Will there be a special session of the N.M. Legislature to balance the budget? What’s this talk coming from the Governor’s Office of a possible partial government shutdown?
Gov. Susana Martinez hasn’t yet acted on legislation from the legislative session that concluded Saturday to balance the budget, but she’s not happy. Here’s a statement from her office’s spokesman Michael Lonergan about the situation:
The Governor has met with DFA; they tell her that soon we won’t be able to cut checks. Cash is nearing empty.
She directed DFA to begin exploring the process of a government shutdown. This could mean many things — closing our museums to just a few days a week; cutting hours at parks; state employee furloughs; and, God forbid, fewer days our kids spend in the classroom.
This was COMPLETELY avoidable. But from day one, the Senate seemed determined to drive us into a shutdown.
The Governor will call a special session soon because the do-nothing Senate wasted 60 days debating things like holiday songs instead of working on a balanced budget that doesn’t raise taxes on our families.
It’s important to note that the Governor and her administration offered $300 million in options to balance the budget – all while protecting classroom spending, and rejecting tax increases on our families and businesses. These included legislative retirement fund (among the most generous in the country) and lawmakers’ pet pork projects. Part of the governor’s solution also includes comprehensive tax reform that closes loopholes, broadens the base and reduces rates
Besides the budget, it’s not final what will be on the call, but there’s room for other items given that they squandered two months of work.