Santa Fe, NM - Tonight, the House Democrats voted to protect their pet pork projects ahead of New Mexico's priorities when they approved Senate Bill 462, legislation to allocate state capital outlay funds.
Senate Bill 462 authorizes $26 million for various Democrat-sponsored pork projects across the state. The money would fund projects like fish hatcheries and passenger cars for a tourist train.
House Republicans offered an amendment to direct the capital outlay to the general fund to shore up the state's reserves and ensure funding is available for K-12 education, child protective services and public safety agencies. Providing additional money to the general fund would also help the state restore its bond rating. House Democrats rejected the amendment on a party-line 37 to 32 vote.
"New Mexicans have demanded that we do everything we can to protect education funding for our children. This bill does nothing to repair the cuts to early reading programs, Breakfast after the Bell or truancy and dropout prevention," said House Republican Whip Rod Montoya (R-San Juan). "Senate Bill 363 allocates almost $4 million to fish hatcheries. So instead of protecting New Mexico's families, this bill protects fish families. Once again, it sends a terrible message about the priorities this Democrat-controlled Legislature has for New Mexico."
Senate Bill 362 heads to Gov. Susana Martinez's desk for her action.