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A brief history of fumbles and foibles

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By Sherry Robinson

Talk of the economy and economic development, as the legislative session gets rolling, makes me think there’s a finger on the playback button. I could dust off old stories and columns and they would sound fresh.
In fact, I will. Here’s my own playback.
1986: New Mexicans studying economic development have produced piles of reports, “usually without any concrete plan for moving from point A to point B.”
Business people told me that year, “Probably the best thing the state could do is create a stable, non-political climate in areas that matter — taxes, education and public services.” They blamed the Legislature for allowing the University of New Mexico to decline and blasted its lack of commitment to higher education.
Said one CEO, “The continuing problems that we have in coming to grips with the kind of university and educational system we want is noticed by others. The state doesn’t seem to have it together.”
1987: “We need to radicalize our business climate,” said up-and-coming economic developer Mark Lautman. “We need to do everything possible to make ourselves better than Texas.”


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