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New Mexico Senate Approves Over $9.5 Billion Budget


The New Mexico Senate on Sunday approved a $9.57 billion budget for the upcoming fiscal year, but not without some late controversy.

The Senate Finance Committee approved the budget on Saturday but then came back Sunday morning and added more projects.

Republicans accused Democrats of caving to the Governor’s office.

Finance Chairman Sen. George Munoz says it was a long journey to get the budget approved.

“Everybody thinks this is done late at night in a dark room. It’s not,” he said. “We try to travel the state through LFC (Legislative Finance Committee) and build this framework all year round. One week out of every month pretty much we’re on the road somewhere in New Mexico or in this capitol creating this. It’s not easy and it’s not a simple process. It’s not easy to make decisions to create winners and losers.”                    

Democrat Shannon Pinto joined all the Republicans to vote against the budget.

In a statement released Sunday night, Sen. Pat Woods called the budget some of the worst policymaking in state history.

He said the people deserve more from their elected appropriators and until this budgeting process changes, the state will continue to pass bad budgets.

The bill now heads back to the House for a concurrence vote.