On a trip I had a few days ago I had contacted the ground controller at Santa Fe Municipal (KSAF), a Class D airport, to arrange for a VFR departure to the southwest and requested VFR flight following. The ground controller said he couldn't arrange flight following and that I had to arrange that with Albuquerque Center while in the air. I was taught (and encouraged) that you could get flight following while on the ground at a towered airport. The tower was not busy at the time as I was the only plane talking to them and the airport has its own radar which I know the controllers can see in the tower. In fact I had forgot to reset the transponder to 1200 and they called me out on that after I took off. Is there any particular reason why they could not set up flight following for me on the ground?
EDIT: The FAA has a program where they can contract out a control tower at an airport to a private company. I just looked at this FAA website and Santa Fe is listed as a contract tower. Could this be the reason why the tower could not arrange VFR flight following?