The Village of Questa Council passed a resolution outlining their priorities for the upcoming New Mexico legislative session during their regular meeting on December 12 of last year.
“Whereas, the legislative priorities include support for legislation on the following: sewer system improvements, Cabresto Road improvements, Embargo Road improvements, a new fire department building, a new ambulance emergency vehicle, a wildland fire truck, the Veterans Healing Field, the Questa skatepark, an animal control program, and the green hydrogen facility.”
The resolution was passed by the Council unanimously.
The priorities will be delivered to the New Mexico Legislative Council Service (LCS). Questa Project Manager Jake Lafore explained to the Council that a select few, high-cost projects will be delivered directly to Governor Michelle Lujan-Grisham, but they have not yet been identified.
“We were told by the North Central New Mexico Economic Development Department (NCNMEDD) that road projects are going to be given very low priority from the Legislative Council… We’re still gonna send them in,” said Lafore.
High-priority projects will be projects that have already started but are not complete, which include some of Questa’s road improvements.
Mayor John Ortega believes the priority for the sewer system improvements to be among the most important and the most likely to come through the NM Legislature. Any new projects will likely need to be submitted to the Governor.
Questa del Rio News reached out to lobbyist Robert Romero of Robert Romero & Associates regarding these legislative priorities and which ones are likely to come through for the village.
“At this point it is hard to say for sure. The skatepark has received funds in the past, therefore it may have a good chance,” said Romero. “Regarding the hydrogen facility, hydrogen energy is a priority of the Governor, so we are hopeful.”
Romero explained that there are usually more requests for funding than what is available and that projects that have been designed and are “shovel-ready” usually have priority over projects yet to be designed. Road projects are usually funded independently from the Legislature. The Legislature gives money to the state Department of Transportation and they divide it among its districts. Last year, Questa received about a million dollars for road projects from the DOT.
Robert Romero & Associates LLC can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. New Mexico’s 2024 legislative session begins on January 16 and ends on February 15. Taos County’s municipal day at the Capital will be January 31.