Bill would change name of monuments

SANTA FE (KRQE) — The Department of Cultural Affairs wants another name for the state monuments it oversees.

"The number one reason people travel to the state of New Mexico is to visit historic sites and our state monuments truly are historic sites," said Cabinet Secretary Veronica Gonzales.

Now the Cabinet Secretary says it is time the monuments are called that too.

A new bill she's backing would change the name from 'monument' to 'historic site'.

Senator Pete Campos, (D) Las Vegas is sponsoring the legislation.

"What we're trying to do is go in line with economic development and tourism so that when people talk about our historical sites in New Mexico they become a living site," the Senator said.

Gonzales said another big reason for the change has to do with attracting more visitors.

Last year 71,077 people visited all the state's monuments combined.

When News 13 went to get video of the Coronado State Monument in Bernalillo the parking lot was empty.

According to the fiscal impact study the department sighted a marketing study that showed people are more likely to visit a historic site versus a monument because it insinuates it is more than just a plaque or a rock.

"I believe it's a solid first step in attracting more tourists, getting the younger tourists in," Gonzales said.

The department estimates the cost of the name change at $50,000 mainly to pay for new signs and to re-do all the promotional materials for the monuments.

Cultural Affairs would pay for all the changes without a budget hike.

That same bill would also add Fort Stanton as the state's 8th 'historic site'.

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New Mexico (change)

New Mexico is located in the southwestern region of the U.S. Inhabited by Native American populations for many centuries, New Mexico has also been part of Imperial Spain, part of Mexico, and a U.S. territory.
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Governor: Susana Martinez
Lieutenant Governor: John Sanchez
Attorney General: Gary King
Secretary of State: Dianna J. Durán

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