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Tapping permanent fund for early childhood programs get Senate committee OK

SANTA FE, N.M. — A proposal by some Democratic leaders to take more money out of a state permanent fund and put it into early childhood programs has begun moving through the Legislature.

The Senate Rules Committee approved it today. It still has two more committees to clear before it would get to the full Senate for a vote.  The same proposal, meanwhile, is also being considered in the House.

Supporters say investing in early childhood programs is the best way to ensure that kids do well in school, graduate, and become productive adults.

But opponents say the Land Grant Permanent Fund should be left alone, and funding should come from other sources.

The proposal is in the form of a constitutional amendment, which means if the Legislature approved it,  it would go to voters for the final say.