John Arthur Smith

New Mexico Legislature approves budget that boosts pay

New Mexico lawmakers ended a standoff Wednesday between the House and Senate over minor provisions of a $6.3 billion spending bill, clearing the way for increased spending on public schools, the criminal justice system, roadways and Medicaid.

The budget bill cleared the House and Senate on Wednesday evening after a conference committee negotiated a compromise on disputed spending provisions for road maintenance, highway restroom upkeep, school district reimbursements and subsidies for police hiring. Republican Gov. Susana Martinez can veto any portion of the bill.

Democratic Rep. Patricia Lundstrom of Gallup, who led the final budget negotiations on behalf of the House, said...