crisis: “ Let me talk really clearly, New Mexicans are non under taxed, the authorities has merely overspent ” ( Governor Susana Martinez, 2011 State of the State Address ) . After seting together a squad of analysts for this intent, it was evident to the new disposal merely how loose the disbursement has become. Legislators are suggesting higher revenue enhancements, furloughs, lay-offs, omission of plans, and fewer services available to citizens. All of these are feasible options ; nevertheless, they have merely proven to shut a little spread in the possible $ 450 million shortage. The job of over disbursement still exists, and has merely been minimally addressed.

When looking at buying, it should be understood that there are legislative acts regulating procurance processs. Statute 13-1-125 provinces: “ A province bureau or local public organic structure may secure services, building or points of touchable personal belongings by publishing a direct purchase order to the contractor based on best gettable monetary value ” ( The New Mexico Statutes Annotated 39 ) .This is defined as the lowest bidder. Additionally, bureaus are tasked with securing through competitory command and non to merely sellers associated professionally or personally. This is another common pattern that seems to be present in most bureaus. By seting a justification procedure in topographic point through an indifferent commission,

bureaus would hold to get down enumerating the demand for the procurance and how they will continue in a wholly crystalline mode.

The State Purchasing Division has administered 100s of contracts with sellers for discounted pricing for all province bureaus covering 1000s of merchandises and services. By bureaus using these contracts, the nest eggs is a whole for the full province and affects future pricing due to bulk buying. Intelligibly, there are procurances that require specialised accomplishments, but the procedure should be monitored and the outgo justified. The sanctioned budget of an bureau should be monitored by set parametric quantities for outgos and the extra put back into the General Fund, in order to refill the shortage amounts or to be used for more important services. Without inadvertence, this job will non discontinue.

Deficit Factors

Increased authorities disbursement over the old eight old ages has surpassed the sum needed to dutifully run into the demands of New Mexicans. Besides, the current economic recession has affected province grosss and the recession has revealed the truth that province authorities has been passing far beyond its agencies. Additionally, over $ 408 million in federal stimulation and other support was employed in FY 11 for instruction, Medicaid and other societal service plans. Those federal dollars will non be available in FY 12 and must be replenished, either wholly or partly, by general fund dollars. Additionally, the province amasses $ 1.1 billion in gross grosss revenue enhancements distributed to counties and pays back $ 125 million in revenue enhancement gross to screen counties from the consequence of the riddance of the revenue enhancement on food markets and medical disbursals. This amplifies the impact of the nutrient and medical gross grosss revenue enhancement freedom on province grosss.

New Mexico is required to go through a “ balanced budget. ” State jurisprudence defines the budget as an estimation of State outgos and proposals for funding them. New Mexico jurisprudence forbids the transporting over of a shortage from one twelvemonth to the following ( Section 6-3-10, NMAC ) .Governor Susana Martinez ‘s FY 12 budget reduces province disbursement by three per centum and does non increase revenue enhancements. The Governor ‘s budget proposal is centered on appraisals from December 2010 that there will be an addition of 4.4 per centum in New Mexico ‘s grosss from FY 11 to FY 12. Governor Martinez has stated that decreases in disbursement Begin with cutting disbursals within the Governor ‘s office, Governor ‘s sign of the zodiac, and the wages of the Governor ‘s Cabinet. Martinez ‘s budget program besides recommends cut downing administrative disbursals from instruction, diminishing or extinguishing the movie subsidy plan, and cutting the size of the province environment section ( New Mexico Department of Finance Website: Executive Budget Recommendation for Fiscal Year 2012 ) .

Governor ‘s Proposal

The Governor ‘s budget proposal for FY 12 recommends general fund disbursement of 5.4 billion. This may look to be an addition from FY 11, but it is really a lessening. The 1000000s in federal stimulation dollars that were utilized in FY 11 allowed general fund disbursement to be lowered in FY 11. Governor Martinez ‘s recommendation is constructed to put to death three important duties: 1 ) the budget will be balanced without increaseing revenue enhancements, 2 ) the budget will safeguard financess soon being expended in the schoolroom for k-12 instruction. , and 3 ) the budget will go on to supply for wellness attention costs ( New Mexico Department of Finance Website: Executive Budget Recommendation for Fiscal Year 2012 ) . The province legislative assembly besides has a function to play sing budgetary determinations. They have to measure and accept or reject the overall effectivity of recommended budget decreases. Making off with or cut downing disbursement may be questioned when citizen, community, and concern concerns are taken into consideration. It is possible that extended nest eggs to the revenue enhancement remunerators and province of New Mexico could be touchable if a part of the disbursement cuts recommended by Governor Martinez were implemented.

Current State of Affairs

Presently it appears that New Mexico State authorities is seeking to do up the budget shortage through their employees. Employees are forced to take furlough yearss, denied educational benefits and travel, and a decrease in preparation. Employees are confronting additions in their parts when it comes to their retirement and wellness insurance. In 2008 former Governor Richardson ordered a hiring freezing for all New Mexico bureaus ensuing in 4,000 vacancies across province authorities. The former governor ordered about 20,000 province employees to take 5 compulsory unpaid furlough yearss and cut province bureaus. All exempt employees took a 2 % wage cut, overtime for non-essential employees was eliminated, 59 out of 84 exempt employees were terminated, non-essential vacant exempt places were kept unfastened, and capital spending undertakings were frozen in October of 2009. The consequences of this method of budget decrease could stop up being damaging to province authorities. Outcomes may ensue in employees that are non decently trained for their places which can take to errors being made on the occupation. Cut in wage, furlough yearss, and reduced retirement benefits can besides take to disgruntled employees.


The governor of New Mexico needs to guarantee that province bureaus are allowed to accurately budget disbursals based on their mission. At the same clip doing certain their justifications are decently supported, that there is sufficient inadvertence, and that they are made accountable for their disbursement. Government reorganisation is besides an option for furthering fix of the budget shortage. The governor has considered consolidating province bureaus in order to cut down over caput costs. This consideration is based on an executive proposal on restructuring that indicates a possible nest egg of $ 7.9 million. Additionally, some of Governor Martinez ‘s other recommendations include selling the province jet and cut downing the overall figure of province employees by extinguishing unneeded vacant places for extra nest eggs. Immediate steps have already been taken by Governor Martinez by publishing a moratorium, in which she has put a arrest to province bureaus buying new vehicles, except for vehicles that are indispensable for public safety, and stoping the usage of cell phones by non-essential forces. These were necessary moves, but it is clip to look at the attack bureaus are taking in passing money and what it is spent on. Presently, there is no procedure for justification of big purchases. Along with the deficiency of supervised procurance, bureaus will pass extra budget at the terminal of the Fiscal twelvemonth on anything possible non to return the money to the General Fund. Equally unethical as this seems, it is common pattern. There are simple stairss that can be followed to avoid these patterns and extinguish them being portion of shortages in the hereafter.

Budgets should non be based on last twelvemonth ‘s disbursals, as this forces bureaus to pass financess that have non been earmarked for specific undertakings unwisely, so as non to non hold their budgets reduced for the undermentioned financial twelvemonth. Currently province bureau budgets are approved based on entire dollar sum and non by proper justification. Performance based budgeting is an absolute must. Strict fiscal inadvertence is necessary. Agencies should non be allowed to switch budget authorization to or from classs that do non hold proper justification for outgos.

In world, a budget should be an allowance spent “ sagely ” throughout a specified sum of clip. When it comes to the province budget a batch of money has been spent on unneeded points in order to keep the sum of financess allocated for the budget for the approaching financial twelvemonth. When a province bureau is allocated financess for a given financial twelvemonth and they end up with a excess remaining, those resources should be put into a revolving history where other sections that are in demand of extra gross can entree it. Increasing province employee ‘s retirement part is unacceptable. State employees are populating payroll check to paycheck and 1 or 2 per centum lessening in wage is damaging to the well-being of those employees and their households. Besides, cut downing the sum of retirement that has already been pledged to those that have been with the province for a specified sum of old ages seems unjust. Current province employees began working for the province with a warrant that they would have a pre-determined per centum as their retirement. Now that per centum is at hazard of being reduced. If the sum of retirement being paid to province employees can assist salvage the budget, so possibly the legislative assembly should see take downing the per centum of retirement for new province employees. Over the last two old ages, executive bureaus have implemented a assortment of schemes to cut down operating costs including greater usage of teleconferencing because of the freezing on travel. In add-on, bureaus have restructured their concern procedures and have attempted to work more efficaciously and expeditiously. By making this, province bureaus have reduced their disbursals on supplies and cut back on uneconomical disbursement.


New Mexico is non entirely in its battle for a balanced budget. America has been in a recession for many months and all 50 provinces have been hit hard by the loss of revenue enhancement dollars. Worsening belongings values leads to a lessening in belongings revenue enhancement gross. Unemployed and underemployed citizens pay few or no income revenue enhancements. The unemployment rate in New Mexico has been on a steady rise from 3.7 % in 2008 to 8.8 % in 2010. Businesss that close their doors because of decreasing gross revenues due to a weak economic system, means a loss of gross grosss revenue enhancement returns for the provinces. While New Mexico ‘s locally owned concerns are paying gross grosss revenue enhancement, New Mexico ‘s current revenue enhancement Torahs allow corporations to avoid paying revenue enhancements that should be supplying gross for province services, such as wellness attention, instruction, and public safety, which all of the occupants of New Mexico benefit from.A ( New Mexico Independent Website ) . More focal point should be put on what is needed alternatively of cutting services. For illustration, at the beginning of this school twelvemonth, the public schools budgets were already reduced compared to old old ages. Presently, instructors and parents have to pay out of pocket for necessary supplies. The bulk of New Mexico ‘s leaders say that they want to assist repair instruction in New Mexico, but since instruction encompasses the largest part of the budget, it is normally the first to be cut.

The hereafter will be disputing and hard picks will necessitate to be made, but with stamina and finding, New Mexico will retrieve. With Susana Martinez as New Mexico ‘s governor, one can merely trust that she will present on what she has promised the citizens of New Mexico: A balanced budget, sufficient educational disbursement, funding for continued wellness attention and future prosperity for the people of New Mexico.