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Governor Richardson Highlights New Report That Shows 24,000 New Mexico Jobs From Recovery Act

Additional 23,000 Jobs by June 2011; Billions in Federal Programs Support Teacher, Health Care, and Other Jobs

SANTA FE – Governor Bill Richardson today highlighted a new report that shows billions of federal stimulus dollars have supported New Mexico’s economy and provided for more than 24,000 jobs through June 30, 2010. Another 23,000 jobs will be supported through June 30, 2011, according to a report by University of New Mexico economists.
New Mexico workers will have received more than $2 billion in wages, benefits and income by July 2011, the report shows. The report was prepared by The University of New Mexico’s Bureau of Business and Economic Research.

“The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act has had a broad and positive impact on New Mexico’s economy, and it has helped thousands of working families during a difficult time,” Governor Richardson said.

The Recovery Act supported 5,342 education jobs alone through June 30, 2010, according to the report. Another 4,415 education jobs will be supported by additional millions in federal spending to flow through New Mexico classrooms through June 30, 2011.

The Recovery Act also supports thousands of health care jobs, state and local government jobs, the retail sector, and construction, among other categories. The report estimates direct, indirect and induced jobs – in other words, jobs created directly by federal spending and the ripple effect of the billions in federal spending throughout the entire economy.

The report concludes that New Mexico has experienced a historic recession with major job losses – but that recession would be much deeper and more painful without the estimated $5.7 billion and tens of thousands of jobs generated from the Recovery Act.

“The Recovery Act continues to put thousands of New Mexicans to work, and I am extremely pleased to see education at the top of the list,” Governor Richardson said. “Teachers are working. Schools are open. Our families are still being served by hard-working, professional educators.

“I know too many New Mexico families are struggling with job losses and hard times. But without this extra help, things would be much worse,” Governor Richardson said. “I commend New Mexico’s Congressional delegation for helping our state in the midst of a historic recession. It has made a real difference.”

The report summarizes broad categories that have helped New Mexico’s economy, including more than $1.2 billion in tax benefits, $1.4 billion to help seniors, the needy and the unemployed, and more than $2 billion for other projects including nuclear waste cleanup at Department of Energy facilities, new highway projects, and the construction of affordable housing.

“New Mexico was ready when Congress passed the Recovery Act,” said former Governor Toney Anaya, who oversees stimulus programs in New Mexico state agencies. “Governor Richardson promptly established the New Mexico Office of Recovery and Reinvestment as the centralized focal point to ensure the state applied for all funds it was entitled to, as well as compete for additional funds; and, to oversee compliance with the strict federal reporting and transparency requirements. New Mexico became a model for other states.”

“I hear almost daily from New Mexicans struggling with the Great Recession,” former Governor Anaya said. “Thankfully, this historic infusion of billions in federal help means food on the table for thousands of our citizens. Schools have been spared drastic cuts. New police officers are being hired, while new construction projects are under way. As about $650 million in Recovery Act funding winds its way through state agencies over the next year, New Mexicans can be assured that these dollars have helped New Mexico families survive the greatest economic downturn since World War II.”

The report can be accessed here. For more information, including photos of Recovery Act projects in New Mexico, visit www.recovery.state.nm.us.

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