New Mexicans for Economic Prosperity, a statewide economic advocacy coalition of which the Rio Grande Foundation is a member, released a report yesterday that shows the impact of state trust lands on New Mexico’s economy and budget.
New Mexicans are benefiting more from state trust lands than ever before, according to a new report released today by New Mexicans for Economic Prosperity (NM4EP). The report, entitled “Prosperity for the Public: State Lands and the New Mexico Economy,” found that the average New Mexico household saved more than $1,100 in taxes last year thanks to economic activity on state trust lands.
New Mexico’s 9 million acres of state trust land generated a record high $852.2 million in revenue for the Land Grant Permanent Fund and Land Maintenance Fund in Fiscal Year 2018. These funds have distributed $3.5 billion in the last five years – which includes $826.2 million last year – to schools, colleges, universities, hospitals, and other public institutions across the state.
“The economic activities that take place on our state trust lands are an important source of jobs in multiple industries from agriculture and energy to mining and outdoor recreation. They also generate hundreds of millions of dollars every year for education and health care across New Mexico,” NM4EP Executive Director Kyler Nerison said.
Among the report’s key findings:
- Over the last ten fiscal years, revenue from state trust lands has totaled more than $6.25 billion
- Oil and gas development accounted for 93.5% of that revenue, although less than a quarter of state trust land is leased for that purpose.
- More than $6.52 billion has been distributed from the Land Grant Permanent Fund and the Land Maintenance Fund to beneficiaries across New Mexico.
- These distributions have saved the average New Mexico household $8,600 in taxes, including $1,105 last year.
- State trust lands support tens of thousands of jobs in agriculture, renewable energy, outdoor recreation, oil and gas development, and other industries.
The report also identified opportunities for New Mexico to seize on opportunities in oil and gas production, renewable energy development, and outdoor recreation that could increase revenue while expanding and diversifying the state economy.
“By capitalizing on opportunities available on state trust lands, we can expand and diversify New Mexico’s economy, create jobs in multiple industries, and help build a stronger future by generating increased revenue for education, health care, and public institutions around the state,” Nerison said.
This report is part of NM4EP’s ongoing educational campaign explaining how the responsible use of state trust lands – be it from agriculture, energy, recreation, or many other activities – is benefiting all New Mexicans.
Earlier this year, NM4EP released an informative whiteboard video about state trust lands that amassed more than 150,000 views on YouTube and Facebook.