Updated: February 17, 2020 06:23 PM
Created: February 17, 2020 04:24 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.—A bill on the governor’s list of key initiatives is currently in legislative limbo. The New Mexico Opportunity Scholarship would provide free college tuition for state residents, however the proposal has yet to be heard by the full Senate or full House.
The bill has received criticism from some Republican lawmakers.
“You can't really say this is free tuition because somebody is paying something somewhere on it,” said Sen. Stuart Ingle (R-District 27).
Now officials from the state’s oil and gas industry are stepping in to help move the bill along.
“We've been 50th in too many categories for too long and it's time for us to really employ some big bold ideas and really change things up,” said Ryan Flynn, executive director of New Mexico Oil and Gas Association.
NMOGA rolled out digital advertisements calling on residents to push for the bill’s passage.
“Education in terms of attracting and retaining our workforce is critical,” Flynn said.
“We're going to need the next generation of engineers and scientists and professionals to be trained right here in New Mexico and receive outstanding educations and be able to come work,” he added.
Lawmakers said they believe the bill is still in play, but the question of how to fund the scholarship still remains. Whether it’s included in the budget will ultimately decide its fate.
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