Governor signs capital outlay bill

Staff and wire reports

SANTA FE — Gov. Bill Richardson has signed a $622 million capital improvement measure without rejecting any projects with his line-item veto powers.

The governor’s treatment of the massive capital outlay bill was in sharp contrast to last year when he angered lawmakers by cutting more than $100 million worth of projects.

“I have signed this capital outlay package without any vetoes as a sign of good will,” Richardson said in a statement late Thursday.

The governor urged lawmakers to wrap up work on other administration priorities, including a minimum wage increase, ethics reforms, a highway financing proposal and an overhaul of regional housing authorities. The Legislature adjourns on Saturday.

The bill includes $4 million that Richardson designated for a highway project near Belen, which was sought by a developer that was one of the top campaign contributors to the governor’s re-election last year. The improvements to an interchange on Interstate 25 will provide access to a planned 6,000-acre residential and commercial development.

Richardson said infrastructure improvements, such as the highway interchange upgrade, were critical to economic development efforts.

“We want to attract business,” Richardson said in a new conference. “We want to attract aircraft companies, movies and it’s part of our incentives to attract major operations here that create jobs.”

Richardson pointed out that the Transportation Department and Belen city official support the interchange improvements.

“I believe it’s a good project,” said Richardson.

The capital improvement bill provides $238 million for statewide projects earmarked by the governor and legislators. House members designated financing for $124 million worth of projects; $123 million went for Senate projects and $121 million was for “local projects” that were included at Richardson’s direction. Special revenues covered $16 million worth of projects.

Financing for the projects comes mostly from bonds backed by severance taxes and surplus revenues in the state’s main budget account.

Curry County
Clovis Community College

Cosmetology Dept. Electrical projects $75,000
EMS program equipment $35,000
Mesa Theater improvements $50,000
Swimming pool renovation $50,000
City of Clovis
Effluent refuse system construction $920,000
Clovis Food Bank $63,697
Industrial Park improvements $800,000
MainStreet, Mercantile building $50,000
Municipal airport expansion $695,000
Norman Petty Studios and museum $50,000
Recreational facilities construction $200,000
Road/street improvement $750,000
Wastewater treatment plant $800,000
Curry County
Fairgrounds, animal barns and stalls $50,000
Fairgrounds improvement $200,000
Road improvement $150,000
Sheriff’s Dept. telecommunications $60,000
Special Events Center construction $250,000
Special Events Center construction $1,020,000
Clovis Schools
Clovis High security fencing, doors $130,000
Ambulance purchase $100,000
Fire truck purchase $100,000
Main Street improvements $80,000
Melrose Schools
Ag building doors $10,000
Gym air conditioning system $200,000
Texico Schools
Roofs, air conditioners $50,000
Town of Texico
Wastewater system improvements $150,000

Roosevelt County
9th Judicial District Attorney

Office renovation, equipment $180,000
Town of Causey
Breathing apparatus packs $20,000
Community Center building install $15,000
Memorial Park improvement $10,000
Dora Schools
Activity Bus $130,000
Town of Elida
Fire department tanker truck $100,000
Baseball field construction $75,000
Oscar Acosta field, facilities $50,000
Water system and tank improvement $150,000
Eastern New Mexico University
Agricultural facility $75,000
Digital production equipment $225,000
Forensic anthropology lab $120,000
KENW-TV editing equipment $100,000
Music Department pianos $80,000
Safe Ride program $10,000
Science Building equipment $25,000
Speech, Hearing Center equipment $165,000
Town of Floyd
Vehicle purchase $20,000
City of Portales
Juniper Street improvements $150,000
Melrose Bombing Range improvements $100,000
Affordable housing $250,000
La Casa telecommunications $50,000
Land and water rights purchase $400,000
Los Abuelitos equipment $20,000
Municipal Swimming pool upgrade $100,000
Road and street improvements $250,000
Athletic fields, playground equipment $50,000
Portales Schools
Improvements/security equipment $130,000
Roosevelt County
Fairgrounds improvement $100,000
Road improvements $200,000
Road dept. vehicles, equipment $400,000
Roosevelt General Hospital
Intensive care unit $225,000
Total: $3,975,000