The Latest: New Mexico House approves internet sales tax

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) – The Latest on efforts by New Mexico lawmakers to resolve a state budget crisis (all times local):

6:10 p.m.

A bill aimed at increasing New Mexico state tax income from online sales and nonprofit hospitals has been approved by the House of Representatives.

The House voted 37-29 Wednesday on the budget-balancing measures. The bill also would create a new state rainy day fund from future oil and natural gas proceeds for use during future fiscal emergencies.

Without revenue increases, New Mexico won’t have enough money to restore higher education funding that was vetoed by Gov. Susana Martinez last month. General fund dollars for the Legislature as well as state colleges, universities and specialty schools are scheduled to run out July 1.

Lawmakers began a special session Wednesday. They are grappling with a downturn in tax revenue linked to energy prices and a weak economy.

The Senate on Wednesday approved tax and fee increases on gasoline, vehicle sales and trucking permits that are likely to be vetoed by the governor.

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5:30 p.m.

Legislation that reinstates funding for New Mexico’s universities and colleges as well as the Legislature itself has been approved by the House of Representatives.

The Democratic-led House voted 46-20 Wednesday to restore some $765 million in general fund spending that was previously vetoed by New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez.

Restoration of the funding for the upcoming fiscal year is likely to depend on support for companion revenue increases from internet sales, taxes on nonprofit hospitals and suspended infrastructure projects. Martinez vetoed $350 million in tax and fee increases in April.

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