NM Jobless Fund Drops From $500 Million To $129 Million

New Mexico – Gov. Susana Martinez's administration says the finances of New Mexico's unemployment compensation program are improving and the fund should remain in the black through early 2013, a year longer than previously projected. The unemployment fund had a balance of $129 million earlier this month. It was more than $500 million three years ago.

However, it remains uncertain how much businesses must pay in taxes next year to finance the program. As it stands now because of a veto by the governor, there's nothing in state law that sets unemployment tax rates for businesses starting in January.

The governor wants lawmakers to address the unemployment issue during a special session planned this fall.

About $745,000 a day is paid out in unemployment benefits to jobless New Mexicans.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.