The Legislative Finance Committee (LFC) was first established as a fiscal and management
arm of the New Mexico Legislature in 1957. Since its inception, the committee's
role in the state budget process has grown as the complexity and size of the budget
has increased. In 1991, the LFC assumed responsibility for the performance audit
program, previously a part of the Office of the State Auditor.
The committee makes budgetary recommendations to the Legislature for funding state
government, higher education and public schools. The committee also prepares legislation
addressing financial and management issues of state government. The program evaluation
unit, formerly the performance audit unit, reviews the costs, efficiency and effectiveness
of activities of state agencies and political subdivisions and recommends changes
to the Legislature.
New Mexico is rare in that both the governor and a legislative agency (LFC) propose
comprehensive state budgets to the Legislature. The New Mexico budget currently
amounts to about $6 billion in general fund appropriations and about $14.7 billion
in total funds. Four areas account for seventy-eight percent of the general fund
budget: 43 percent for public schools, 15 percent for higher education, 13 percent
for Medicaid and 7 percent for public safety.
About the LFC