HOUSE BILL 359
54th legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - second session, 2020
David M. Gallegos and Jack Chatfield and Rachel A. Black and James R.J. Strickler and Candie G. Sweetser
RELATING TO TAXATION; PROVIDING A TAX CREDIT FOR CERTAIN RURAL TEACHERS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO:
SECTION 1. A new section of the Income Tax Act is enacted to read:
"[NEW MATERIAL] RURAL TEACHERS TAX CREDIT.--
A. A taxpayer who files an individual New Mexico tax return, who is not a dependent of another individual and who is an eligible rural teacher may claim a credit against the tax liability imposed by the Income Tax Act. The credit provided in this section may be referred to as the "rural teachers tax credit".
B. The rural teachers tax credit may be claimed and allowed in an amount that shall not exceed one thousand five hundred dollars ($1,500) for each eligible New Mexico licensed teacher.
C. To qualify for the rural teachers tax credit, an eligible teacher shall have taught as a full-time teacher in a rural school district pursuant to at least a standard nine and one-half month contract for a school year that ends in the taxable year.
D. Before an eligible rural teacher may claim the rural teachers tax credit, the teacher shall submit an application on a form provided by the public education department that includes the teacher's employment contract and any additional information the public education department may require. The public education department shall determine whether a teacher qualifies for the rural teachers tax credit and shall issue a certificate to each qualifying eligible teacher. The public education department shall provide the taxation and revenue department appropriate information for all eligible rural teachers to whom certificates are issued.
E. A taxpayer claiming the credit provided by this section shall submit a copy of the certificate issued by the public education department with the taxpayer's New Mexico income tax return for the taxable year. If the amount of the credit claimed exceeds a taxpayer's tax liability for the taxable year in which the credit is being claimed, the excess may be carried forward for three consecutive taxable years.
F. Married individuals filing separate returns for a taxable year for which they could have filed a joint return may each claim only one-half of the rural teachers tax credit that would have been claimed on a joint return.
G. The department shall compile an annual report on the rural teachers tax credit that includes the number of taxpayers approved by the department to receive the credit, the aggregate amount of credits approved and any other information necessary to evaluate the credit. The department shall provide the report to the revenue stabilization and tax policy committee and the legislative finance committee with an analysis of the efficacy of the tax credit.
H. As used in this section:
(1) "eligible rural teacher" means a teacher who holds a level one, level two or level three-A license and whose primary job is classroom instruction or the supervision, below the school principal level, of an instructional program or whose duties include curriculum development, peer intervention, peer coaching or mentoring or serving as a resource teacher for other teachers and who teaches in a rural school district; and
(2) "rural school district" means:
(a) a school district that has no more than four public schools to serve kindergarten through twelfth grades;
(b) a school district that is located along the border with another state and can demonstrate to the public education department that it is losing public school teachers to school districts in that bordering state;
(c) a school district that is more than thirty-five road miles from an urban cluster or urbanized area as those terms are used in the most recent federal decennial census; or
(d) a public school of a geographically large school district whose central administration is located in an urban cluster or urbanized area but the public school is located more than thirty-five road miles from the school district's central administration building and the public school has a chronic critical teacher shortage."
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