Richardson Backs Tax Hike

New Mexico – Gov. Bill Richardson will support a temporary tax increase to help balance next year's state budget, but he opposes raising personal income or capital gains taxes and rolling back business tax incentives.

Richardson made the comments in a statement released Saturday to The Associated Press in previewing budget proposals that his administration will release on Tuesday. Richardson said he'd only support a package that automatically expires after the economy recovers.

In his budget proposals, Richardson will not specify what tax should be raised. Deputy chief of staff Gilbert Gallegos said the governor will negotiate that with the Legislature.

The state expects to spend more than $5 billion this year on public schools, colleges and general government programs ranging from prisons to courts. That's after a round of spending cuts, including unpaid furloughs for state government workers.

The Legislative Finance Committee will release its budget proposals on Monday.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.