Wednesday, October 21, 2009

State investment officer Gary Bland resigns

The head of the State Investment Council resigned this afternoon, a spokesman just confirmed.

In recent months, Gary Bland has been dogged by this lawsuit, (in which he is named) among other things, but hasn't issued a public statement yet on why he's leaving.

New Mexico spent $220,123 between March and July on lawyers to defend the state on the lawsuit over an alleged pay-to-play scheme, known as Foy v. Vanderbilt, according to records obtained by The New Mexican. That's in addition to $119,680 spent on the case in January and February.

Bland's resignation comes as other financial scandals abound.

Bland's resignation letter says he's "saddened and disappointed" to tender his resignation, effective immediately, but doesn't say why.

A Gov. Bill Richardson spokesman said the governor has accepted the resignation.

"Governor Richardson has accepted Gary Bland's resignation and thanks him for his service to New Mexico. The governor will start the process to name a successor to run the State Investment Office," Richardson spokesman Gilbert Gallegos said.

The announcement comes as the investment council this afternoon posted a notice about an emergency meeting for tomorrow, but later cancelled it.


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