Governor Susana Martinez announced today that the New Mexico Human Services Department's Child Support Enforcement Division (CSED) has, for the second consecutive fiscal year, set a record for the amount of collections in support of New Mexico's children. For State Fiscal Year 2012, the division collected a record 129.6million, five percent higher than last year's record of $123.5 million. This also marks the fifth straight fiscal year in which the division has collected higher levels of child support payments. The record collections set for the most recent fiscal year were also 16.75 percent higher than the goal set by the Legislative Finance Committee of $111 million.
Governor Martinez stopped by the Child Support Enforcement Division's Central Office this morning to discuss the program, its goals, and its achievements over the previous two years.
"The Child Support Enforcement Division continues to demonstrate its commitment to the children of New Mexico through continued record collections of child support," said Governor Susana Martinez. "We will continue to work hard to ensure that these valuable resources support New Mexico's children. I applaud CSED for another record-setting effort and look forward to their continued efforts to fight on behalf of our kids."
This achievement comes on the heels of another outstanding accomplishment announced earlier in July in which the NMCSED was named the Most Improved Program in the country by the National Child Support Enforcement Association (NCSEA). The award is in recognition of a child support program that has shown exceptional improvement in key child support enforcement performance areas over the past three years. In the past year alone, CSED has improved its national ranking from 45th in the nation to 40th in the nation, a major improvement in the course of only one year.
Last year, Governor Martinez and HSD successfully implemented a statewide Child Support Bench Warrant Roundup project. The effort resulted in a dramatic increase in child support collections from individuals having bench warrants issued due to their failure to comply with their child support obligations. For the period September 2011 through June 2012,collections from individuals having outstanding arrest warrants doubled to over $70,000 per month, resulting in an increase of $350,000 in support collections from the prior year.
"We are very proud of CSED and its accomplishments to date," commented Sidonie Squier, Secretary of the New Mexico Human Services Department. "I offer my congratulations to our child support team members as we continue to improve the child support program in New Mexico and ensure that the children of New Mexico receive the support that is due to them."