This story is a staff report from The Paper.

Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Thursday addressed attendees at a Veterans Day ceremony at the New Mexico Veterans Memorial in Albuquerque.

“Today, I offer my profound and sincere thanks to the men and women who so selflessly served and those who still serve our nation. I am so proud to lead a state where so many of its citizens answered the call of duty,” she said. “Each of these individuals truly embodies the values of our country. But it’s important that each of us carries this gratitude forward, and that we support each and every veteran, even after they leave military service. That’s why I was proud to announce today that we will break ground on state-of-the-art new facilities at the New Mexico State Veterans Home in summer 2022, pending the support of the state legislature.” 

Lujan Grisham said she will request $59 million in capital funding during the upcoming legislative session to build updated facilities at the Truth or Consequences Veterans Home, because veterans deserve respect and support, including in their later years. There are several maintenance issues at the main building, which was originally built in 1936, including an outdated and inadequate hospital corridor model; undersized resident rooms; inadequate ventilation and non-ADA compliant restrooms. 

The new facilities will comprise six small, home-like settings that will provide safer and more comfortable living spaces for residents. The model has been shown to result in a better quality of life for residents, their families and staff. Following the Albuquerque ceremony, Lujan Grisham traveled to the state Veterans Home in Truth or Consequences to commemorate Veterans Day with residents.