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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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New Mexico State University extends benefits to domestic partners

The New Mexico State University Board of Regents voted today (Dec. 12, 2003) to extend benefits such as health insurance to domestic partners of university employees beginning July 1, 2004.

icy approved by the board will apply to both opposite-sex and same-sex couples. It defines domestic partners and establishes qualifying criteria to prove a long-term relationship in which the partners agree to be financially responsible for each other's welfare and share financial obligations. An Affidavit of Domestic Partnership would also be required.

The policy, approved by the board on a 3-2 vote, had been approved previously by the university's Faculty Senate and the Advisory Council on Administrative Policy. A similar policy has been in place at the University of New Mexico for several years.

A financial impact analysis presented to the board estimated that extending benefits to domestic partners would cost an additional $104,832 to $192,192 per year in state funds. The total annual state-funded support for health care benefits to NMSU employees currently is about $8 million.

The regents also rejected, 3-2, a proposal to apply for a license to sell beer and wine at a restaurant in the university's Corbett Center Student Union. The proposal was part of a revitalization plan for the student center that had been approved by the student government, the Associated Students of New Mexico State University.