NM fiscal health rates a ‘C,’ think tank says

Politics Notebook

Dan Boyd

Albuquerque Journal

New Mexico got a passing grade – but didn’t land on the honor roll – in a recent study of states’ fiscal health.

The state received a ” C” grade and ranked as the nation’s 11 thlowest in terms of projected debt per taxpayer, according to the report released Tuesday by Truth in Accounting, a Chicago-based think tank.

However, the report found New Mexico is one of 41 states that do not have the money to pay all their bills, which include future pension obligations and bond payments.

Although a revenue downturn has prompted budget cuts in recent years, New Mexico does have billions of dollars invested in endowment funds for future use. A small amount of that money is used annually to bolster state spending.

The report released Tuesday analyzed states ‘ financial reporting practices. It identified Alaska as being the best-off when it comes to debt per taxpayer ; New Jersey came in last.

STORM HELP : A legislator from Albuquerque is headed to Houston to help with recovery efforts in Hurricane Harvey’s aftermath.

Rep. David Adkins, a Republican in his second term, will leave for Texas later this week with a 10-person team from New Covenant Church in Albuquerque. The group will remove debris, clean houses, help rebuild damaged structures and distribute money to disaster victims.

” This mission is one way we can provide comfort, supplies and financial assistance to our neighbors in Texas as they rebuild their homes and communities, ” Adkins said Tuesday.

At least one other legislator, Rep. Bill McCamley, D-Mesilla Park, has also traveled to Texas to land a hand in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

The hurricane caused catastrophic flooding as it dumped more than 40 inches of rain over East Texas late last month. At least 82 people have reportedly been killed.

DEMOCRATS ‘ DINNER : Democratic National Committee Deputy Chairman Keith Ellison will speak at a Democratic Party of New Mexico dinner later this week.

Ellison, who also represents a Minneapolis-area congressional district, in 2007 became the first Muslim to be elected to Congress. He is currently one of two Muslims serving in Congress.

He will deliver the keynote address Friday in Albuquerque at the state Democratic Party’s annual Rising Star Dinner, which has in the past featured former U. S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Julian Castro and U. S. Rep. Cedric Richmond of Louisiana.

Two state lawmakers, Reps. Daymon Ely of Corrales and Angelica Rubio of Las Cruces, will be honored at the event as the state party’s 2017 rising stars.

Dan Boyd : dboyd@abqjournal.com