Currently, the primary focus of our elected officials remains on addressing the viral outbreak that continues to infect people and shut down large swaths of our economy. Soon, however, a special session of the Legislature will be called to address the situation. When it happens will depend on the dynamics of the current outbreak and any number of political decisions made in both Washington and Santa Fe.
What we DO know is that there are numerous potential cuts to be made. These include everything from 17% pay raises for the Gov’s cabinet secretaries to some more substantive savings to be had. Regardless, as the following chart illustrates, New Mexico government is substantially bigger in terms of spending as a percentage of GDP than any neighboring state. You can check the data for other states (including state and local breakdowns) here.
We know the State budget is going to be deeply affected by the decline in oil and gas prices. But, when they do meet to address the budget New Mexico’s legislators MUST cut spending BEFORE even considering tax hikes.