Platform streamlines process, increases project transparency
The New Mexico Higher Education Department has launched a new software system for receiving, evaluating and managing capital project funding requests from New Mexico’s public and Tribal colleges and universities, making it the first state agency to implement a system of this kind.
The New Mexico Higher Education Department’s Capital Outlay Committee reviews and recommends funding for all major construction, on-campus repairs, and infrastructure improvements at New Mexico public college and university campuses.
The Capital Funding Request and Management System (CFRMS) is a web-based platform that allows colleges and universities the opportunity to submit project funding requests and supporting documents, is pre-loaded with the department’s evaluation criteria and objectives, provides a system for the department and committee to more easily evaluate each proposed project request, and uses data analytics for the development of a statewide capital outlay funding plan for New Mexico’s Tribal and public colleges and universities. This system will also allow the department to generate data reports which can be used to analyze financial feasibility, long term costs, project outcomes, and other key project impacts.
“While our department has already developed an extensive process for evaluating capital funding requests, this software has enabled us to streamline and modernize this process, provided a platform to better collect and review information, and will allow us to make data driven decisions about how state funds are being used in the public’s best interest,” Higher Education Department Capital Outlay Director Gerald Hoehne said.
“In order to improve transparency and equity, the New Mexico Higher Education Department’s Capital Outlay Director has worked with the Capital Outlay Committee to develop an evaluation system that is more transparent and provides for a fair funding process for the capital outlay needs of higher education institutions in New Mexico,” Higher Education Department Capital Outlay Committee Chair Gerald Burke said. “I look forward to implementing and using the Capital Funding Request and Management System (CFRMS) to develop this year’s capital outlay funding recommendations for the 2022/FY23 General Obligation Bond cycle.”
The Higher Education Department implemented the software platform following a process review that considered nationwide best practices for capital project management, made possible by a FY20 appropriation of $232,000 signed by Gov. Lujan Grisham. The review also resulted in the creation of a detailed instruction guide for project evaluation which defines how proposed projects are evaluated and prioritized.
The CFRMS system will be used to evaluate project proposals submitted by New Mexico’s Tribal and public higher education institutions starting this summer, and to inform recommendations the department will make for the 2023 fiscal year. The recommended projects will go before voters in the 2022 general election as part of the bi-annual General Obligation (GO) Bond.
For more information about the New Mexico Higher Education Department’s Capital Outlay oversight, visit www.hed.state.nm.us