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Report: Fed's Stimulus Package Not Fully Stimulating in NM

March 11, 2008

Albuquerque -The recently-approved federal economic stimulus package is inadequate and could even have a negative impact on New Mexico, according to a new report. The Fiscal Policy Project of New Mexico Voices for Children says the state's government could lose $27 million in revenue because of the new package.

Report author Gerry Bradley says he believes that the stimulus was a step in the right direction, but is still inadequate for states like New Mexico.

"We would hope that the second phase of the stimulus package will make up for that. The most obvious way of doing that is to increase the amount that comes to New Mexico in the Medicaid match."

He says the state would lose revenue because of tax cuts for business included in the national package. He points out that other measures not included in the stimulus package could better help beat back a recession, mention that, for instance, increasing food stamp payments could extend the stimulus effort to people who don't have to file tax returns.

A new tax credit is available from the state this year to provide a little extra help for working families, Bradley adds.

"We're encouraging people to take advantage of the federal earned income tax credit and also of the working families tax credit, something very positive that the New Mexico Legislature did last year."

The report is available at www.nmvoices.org.

Eric Mack/Kevin Clay, Public News Service - NM