New Mexico First Examines Economic Vitality Issues

Apr 21, 2016

  New Mexico First is pleased to release the background report for its upcoming statewide town hall on economic security and vitality. The statewide public policy organization framed the report and town hall around business-driven and family-based economic strategies that will improve New Mexico’s levels of opportunity and expand upward mobility for all.

“This town hall is unique in that we are bringing together economic development interests along with issues facing the financial futures of families,” noted Heather Balas, New Mexico First president and executive director. “Often, people addressing the economic growth for businesses  and families work separately, deploying different strategies. But they often want the same things. This event creates an excellent opportunity to think creatively – across political, regional and interest-group lines – about our state’s economic future.”

This report addresses six major themes, each of which will be discussed by citizen groups at the town hall:

  • Economic stability for low- and middle-income families, including the impact of safety net programs and the nonprofit sector on the state's economy
  • Our changing workforce, including opportunities for engaging "millennials" in the new economy
  • Advancing a culture of entrepreneurship, including support for our state’s many small businesses
  • Industry diversification and new business recruitment, including consideration of the state’s tax structure
  • New opportunities for rural and tribal development
  • The changing role of government on the state’s economy, including federal dollars and opportunities for public-private partnerships

The report was developed for participants at the town hall, but is a useful resource for policymakers, business leaders, and citizens who want to educate themselves about the issues. The background report is available at:

  • What: Town Hall 2016: Economic Security and Vitality for New Mexico
  • Who: All community members from all regions of the state are encouraged to attend. Outreach includes business people, family and labor advocates, educators, tribal representatives, economic development planners, government professionals, youth and elected officials. The town hall is limited to 140 participants, so individuals interested in attending the town hall should register at
  • Where: Marriott Pyramid North, Albuquerque, NM
  • Registration: Register at or for more information call 505-225-2140.
  • Registration Fee: $100 (Participants and Observers) 

    Date: May 19-20, 2016 

    Both Days: 8:30 am - 5:00 pm 

The town hall is convened by New Mexico First, a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy organization that engages people in critical issues facing our state and communities. Established in 1986, New Mexico First offers unique town halls and forums that create recommendations for policymakers and the public. New Mexico First also produces nonpartisan reports on water, education, healthcare and the economy. Reports and more information is available at