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Western Resource Advocates Responds to Gov. Lujan Grisham’s Budget Recommendation for the Land of Enchantment Legacy Fund

Western Resource Advocates (WRA) issued the following statement to the release of Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s FY24 Executive Budget Recommendation which announced the Land of Enchantment Legacy Fund, a conservation fund for state programs that protect and preserve the environment, including the River Stewardship Program, Healthy Soils Program, and Outdoor Equity Fund. Included under “Special

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Western Resource Advocates (WRA) issued the following statement to the release of Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham’s FY24 Executive Budget Recommendation which announced the Land of Enchantment Legacy Fund, a conservation fund for state programs that protect and preserve the environment, including the River Stewardship Program, Healthy Soils Program, and Outdoor Equity Fund. Included under “Special Initiatives” in the report, Gov. Lujan Grisham recommended $75 million to support these programs over the next three to five years.

“The Land of Enchantment Legacy Fund will be a critical tool for New Mexico to achieve the state’s conservation, preservation, restoration, and climate resilience goals,” said Dr. Brittany Fallon, western lands senior policy manager at WRA. “New Mexico is home to one of the most diverse landscapes in the U.S., yet the state has no permanent source of conservation funding. This leaves millions of available federal funds on the table each year instead of being put to use in our communities.”

“We applaud Gov. Lujan Grisham’s stalwart commitment to our environment and look forward to working with her and the Legislature to put a fund in place that will adequately serve the people, wildlife, lands, and waters of New Mexico,” Fallon continued. “With the governor’s policy vision in place, now it’s up to the Legislature – as the appropriating body – to build upon Gov. Lujan Grisham’s budget recommendation by investing a portion of the $3.6 billion budget surplus into an interest-generating fund. This would support the Land of Enchantment Legacy Fund in perpetuity so that we can preserve and restore New Mexico’s landscape for future generations.”

“In announcing the Land of Enchantment Legacy Fund, Gov. Lujan Grisham sets forth a vision to fund dramatically underfunded conservation and environmental programs throughout the state, while leveraging federal funds to have substantially larger impact,” Fallon concluded. “Thanks to dual leadership from the Governor and legislative champions, the fund is poised to infuse a meaningful amount of money into protecting and restoring the lands and waters that are vital to the cultural heritage and economic lives of New Mexicans.”

Read Gov. Lujan Grisham’s official press release or the full details of the FY24 Executive Budget Recommendation.

Contact

Jennifer Inaba, 775-430-4644jennifer.inaba@westernresources.org

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