The New Mexico Department of Human Services and lawyers for low-income people are at odds on whether the state is complying with a judge's order to quickly process applications for food and medical benefits.
U.S. District Judge Kenneth Gonzales on May 15 ordered the department to process the backlogged applications immediately.
The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that the New Mexico Center on Law and Poverty has filed documents in court indicating that the number of unprocessed applications for food and Medicaid benefits grew to approximately 12,800 from just over 9,500 between the end of May and mid-June.
However, department spokesman Matt Kennicott says the backlog actually has been cut nearly in half. He says it dropped to just under 11,200, down from close to 22,200 in mid-May.
Information from: The Santa Fe New Mexican.
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