Over $25 million in capital outlay funds have been approved for more than sixty senior recreation center construction and renovations projects in New Mexico.
The projects were originally approved by members of the New Mexico State Legislature during their recent winter session, which wrapped up business on February 20.
Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham has since vetoed just over thirty senior facility projects proposed by the New Mexico Aging and Long-Term Services Department.
Among the funding that the Governor axed is $350,000 for the Albuquerque Los Volcanes Senior Center; $40,000 for kitchen improvements to the Barelas Senior Center, also in Albuquerque; and $40,000 for the construction of a garage and storage facility at the Chichiltah Chapter Senior Center in McKinley County.
Funding not vetoed includes $370,000 for the construction of the Isleta Pueblo Elder Center in the Isleta Pueblo; $274,000 for the renovation of the Eagle Nest Center in Colfax County; and $4.7 million to build the Hillcrest Senior Center in the Hillcrest Park area of Clovis.
Also surviving the Governor’s pen: $2.4 million for facility work at the Mary Esther Gonzalez Senior Center in Santa Fe.
Altogether, Lujan Grisham vetoed $150 million in general fund spending that had been approved by lawmakers for public works projects and roads, with $10 million specifically cut from capital outlay projects passed under House Bill 349.
At the same time more than $132 million in state agency capital projects was approved, along with $84 million for local public safety projects, $82 million for water and wastewater projects, and $25 million for higher education institution facility projects.
In noting the possible economic impact of the coronavirus, as well as volatility in the global oil markets, the Governor remarked: “We want to make sure we have enough money in reserves.”
By Garry Boulard
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