New Mexico continues to be sluggish in its recovery from the recession and according to a new report, the state lacks over 100,000 jobs.
Gerry Bradley is with New Mexico Voices for Children, a nonprofit children’s advocacy group that produced the report. He says the state needs a jobs package to fill the gap caused by job loss and lack of job growth. Bradley says state government has conducted an experiment over the last ten years- cutting taxes for high income people and corporations.
Bradley points to a last-minute tax package signed by Republican Governor Susana Martinez earlier this year. Martinez says it will encourage relocation of outside corporations and spur growth of large firms that will bring jobs to New Mexico. In 2003, former Governor Democrat Bill Richardson also signed a tax cut for corporations and high income people, claiming the cuts would create jobs.
“Cutting taxes for high income people and corporations doesn’t work to create jobs and to better employment in New Mexico, “ Bradley says. Instead, he argues, the state should be using its bonding capacity to create construction jobs. That industry has been one of the slowest to recover from the recession.
The New Mexico Voices for Children report also suggests investing in early child-care and education programs, increasing the minimum wage, and enrolling eligible adults in Medicaid.