- Associated Press - Wednesday, October 12, 2016

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez is highlighting the impact of tourism on the state economy in a series of appearances across the state.

The second-term Republican governor told an audience Wednesday in Albuquerque that growth in the tourism sector is helping New Mexico trim its economic reliance on the federal government.

In a news release, she cites a state-commissioned analysis from consultant group Tourism Economics. The analysis says the number of travelers to the state in 2015 increased by more than 2 percent to 34 million. Visitors generated an estimated $629 million in state and local taxes. Growth in the visitor economy is led by leisure trips.

New Mexico state government is confronting a major budget deficit tied in large part to a downturn in oil and natural gas markets.

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