By Margaret Wright
— With federal spending comprising more than 12 percent of our entire state GDP, New Mexico is among 10 states that could most acutely feel the effects of the impending national budget sequestration.
The sequester was put in place to force Congressional Democrats and Republicans into an agreement on cuts to balance the national budget. If lawmakers don’t reach a compromise before Friday, March 1, the 10 percent cuts will automatically go into effect across a range of programs.
Some economic experts say that sequestration isn’t a big deal compared to other looming federal showdowns, while other argue the cuts could actually be a good thing. Meanwhile, Congresswoman Michelle Lujan Grisham has said the sequestration would set back our already struggling state economy. Republican Rep. Steve Pearce, following a Defense Department notice that employees at military bases in New Mexico might see their jobs furloughed, did not sound optimistic that a deal will be reached in time.
Other items of note:
- The Georgia O’Keeffe Museum in Santa Fe (which is open on Saturdays and Sundays), currently features an exhibit of famed photographer Annie Leibovitz‘s recent work, ”Pilgrimage.” Liebovitz told the U.K.’s Guardian that the “heart” of the series centers around her visit to O’Keeffe’s studio at Ghost Ranch near Abiquiu.
- State Rep. Nate Cote’s (D-Organ) legislation making it illegal to “organize, cause, sponsor, arrange, hold or participate in a coyote-killing contest” was scheduled for a Friday vote by the full House, but as of this posting is still listed on the calendar.
- A stretch of old Route 66 between Moriarty and the Rio Puerco will get a new moniker: Retribution Road.