The House Appropriations and Finance Committee (HAFC) Chairman announced Friday that the Committee will begin taking input from members of the public during agency budget hearings, to give New Mexico’s diverse communities a voice in the budget process.
The new public comment policy will begin at the Committee’s next meeting Monday, Jan. 23.
Following the introduction of the House’s budget for the fiscal year 2024 on the House Floor yesterday, HAFC will begin the critical work of reviewing Executive requests and public comment to ensure that the needs of people across the state are met. The Committee’s process will build on the interim work of the Legislative Finance Committee, using its recommended $9.44 billion budget proposal. This framework is designed to usher in transformational change for all New Mexicans, with record investments in students, schools, and teachers, our environment and economy, health care accessibility and affordability, and safe and secure communities.
“We must meet this moment by putting our record revenues to work for New Mexicans while charting a course for generational change. A vital piece of this process is hearing directly from our communities to make sure our budget works for them,” HAFC Chair Nathan Small, (D-Las Cruces) said. “We look forward to hearing from the public and building upon the strong recommendations of the Legislative Finance Committee to formulate a budget that makes responsible, impactful investments in our state’s most pressing areas of need while ensuring that we maintain strong reserves.”
“Working with record revenue is a great responsibility, and we must make prudent investments that will benefit all New Mexicans,” HAFC Vice Chair Meredith Dixon said (D-Albuquerque). “This year, we are focused on delivering results for people all across our state – through funding for community safety, health care, and housing, and in our future – with long-term investments in our next generation, our environment, and our economy.”
“The Legislative Finance Committee works year-round to assess New Mexico’s revenue, track our state’s reserves, and determine how we can maintain robust reserves while best utilizing available funds to make research-based investments in areas of greatest need,” LFC Director David Abbey added. “Right now, we have the opportunity to not only address a number of systemic challenges but also turn our current financial boom into long-term returns.”Source: LA Daily Post