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.

UPDATE: Timberon Fire Destroys, Damages Approximately 60 Buildings

Jul 15, 2016

Authorities say dozens of homes and other buildings have been damaged or destroyed by a wildfire burning in the southern New Mexico mountain village of Timberon.

A multiagency fire information service reports that approximately 60 structures were damaged or destroyed as of Thursday night.

The service says that figure of approximately 60 structures includes homes and outbuildings.

No injuries have been reported from the fire, which started Wednesday. Cause is under investigation.

Your Weekend Pulse!

Jul 15, 2016

Time now for Your Weekend Pulse! your guide to what is happening in our area this weekend with Lorena Sanchez, Pulse Editor for the Las Cruces Sun-News and Edmundo Resendez. This weekend it’s Ice Cream Sunday at the Farm and Ranch Museum.

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New Mexico 4-H held their youth leadership state conference at New Mexico State University this week.

New Mexico 4- H is a youth development program that focuses on building leadership, citizenship, and life skills. Katelin Spradley, the song and recreation leader for New Mexico State 4-H has participated in the program since she was in second grade. She says 4-H helped her learn how to be a community leader.

Santa Fe, NM — Today, Governor Susana Martinez directed the activation of the New Mexico Emergency Operations Center to assist in the coordinated response to the Timberon Fire in Otero County. The Governor also announced that federal funding to help cover costs associated with fighting the fire has been approved.

Lawmakers: New Mexico's Low Teacher Pay Hurts Recruiting

Jul 14, 2016

A New Mexico committee says the state's relatively low salary for teachers is hurting efforts to recruit and retain educators.

The New Mexican reports that an expert also told lawmakers on the Legislative Education Study Committee that teacher salaries nationwide are failing to keep pace with other professions, driving prospective teachers to look at other careers.

The Latest: Governor To Be Briefed On Latest New Mexico Fire

Jul 14, 2016

The Latest on a wildfire burning in part of a mountain village in southern New Mexico (all times local):

12:50 p.m.

Gov. Susana Martinez plans to be briefed by fire officials leading efforts to corral a blaze that has destroyed homes in southern New Mexico.

Martinez will be visiting the Timberon area Thursday afternoon. She's expected to catch a glimpse of the fire as she flies in on a National Guard helicopter.

2 Dozen Arrests In Crackdown On El Paso Street Gang

Jul 14, 2016

More than two dozen gang members have been arrested in El Paso as part of a nearly three-year investigation of a street gang authorities say is involved in drugs and gun trafficking.

U.S. Attorney Richard Durbin says the arrests have included four leaders of the Surenos gang that's believed to have about 350 members in four separate groups in El Paso.

Troubled New Mexico Border City Eyes Land Annex Amid Fight

Jul 14, 2016
Facebook

A New Mexico border city that has battled allegations of government corruption is set to vote on annexing land near affluent neighbors.

KVIA-TV in El Paso, Texas reports Sunland Park city council is scheduled to decide Tuesday on taking more than 200 acres from the unincorporated Santa Teresa.

Sunland Park City Manager Bob Gallagher says a private developer seeking to build 900 homes asked the city to annex the land so the homes could tap into municipal services.

Dozens Of Curanderos In New Mexico For Healing Conference

Jul 14, 2016

Traditional healers and students of alternative medicine are at the University of New Mexico this week for an annual conference on curanderismo.

The healers from the United States and Latin America are meeting on campus for two-weeks for demonstrations and hands-on activities about traditions, rituals, herbs, and remedies.

Republicans Highlight Fundraising Efforts To Elect Governors

Jul 14, 2016
Office of the Governor

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez says fundraising efforts by the Republican Governors Association are putting the GOP in a strong position ahead of 12 gubernatorial elections this fall.

Martinez is chairwoman of the political committee dedicated to helping elect Republicans to governorships. The Republican Governors Association announced Wednesday that it raised $17.3 million in the three months ending June 30.

Udall Joins Senate In Approving Bill To Combat Heroin And Prescription Drug Abuse

Jul 13, 2016
Senator Tom Udall (D-NM)

Commentary: Tonight, U.S. Senator Tom Udall joined the Senate in voting 92-2 for a final agreement on the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA), a bill that promises additional programs and resources to help prevent prescription opioid and heroin abuse. Udall has long worked to increase funding and support for people battling addiction—particularly prescription drug abuse, which is too often a gateway to heroin use.

New Mexico State University Outlines Budget Cuts

Jul 13, 2016
Darren Phillips, NMSU

  The New Mexico State University Board of Regents reviewed budget cuts today presented by Chancellor Dr. Garrey Carruthers.

NMSU is making more than $12 million dollars in cuts following reductions in state funding, a refusal by the Board of Regents to increase tuition, and declines in enrollment.

The University will eliminate 37 jobs…and 89 open positions.  Chancellor Dr. Garrey Carruthers said some may be transferred to other appropriate positions.  Of the 37…three are faculty and 34 are staff members.

Former Teacher Gets Probation For Sex With Teenage Student

Jul 13, 2016

A former Roswell High School teacher has been sentenced to probation after taking a plea deal on charges of having sex with a teenage student.

The Roswell Daily Record reports that 24-year-old Kellie Hurst pleaded no contest to a felony charge of criminal sexual penetration. Additional chargers were dismissed as part of the agreement.

Police say the male student was 16 at the time of their relationship.

NMSU Announces Details On Budget, Job Cuts

Jul 13, 2016
NMSU President Dr. Garrey Carruthers

New Mexico State University president Garrey Carruthers has unveiled details about the school's budget problems, which will include jobs cuts.

Carruthers spoke Wednesday about the elimination of 89 open positions and 37 jobs currently held by employees. He says the moves are needed for the long-term fiscal health of the school.

Carruthers says the university will try to find jobs for those who will be laid off.

The university saw a $9.1 million reduction in its $690.5 million operating budget for fiscal year 2016.

State Department Of Health Warns Of Confirmed Wound Botulism

Jul 13, 2016

The New Mexico Department of Health is investigating a confirmed case of wound botulism in a 33-year-old woman from Rio Arriba County who remains hospitalized.

Health officials say the patient is a heroin user and the suspected source of infection is a soiled skin injection site, contaminated injection devices or contaminated heroin.

Botulism is a rare, but potentially deadly illness caused by a nerve toxin that induces paralysis.

Wound botulism is caused by the toxin produced from a wound infected with bacteria.

Ex-Colfax County Deputy Pleads Guilty In Drugs, Theft Case

Jul 13, 2016

A former Colfax County Sheriff's deputy has pleaded guilty to federal drug trafficking and theft of government property charges.

Prosecutors say 46-year-old Vidal Sandoval, of Cimarron, entered his plea Wednesday.

The FBI and the New Mexico State Police arrested Sandoval in March 2015 for allegedly trying to possess cocaine with intent to distribute in Colfax County the previous month.

He also was accused of stealing money belonging to the FBI.

Newsmakers 816, 7/7/16

Jul 13, 2016

Newsmakers 815, 6/30/16

Jul 13, 2016

Living Here- War Eagles Air Museum

Jul 13, 2016

  The National Science Foundation has awarded The University of Texas at El Paso $1.9 million to prepare more computer science professionals over the next five years.  

 

The funds will be used to address a 2012 report on undergraduate education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) from President Barack Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST). The report cites "uninspiring" introductory courses and an unwelcoming atmosphere from faculty as major factors contributing to attrition of STEM students.

 

  Albuquerque, NM – Today, Attorney General Hector Balderas issued a Scam Alert to inform the public of unjust, misleading, or deceptive business practices, and to inform and guide the public on other issues of interest. Consumer Alerts are not legal advice, legal authority, or binding legal opinions by the New Mexico Office of the Attorney General. Please see below for the latest scam impacting New Mexico and how to protect yourself.

The Scam: Prize Offers

Congratulations, today is your lucky day!

Clay 101: What is Clay?

Jul 13, 2016

  “Every time I sit at the wheel or begin to create, I feel as though I have been honored and called to meditation and active prayer, called to create and engage others in thoughtful response or use in the objects of the mind and hands.” –Claude W. Smith, III

Crash Investigators Seek Tips On Fatal Hit And Run

Jul 13, 2016

      

    A month following the hit-and-run death of a Chaparral man, Doña Ana County Sheriff’s deputies are hopeful a Crime Stoppers tip might lead investigators to new information about the case.

Juan Sanchez, 50, was reportedly walking home the night of June 5 when an unidentified vehicle struck him. Deputies were called to the scene in the 500 block of Paloma Blanca at around 9:30 p.m.

Anyone with information on the crash is asked to call Crime Stoppers at 1 (800) 222-TIPS (8477) or send a tip via text message to CRIMES (274637) using the keyword LCTIPS.

Deadline Nears For Navajos In National Land Buyback Program

Jul 13, 2016

Deadlines are nearing for thousands of Navajos considering offers to sell off land interests as part of a nationwide program.

The U.S. Department of the Interior has made offers worth more than $260 million to about 26,000 Navajo landowners.

The buyback program is the second phase of the $3.4 billion Cobell class-action lawsuit over royalties the federal government held in trust for American Indians.

The voluntary program aims to buy land parcels owned by multiple individuals — sometimes hundreds or thousands of people — and turn them over to tribal governments.

Latest Installment Of 'Wolverine' Filming In New Mexico

Jul 13, 2016

The final installment of Hugh Jackman's "Wolverine" will be shooting in New Mexico.

Under the working title "Juarez," the film begins principle photography this month and work will continue through August in the Albuquerque area, Abiquiu and Chama.

The New Mexico Film Office says the production will employ about 130 New Mexico crew members, two New Mexico cast members and about 600 background talent.

Libertarian Candidate Courts Sanders Followers

Jul 13, 2016

Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson is wasting no time in courting backers of Bernie Sanders after the Vermont senator endorsed former rival Hillary Clinton.

Johnson appeared Tuesday in a new YouTube video to urge people who are still "feeling the Bern" to consider the Libertarian Party option.

El Paso Bundles Career Opportunities With Scholarship

Jul 13, 2016

  Workforce Solutions Borderplex, the Far West Adult Education Consortium, and El Paso Community College are launching a program that will jump-start individuals who have been out of school and/or been looking for new career with a $1,000 scholarship for a professional certification.

Led by the Far West Education Consortium, the Community College has developed accelerated curriculums for individuals who want to get back into school. Qualifying participants can pursue in-demand careers as:

Silver City Report

Jul 13, 2016

Time now for the Silver City Report with Edmundo Resendez and Silver City Press and Independent reporter, Stewart McClintic. This week, an ongoing investigation in what happened during a recent traffic stop with the district attorney and more on the school board recall.   

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Lightning Not to Be Taken Lightly

Jul 13, 2016

  Summer is obviously our hottest time of the year, but it’s also the wettest. July and August historically are the months in which we have the highest average rainfall in southern New Mexico.

With rain can come lightning, and too often it’s taken lightly.

Think of how many times you’ve heard the weather forecast calling for a slight chance of thunderstorms, but you only see a few fluffy white clouds overhead. So you go outside to work, walk, run, or anything and minutes later you hear thunder and see lightning in the distance.

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