New Mexico offers new window into infrastructure spending

New Mexico

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, foreground, gestures in front of Scott Kidwell, chairman of the New Mexico Oil and Gas Association, at the association’s annual meeting in Santa Fe, N.M., Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2019. Lujan Grisham praised the oil industry’s role in underwriting public education and solicited its help in developing new state regulations for methane emissions. (AP Photo/Morgan Lee)

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico is aiming to making it easier to monitor progress on local government construction projects through a new public webpage.

Launched Friday, the capital outlay online dashboard from the administration of Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham aims to encourage efficiency and financial accountability as the state goes on a major spending spree on everything from sewers to cemeteries, museums and baseball fields.

Lawmakers this year approved a $933 million infrastructure spending bill amid a surge in state government income. Most expenditures come directly from the state general fund.

The new website uses color-coded charts and data spreadsheets to indicate progress on local construction as spending deadlines approach.

Capital Outlay Bureau Chief Wesley Billingsley hopes that greater public scrutiny will ensure that state dollars are put to use quickly.

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