Contacts: Joe Galon, director of planning at NM Tech, 835-5164
Donnie Gonzalez, G.O. Bond for Education Campaign Committee, 888-5959

SOCORRO, October 4, 2004 – In addition to the Presidential, state, and county elections, every voter in Socorro County is going to be faced with yet another important choice on November 2: Whether to support much-needed capital improvements at New Mexico Tech, or sit back idly and watch the facilities and infrastructure of this state-supported research university crumble due to lack of funding.

It’s nearing the time again for citizens to cast their vote on the General Obligation (G.O.) Bond for Education, also known as Bond B. The bond issue is placed on the General Election ballot by the New Mexico State Legislature every two years. The 2004 cycle proposes allocating $94 million for capital improvements to New Mexico Higher Education Institutions and Constitutional Special Schools.

New Mexico Tech stands to receive more than $5 million for capital improvements to campus facilities if New Mexico voters pass this year’s G.O. Bond for projects such as:

  • Renovations and additions to the Kelly Petroleum Building and Jones Hall (includes $3.5 million for mechanical and electrical upgrades to Jones and a 9,000-square-foot addition to Kelly);
  • Improvements to the campus infrastructure (includes $750,000 for expansion of the university’s Chiller Plant and other smaller projects); and
  • Information technology projects throughout New Mexico Tech (includes $850,000 in IT upgrades).

Former New Mexico Governor Garrey Carruthers has gone on record as saying, “There are times when you must take a stand and do what’s right — times when you find a cause that’s worth fighting for. That time is now! On November 2nd, vote for Education Bond B, because better education means a better tomorrow.”

Carruthers is currently serving as the honorary statewide chair of the 2004 G.O. Bond for Education Campaign Committee.

As to the cost to tax payers: The G.O. Bond is funded by property taxes collected by the State of New Mexico. If the bond passes, the added cost will equal about 31 cents per thousand dollars of the taxable value of the property (which, incidentally, is down from the additional 34 cents that was approved during the 2002 bond cycle).

For example, New Mexico taxpayers will stand to pay an additional $10.17 per year on property with an assessed value of $100,000. Those with properties assessed at $250,000 will pay $25.44 each year.

The 2004 G.O. Bond for Education Campaign Committee is a consortium of representatives from New Mexico institutes of higher education. The Committee’s primary objective is to advocate — through a statewide public education campaign—for the passage of Bond B and continued funding of capital improvements at New Mexico schools.