New Mexico is a beautiful state with incredible scenery, vast resources, and a diverse workforce that includes some of the greatest minds in the country. We have two national labs, great universities, wonderful food and restaurants, thousands of small businesses, and major corporations. Yet we continue to lose our best and brightest to other states.
New Mexico relies heavily on state and federal employment, and while those jobs are important, they are not enough to sustain a thriving and robust economy. In the last four years, we have made significant economic advances: we reduced taxes to be competitive with neighboring states, we eliminated the double taxation of goods that was hurting small businesses and we closed loopholes so that out of state corporations must now pay their fair share. We have dramatically increased tourism to our state and in 2012 we were number 1 among all states in export growth, a move that has generated thousands of jobs. We also passed a tax relief package to encourage out of state business to relocate to New Mexico.
New Mexico is now “the best state in the west for manufacturing.” While we have made great strides over the last 4 years, we must still do more to encourage economic growth so that our graduating students see a future in New Mexico. That includes simplifying the tax code so businesses can focus more on growth and less on worrying about taxes. We must reduce red tape and regulatory burdens that stifle growth and innovation and we must continue to reach out to new and expanding business throughout the country to encourage them to make New Mexico their home.