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Fri Nov 25, 2016, 08:07 AM

Gov. Martinez says permanent fund is off-limits as budget fix

SANTA FE – Gov. Susana Martinez wants incoming state lawmakers to know that the state’s permanent investment fund should be off-limits from efforts to resolve a state budget deficit.

Martinez and other members of the State Investment Council that oversees two sovereign wealth funds and $20.8 billion in assets discussed ways this week to tell newly elected legislators that the largest of its accounts – the State Land Grant Permanent Fund – should be managed as an endowment and not a rainy-day fund to be tapped in lean budget years.

Efforts to the increase distributions to education initiatives from the $15 billion permanent fund have become a perennial source of political conflict.

With fund assets near an all-time high and the state mired in budget difficulties and a fresh round of agency spending cuts, an incoming Democratic majority in the Legislature is considering whether to tap into the fund to supplement spending on education or help mobilize capital for small businesses.

Read more: https://www.abqjournal.com/895749/gov-says-permanent-fund-is-offlimits-as-budget-fix.html

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