ESPAÑOLA, N.M. (KRQE) – This year, northern New Mexico voters are voting on several bonds and a Mill Levy Tax. The bond would help senior citizens and the Mill Levy Tax would help increase the workforce in northern New Mexico.
One year ago, the only nursing home in Española closed its doors after filing for bankruptcy.
“Not only did they shut it down, they put a restrictive covenant that the building can no longer be used as a nursing facility,” said Chris Madrid, the Economic Development Director for Rio Arriba County.
Nearly 100 patients had to find a new place to live, and 90 people lost their jobs.
“People’s lives were curtailed, cut short because they’re moving our elderly from the nursing home here to Raton, Farmington, Albuquerque, or Santa Fe,” said Madrid.
In the upcoming November election, the county will be asking voters to approve a $12 million bond to build a new nursing home.
Also on the ballot is a Mill Levy Tax proposed by Northern New Mexico College. If approved, homeowners could see an increase of up to $5 a month on their property taxes.
The $2.4 million will be put towards programs at the El Rito and Española campuses. It would establish some desperately needed trade education programs.
The college says the new programs will bring skilled workers in areas of need to support economic development in northern New Mexico.
The election is on November 5.