In the month of September, the New Mexico State Land Office earned $56.3 million in revenue for the beneficiaries of the state land trust.
“The New Mexico State Land Office is working hard to ensure that revenues are optimized to support the public schools, universities, and hospitals,” said Commissioner of Public Lands Ray Powell. “We also are working with the private sector, our sovereign tribes, our local, state, and federal agencies, and our local communities to create jobs for New Mexicans while taking care of the health of our working Trust Lands.”
The New Mexico State Land Office is responsible for managing state trust lands to generate income for 22 beneficiaries and for taking care of the lands so they are healthy and productive for the future.
- More than $49.6 million went to support public schools in New Mexico.
- More than $2.2 million went to state colleges and universities.
- More than $1.35 million went to special schools, such as the School for the Blind and Visually Impaired, in Alamogordo, and the School for the Deaf, in Santa Fe.
- More than $919,000 went to hospitals, including Miner’s Colfax Hospital in Raton, and special hospitals like Carrie Tingley Hospital in Albuquerque.
- The remaining $2.13 million went to other institutions, including the State Penitentiary and public buildings, water reservoirs, Rio Grande Improvements, and other beneficiaries.
Revenues from nonrenewable use of the trust lands, such as the royalties from oil and natural gas extraction, are deposited into the Permanent Fund. They are invested and a percentage of the fund is paid to the beneficiaries.
Revenues from the renewable resources uses, such as grazing, rights of way, interest on earnings and bonuses paid to acquire oil and gas leases, are distributed directly to the beneficiaries, minus the State Land Office’s operating budget and other administrative expenses.
The New Mexico Commissioner of Public Lands is an elected state official responsible for administering the state’s land grant trust. Thirteen million acres of land were granted to New Mexico in 1898 and 1910. Each tract is held in trust for the public schools, universities, as well as special schools and hospitals that serve children with physical, visual, and auditory disabilities. In fiscal year 2013, the trust lands produced more than $577 million in income for the beneficiaries, which saves the average household about $800 a year in taxes.