The governor is on a mission to fill 1,000 state jobs. They’re positions that have remained vacant for many years because of budget cuts. The governor hopes it will rebuild state government, but some wonder if it’s necessary.
More than 1,000 vacant state jobs are up for grabs. They include 341 in the Department of Health; 187 in the Children, Youth and Families Department; 49 in the Department of Transportation; 41 in the Corrections Department; 40 in the Tax and Revenue Department; 36 in the Department of Public Safety; and hundreds more in other departments.
“We need everything from heavy equipment operators with the Department of Transportation to social workers for the Children, Youth and Families Department,” said Bill McCamley, Cabinet Secretary for the Department of Workforce Solutions.
McCamley says they’ve have helped launch a statewide rapid hire tour.
“We really want people who want to make their communities better. The governor wants government to work, and this is a way for us to make that happen,” McCamley said.
McCamley says many of these vacancies are crucial positions.
“If we don’t have a government that works where our kids are protected, where our roads are maintained, businesses aren’t going to want to start and grow here,” McCamley said.
However, not everyone is convinced 1,000 new employees is what the state needs.
“I am very concerned and many people that I’ve talked to are very concerned that growing government this fast with history being so astute, that we are setting ourselves up for another failure,” said House Minority Leader James Townsend.
When Gov. Susana Martinez took office in 2011, New Mexico was in a major budget crunch. Hundreds of jobs were cuts, along with services, and many of those positions have remained vacant for years.
While House Minority Leader James Townsend agrees there are areas where the state needs to improve, he believes the rapid hire idea needs more evaluation.
“If we’re just hiring people so we can grow government without providing better services and not a lower cost, then I think it’s disingenuous at best,” Townsend said.
The first hiring event was Tuesday in Carlsbad. There will be six more, including two in Albuquerque and one in Santa Fe.
According to McCamley, they wanted to bring these events to cities that had the biggest gaps to fill.
Hiring Event Details
- Wednesday, April 10 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at New Mexico Workforce Connection in Roswell
- Friday, April 12 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at San Juan College, Information Technology Center in Farmington
- Tuesday, April 16 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Santa Fe Higher Education Center in Santa Fe
- Wednesday, April 17 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at New Mexico Workforce Connection in Albuquerque
- Thursday, April 18 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at New Mexico Workforce Connection in Albuquerque
- Tuesday, April 23 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Dona Ana Community College in Las Cruces