Some New Mexicans still waiting on gas tax rebates

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – State leaders made a promise in April that every eligible New Mexican would be getting rebate checks to help offset some of the current rising prices. Almost 800,000 New Mexicans have already gotten checks or direct depots, but many are still waiting.

“My husband’s a firefighter for Bernalillo County and he’s been busting his butt and I do work with foster kids here,” said Sarah Owensby, who lives in Los Lunas. “And we could really use the money right now.”

She claims the Taxation and Revenue Department has had a sliding deadline.

“Each time you call, the automated message pushes it back another week and there just isn’t a reference to like ‘hey this is the next step to contact to speak to a human,’” said Owensby.

KOB 4 got the same message when we called Wednesday, asking to inquire again on June 24.

The Taxation and Revenue Department says they have until the end of June to get payments out to taxpayers. They’re able to print and send 14,000 per day. It’s happening in the same order as people filed their taxes.

“I know it’s hard to wait when you know your friends or your family member got theirs and you’re still waiting, but please do be patient,” said Secretary Schardin Clarke. 

They also hit snags in the supply chain.

“Like many supply chains, it’s hard to come across warrant stock right now– the check paper that we actually write on,” said Schardin Clarke.

She admits the call center is less than efficient right now.

“Frankly, the call center time is not where we want it to be right now because we’re receiving so many questions from people calling about their rebate and all we can really do is say the same thing,” said Schardin Clarke.

Every eligible taxpayer will get a payment. If the department sends out the final round on June 30, they should be at your home within a few days, depending on the postal service.

The second round of payments is supposed to go out in August. The department plans to outsource printing those checks to the state’s bank, meaning they can print 50,000 a day, almost triple what they’re doing now.

Those two rebate payments are on top of a third payment coming in July, for many New Mexicans making below a certain income. Joint filers have to make less than $150,000 a year, and single filers have to make less than $75,000 a year.