Actions: SPREF  SCONC/SFC-SCONC  DP-SFC  DP/a - PASSED/S (32-2)  HGEIC/HAFC-HGEIC  DP-HAFC- DP/a  PASSED/H (64-4)  s/cncrd
Scheduled: Not Scheduled
Senate Bill 94 (SB 94) transfers administration of the Rio Grande Trail Commission and the Rio Grande Trail Fund from the Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department to the Economic Development Department. It directs the New Mexico Outdoor Recreation Division of the Economic Development Department to complete the Rio Grande Trail and makes an appropriation of two hundred twenty-five thousand dollars ($225,000).Legislation Overview:
Analysis: Senate Bill 94 (SB 94) changes Section 9-5C-1 NMSA 1978 by transferring administration of the Rio Grande Trail Commission and the Rio Grande Trail Fund from the Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department (EMNRD) to the Economic Development Department. It adds to the duties of the New Mexico Outdoor Recreation Division (ORD) of the Economic Development Department (EDD) to complete the Rio Grande Trail and removes the requirement to publish any variance from commission recommendations on the commission’s web site. SB 94 appropriates two hundred twenty-five thousand dollars ($225,000) from the General Fund (GF) to the EDD for expenditure in Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 for personnel and operational expenses needed to support the development of the Rio Grande Trail and management of the Commission. Any unexpended or unencumbered balance remaining at the end of FY 2024 reverts to the GF.Current Law:
The legislature established the Rio Grande Trail Commission in 2015. According to its webpage, its purpose is to define and recommend viable path routes of the Rio Grande Trail, mitigate challenges related to its establishment and define and recommend other features, facilities and enhancements needed on the trail. The commission also makes recommendations to the legislature as needed and report annually to the governor and the appropriate interim committees that deal with water and natural resources and rural and economic development. Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham signed New Mexico’s Outdoor Recreation Division (ORD) into law on 2 April 2019. According to its webpage, at the time, ORD joined a dozen other states committed to growing and championing the outdoor recreation economy, which the state has recognized as an immensely powerful economic engine for sustainable growth and for job opportunities.Amendments:
3/7/23 The House Appropriation and Finance Committee amended SB 94A (SB 94AA SFC) by removing the appropriation from the title and content of the bill. 2/16/23 The Senate Finance Committee amended SB 94 (SB 94A SFC) by inserting and then amending Section 16-3-4 NMSA 1978 to exempt the Rio Grande Trail from the provisions of the State Trails System Act relating to planning and designation of trails.