June 27, 2017

NM Counties to Receive $38.5 Million in PILT Funding for Schools, Roads, Local Police

WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senator Tom Udall, ranking member of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee that oversees funding for the Department of the Interior, and U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich, a member of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, announced that counties across New Mexico are receiving more than $38.5 million through the 2017 Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program. Funding for this year's PILT program was provided in the bipartisan budget agreement to fund the government through September as part of the Interior Department's Fiscal Year 2017 budget.

PILT provides federal payments to local governments because of nontaxable federal land within their boundaries, such as Bureau of Land Management land, national parks and forests. Local governments use PILT funding to help pay for police and fire protection, emergency response, schools, road maintenance, and other crucial services to residents. New Mexico is the third-highest recipient of PILT payments in the country. A full list of funding by county is included below.

"PILT payments are critical for New Mexico counties, especially rural counties, which rely on the funding to provide basic services like public safety, schools, and roads," Udall said. "I fought for these FY 2017 payments, which increase funding to New Mexico counties, but now the Trump administration is proposing to cut the funding for FY 2018 — despite how important this program is to New Mexico and other rural Western states. As ranking member on the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee that oversees the Interior Department's budget, I will do everything I can to ensure this program receives full funding going forward, so we can continue to support these counties for hosting valuable federal lands."

"Rural communities across New Mexico rely on PILT funds to provide for emergency response, maintain roads and bridges, and support local jobs," said Heinrich. "I am glad we were successful in securing funding for this year’s payments, but we still need permanent funding for PILT to give counties in New Mexico more long term predictability. I will continue to fight for full, permanent PILT funding so our counties have the budget certainty they need to succeed.”

According to the Department of the Interior, which administers the PILT program, annual PILT payments are calculated based on the number of acres of federal land within each county and the population of that county. The lands managed by the National Forest Service, National Park Service, the Bureau of Land Management, as well as most lands managed by the Fish and Wildlife Service, and water resource projects which are managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Bureau of Reclamation, are included in the calculation for the payment.

New Mexico PILT Payments for FY 2017

CATRON COUNTY - $617,372
CHAVES COUNTY - $3,155,280
CIBOLA COUNTY - $1,848,110
COLFAX COUNTY - $166,163
DE BACA COUNTY - $111,013
DONA ANA COUNTY - $3,130,852
EDDY COUNTY - $3,509,582
GRANT COUNTY - $2,185,171
LEA COUNTY - $1,109,802
LINCOLN COUNTY - $1,719,351
LUNA COUNTY - $1,961,182
MORA COUNTY - $246,783
OTERO COUNTY- $3,266,296
QUAY COUNTY - $4,751 
RIO ARRIBA COUNTY - $2,277,385
SAN JUAN COUNTY - $2,272,465
SANDOVAL COUNTY - $2,237,717
SANTA FE COUNTY - $736,658
SIERRA COUNTY- $1,166,412
SOCORRO COUNTY - $1,412,258
TAOS COUNTY - $1,733,264
UNION COUNTY - $154,208

STATE TOTAL - $38,525,087