Regional

Regional
3:51 pm
Sat April 18, 2015

NMSU Plans Second Community Forum On Test-Based Evaluation Issues

  New Mexico State University will conduct another community meeting to discuss standardized testing. The event will include a film and a public forum from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, April 30, at Clara Belle Williams Hall, room 229. 

NMSU’s Borderlands Writing Project has joined with two other organizations -- NEA Las Cruces and Time to Learn and TNT: Teaching, Not Testing -- to host the event.

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Regional
3:49 pm
Sat April 18, 2015

In Depth: Dueling Tax Cuts And Much More In Texas

The Senate has approved its budget featuring $4-plus billion in property tax cuts. The House is advancing its plan spending slightly more on Texas' first-ever sales tax reduction.

As both chambers speed toward a tax-cut showdown that could leave the roughly $210-billion state budget in limbo, could Gov. Greg Abbott step in?

No. At least not yet.

Abbott has declined to take sides, saying only that the Legislature should settle on a blend of tax cuts worth "$4 billion or more" by the end of the legislative session June 1.

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Regional
3:48 pm
Sat April 18, 2015

Scientists Study Giant Methane Mass In New Mexico

Researchers have a plan for trying to pinpoint the source of a giant mass of methane hanging over the Four Corners region.

They outlined their plan to city officials, environmentalists, industry leaders and others Friday during a forum in Farmington.

A study released last fall highlighted the methane hot spot over the area where New Mexico, Colorado, Arizona and Utah meet. Satellite imagery captured between 2003 and 2009 revealed the mass.

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Regional
3:46 pm
Sat April 18, 2015

Texas Vet Fired, Investigated In Cat Death

A Texas veterinarian has been fired from her job and authorities are looking into whether animal cruelty charges should be pursued against her after she's shown in a Facebook posting holding a feral cat she says she killed with a bow and arrow.

Austin County Sheriff Jack Brandes says the image is disturbing and it's the "kind of stuff that shouldn't happen in our society."

He says the results of his department's investigation will be turned over to the county's district attorney for possible charges.

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Regional
3:45 pm
Sat April 18, 2015

A "Safe Zone" For Craigslist Customers In New Mexico

A police department on the outskirts of New Mexico's largest city is opening up its lobby and parking lot as a safe zone for Craigslist transactions.

Los Lunas police are joining departments across the country that are looking to prevent crime and give residents a sense of safety by offering up areas that are under 24-hour surveillance, well lit and surrounded by law enforcement.

From Connecticut's capital to counties in Colorado and cities in Florida, police and sheriff's departments have been offering up their lots as safe sites.

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Regional
3:44 pm
Sat April 18, 2015

Arrest Of Cartel Leader Sparks Border Gun Battles

Authorities say the arrest of the man who headed the once powerful Gulf Cartel sparked the gunfights and blockades of burning vehicles that left at least three people dead near Mexico's border with the United States.

The arrested leader was identified as Jose Tiburcio Hernandez Fuentes, who stepped into the cartel's leadership vacuum as the group was steadily losing influence with the arrests of key members.

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Regional
3:43 pm
Sat April 18, 2015

Blue Bell Working To Get Past Contamination Problem

Blue Bell Creameries will survive the crisis caused by a recent recall of products prompted by a finding of bacterial contamination in some of its products, experts said, but they say it will take a lot of work and a lot of money.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported earlier this month that three people in Texas had the same strain of listeria bacteria linked to some Blue Bell ice cream products previously found in five others at a Wichita, Kansas, hospital. Three of the five in Kansas died.

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Regional
9:19 am
Sat April 18, 2015

Hearing Examiner Rejects PNM Rate Hike; Decision Now Goes To PRC

Credit pnm.com

A plan by New Mexico's largest electric provider to raise rates has been rejected by a state hearing examiner.

The finding came Friday after environmentalists and others accused Public Service Co. of New Mexico of failing to provide state regulators with enough information to justify a proposed 12 percent rate increase.

The groups, in recent filings with the state Public Regulation Commission, had said PNM's application was incomplete and offered no explanation for some of the expenses the utility expects in future years.

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Regional
4:25 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

Man Who Fled From Border Patrol Checkpoint Could Get Five Years In Prison

  ALBUQUERQUE – Carlos Torres, 39, of Huntington Park, Calif., pleaded guilty today in federal court in Las Cruces, N.M., to fleeing from a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint at a high rate of speed.  The guilty plea was entered without the benefit of a plea agreement.

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Regional
4:23 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

State Auditor Working With Santa Fe On Financial Controls

Credit New Mexico State Auditor Timothy Keller (D)

  SANTA FE – Today, State Auditor Tim Keller released a statement on a special examination the City of Santa Fe initiated with accounting firm REDW. The examination reviewed the use of voter-approved bonds of $30.3 million dedicated to acquire land for and to improve public parks, trails and open spaces for recreational purposes during a period from March 4, 2008, through June 30, 2014.

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Regional
4:12 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

Tour Of The Gila Will Affect Travel In Silver City

  Las Cruces: The Annual Tour of the Gila will be in full gear on Wednesday April 29 and will run through Sunday May 3, 2015. Law enforcement agencies and the New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) District One office will be assisting as racer travel through various routes as motorists may encounter intermittent closures.

The closures will be as follows:

·         Thursday April 30, 2015 on NM 15 from the “Y” in Pinos Altos to the intersection of NM 15 and NM 35, this will be from 7:30 am until 12:30 pm. This will be in both directions.

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Regional
3:42 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

Memo: Up To 45 Percent Of NMSU Faculty Could Receive Salary Adjustments

Credit NMSU President Dr. Garrey Carruthers

  Up to 45 percent of NMSU faculty could receive salary adjustments as part of a market equity effort.  Here is the full text of a memo issued Friday:

DATE:            April 17, 2015

TO:                  NMSU Las Cruces Faculty

FROM:            Garrey Carruthers, President

Dan Howard, Executive Vice President and Provost

SUBJECT:      NMSU’s market equity plan

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Regional
3:37 pm
Fri April 17, 2015

Volunteer Teacher Charged In Sex Case

  A volunteer teacher suspected of having a sexual relationship with a student has been arrested and charged with multiple felony counts.

Gary Vau Jr., 31, is charged with three counts of criminal sexual penetration, two counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor and one count of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

In early March 2015, Las Cruces Police learned that Vau, a volunteer teacher at St. Mary’s High School, had allegedly been communicating by cell phone with a girl at the school since April 2014.

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Regional
11:28 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Alleged Cheating Gambler Indicted On Felony Charge

Credit <p><a href="http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=2280">Image: digitalart / FreeDigitalPhotos.net</a></p>

  Las Cruces—Ines O. Miller, 52, has been indicted for Manipulation of a Gaming Device with Intent to Cheat.

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Regional
10:04 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Finalists Named For NMSU Alamogordo President

The New Mexico State University Alamogordo Presidential Search Committee has extended invitations to three candidates for campus interviews and plans a community reception for each candidate to give Otero County residents and others an opportunity to interact with the finalists.

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Regional
9:35 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Texas Unemployment Rate Slips To 4.2 Percent In March

The Texas unemployment rate slipped to 4.2 percent in March for the seventh straight month of declines.

The Texas Workforce Commission on Friday announced the figure is down slightly from February unemployment of 4.3 percent.

The nationwide jobless rate was 5.5 percent in March.

TWC officials in Austin say last month's unemployment rate for Texas was the lowest since July 2007. Texas has added 327,500 jobs in the past year.

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Regional
9:31 am
Fri April 17, 2015

NM Senator Who Resigned Amid Ethics Probe Still Gets Pension

A state senator who resigned last month amid an ethics probe will get a more than $1,300 a month pension starting this month.  

Former Sen. Phil Griego tells The Albuquerque Journal he has no qualms about drawing the pension because he earned it and broke no criminal laws.

The San Jose Democrat resigned on March 14 to avoid disciplinary action by the Senate over a real estate deal approved last year by the Legislature. Griego received a $50,000 broker's fee for monitoring the sale of a historic state-owned building in Santa Fe to a private buyer.

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Regional
9:29 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Appeals Court Denies Bid To Halt Ruling On Navajo Mine

A federal appeals court has denied a request to keep a review on the effects of burning coal from a Navajo Nation mine from moving forward.

The Navajo Transitional Energy Co. LLC sought an emergency stay on a ruling by U.S. District Court Judge John Kane while it appealed the decision. The 10th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals denied the request Thursday.

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Regional
9:26 am
Fri April 17, 2015

NM Supreme Court Panel Says Taos Prosecutors Should Be Cleared Of Misconduct

A New Mexico Supreme Court disciplinary panel says misconduct charges should be dismissed against Taos County District Attorney Donald Gallegos and his top assistant.

The recommendation issued Thursday could end the misconduct case brought last year for the prosecutors' use of subpoenas without judicial oversight. The Albuquerque Journal reports the issue was whether prosecutors had improperly become investigators before anyone had been charged or named in criminal proceedings.

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Regional
7:37 am
Fri April 17, 2015

NMSU International Students Set To Share Culture, Style, And Performances

Arriving to a new country and university where you do not know anyone can be a major adjustment. The International Club of NMSU's President, Monica Manzur is from Belize, and is a senior majoring in Human Resource Management.  She says that the International club tries to make the transition easier for students arriving to Campus from other countries. For example, the club offers a tour of Las Cruces.

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Regional
6:00 am
Fri April 17, 2015

Annual Fair Helps Veterans Find The Services They Need

The 7th annual Veterans Information Fair was held at the Las Cruces convention Center, and James Turner a Veterans Services Officer with the New Mexico Department of Veteran’s services says it is one of the largest he’s been too.

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Regional
4:37 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

A $500,000 Grant To Boost Education At NMSU's Arrowhead Center

Then-sixth-graders Jeremy Shelby, left, and Arlan Dawdy work on their business projects during Camp Innoventure at New Mexico State University’s Arrowhead Center in June 2013. A $500,000 grant from the Daniels Fund will support this and other “cradle-to-career” pipeline programs at Arrowhead Center. (Photo by Darren Phillips)

  A half-million dollar grant from the Daniels Fund will help New Mexico State University’s Arrowhead Center develop a “cradle-to-career” pipeline for young people throughout New Mexico to practice innovation and entrepreneurship at every stage of their education, emphasizing critical thinking and problem-solving skills.

The Daniels Fund provides grants to nonprofit organizations in Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, and Wyoming in a variety of areas, including ethics, education and youth development.

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Regional
3:00 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Border Patrol: Seven Arrested After Chase

The Border Patrol says seven people were taken into custody in southern New Mexico following a chase of a pickup seen stopping along Interstate 10 in Deming to pick up people who emerged from the desert.

The Border Patrol said agents saw the vehicle make several U-turns on I-10 before and after it picked up the people on Monday.

The agents followed the vehicle when it got off I-10 in Deming and alerted other law enforcement agencies when the vehicle accelerated when the agents tried to pull it over.

The truck was disabled when a tire struck a curb.

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Regional
2:58 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Private Attorney To Prosecute Albuquerque Officers Involved In Fatal Shooting

The prosecutor removed by a New Mexico judge from the case of two Albuquerque police officers charged in the shooting death of a homeless man last year has tapped a private attorney to handle the case.

Randi McGinn has agreed to prosecute officers Dominque Perez and Keith Sandy, who were charged earlier this year with murder in the March 2014 death of James Boyd during an hourslong standoff.

Authorities have said the homeless man was camping illegally and threatened officers with two knives.

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Regional
2:57 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Life In Prison Sought For New Mexico Murder Suspect

Prosecutors say they're seeking a life prison sentence without parole for a Texas man accused of killing his Dallas-area girlfriend last year in southeastern New Mexico.

A jury trial for 33-year-old Robert Glenn Earley is scheduled to begin April 28 in Carlsbad.

Earley, of Euless, faces felony charges of murder, tampering with evidence and kidnapping in the death of 30-year-old Emily Rebecca Lambert.

She was killed while in New Mexico to visit Earley, an oil field worker. Her body was found behind a ranch building near Loving on March 4, 2014.

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Regional
2:42 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

WIPP Nuclear Waste Site Accident Report: "Critical Failures Of Leadership"

Credit Senator Tom Udall (D-NM)

  WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Reps. Steve Pearce and Ben Ray Luján issued the following joint statement on the report by the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Accident Investigation Board, analyzing the direct cause of the of the Feb. 14, 2014, radiological incident at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP): 

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Regional
2:28 pm
Thu April 16, 2015

Attorney General To PRC: Investigate New Mexico's Energy System

  Attorney General Hector Balderas has filed a petition with the Public Regulation Commission (PRC) requesting that it investigate the impact of distributed generation (DG) on the utility system in New Mexico, including a full examination of its associated costs and benefits.

DG refers primarily to solar or wind power generated by a customer and connected to the utility system or grid. Examples include solar panels on homes and businesses and small wind turbines.

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Regional
8:51 am
Thu April 16, 2015

Gov. Martinez Makes Quick Trip To Mexico

Credit Office of the Governor

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez made a quick trip to Mexico on Wednesday to celebrate the completion of a highway bypass project that officials hope will boost trade throughout the border region.

Martinez was a guest of Chihuahua Gov. Cesar Duarte. He and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto unveiled the $800 million project, which includes a 25-mile loop around the city of Chihuahua.

Officials hope the bypass will ease traffic and help the movement of goods between Mexico and New Mexico.

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Regional
8:49 am
Thu April 16, 2015

New Mexico Attorney General Opposes Proposed Solar Fee

Credit Hector Balderas

The state attorney general's office has come out against a proposal by New Mexico's largest electric utility to charge customers with new solar power systems a monthly fee to connect to the grid.

The office filed a motion this week in support of dismissing Public Service Co. of New Mexico's request.

Attorney General Hector Balderas also has asked state regulators to investigate the effects of distributed generation on the utility system.

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Regional
8:47 am
Thu April 16, 2015

Gains Cited From Albuquerque Public Schools Truancy Program

Albuquerque Public Schools official says a pilot program aimed at reducing truancy is having success.

The program involves having truancy advisers and social workers contact truant students and their families to work on an intervention plan.

According to Kris Meurer, executive Director of the Student, Family and Community Supports Division, truancy rates dropped by 13 percent for the 23 participating schools.

Information from: KOB-TV. 

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