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Let's Talk how to use new education dollars

The passage of a constitutional amendment by voters promises to bring tens of millions of dollars to early childhood education and public schools

Let’s Talk New Mexico 11/17 8am: On this week’s show we look at what happens next now that voters approved a constitutional amendment to funnel more money from the Land Grant Permanent Fund into early childhood education and public schools.

The Permanent Fund is valued at around $21.6 billion, but that will fluctuate over the years based on the size of the trust funds, which is dictated by investment returns and income from state trust lands.

The amendment increases the distributions from the fund by 1.25%, of which 60% would go towards early childhood education and the rest would be distributed to public schools. Supporters have been pushing for this move for years, arguing that investments in children early on will yield cost savings in the long run, which is a point supported by numerous researchers and economists.

But opponents have argued the amendment could hurt overall returns from the trust fund and they have criticized the lack of specific plans for the money. What questions do you have about this money? What do you think it should be used for? Email us at LetsTalk@kunm.org or call in live during the show to (505) 277-5866.


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This episode is part of our Your New Mexico Government project, a collaboration between KUNM radio and New Mexico PBS. Support for public media provided by the Thornburg Foundation.

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Kaveh Mowahed is a reporter with KUNM who follows government, public health and housing. Send story ideas to kaveh@kunm.org.
Megan has been a journalist for 25 years and worked at business weeklies in San Antonio, New Orleans and Albuquerque. She first came to KUNM as a phone volunteer on the pledge drive in 2005. That led to volunteering on Women’s Focus, Weekend Edition and the Global Music Show. She was then hired as Morning Edition host in 2015, then the All Things Considered host in 2018. Megan was hired as News Director in 2021.
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