Bill Would Allow Donations Of Tax Refunds For Schools

New Mexico – A state lawmaker proposes to allow New Mexicans to donate part of their tax refunds to help boost public school funding.

The Senate Education Committee on Wednesday unanimously endorsed the proposal by Sen. John Sapien, a Corrales Democrat.

Under the measure, individuals could voluntarily contribute part of their state income tax refund to public schools. The money would be distributed through New Mexico's school funding formula to districts statewide. Taxpayers could not earmark their refunds for any particular district.

Sapien said the measure would help supplement state aid that schools receive annually.

The Taxation and Revenue Department says it's uncertain how much money the proposal might generate, but about $134,000 was donated in 2008 through other state tax refund contribution programs.

The bill heads to another Senate committee for consideration.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.