Analysis

Synopsis:

 Senate Bill 321 (SB 321) enacts the County Courthouse Bonding Act, allows the New Mexico Finance Authority to issue county courthouse revenue bonds, creates the County Courthouse Bonding Fund, the County Courthouse Grant Fund, provides grants to certain counties for courthouse projects, and provides a tax distribution to the fund.  

Analysis:

 Senate Bill 321 (SB 321) enacts the County Courthouse Bonding Act (Act) which does the following: 
•	Allows the New Mexico Finance Authority (NMFA) to issue and sell County Courthouse Tax Revenue Bonds (Bonds) for the purpose of remodeling, renovating or constructing courthouses, including the purchase of furnishings.  The Act provides the technical details for how the NMFA administers and executes the Bonds.  
•	The Act creates the County Courthouse Grant Fund (Fund) to be administered by the NMFA.  Money from the sale of the Bonds and money appropriated by the legislature are deposited into the Fund.  The Fund is to be used to make grants to qualified counties   to remodel, renovate or construct courthouses, including the purchase of furnishings. Money in the Fund cannot be used to buy land or buildings.   A qualified county must provide a matching funding, in an amount equal to the grant.  The NMFA must determine that the financing for the complete project is cost-effective.  
•	The Act does not define what a “qualified county” is, but provides that funding can only be used in counties that meet the requirements set by the NMFA.  

The bill also enacts a new section of the Tax Administration Act that provides a tax distribution to the Fund in the amount of $1,000,000 from the net receipts attributable to the gross receipts tax.  This distribution will occur from July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2026.  

SB 321 is effective July 1, 2021.  

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