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The Huseby Journal

Demand for New Mexico court interpreters taxes state budget

The county courthouse in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Photo via Flickr Creative Commons. The county courthouse in Las Cruces, New Mexico. Photo via Flickr Creative Commons.

Courts in New Mexico recently ran out of money to pay interpreters, The New York Times reports.

This is a bigger problem in New Mexico than most states because one in three residents speaks a language other than English here. And the problem doesn’t just involve interpreters -- the same fund that pays them also pays jurors and expert witnesses.

At the brink of paying interpreters with IOUs, the fund was given a temporary infusion of money, but the problem persists because demand for interpreters continues to grow faster than the budget.

This trend is most acute in New Mexico, the Times reports, but the same thing is also happening in Ohio, Kansas and Illinois -- all states with growing non-native English speakers. Could your state be next?

Read more.

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