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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.

Living Here - Space Murals Museum

Jun 30, 2016

  Alamogordo, NM – On Saturday July 2 and Sunday July 3, White Sands National Monument, Western National Parks Association, and White Sands Trading Company will host a Mexican & American Indian Art Market at the visitor center from 10:00 am-5:00 pm. 

Fronteras 614: Bipolar Spectrum Disorder - Dr. Manuel Mota-Castillo

Jun 30, 2016

Las Cruces Student Serves Up National Honors

Jun 30, 2016

  Las Cruces – Culinary Arts student Lorena Giesbrecht returned from Louisville, Kentucky with the second place silver medal in the Restaurant Services category at the SkillsUSA National Leadership & Skills Conference.

NMSU photo by Jane Moorman

  LOS LUNAS – A vibrant ecosystem of native plants and insects is critical for maintaining a healthy pollinator environment, whether it is in urban or rural landscaping.

New Mexico State University’s new urban and small farm integrated pest management specialist, Ashley Bennett, was drawn to study the intersection of native plants, landscaping and insects, while completing her undergraduate degree at Millikin University in Decatur, Illinois.

NMSU photo by Darren Phillips

  Maureen Howard, New Mexico State University’s associate vice president for university communications and marketing services, will retire Aug. 1. She has led NMSU’s communications office for the past 13 years.

NMSU Air Force ROTC establishes alumni chapter

Jun 30, 2016
NMSU photo by Darren Phillips

  In celebration of Detachment 505’s 70th anniversary and to provide an avenue for graduates to preserve and share their knowledge, New Mexico State University’s Air Force ROTC has established an alumni chapter.

New Laws Take Effect At Mid-Year In New Mexico

Jun 30, 2016
rio grande foundation

New laws going into effect July 1 in New Mexico run the gamut from new sentencing requirements for drunken drivers to stepped-up financial disclosures for lobbyists.

The state also is entering a new budget year that calls for reduced general fund spending, as revenues lag amid low energy prices.

Tougher sentencing guidelines will apply to some repeat DWI convictions and for homicide by vehicle while under the influence.

New Mexico Gov. Martinez To Announce 900 Jobs In Rio Rancho

Jun 30, 2016
Office of the Governor

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez is set to announce that new 900 jobs are coming to Rio Rancho amid uncertainty around Intel.

The announcement on Thursday is the largest number of jobs announced in one place during the governor's term and comes after Intel announced company-wide layoffs.

Intel has a massive plant in Rio Rancho and the plant's workforce has shrunk over the years.

Earlier this month, executives with El Segundo, California-based PCM, a direct marketing technology company, said the company would add more than 200 sales positions in Rio Rancho.

New Mexico Man Accused In Quality Inn Fire Takes Plea Deal

Jun 30, 2016

Authorities say a 36-year-old New Mexico man accused of setting a Carlsbad hotel on fire has pleaded guilty to a federal firearms charge.

Travis Hayslip appeared Wednesday in federal court in Las Cruces, with the U.S. Attorney's Office saying he admitted igniting the fire that destroyed the Quality Inn Hotel as part of his guilty plea.

Authorities say he will be sentenced to two-and-a-half years in prison under the plea agreement that also requires he pay $2.4 million in restitution to Choice Hotels. His sentencing hearing has not yet been scheduled.

N.M. Selected To Participate In Program To Extend Commercial Hours Of Operation At Santa Teresa

Jun 29, 2016

Commentary: U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) welcomed U.S. Customs and Border Protection's (CBP) announcement that it has tentatively selected New Mexico Economic Development Department's (NMEDD) application for funding for additional hours of operation for northbound commercial traffic at the Santa Teresa Port of Entry (POE). The partnership is through CBP's Reimbursable Services Program, which supports requests for supplemental services at U.S. ports of entry to manage the rising volume of travel and trade that contributes to the nation's economy.

Santa Fe Among School Districts In Civil Rights Settlement

Jun 29, 2016

Federal authorities say Santa Fe Public Schools is among 11 parties involved in a U.S. Department of Education civil rights settlement.

The U.S. Department of Education announced the settlement Wednesday in connection with a case involving website accessibility for people with disabilities.

Catherine Lhamon, assistant secretary for civil rights, says the parities in the settlement were committed to ensuring that their websites are accessible to people with disabilities.

Commentary: U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and 127 Members of Congress filed an amicus brief in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in the case of Christiansen v. Omnicom Group, Inc., arguing that workplace discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity is already prohibited under the Civil Rights Act of 1964 since these types of discrimination are inherently linked to sex discrimination. Discrimination on the basis of sex is banned under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act. The amicus brief was lead by U.S.

Prison Health Care Company Settles Lawsuits For Nearly $4.6M

Jun 29, 2016

The nation's largest for-profit provider of inmate medical services has reached a nearly $4.6 million settlement with New Mexico prisoner.

Corizon Correctional Health settled claims filed by 59 inmates at Guadalupe County Correctional Facility in Santa Rosa and the Northeast New Mexico Detention Facility in Clayton. Most of the payouts appear to be related to a former Corizon doctor who was accused in lawsuits of sexually abusing dozens of inmates at those prisons.

Corizon fired the doctor in July 2012 after several inmate complaints.

Teen Accused In New Mexico Man's Death Takes Plea deal

Jun 29, 2016

A teenager has pleaded guilty to aggravated burglary and other charges stemming from an attack authorities say led to an Albuquerque man's shooting death in his driveway.

The 18-year-old was one of six charged last year in 60-year-old Steven Gerecke's death, with authorities saying the teens were breaking into homes the night of the killing.

The 18-year-old, whom the Associated Press hasn't named because of his age at the time of the crime, was initially charged with murder.

Road Closures Sunday In Downtown Las Cruces

Jun 29, 2016

  The police department is reminding drivers that some roadways in Downtown Las Cruces will be closed Sunday evening in preparation for Independence Day activities held at that venue.

Roadways immediately surrounding the Downtown Mall – including Water Street, Church Street, Main Street, Griggs Avenue and Las Cruces Avenue – will be closed to all traffic beginning at 7:30 p.m. Sunday, July 3. Vehicular traffic in and out of the Downtown Mall will be prohibited during that time.

The Latest: Southern Utah Wildfire Grows

Jun 29, 2016

The Latest on a wildfires burning in the U.S. West (all times local):

The Latest on a wildfires burning in the U.S. West (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

Authorities say two dead bodies were found in a fire-stricken area near San Diego.

San Diego County Sheriff's Department spokeswoman Jan Caldwell said the unidentified man and woman were found Wednesday near a boulder in Potrero, about 45 miles east of San Diego. The property had been under mandatory evacuation orders after a fire began on June 19 and has since spread to nearly 12 square miles.

Commentary: U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) is calling on House and Senate members negotiating the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization bill extension to include a provision he spearheaded to enhance airport and mass transit security. The provision, which passed the Senate in April, would strengthen security, especially in non-secure "soft" target areas at airports, like check-in and baggage claim areas.

Albuquerque Mayor Appoints BioPark Executive

Jun 29, 2016
cabq.gov

The Albuquerque mayor has appointed a new ABQ BioPark chief executive who will oversee the attraction's aquarium, zoo, botanical gardens and other sites.

James T. Allen was selected for the job after a months-long search.

A retired U.S. Air Force lieutenant colonel and civil engineer officer, Allen moves to Albuquerque from Denver, where he was a senior director for Denver Public Schools. He also is a former construction director for the Los Angeles Unified School District.

Governor Martinez Touts Cases Probed Under DNA Testing Law

Jun 29, 2016
Office of the Governor

Gov. Susana Martinez says the expansion of a DNA testing law named for a slain New Mexico college student has helped authorities connect hundreds of suspects arrested on felony charges to other unsolved crimes in the past five years.

Martinez says a 2011 expansion of Katie's Law has linked 339 New Mexico suspects to 344 other cases, including more than a dozen homicides and 40 sex crimes.

The governor says only 407 suspects would have been connected to 420 other cases if the expansion weren't in place.

Silver City Report

Jun 29, 2016

Time now for the Silver City Report with Edmundo Resendez and Silver City Press and Independent reporter, Stewart McClintic. This week, the district attorney was pulled over recently and while no charges were filed, there is still some controversy. 

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Hobbs Police Say 100 Applicants Seeking Spots With Force

Jun 29, 2016
https://www.facebook.com/HobbsPoliceDepartment

Hobbs Police Chief Chris McCall says his department has seen around 100 applicants for openings thanks to a hiring push.

The Hobbs News-Sun reports that Hobbs police are trying to fill around nine open spots for a department that was battling shortages for months.

Two months ago, Hobbs police officials launched a recruitment effort that focused on applicants from Hobbs and the Lea County area.

University Of New Mexico Starts Chicano Studies Online Plan

Jun 29, 2016

The University of New Mexico is launching an online degree program in Chicana and Chicano Studies beginning this fall.

Under the program, the newly minted department will allow students to take online classes in Chicano studies toward a degree. Officials say the online classes with allow nontraditional students with busy schedules to get a Bachelor's degree in Chicano studies.

The program is aimed at students who already have 24 hours of college credit.

The move comes a year after Chicana and Chicano Studies became an official department at the school.

New Mexico State Auditor Timothy Keller (D)

Throughout New Mexico there are about 5,400 untested rape kits, but State Auditor Tim Keller says those numbers are improving in Dona Ana County.

“Down here the numbers have actually gone down,” Keller said. “There was roughly about 100 in the county and the city. And actually since we started tracking the backlog and shining the light on the issue that number is significantly down, and that’s a good thing. But we want to make sure systems are set up, so the backlogs don’t happen again in the future.”

Celebrate Independence Day Safely

Jun 29, 2016

  The Fourth of July holiday weekend is traditionally the time for parties, barbecues and fireworks, but for emergency rooms in New Mexico, it can be more than that. It’s a day where the hospital staff knows to expect to see patients suffering burns, bruises, cuts and more.

Fireworks are synonymous with our celebration of Independence Day, yet the day can also bring pain, even death.

In 2014, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) conducted a nationwide study of fireworks injuries from June 20th through July 20th. Here’s what they learned:

New Mexico's Medical Marijuana Program Gets New Location

Jun 28, 2016

New Mexico's medical marijuana program will be operating out of a new location beginning next week.

State health department officials said Tuesday that the new office in Santa Fe will be larger and will have room for more employees and infrastructure to keep up with the growing number of patients who are enrolling in the program.

Participation has increased by about 12,000 in the last year, bringing the number of active patients to about 25,000.

Bear Attack Victim Wants Change In New Mexico Wildlife Law

Jun 28, 2016

A New Mexico marathon runner who was attacked by a black bear is advocating to change the state law that forced wild officials to kill the animal.

Karen Williams tells the Santa Fe New Mexican that the female bear was acting on its protective instincts to defend its cubs when it charged and mauled her June 18 in the Valles Caldera National Preserve.

Williams, who was competing in a race when she was mauled, was treated at an Albuquerque hospital for bites, scratches and a fractured eye socket.

New Mexico Cites Progress In Capturing DWI Fugitives

Jun 28, 2016

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez says the state has tracked down 100 fugitives linked to drunken driving infractions since a roundup effort began late last year.

The Republican governor announced the milestone on Monday. Launched in December, the initiative directs State Police and a special absconder unit of the Department of Corrections to track down fugitives linked to DWI violations who have skipped out on parole or probation requirements.

Of the 100 fugitives detained, 55 had multiple DWI arrests or were linked to a killing while driving drunk.

New Mexico Man Sentenced In Fatal Stabbing On Navajo Nation

Jun 28, 2016

Federal authorities say a New Mexico man accused in a fatal stabbing on the Navajo Nation has been sentenced to more than eight years in prison on a voluntary manslaughter conviction.

The U.S. Attorneys Office says 53-year-old Bufred Denetclaw, of Sheep Springs, was sentenced in federal court in Santa Fe on Tuesday.

Authorities say Denetclaw attacked the victim in June 2014, stabbing him three times in the back.

Court documents say an alcohol-fueled argument led to the attack.

Denetclaw pleaded guilty early this year to a voluntary manslaughter charge.

Commentary: U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, placed a hold on the 2017 Intelligence Authorization Act over a provision in the bill that seeks a massive expansion of government surveillance into Americans' email, web browser history, and communication through social media platforms without judicial approval.

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