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Regional
11:47 am
Wed July 16, 2014

More Texans Enroll In Medicaid

  The number of Texans enrolled in Medicaid has grown by 80,000 despite the Texas Legislature's decision last year to reject the program's expansion under the federal Affordable Care Act.

Health officials attribute the spike that began last summer and extended until May to greater public awareness about the health care reform law. Many people were made aware of their Medicaid eligibility when they inquired about joining the federal insurance marketplace created by the law.

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Regional
11:46 am
Wed July 16, 2014

UT Chancellor: No Trust In UT Austin President

The chancellor of the University of Texas System insists a lack of trust and communication led him to press for the resignation of the president of the Austin flagship campus.

Chancellor Francisco Cigarroa praised President Bill Powers' record on items such as graduation rates and luring research money. But Cigarroa also told state lawmakers on Wednesday the two have had a "fractured" relationship for years and it was time to make a change.

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Regional
11:45 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Bergdahl Hires Lawyer For Military Probe

  Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has hired a well-known lawyer and military justice expert to represent him as the Army investigates how and why the soldier left his post in Afghanistan five years ago, before being captured by the Taliban.

The Pentagon says Eugene R. Fidell, who teaches military justice at Yale Law School, has spoken with the Army officer handling the case, Maj. Gen. Kenneth R. Dahl.

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Regional
8:05 am
Wed July 16, 2014

State Law Enforcement Academy To Discuss Changes

The board for the state's main law enforcement academy is scheduled to discuss recent changes to its cadet curriculum and vote on revoking licenses of troubled officers.

The New Mexico Law Enforcement Academy board is slated to meet Wednesday morning in Albuquerque as protesters vowed to picket outside over recent Albuquerque police shootings.

Attorney General Gary King, chair of the board and who is running for governor against Gov. Susana Martinez, also has come under criticism for not aggressively revoking the licenses of fired officers.

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Regional
8:01 am
Wed July 16, 2014

New Feature "Bare" To Begin Filming In New Mexico

Credit nmfilm.com

  

  

Another feature film is coming to New Mexico.

New Mexico Film Office Director Nick Maniatis said Tuesday that the feature "Bare" will begin principal photography in Albuquerque and Moriarty at the end of July and film through mid-August.

He says "Bare" is the story of a young girl living in Nevada who starts a complicated relationship with a female drifter who introduces her to a darker world and forces her to grow.

The movie stars Imogen Poots, Riley Keough, Chris Zylka and Rachel Korine.

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Regional
7:59 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Portales Breaks Ground On Water Treatment Plant

Portales has officially broken ground on a $27 million treatment plant that will help the eastern New Mexico community meet its future water needs.

State Environment Secretary Ryan Flynn was among the officials at Tuesday's ceremony. He says the plant represents the largest state investment in a water facility in the department's history.

A state loan program provided more than $26 million. Portales also received state and federal grants for the project.

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Regional
7:57 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Navajo Nation To Hold Tribal Energy Summit

    

The Navajo Nation is hugely dependent on coal for revenue.

Tribal officials want to get their government talking about how to diversify the portfolio at an energy summit.

The tribe's Division of Natural Resources is sponsoring the summit to be held July 23-24 at the Twin Arrows Navajo Casino Resort east of Flagstaff.

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Regional
7:54 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Santa Fe Vote Sought On Pot Decriminalization

Activists have submitted thousands of petition signatures to try to force a November vote in Santa Fe on decriminalizing small amounts of marijuana.

ProgressNow New Mexico and Drug Policy Action on Tuesday submitted petitions bearing more than 7,100 signatures. They need at least 5,763 valid signatures from registered city voters to force a vote on their proposal.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that the Santa Fe proposal mirrors one which the groups are trying to get on the ballot in Albuquerque.

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Regional
6:00 am
Wed July 16, 2014

Proposed Changes To NM Medicinal Cannabis Program Could Make Medicine Harder To Access For Patients

Different strains of marijuana are spread across the counter at dispensaries Compassionate distributor in Ruidoso New Mexico
Credit Simon Thompson

Green Crack, Super Silver Diesel Haze and Snowberry- Just three of the names given to cannabis being legally used in New Mexico to treat anything from cancer to chronic pain to post traumatic stress disorder.

The New Mexico Department of Health is proposing changes to the state's medicinal marijuana program. Dispensaries are concerned that it will make the medicine even more expensive when some patients already faced shortages and difficulty paying for their medicine.

Mandy Denson is the co-owner of Compassionate Distributors dispensary in Ruidoso.

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Regional
3:05 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Lawsuit: DEA Paid New Mexico Man In Crack

A lawsuit says federal agents paid a struggling addict in crack for his help with an undercover investigation into a Las Vegas, New Mexico drug operation.

Court papers filed Monday in U.S. District Court in Albuquerque say 38-year-old Aaron Romero was approached by DEA agents in 2011 to assist with drug deals in exchange for portions of the drugs obtained by authorities.

The lawsuit claims Romero's participation in "Operation Smack City" reignited a previous crack addiction and he became a victim of recklessness on behalf of DEA agents.

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Regional
12:57 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

New Mexicans Age 65 And Older Increases 12 Percent

Credit census.gov

The Census Bureau reports that New Mexicans over age 65 are the fastest-growing segment of the population so far this decade.

University of New Mexico demographer Jack Baker said that trend is expected to continue in the coming decades and is partly why New Mexico's population growth is slowing.

Baker said the state's birth rate has been fairly constant and an aging population means there are more deaths each year, which depresses the overall population growth.

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Regional
11:21 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Pearce Opponent Announces Best Fundraising Quarter To Date

  Rocky Lara, candidate for Congress in New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District, will report her strongest fundraising quarter to date, raising more than $375,000 in the second quarter of 2014.

Lara will report having more than $710,000 cash on hand. Since entering the race in September, the campaign has raised more than $945,000.

The campaign reports that nearly 1,600 individual donors contributed in the second quarter of 2014, with 84% of individual donors contributing $100 or less. The average individual contribution was $105. 

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Regional
11:12 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Augustin Plains Ranch Files New Application for NM Water Permit

A commercial venture that sought to drill dozens of wells in western New Mexico in hopes of shipping the water to more populated areas is making another run at getting approval for the $600 million project.

Augustin Plains Ranch filed a new application with the state engineer's office Monday.

The plan calls for drilling 37 wells capable of pumping more than 17 billion gallons of water a year for up to 300 years to supplement dwindling supplies in the Rio Grande Valley. The company would capture runoff from the surrounding hills and use that to help recharge the aquifer.

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Regional
11:05 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Free Course For Families Facing Alzheimer's Disease

Families facing Alzheimer’s disease will have access to a free, seven-week education course in Las Cruces offered by the Alzheimer’s Association, New Mexico Chapter. Beginning Tuesday, July 22nd, the “Savvy Caregiver Program,” will meet once per week for seven consecutive weeks at the Alzheimer’s Association offices, 1121 Mall Drive, Las Cruces, NM 88011 from 2:00pm to 4:00pm.

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Regional
11:01 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Las Cruces Arson Suspect Sought

  Las Cruces Crime Stoppers is offering a $1,000 reward for information that helps identify the person suspected of setting fire in June to a commercial building on west Picacho Avenue.

Fire and police investigators believe the person, possibly a man, entered The Gen on the 1200 block of west Picacho Ave. at around 11 p.m. Wednesday, June 25, wearing a white Tyvek-type suit similar to those worn by painters. The person was captured on a surveillance camera walking through the building to a back room where the fire was set.

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Regional
11:01 am
Tue July 15, 2014

NMSU Dean Departs After Five Years

  After five years as the New Mexico State University College of Health and Social Services dean, Tilahun Adera bids farewell to Las Cruces later this month. Adera has accepted a position as vice president for academic affairs/provost at Evangel University in Springfield, Missouri. 

“Dr. Adera has done an outstanding job in serving New Mexico State University,” said NMSU President Garrey Carruthers. “In particular, I’m impressed with the collegial nature with which he approached this job and I’m happy to call him a friend. I wish him Godspeed in his endeavor.”

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Regional
10:57 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Las Cruces Burn Ban Rescinded

  Enough rain appears to have fallen in recent weeks to allow the Las Cruces Fire Department to rescind fire restrictions that were imposed on June 6.

The most recent drought index released by the National Weather Service shows marked improvement and indicates that the city of Las Cruces is no longer experiencing severe or extreme drought conditions.

The new order rescinding the limitations on open burning takes effect at noon Tuesday, July 15.

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Online EXTRA
10:55 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Transcript: President Discusses The Nation's Economy In Virginia

  REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT

ON THE ECONOMY

 

Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center

McLean, Virginia

 

 

11:50 A.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Hello, everybody!  (Applause.)  Everybody have a seat, have a seat, have a seat.  Good afternoon.  Thank you, Secretary Foxx, for that introduction. 

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Local Viewpoints
9:00 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Pearce Urges Additional Flights For Deportations Of Central American Immigrants

Credit Rep. Steve Pearce (R) New Mexico

  Congressman Steve Pearce issued this statement today after the Department of Homeland Security's first flight of deported immigrants left the Roswell International Air Center. The undocumented women and children were being temporarily housed at the Federal Law Enforcement and Training Center (FLETC) in Artesia.

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Regional
7:54 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Residents Of Arizona Town Plan Blocking Immigrants

Residents of a small town near Tucson are planning a protest on Tuesday against the housing of immigrant children at an academy for troubled youth.

Resident Robert Skiba says he was informed last week that immigration authorities planned to house the children, most of them from Central America, at the Sycamore Canyon Academy in Oracle, Arizona.

Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu has been spreading the word via social media and through a news release that the children are set to arrive Tuesday.

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Regional
7:52 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Albuquerque Boy Shoots Gun Found Outside Of Home

Albuquerque police say a 5-year-old boy found a loaded gun outside his home and fired it once before he got scared and dropped the weapon.

Nobody was injured in Monday's incident.

Police say the gun belonged to a man visiting the home of a friend and that the resident didn't know the man had brought a gun and placed it outside the home.

The man who brought the gun to the home was sought in a domestic violence incident. He was arrested on suspicion of charges that include child abuse.

Regional
7:51 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Taos Man Accused In Shotgun Shooting Of Woman

A Taos body-builder and former gym owner has been arrested in the shotgun shooting of a woman during a confrontation at the man's home.

Taos County Undersheriff Edward Romero says 62-year-old Mikolai "Mick" Sopyn told authorities that he unintentionally shot 38-year-old Amber Hava Friday evening as Hava struck him during an argument over a demand that Sopyn provide money for drugs.

According to the Albuquerque Journal, Sopyn said he wielded the shotgun to fire shots in the air but that it went off and fatally wounded Hava when she struck him in the face with her hands.

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Regional
7:49 am
Tue July 15, 2014

El Paso Man Gets Nearly 19 Years For Child Porn Video

A West Texas man has been sentenced to nearly 19 years in federal prison for directing two children to perform sex acts as he made a pornography video.

Prosecutors in El Paso say 48-year-old Tomas Steven Quinones was sentenced Monday.

Quinones in May pleaded guilty to production of child pornography. Investigators say Quinones in a 2010 video is seen and heard instructing two children on how to have sex.

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Regional
7:46 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Postal Worker Gets Probation In False Records Case

A former U.S. Postal Service worker has been sentenced to three years of probation for falsifying records.

Federal prosecutors say 40-year-old Gabriel Arsola of Silver City was sentenced Monday. He was also ordered to pay more than $10,000 in restitution to the Postal Service.

Arsola was charged in 2013 with dozens of counts of making false entries and reports on Postal Service forms to conceal a scheme to defraud the agency of revenue from the sale of postage stamps and packing material.

Arsola pleaded guilty in April to one count as part of a plea agreement.

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Regional
8:53 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Court Revives Request For Confederate Flag License Plate In Texas

A federal appeals court has revived a lawsuit that had been filed against officials who had rejected a group's petition for a customized Texas license plate featuring the Confederate battle flag.

The Texas Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans sued in 2011 after the state Department of Motor Vehicles Board rejected its application for a specialty license plate. The lawsuit was dismissed in 2013.

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Regional
2:35 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Bill Would Speed Deportations Of Central American Children

Two Texas lawmakers are teaming up on a bill to speed removals of the unaccompanied Central American kids who've been arriving by the tens of thousands at the U.S.-Mexico border.

The legislation by Sen. John Cornyn, a Republican, and Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Democrat, would allow Border Patrol agents to turn many of the kids around quickly at the border.

Under current law, the youths stay here while awaiting an eventual hearing in the backlogged immigration court system, something that can keep them in this country for years.

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Regional
2:34 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

40 Immigrants Deported From New Mexico

Officials say around 40 or so Central American immigrants detained briefly in New Mexico have been deported.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement said the immigrants were placed on a plane in Roswell on Monday and flown to Honduras. The agency says the adults and children previously were housed at temporary detention center in Artesia.

Authorities say more immigrants being held in Artesia will be sent back to Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador soon, as part of an effort to quickly remove immigrants who were part of a recent surge along the U.S.-Mexico border.

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Regional
2:26 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Utility Scam Reported In Las Cruces

  Las Cruces Utilities (LCU) is reporting a marketing scam that targets its customers.

According to one customer, a telemarketer phoned and stated he could reduce the customer’s water bill for $1,000 under a LCU-sponsored program.

LCU emphasizes it does not have such a program and encourages customers who believe they may be potential victims of the scam to call the Las Cruces Police Department non-emergency number at 526-0795.

LCU operates gas, water, wastewater and solid waste services for the City of Las Cruces.

Information from City of Las Cruces

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Regional
1:35 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Las Cruces Arroyo Management Plan Public Meeting Set For Next Week

  The City of Las Cruces Community Development Department will hold a public input meeting to discuss the draft of the City’s Arroyo Management Plan at 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 23 in the Commons area at the Dona Ana Community College East Mesa Campus, 2800 Sonoma Ranch Blvd.

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Regional
1:26 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

County Launches Community Services Division

  Doña Ana County Manager Julia T. Brown has announced the formation of a new division of her office to respond in a timely fashion to constituent concerns and complaints, as well as to facilitate community meetings and to assist individual members of the Doña Ana County Board of Commissioners in their ongoing outreach efforts.

   The Office of Community and Constituent Services will be headed by longtime Doña Ana County employee – and former Undersheriff – Edward Lerma.

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