More than $25 million in capital outlay projects are on the November ballot for New Mexico State University campuses as part of the $169 million in proposed general obligation bonds that help pay for major projects across the state, including renovating university facilities.
If the GO bond is approved in November, the funding will allow $19.2 million in facilities upgrades to replace aging gas and electrical infrastructure for Jett Hall and Jett Annex at NMSU as well as provide additions and renovations for Rentfrow Hall to improve teaching facilities.
“These GO Bond projects are important to each of our campuses around the state,” said NMSU President Garrey Carruthers. “Jett Hall and Rentfrow Gym, in particular, need serious attention. These investments will help to ensure our students have safe and modern places to learn and our faculty members have the facilities they need to teach and make new research discoveries.”
Jett Hall and Jett Annex would benefit from improvements such as replacing aging HVAC, gas, and electrical infrastructure that support instructional facilities in the College of Engineering. The upgrades are integral to ensure the quality of education for chemical engineering students, whose starting salaries coming out of NMSU in 2013 averaged $80,000 per year.
“The ongoing chemical engineering research requires proper facilities, laboratory processes, and protective equipment to assure it can be performed safely,” said Chemical Engineering Department Head David Rockstraw. “Jett Hall was not designed to accommodate such hazards, and only through the creative engineering of NMSU Office of Facilities and Services personnel has chemical engineering been able to continue its mission. Laboratory upgrades are critical to the educational component of graduate and undergraduate students studying chemical engineering at NMSU.”
A total of $5.9 million in infrastructure upgrades, renovations and construction will be on the ballot for Dona Ana Community College, NMSU Alamogordo, NMSU Carlsbad, and NMSU Grants.
General Obligation bonds come before the voters of New Mexico every two years to support projects throughout the state. There are no tax increases associated with these bonds.