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New Mexico AG: Budget not keeping pace with crime growth

New Mexico faces a public safety crisis and needs resources to respond to everything from police officer shootings to consumer fraud, state Attorney General Hector Balderas said.

Balderas has joined a chorus of state officials seeking more money in what's sure to be another slim budget year. He testified recently before the Legislative Finance Committee and reiterated his concerns in a letter sent this week.

His office wants a 4.8 percent increase — nearly $962,000 — over last year's spending. That would help pay for raises as well as the state's share of a new assistant attorney general and two special agents who would focus on Medicaid fraud in southern New...