Las Cruces, NM – The measure is asking voters statewide to approve an amendment to the state constitution which would grant a property tax exemption for all congressionally charted veterans' service organizations in New Mexico.
State Representative Jeff Steinborn introduced the measure every year for the last four years , with the amendment getting legislative approval in the 2010 session. He says the annual tax burden threatens the viability of veterans' posts.
Steinborn-"Since some of them don't generate any income at all it really places this very difficult burden on them to come up with the money to keep the doors open. It's something that we as a society I think should help them do away with because we really want our veterans' organizations to be strong and these posts to be strong not only for existing veterans, but those men and women coming home from war. So, for that reason it is something we have been fighting to get passed."
In Dona Ana County there are six veterans' posts that would benefit from the amendment and with over fourteen thousand veterans the county has the second largest veteran population in the state.
Steinborn says it is crucial for this to pass now because the constitution can only be changed by voters on a general election ballot which means it would take another two years to come back.