Thursday, December 16, 2010

A look at Richardson's discretionary stimulus spending

Former Gov. Toney Anaya, who heads up the state's Office of Recovery and Reinvestment, has said that the spending of the state's share of stimulus money will be transparent. In covering the stimulus as part of my beat, I've found that generally to be the case so far, although it took a while to get used to how the state presents the information on its website. And, it still takes some knowledge of state government speak to wade through the reports.

Anyway, when Gov. Bill Richardson announced yesterday that he was spending the last of his discretionary stimulus pot, (and not on a horse ranch) I looked back and what else he had used the $58 million in discretionary funds for. Here's a complete list, from the recovery office.

New Mexico Corrections Department. Help balance the state budget as the state continues to feel the impact of the recession. This move will help avoid cuts to important state services. $20,000,000

Help stave off additional state-employee furloughs and layoffs, $3.1 million

Graduate New Mexico! Initiative $8,312,877

Purchase land on the College of Santa Fe Campus $4,000,000

Expand Cerrillos Hills State Park and establish wild horse refuge $3,000,000

Assist teachers with health insurance premiums, professional development $2,500,000

Fund child care assistance and services $2,000,000

General Assistance Program for struggling New Mexicans $2,000,000

New construction and renovation at Los Luceros $1,750,000

Fund the New Mexico Office of Recovery and Reinvestment $1,150,000

Fund new Rio Rancho fire station $1,000,000

Food purchase and transportation to address food insecurity, including matching funds for farmers' markets purchases by
SNAP recipients $1,000,000

Fund interactive whiteboards in New Mexico classrooms $1,000,000

Fund dam and structural repairs at six acequias, or community irrigation systems $823,500

Fund State Police vehicles and fuel $750,000

Fund early childhood programs $734,000

City of Albuquerque Fire Department Self-Contained Breathing Apparatus $685,000

Fund Sunday Rail Runner service $643,500

Fund school breakfast and GRADS program $460,000

Cover budget shortfall to avoid furloughs in New Mexico courts $450,000

Department of Cultural Affairs furlough prevention $352,200

Fund Center for Education and Studies of Diverse Populations $350,000

Treatment services for veterans suffering from PTSD $350,000

Animal protection training for law enforcement $350,000

Construct wetlands treatment cell at Zuni Pueblo $300,000

Bernalillo County water project $300,000

Human Services Department furlough prevention $295,300

Fund juvenile justice community programs $250,000

Promote tourism opportunities in New Mexico through increased branding, advertising, and promotion $250,000

Fund Child Crisis Center of Southern New Mexico $250,000

Cover budget shortfall in the Pre-Kindergarten Program $237,123

Alleviate Developmental Disabilities Planning Council budget shortfall $209,800

Provide landscaping, furnishings, and equipment needs at New Mexico State University's Native American Student Center

Address budget shortfall to alleviate case backlog at the Public Defender Department $200,000

Fund Santa Fe International Folk Art Market $200,000

Support domestic violence programs $200,000

International Relations Institute at New Mexico State University $200,000

New Mexico Land Grant Council funding $200,000

Energy efficiency upgrades to higher education institution campuses $200,000

Wild horse herd management on the Jicarilla Apache Nation $100,000

New Mexico Highlands University - New Mexico Cultural Programs and Materials $100,000

Gadsden Independent School District STEM Program $100,000

Completion of heating and cooling system at New Mexico School for the Deaf $100,000

Health Careers Pathway Program at Raton High School $75,000

Promote Tour of the Gila bike race in Silver City $50,000

Children of incarcerated parents $50,000

Fund budget shortfall at Lensic Performing Arts Center and free admissions for children $50,000

Regulation and Licensing Department furlough prevention $15,700

Adult Parole Board furlough prevention $8,000

Office of Natural Resources Trustee furlough prevention $7,100


  1. Virtually all of that I completely agree with. Bill Richardson was a good governor.

  2. A lot of it wasn't really stimulus but putting off the day of reckoning. We will all have to bite the bullet in 2011--and it won't be pretty.