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Regional
8:28 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Chief Deputy Clerk Resigns

  Doña Ana County Clerk Lynn Ellins has announced the resignation of Chief Deputy Clerk Mario O. Jimenez III, effective Friday, Sept. 26.

   “Mario has done a terrific job for me and for the voters of Doña Ana County during his tenure,” Ellins said. “He is leaving for personal reasons, and while my staff and I are sorry to see him go, we support his decision and wish the very best for him going forward.”

   Jimenez informed the office staff of his decision at a 5 p.m. meeting on Monday, Sept. 22.

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Election 2014
7:31 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Another County Wants Advisory Ballot Questions

Secretary of State Dianna Duran says another county is proposing nonbinding ballot questions to poll its voters in the November general election.

Duran said Monday that Chaves County has approved five advisory questions, including ones to ask the county's voters whether they would support local ordinances to require voter identification, ban the release of wolves in the county and repeal a prevailing wage that must be paid by contractors on certain taxpayer-financed construction projects.

The county also wants to poll its voters about a possible right-to-work measure.

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Regional
7:30 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Oil Lease Sales On State Land Generate $7 Million

The state Land Office says it received $7.3 million from the most recent sale of oil and gas leases.

The agency said Monday the revenue is the highest from leases since getting $7.8 million in December 2013.

Leases were sold last week for oil and gas development on three dozen tracts of state land in Lea, Eddy, Chaves and Roosevelt counties. The highest bid was nearly $1.8 million for a 320-acre parcel in Lea County.

The Land Office said it's collected more than $246 million from oil and gas lease sales since 2011.

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Regional
7:28 am
Tue September 23, 2014

Trial Of Sheriff Accused Of 'Road Rage' Continues

A motorist says he thought a northern New Mexico sheriff was going to execute him during a heated traffic stop.

Michael Tafoya told jurors Monday he begged for his life as Rio Arriba County Thomas Rodella pulled a gun on him following a road rage chase in March.

Rodella is standing trial of federal charges of deprivation of rights and brandishing a firearm. He has pleaded not guilty.

Authorities say Rodella was in plainclothes when he pulled over Tafoya, jumped out of his personal SUV with a gun, and shoved his badge in Tafoya's face.

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Regional
6:00 am
Tue September 23, 2014

NMSU Confucius Institute Helps College, K-12 Students Across Region Study Chinese

Cathedral High School in El Paso, Texas, is one of New Mexico State University’s Confucius Classrooms, and a small group of students had the chance to spend three weeks in the Hanban Chinese Bridge Summer Camp in Henan, China, in July. (Courtesy photo)

  In global references, New Mexico State University and Las Cruces occupy a small section of the United States, but an NMSU professor believes students can have a connection across the Pacific Ocean.

“We can’t just think of ourselves as a little corner of the Southwest, we are a little corner of the world and our students really take to Chinese culture,” said Elvira Hammond, co-director of NMSU’s Confucius Institute.

Across the state of New Mexico and southwest Texas, the Confucius Institute oversees the Chinese language and cultural instruction programs.

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Regional
6:00 am
Tue September 23, 2014

NMSU Students Redesign School Building In Mexico

NMSU Engineering students worked side-by-side with members of the community to build a school in Queretaro, Mexico. (Courtesy photo)

  The old school structure in Queretaro, Mexico, was a tarpaper and pallet shack with a dirt floor. It served as both an overflow school building for a school too small to hold all of its students and a community medical clinic for the doctor who visits each week.

Over the summer, 14 students in New Mexico State University’s Engineering Without Boundaries helped to replace the shack with a proper schoolhouse.

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Regional
8:49 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

Environmental Artist Visits New Mexico

  Prominent environmental artist and writer, Louise Phillips, will be visiting New Mexico from Washington, D.C. to inspire children to conserve nature through art.  Ms. Phillips has donated 3 paintings to commemorate her support of U.S. Forest Service efforts in New Mexico to take more kids to the woods. Her paintings celebrate the beauty of the Rio Grande Bosque, the Gila National Forest and the Lincoln National Forest.

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Local Viewpoints
6:23 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

Secretary Of State's Office: Chaves County Seeks Five Advisory Ballot Questions

  SANTA FE—The Office of the Secretary of State today received a resolution requesting that five advisory ballot questions be placed on the general election ballot.   Last week the county manager had sent a letter stating he “would like to see” if the county could put certain advisory questions on the ballot.   The response from the Secretary of State last week was that the advisory questions were not allowable on a general election ballot under New Mexico law.  However, today Chaves County passed a resolution that included five advisory questions (shown below). 

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Local Viewpoints
3:50 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

For Lara, It's Teamwork And Ideas That Count

  As a Democrat living and working in a Republican-leaning community in southern New Mexico, 2nd Congressional District candidate Roxanne “Rocky” Lara says she’s developed a knack for working well with political opponents.

Lara, a 39-year-old family law attorney from Carlsbad, said that kind of collaborative attitude is an essential for Congress these days.

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Local Viewpoints
3:44 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

A Great Discussion About Immigration

Panelists were, l-r: Ali Noorani (Executive Director of the National Immigration Forum), U.S. Rep. Pete Gallego, and International Bank of Commerce Executive Vice President Eddie Aldrete. Moderator, at end, was the Tribune's Julian Aguilar.

  

  We had a great conversation about the importance of comprehensive immigration reform, from the perspective of welcoming immigrants, at the Texas Tribune Festival on Saturday.

I believe, and I think the majority of Americans do as well, that the perspective of welcoming rather than shunning immigrants, is both humane and practical.

During the panel, we discussed at length the critical role that immigrants have and continue to play in our nation’s economy.

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Local Viewpoints
3:33 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

King: Martinez Sticks To Scripted Comments During Forum

  Democratic candidate for New Mexico Governor Gary King today wasted no time correcting Governor Martinez about the misrepresentations contained in one of her latest campaign attack ads.  King told a crowd of several hundred that Martinez forgot to mention that it was his office that put the ‘Casanova Con Man’ in prison, that his agents went to the east coast to arrest him, and his prosecutors who convicted him.

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Regional
3:22 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

Texas District Temporarily Bans Seven Books

Credit Courtesy: US Dept. of Education

  A Texas school district has temporarily removed seven books from classroom-use after parents complained about them.

Some parents complained to the Highland Park school district about the novels because of sex scenes and references to rape, abuse and abortion.

The district's superintendent Dawson Orr says the books will be reviewed by committees of parents, teachers and students. Orr says the process could take months.

One book that will be reviewed is "The Glass Castle: A Memoir" by Jeannette Walls.

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Regional
3:20 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

SpaceX Breaks Ground On Texas Rocket Launch Site

SpaceX founder Elon Musk says his company expects to spend $100 million in South Texas over the next three to four years on the first commercial orbital spaceport.

Musk was joined Monday by Gov. Rick Perry and other officials as SpaceX broke ground at the state's southernmost tip.

The ceremony marked the start of construction of the $85 million site at Boca Chica Beach, east of Brownsville, where commercial satellites will be launched.

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Regional
3:17 pm
Mon September 22, 2014

El Paso Woman Dies After Accident During Flood

Authorities are investigating the death of a woman in El Paso after torrential rains from the remnants of Hurricane Odile battered West Texas.  Rainfall amounts across Texas in the past week have ranged from 2 inches to as much as 14 inches. The greatest amount was recorded over a four-day period in a community about 70 miles southeast of Lubbock.

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Election 2014
8:21 am
Mon September 22, 2014

UPDATE: Gubernatorial Candidates Face Off At Forum

 

Republican incumbent Susana Martinez and Democratic challenger Gary King disagreed over the economy and schools in their first appearance together at a candidate forum in New Mexico's race for governor.

King criticized Martinez for presiding over the "worst economy in the country," and said New Mexico has lagged behind other states in job growth.

Martinez jabbed at King for supporting tax increases to balance the budget two decades when he served in the Legislature.

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Regional
8:15 am
Mon September 22, 2014

24 Spend Night In Carlsbad Shelter Due To Flooding

 

Some Carlsbad residents spent the night in a shelter because of Pecos River flooding that is now receding.

Red Cross spokeswoman Beverly Allen says 24 people took refuge at a shelter at Carlsbad High School.

Eddy County emergency center spokesman Kenny Rayroux says the problem stems from flooding of the Pecos River that runs through Carlsbad.

However, Rayroux says the river crested early Monday morning and is now receding.

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Local Viewpoints
6:00 am
Mon September 22, 2014

Goodman: Bardwell, Rawson Present Clear Choice In District 3 County Commission Race

      I live in District 3, where the County Commission candidates are Beth Bardwell and Ben Rawson.  Karen Perez ably represented us, but had to quit because her professional work situation changed. 

This race presents a clear choice.

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Regional
6:00 am
Mon September 22, 2014

Monday Business Watch

Every Monday at 7:51am on Morning Edition, Edmundo Resendez covers the week's top local business stories with Las Cruces Sun News Business Editor Jason Gibbs.

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Local Viewpoints
3:45 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Overseas Ballots In Bernalillo County Mailed By Deadline

  Despite a number of hurdles due to legal action and problematic ballot design processes overseen by the Secretary of State's office, Bernalillo County Clerk Maggie Toulouse Oliver announced today that her office successfully mailed ballots to overseas and military voters yesterday, meeting the federal deadline for sending those ballots to voters who had already applied before the deadline.

 

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Regional
2:06 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Las Cruces Area Prisoner Cuts Himself With Razor

  A man who was about to be sentenced for a murder conviction cut himself with a razor blade and had to be forcibly removed from a court holding cell and rushed to a hospital.

An investigation is being conducted into how 38-year-old Dominic Martin Montoya obtained the razor that he used to cut his arms and neck on Friday.

Montoya was supposed to be sentenced Friday for his murder conviction in the 2006 killing of 29-year-old Adam Avalos, then a fellow detainee at the Dona Ana County Detention Center, with a jail-issued razor.

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Regional
2:05 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Albuquerque Workers Fighting Pay Raise Imposed By City

Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry
Credit http://www.cabq.gov/mayor

  More than 2,000 Albuquerque municipal employees say a proposed pay raise by the city would come at the cost of an unapproved contract.

KOAT-TV reports that representatives for more than 2,000 workers have filed a temporary restraining order against the city.

Mayor Richard Berry's administration announced earlier this month a 3 percent pay hike following an impasse with union locals representing workers.

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Regional
2:03 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Lead In 60-Year-Old Santa Fe Case May Fizzle

  Investigators say several bone fragments are looking less likely to be connected a Santa Fe woman who disappeared more than 60 years ago.

Police said Thursday a lab in Texas determined that all but one of four fragments came from an animal.

Police spokeswoman Celina Espinoza says the lab will continue testing the last bone.

Police found the fragments in March in the garage of a home that once belonged to the husband of 26-year-old Inez Garcia.

Garcia was last seen in the early morning of Nov. 6, 1952 by her sister when the two were at a downtown bar.

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Regional
2:01 pm
Sun September 21, 2014

Carlsbad Caverns Closed Due To Flooding

  Carlsbad Caverns will remain closed because of hazardous road conditions caused by recent flooding.

National Park Service officials say crews are working Sunday to clear debris on a road brought in by high water.

The park has been closed since Thursday.

Southeastern New Mexico has been experiencing flooding the last few days as a result of the remnants of Hurricane Odile.

The New Mexico National Guard on Saturday rescued 40 oilfield workers stranded by floodwater on a county road near Artesia.

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Regional
7:19 am
Sun September 21, 2014

In Depth: NMSU Falls To UNM 38-35

  LAS CRUCES, N.M. – The NM State Aggies fell to 2-2 on the season after losing the Rio Grande Rivalry 38-35 to the New Mexico Lobos, now 1-2 on the season, Saturday, Sept. 20, at Aggie Memorial Stadium in Las Cruces, N.M.

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Local Viewpoints
6:00 am
Sun September 21, 2014

White House Honors Latino Educators--"Champions Of Change"

  WASHINGTON, DC – On Monday, September 22, 2014 at 10:15 AM, the White House will honor local "Champions of Change" who are doing extraordinary work to educate the next generation of Americans. These Champions have distinguished themselves by devoting their time and energy to creating opportunities for young people to succeed, particularly in low-income communities.

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Regional
6:00 am
Sun September 21, 2014

Long Range Transportation Plan Input Sought In Las Cruces

 

  The future of roads, streets and trails is the subject of upcoming meetings specifically asking for public input from residents of Las Cruces and surrounding areas so they have an opportunity to make an impact on planning decisions.

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Local Viewpoints
3:49 pm
Sat September 20, 2014

Duran: Bernalillo And Santa Fe County Clerks Must Send Out Ballots To Military On Time

SANTA FE—The Office of the Secretary of State has informed both the Bernalillo and Santa Fe County Clerks that they must comply with federal and state law—and ensure that ballots go out to servicemen and women today, Saturday, September 20.

Both county commissions and both county clerks know what is at stake, and they know exactly how many ballots need to be mailed tomorrow,” said Secretary of State Dianna Duran, “the latest count we have is that 124 ballots need to be mailed by Bernalillo County and 48 by Santa Fe County.”

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Regional
6:00 am
Sat September 20, 2014

NMSU Alumnus Promoted To Colonel In Pinning Ceremony

  A pinning ceremony to acknowledge the promotion of United States Army Reserve Col. Richard Delgado Jr. – a New Mexico State University alumnus – will take place at the Fort Bayard Forgotten Veteran Memorial at 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 20.

Col. Delgado’s official pinning was conducted on Saturday, Sept. 6, at the 79th Sustainment Support Command in Los Alamitos, California, by the Commanding General, Major Gen. Megan Tatu. 

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Regional
9:38 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

UPDATE: Suspect Shot And Killed After Las Cruces Standoff

Credit twitter.com/Las Cruces Sun News

  The Las Cruces Sun News reports an armed man was shot and killed by police after a nearly seven-hour standoff. The confrontation came after a 60-mile pursuit on Interstate 10.  The newspaper identifies the man as 33 year old William Smith of El Paso.

New Mexico State Police chased the man's vehicle from the Deming area Friday morning.

Las Cruces police stopped the vehicle in a mostly residential area when it got off the freeway about a mile southwest of downtown.

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PUENTES
5:59 pm
Fri September 19, 2014

When Hunger Hits Home

September is Hunger Action Month

  September 19, 2014 – Las Cruces, NM - On this edition of PUENTES, Emily Guerra profiles Hispanic leaders in the community. Her guest is Casa de Peregrinos Emergency Food Program Executive Director, Lorenzo Alba, Jr.; 2012 alumni of Leadership Las Cruces. His advice for students to succeed is to “listen” and “get involved.”

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