During this year’s midterms, New Mexico voters approved bonds that provide money for higher education facilities, school buses, public libraries and senior citizen centers.
Bond D is the largest part of the budget. A total of $136 million is proposed to go toward higher education buildings. This funding will be used in an effort to repair and renovate university, community, technical and tribal buildings. New Mexicans voted in support of Bond D by about 65 percent.
The other bonds include Bond A, B and C.
Bond B’s $13 million could go toward academic, public school, tribal and public libraries. The funding is slated to be allocated toward equipment and improvement to broadband internet access. About 68 percent of voters supported Bond B.
Bond A’s budget of over $10 million could go toward vehicles and equipment for senior citizen facilities across the state. Roughly 71 percent of voters voted for Bond A.
If Bond C is approved, over $6 million go toward purchasing school buses and equipping buses with air conditioning. About 68 percent of voters supported this bond.
Chart by Sol Traverso / NM News Port
Central New Mexico Community College President Katharine Winograd said support for these bonds has far-reaching effects for all of New Mexico.
“Higher education Bond D is not only important to higher education institutions, it’s important to everybody in our state,” she said.
The vote in support of Bond D will free up funding to give CNM $7.5 million, she said. This would be used for heating, ventilating, air conditioning and refrigeration upgrades as well as increased lighting in parking lots, facelifts on art studios and roofing replacements.
With the passage of Bond D will also come $20 million for the University of New Mexico, according to the New Mexico Higher Education Department. The funding would go toward the renovation and modernization of all classrooms, laboratories and offices inside a 65-year-old chemistry building. Reserve Officers’ Training Corps facilities on main campus are also slated to be replaced and renewed.
New Mexico State University will also be receiving $20 million with the passage of Bond D, according to the New Mexico Higher Education Department. That funding will be going toward the construction of its College of Agriculture building and Consumer and Environmental Sciences facilities.
“The future of our economy and quality of life is directly related to the quality of higher education in New Mexico,” Winograd said.
Sol Traverso can be contacted on Twitter @SolTraversoinc.
Supplemental reporting by Emory Schwanitz