2021 Legislative Outcomes

First, we want to thank everyone for the incredible teamwork, camaraderie, and commitment you all made to help us make collective strides forward. With New Mexico’s 2021 Legislative Session in the rearview mirror, Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham finalized her input signing a $7.4 billion budget package that was overwhelmingly approved by the Legislature.  The budget sustains and enhances key state investments in public education, early childhood education, economic development and pandemic relief, behavioral health, and infrastructure, as reported in a press release from the Office of the Governor.Priority legislative interests of the NM Food & Agriculture Policy Council fared well overall increasing funding for food and nutrition programs, agriculture education and workforce, and soil health and conservation programs. All legislative progress will increase food access, expand nutrition programs for K-12 and seniors providing New Mexico produce in meals programs, and advance economic opportunities for farmers and ranchers.  Additionally, numerous legislative bills such as HB207 helped to highlight the intersections between food, hunger and farming and the importance of agencies working across sectors in a unified effort to strengthen and expand in-state food and agriculture business while ending hunger. Bills such as the Health Food Financing Act that made it just short of the finish line yet opened the doors to new ways of approaching the way we finance and support food and agriculture infrastructure, businesses, and programs while focusing our investments in rural and unserved communities.

Here are the final outcomes of the programs seeking funding (appropriations) for which the NMFAPC advocated:
  • Agriculture Workforce Program, $125,000
  • NM Soil Health Program, passage of the tax refund contribution option and an additional $50,000 to the program administered by the NM Department of Agriculture
  • NM Grown Produce in Senior Meal Programs, $97,600 with a possible addition of $50,000
  • NM Public Education School Nutrition Programs: Restored $2.342 million (up from $1.6M) for the NM Grown Program for School Meals, Breakfast After the Bell, and Reducing Co-Pays for School Meals Healthy Food Financing Act, $100,000
  • Food, Hunger and Farm Act, $275,000 to initiate the inter-agency plan
  • NMDA: Maintain Capacity Building funds for value chain and food safety programs , $50,000
  • NMSU Cooperative Extension and Experiment Station Program, close to full funding restored pre-pandemic and oil & gas slump
  • Livestock Board Meat Inspection Program, $500,000
  • College Hunger Reduction Pilot Program, $100,000