House Republicans Vote AGAINST New Mexico's Children
House Republicans Vote AGAINST New Mexico’s Children
House Republicans vote down proposal to invest in Early Childhood Education
ALBUQUERQUE – Today, Republicans in the House Government, Elections, and Indian Affairs Committee voted against investing in early childhood education for New Mexico’s children. House Joint Resolution 10 would have asked voters to weigh in during the 2016 General Election to decide if increasing funding for early childhood education for children is a priority. In 2015, New Mexico dropped from 49th to 50th for child well-being in the nationally recognized Kids Count report from the Annie E. Casey Kids Foundation.
"If we truly want to address crime and poverty in New Mexico we have to invest in our kids and early childhood education. The Land Grant Permanent Fund continued to grow during the worst financial crisis of our lifetime. An increase of only .7% for early education will not affect the corpus of the fund,” stated Representative Antonio “Moe” Maestas (D-Albuquerque). “The return on investment, both to our families and our communities (as well as in terms of lowering the need for future government spending), is well documented. To not invest in early education at this time in our state's history would be fiscally irresponsible."
“It is a tragedy that my colleagues across the aisle in the New Mexico State House continue to turn a blind eye to the high need in the state for early childhood education,” said Representative Javier Martinez (D-Albuquerque). “It is especially troubling that members of this committee that represent some of the most impoverished areas in New Mexico refused to allow the voters of New Mexico to decide whether to use their money and invest it in their children. Every child deserves a quality education, regardless of how much money their parents make or their zip code.”
House Joint Resolution 10 would have called for a modest increase of investments in education of only 2% – .5% of the increase would have been for kindergarten through 12th grade, and the other 1.5% of the increase would have been for early education. The Early Childhood Education constitutional amendment failed on a party line vote, 5-6.