Richardson Fires Investment Advisor

With New Mexico’s State Investment Council (SIC) mired in scandal and under attack from the Rio Grande Foundation, the media, and others concerned about rampant mis-steps and improprieties, Governor Bill Richardson has taken a first step by firing a private equity adviser under scrutiny in a kickback probe of New York state’s pension fund. This is a good start and a victory for the Rio Grande Foundation, but firing one investment is not going to solve the systemic problems inherent in the SIC.
Sen. Steve Neville’s legislation (SB 460) that would have expanded the SIC and taken it from under the thumb of the Governor was, not surprisingly, vetoed by Governor Richardson. Of course, expanding the SIC will have some positive impact, but restricting the Council’s discretion to invest for job creation is also an important change that could be made. Ultimately, rather than letting government bureaucrats control massive pools of money, we need to ask ourselves whether these resources would be better managed by individual New Mexicans making decisions in the broader economy.