. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

New Mexico policy makers are looking for ways to restore full faith in the state’s credit as they negotiate a solution to a budget crisis.

Lawmakers on Thursday were studying new strategies for rebuilding state financial reserves that do not involve abrupt spending cuts or tax increases.

The state’s dwindling rainy-day funds are on the agenda for next week’s session, in efforts to protect the state’s credit rating and keep borrowing costs affordable for local construction projects. As recently as 2015, New Mexico had $712 million socked away in the event of a downturn in its oil-infused economy. Now the money is mostly gone.

Experts in state government finance at the Pew Charitable Trusts say consistent planning can restore confidence among ratings agencies and investors.