Regional

Local news and weather for Las Cruces, El Paso, Alamogordo, Silver City, Ruidoso, Anthony, Cloudcroft, Deming, Truth or Consequences, Elephant Butte, and all of Southern New Mexico and Far West Texas.

New Mexico Watches State Revenue Plunge Amid Oil And Gas Bust

Aug 24, 2016

New Mexico officials are revising revenue expectations downward as state lawmakers confront state budget shortfalls reminiscent of the 2008 recession.

Members of the Legislative Finance Committee that drafts the state budget are meeting Wednesday in the town of Red River to examine tax receipts for the budget year that ended and June and projections into the near future.

Flood Advisory Delays Opening Of Carlsbad Caverns

Aug 24, 2016

Carlsbad Caverns is experiencing a 2-hour delayed opening this morning, Wednesday, August 24. The visitor center will open at 10 a.m. and the cave will open at 10:30 a.m. The delayed opening is due to a flash flood advisory with the potential for road flooding.  

Silver City Report

Aug 24, 2016

Time now for the Silver City Report with Edmundo Resendez and Silver City Press and Independent reporters, Ben Fischer and Stewart McClintic. This week, changes to Cobre wrestling, a new school board member, a look at the upcoming special session, and the local hospital gets relief from the county. 

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Organizations in Las Cruces are working to create the city’s first community school at Lynn Middle School, a partnership between a school and community resources.

Assistant Director of Ngage New Mexico David Greenberg says many students in low-income areas have more worries then learning, which affects their education.

NMSU researchers find natural immune stimulator for chile plants

Aug 24, 2016

  Farming is a high-risk business. Crops are planted and a variety of things can impact the harvest, yield and ultimately the profit made by the farmer.

Within New Mexico’s chile pepper industry, growers have many potential economic impact issues to face ranging from adverse weather and labor availability to pressure from plant diseases.

Healthy Habits Mean Healthy Eyes

Aug 24, 2016

  This one goes out to everyone who wakes up, like me, with blurry vision. I’ve worn glasses since I was a kid, and like many of you, not a lot can happen in my day until I put those things on.

Same is true for those of you who wear contact lenses. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates more than 30-million Americans wear them. They’re not like glasses where you just put them on your face and you’re done. Contact lenses are usually a safe and effective but, they are not entirely risk-free—especially if they are not cared for properly.

New Mexico Governor Visits California For Business, Politics

Aug 23, 2016
Office of the Governor

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez is traveling in the San Francisco Bay area to help recruit businesses to New Mexico and to attend political meetings.

A spokesman for the Republican governor said Martinez left Monday and returns Friday and is accompanied by New Mexico Economic Development Sec. Jon Barela, along witth representatives from Albuquerque Economic Development and the City of Rio Rancho.

  ALBUQUERQUE – Edward Valenciano, 38, of Las Cruces, N.M., was sentenced today in federal court to 60 months in prison for his conviction on a heroin trafficking charge.  Valenciano will be on supervised release for four years following his prison sentence.

   Valenciano was arrested in June 2015, on a criminal complaint charging him with conspiracy to distribute heroin on June 11, 2015, in Doña Ana County, N.M.  The complaint alleged that Valenciano was involved in the sale of approximately 353.4 grams of heroin to an individual working with law enforcement. 

Utah City Ends Facebook Race Against New Mexico

Aug 23, 2016
Facebook

A Salt Lake City suburb vying against New Mexico to attract a Facebook data center is dropping out of the race after state education officials decided the $240 million deal was too rich.

The city of West Jordan said Tuesday they can't compete with tax-breaks offered by Los Lunas, New Mexico, so they're ending negotiations.

The Utah State School Board signed off on $100 million worth of tax breaks instead Tuesday, but West Jordan says that it's not enough in the face of pushback from other local leaders.

  Santa Fe, NM – Today, the New Mexico Department of Health’s (NMDOH) Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program was recognized nationally for supporting breastfeeding mothers.  New Mexico’s program was one of only eight in the nation to receive the Loving Support Award of Excellence from the United States Department of Agriculture. To receive the award, programs have to go above and beyond in their support of mothers and their children. The WIC Program in New Mexico serves more than 51,000 mothers and children each month.

New Mexico Supreme Court Narrows Scope Of Whistleblower Law

Aug 23, 2016

The New Mexico Supreme Court has narrowed the scope of a 2010 law meant to protect whistleblowers with a ruling in cases involving former Secretary of State Mary Herrera and two former employees.

The court overturned an earlier ruling by the state appellate court, finding that the Whistleblower Protection Act doesn't allow for claims to be brought against state officers in their individual capacity.

The court says the act can only be used to bring suit against government agencies or officials serving in their public roles.

Heinrich Hosts Energy Summit on Storage Strategies For Industry And National Security

Aug 23, 2016
Courtesy Photo

Commentary: Today, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), a member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, hosted the 2016 Energy Summit: Energy Storage Strategies for Industry & National Security in Albuquerque.

Gannett Names Castillo Jones To Head Texas-New Mexico Group

Aug 23, 2016

Gannett Co. has named veteran Texas newspaper executive Lilia Castillo Jones to head a newspaper group that includes the El Paso Times and newspapers in six New Mexico communities.

Castillo Jones is stepping down as publisher of the Valley Morning Star in Harlingen, Texas, to become president of the Texas-New Mexico Newspapers Partnership, effective Sept. 19.

She succeeds Sergio H. Salinas, who retired in June.

Along with the El Paso Times, the partnership includes newspapers in Las Cruces, Farmington, Alamogordo, Carlsbad, Ruidoso, Silver City and Deming.

Officials: Mine Spill Didn't Affect NM County Drinking Water

Aug 23, 2016

New Mexico officials say the massive mine waste spill in southwestern Colorado last year did not impact the quality of drinking water for most residents in San Juan County, New Mexico.

The Farmington Daily Times reports that the New Mexico Environment Department's Drinking Water Bureau informed the Gold King Mine Citizens' Advisory Committee that though the county's public water systems were shut down to keep the waste out, a year later the affected public water systems remain in compliance with drinking water standards.

Alamogordo Man Facing Federal Child Porn Charges

Aug 23, 2016

  ALBUQUERQUE – This morning a U.S. Magistrate Judge sitting in Las Cruces, N.M., found probable cause to support a criminal complaint charging William Allen Patterson, 34, of Alamogordo, N.M., with federal child pornography charges.  Patterson was detained pending trial.

Las Cruces Asks Residents to Eliminate Standing Water

Aug 23, 2016
NMSU photo by Darren Phillips

  With recent heavy rain and more in the forecast, the City of Las Cruces is reminding residents to help prevent the breeding of mosquitoes by eliminating standing water from tarps, tires, buckets, plant saucers, clogged rain gutters, wheelbarrows, wading pools and other containers. Bird baths and pet water dishes should be emptied, cleaned, and refilled at least twice a week. Residents are also advised to repair leaking faucets and sprinkler heads.

NMSU Pushing Solar Powered Wells In Remote Areas

Aug 23, 2016

New Mexico State University is promoting a project using solar panels to operate remote wells.

The school's Northern New Mexico Outreach Project is hosting Friday a solar panel field demonstration at Acoma Pueblo to show how it can be done.

Officials believe it could replace repairing the old windmills out on the range.

Richard Montoya of the Natural Resources Conservation Service also will present updates on programs.

Four Corners School District Eyes Solar Power To Reduce Cost

Aug 23, 2016
https://www.facebook.com/AztecSchools

A school district in the heart of New Mexico's Four Corners oil and gas country is looking toward solar to reduce expenses.

The Daily Times of Farmington, New Mexico reports the Aztec Municipal School District board members recently approved a second project to install solar panels on district property.

The plan calls for installing solar panels on the roofs of five Aztec schools that is projected to cost about $915,000.

Former Rubio Chair In New Mexico Yet To Endorse Trump

Aug 23, 2016
https://www.nmlegis.gov/Members/Legislator

The former chair of Marco Rubio's New Mexico operation says she is not ready to back Donald Trump for president.

Monica Youngblood, a New Mexico lawmaker and Latina Republican, told The Associated Press on Monday she intends to back the GOP's nominee. But the Albuquerque Republican says she still needs to hear from Trump about his specific plans for New Mexico.

Youngblood says she tries to look past Trump's controversial statements and evaluate what a Trump presidency would mean for New Mexico — the nation's most Hispanic state.

Man Pleads Guilty To Robbing Bank In Albuquerque Last Year

Aug 22, 2016

A Rio Rancho man has pleaded guilty to robbing a bank in Albuquerque last year and is facing up to 20 years in federal prison.

Prosecutors say 23-year-old Joshua Abeyta pleaded guilty in federal court in Albuquerque.

Abeyta was arrested last October on a criminal complaint charging him with robbing the Santa Fe Federal Credit Bank.

The complaint alleges that Abeyta robbed the bank by handing a handwritten note with a robbery demand to a bank teller.

  The New Mexico History Museum will bring together historians, anthropologists, art historians, musicians and genealogists for a free symposium to explore the history of Sephardic Jews, conversos, and crypto-Jews' 600-year process of identity transformation. Coinciding with the ongoing exhibitionFractured Faiths: Spanish Judaism, The Inquisition, and New World Identities at the New Mexico History Museum, this Symposium delves deeper into Spanish Judaism from the Golden Age of Spain to Mexico and New Mexico.

Workshop On Applying For Permits With BLM

Aug 22, 2016

  LAS CRUCES---The Las Cruces Green Chamber of Commerce, in partnership with the Friends of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks, is hosting a workshop for local businesses to learn how to fill out Special Recreation Permits with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM).  These permits would allow businesses to conduct commercial events on the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks (OMDP) National Monument. 

  Arrowhead Center at New Mexico State University and other organizations are collaborating with Navajo Technical University in Crownpoint, N.M., to help improve economic conditions across the Navajo Nation by providing technological tools for future generations.

The Navajo Nation is one of the largest American Indian tribes, stretching 27,000 square miles across Arizona, New Mexico and Utah. According to the 2010 U.S. Census, more than 40 percent of tribal members live below poverty and less than 10 percent possess a college degree.

Events at Hueco Tanks State Park & Historic Site

Aug 22, 2016
tpwd.texas.gov

  September 3rd | 11 Am | Family Cave Exploration | 5 groups of 10
This event will take families through some of the tight cracks and dark crevasses of Hueco Tanks.  It is not recommended for anyone who has issues with tight enclosures.  These tours will involve some scrambling, hiking, and basic climbing.  Reservations are required.  Families may reserve no more than 6 spots. To reserve please call:(915) 857 – 1135x0

Simon Thompson

2013 New Mexico and Texas Departments of Health data shows one quarter of Dona Ana County residents needing hospitalization are going to Texas to get those services.  But a lower Medicaid reimbursement rate in New Mexico means many Texas doctors aren’t accepting them anymore.

David Tafoya is 5 years old. His father Joshua said since his son was 18 months old he has suffered from a severe case of epilepsy.

No Leads In Roswell Triple Killing 1 Year Later

Aug 22, 2016

Exactly one year after three people were shot and killed in rural Roswell police still have made no arrests.

The Roswell Daily News reports that Monday is the anniversary of the killing of 31-year-old Mere Contreras, 19-year-old Damon B. Oswald-Newman and 25-year-old Shelly L. Bird, all of whom were found dead in a Roswell home. A 24-year-old woman was also shot but she survived her injuries.

A family member of one of the victims has said that Oswald-Newman was shot in cold blood while he slept.

Uber Expands Spanish-Speaking Service To New Mexico

Aug 22, 2016

Ride-hailing company Uber is extending the option to request a Spanish-speaking driver to New Mexico — the nation's most Hispanic state.

The San Francisco-based Uber announced Monday the launch of uberESPAÑOL in New Mexico at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque.

This new feature is available to customers in Santa Fe, Albuquerque, and Las Cruces who use the Uber app on a smartphone. The app in those areas allows riders to request an uberX with a Spanish-speaking driver.

New Mexico Governor Rules Out Tax Increase To Fix Budgets

Aug 22, 2016
Office of the Governor

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez is indicating that she will not consider any tax increases as the state seeks to close the gap on a projected budget shortfall during a special legislative session tentatively planned for next month.

A spokesman for the Republican governor said Monday that state government needs to tighten its belt and that raising taxes in any way from families and businesses would make the state less competitive and hurt job prospects.

Police Shoot, Kill Suspect In Las Cruces

Aug 22, 2016
las-cruces.org

Police have released the name of a robbery suspect who was fatally shot by officers in Las Cruces.

They say 36-year-old Juan Gabriel Torres of Las Cruces was armed with a knife when he was shot Sunday afternoon on a bridge over Interstate 25.

He later died from his injuries at a hospital.

Police say officers had responded to a home about a stolen pickup truck.

Officers later spotted the vehicle on the bridge where the driver confronted police while a knife.

Las Cruces Police and a multi-agency task force are investigating the events leading to the officer-involved shooting death of an alleged robbery suspect, 36-year-old Juan Gabriel Torres on Sunday.

Las Cruces Police were investigating the robbery of a white pickup truck Sunday afternoon, following the suspect to Lohman Avenue at the I-25 overpass. According to a Las Cruces Police Spokesman, Juan Gabriel Torres got out of the car carrying a bottle of beer and a large knife.

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