By the Chronicle Editorial Board
Many students at CNM have felt the pain and suffering that came along with the recent great recession, and many have had to resort to going back to school as a last alternative to move into another field in hopes of finding a decent paying job, but that is after months or even years of looking for employment in the desolate tumbleweed that is the Albuquerque job market.
And analysts at the Brookings Institute have said that as of 2014, Albuquerque is now back in a recession after three quarters of steadily dropping job losses in the metro area, with only 54 percent of the population in the workforce, according to the Rio Grande Foundation and kob.com.
We as current students are fortunate that there is a local community college for people to go to when times are tough to be able to find another occupation through low-cost education, but what will happen when we all leave college and there is indeed nothing out there for us to move on to and the student loan debt starts to accumulate.
Development has come to a screeching halt in most of the city and state, especially with industry development and exporting; seeing that many companies have either attempted to come here, have come here and failed, or were driven away by our politicians who have had their own agendas when bringing in new jobs and companies.
Some examples of this neglect are such as with the Richardson administration that lost $31 million in state grants and funds to two solar companies in the late 2000’s for not securing the return of funds through contracts, or the film bill from Martinez’s administration that essentially drove away most television series from producing in New Mexico because of last minute tax break negotiation changes.
The reality is that our politicians are not fighting hard enough to make adequate contracts that protect the state, and are not giving enough breaks or other incentives to bring new companies here— at least without preventing ruin or outright pullouts.
It honestly is a sad state of affairs when U.S. state officials are desperately competing with one another to win contracts and jobs for much needed development from the few companies still willing to base their operations out of the country.
But it is essentially up to our leaders to be innovative enough to develop a better economy with more jobs to determine whether outgoing students will have a fighting chance or not out there in the Albuquerque job market.
So it is extremely important, more than ever in fact, to pay attention to local politicians and to become part of the voice that dictates what our leaders do with our great state’s economy, because every day more and more people do not feel it is worth it to keep struggling in this now rapidly declining economy and are fleeing the state for better opportunities, which has unfortunately been an issue for many years here in New Mexico already.
Pay attention to the local general elections on November 4 if you plan on sticking around the state after school, and vote for the candidates that build their policies and reform around more steady jobs for New Mexico residents.
Because our city and state can no longer rely on government, scientific, or military jobs to get the state through this now overlapping recession, and what the state really needs to do is to bring back more blue collar industries and corporations to give New Mexico more middle and lower class jobs, as well as to give an opportunity to the residents to thrive, instead of to just merely survive.