New Human Services Secretary

New Mexico – Gov. Bill Richardson says he has appointed the acting Human Services secretary to head the department.

Richardson says Katie Falls has served as acting human services secretary for the past two months since the departure of former Human Services Secretary Pam Hyde for a federal appointment.

The U.S. Senate on Monday confirmed Hyde as administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Richardson says Falls will be nominated to the New Mexico Senate to head the Human Services Department in January.

The department administers social services, like Medicaid and the food stamps program.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.