Updated: November 20, 2020 06:12 PM
Created: November 20, 2020 04:42 PM
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.- State lawmakers got an update Friday on the unemployment situation in New Mexico.
"As of now we’re in a crisis mode. And people need help," Workforce Solutions Secretary Bill McCamley told lawmakers.
McCamley presented his budget to lawmakers.
“This job is pretty damn heartbreaking sometimes," McCamley said. "I’ve had people call saying, 'I’m calling from my truck because I’m out of my house,' people calling saying 'I’ve had my car repossessed.' It’s hard right now.”
Gov. Lujan Grisham asked all state agencies to cut spending by 5%, which McCamley said his department will do.
“We’re basically doing that by swapping funds with increases in our allocations from the federal government," McCamley said.
The state’s unemployment fund ran out in September.
Since then, the state has borrowed about $150 million to pay unemployment benefits. It could borrow another $100 million by the end of the year.
“Unfortunately, we don’t know how many people are going to get back on the system because of the current public health order, and we’ll have a better idea about that in a couple of weeks, and we’ll be able to project a little bit more about what that debt means,” McCamley said.
During the upcoming legislative session, state lawmakers will decide how to pay back the federal government.
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