FROM THE OFFICE OF THE GOVERNOR
Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Wednesday issued the following statement after Senate Bill 3, creating the Early Childhood Trust Fund, a $320 million investment in the health, education and well-being of New Mexico’s youngest children, passed the Senate floor on a sweeping, unanimous bipartisan vote of 40-0:
“The Early Childhood Trust Fund is a monumental step forward in our effort to permanently transform educational and economic outcomes for kids and families all across New Mexico. It is not the final step, but it is an essential step, and I am immensely gratified by the support our proposal has earned through the legislative process so far.
“Our approach is simple: We are going to develop the whole child, we are going to help kids build social and emotional skills, we are going to set New Mexico kids – and by extension our entire state – on the path to success, now and into the distant future. The trust fund, in conjunction with a thriving new Early Childhood Education and Care Department, will make the difference New Mexico kids and families deserve – and have always deserved.”
The Early Childhood Trust Fund, co-sponsored by Sen. John Arthur Smith and Rep. Doreen Gallegos, unanimously passed through the Senate Education and Senate Finance Committees. A companion House bill has also advanced unanimously through the House Education Committee.
The trust fund has been endorsed by numerous organizations and entities all across New Mexico, among them the Navajo Nation; the pueblo of Isleta; the pueblo of Ohkay Owingeh; the pueblo of Santa Clara; the Greater Albuquerque Chamber of Commerce; the Santa Fe Chamber of Commerce; the New Mexico Association of Commerce and Industry; Save the Children Action Network; CHI St. Joseph’s Children; United Way of Santa Fe County; New Mexico Voices for Children; the New Mexico Association for the Education of Young Children; the New Mexico Pediatric Society; the New Mexico Child Care Association; and AFT New Mexico.
Early Childhood Education and Care Secretary Elizabeth Groginsky issued the following statement:
“Improving the lives of children and families requires us to think in multi-generational terms – and to support initiatives like the Early Childhood Trust Fund. Today is a great day for New Mexico, and I am so grateful to the Legislature and Gov. Lujan Grisham for their foresight and their commitment to the young people of our state.”