Regional

Regional
4:16 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

No Charges For Officers In March Police Shootings

Credit bernco.gov

Bernalillo County's district attorney says a New Mexico State Police officer and Albuquerque police officer won't face charges in connection with the shooting death of a 22-year-old man during a standoff.

District Attorney Kari Brandenburg said Friday that there was no probable cause to bring charges against either of the officers.

Authorities say New Mexico State Police SWAT officer Shane Todd shot and killed Kendall Carroll during a four-hour standoff in March at an Albuquerque apartment complex.

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Regional
4:12 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Chinese Man Gets Prison For Fraud In New Mexico

Credit Image:sakhorn38/FreeDigitalPhotos.net.jpg

A Chinese man has been sentenced to more than three years in federal prison after being convicted on fraud, immigration and witness-tampering charges in New Mexico.

Federal prosecutors say 57-year-old Hai Gan received a 41-month prison sentence Thursday and he will be deported after he completes it.

Gan was convicted in February.

He lived in Texas and was ordered to forfeit his interests in four houses — including two in Albuquerque — used to facilitate his criminal activity and about $27,000.

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Regional
4:09 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

New Mexico Staff Recommends Developing Gila Water

The staff of the Interstate Stream Commission is recommending New Mexico take advantage of federal funding to build a diversion and storage system along the Gila River.

The staff also recommended Friday that some of the funds be spent on municipal conservation projects and other efforts aimed at stretching the region's water supplies.

The commission must weigh the recommendation and make a final decision before Dec. 31, the deadline imposed by the Arizona Water Settlement Act.

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Regional
2:23 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Alamogordo To Extend Runway For Air Tankers

   Alamogordo plans to extend its airport's runway by 2,200 feet to accommodate use by newer firefighting air tankers.

The Alamogordo Daily News reports that the city commission's approval of the $1.8 million project sets the stage for a mid-December groundbreaking ceremony at White Sands Regional Airport.

Airport Manager Jim Talbert says the extension is needed to accommodate landings by newer and larger jet tankers.

The airport now can only accommodate older aircraft dating from the 1950s.

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Regional
2:19 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Work Remains To Reach Out To Uninsured Texans

  Community groups, health advocates and insurers remain encouraged by their success so far in signing up Texas residents for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act.

But ahead of the second round of open enrollment, which starts Saturday, these organizations say more work remains in reaching out to some of the state's largest pockets of uninsured, particularly Hispanics.

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Regional
2:11 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

In Depth: New Mexico's Health Insurance Exchange

     New Mexicans looking for health insurance can enroll online starting this weekend through a government website serving as the state's online marketplace for medical plans.

Nearly 35,000 New Mexicans signed up for insurance plans offered by private insurers through the state's health insurance exchange in the first enrollment period, which ended earlier this year.

J. R. Damron, chairman of the exchange's governing board, said he hopes the state will be able to enroll between 40,000 and 45,000 individuals in the next three months.

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Regional
2:10 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

New Mexico Democratic Chair To Step Down

Sam Bregman

  The chairman of New Mexico's Democratic Party, who led the party during its recent historic loss of the New Mexico House, won't seek a second term.

Sam Bregman announced in a recent email that he was taking full responsibility for losses among Democrats.

Republicans gained control of the New Mexico House for the first time in six decades and Gov. Susan Martinez was re-elected by a wide margin.

The Albuquerque attorney wrote that despite the losses he was still proud the state's Democratic candidates.

No new chairman candidates have come forward.

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Regional
8:26 am
Fri November 14, 2014

N.M. Board To Approve Election And Order Recount In Land Commissioner Race

The State Canvassing Board is to meet later this month to approve results of the general election and order a recount in the race for state land commissioner.

It will be the first recount in a contest for a statewide office since New Mexico enacted a law in 2008 for automatic recounts when the margin between the top two candidates is less than one-half of 1 percent.

The board is scheduled to meet Nov. 25 in the governor's cabinet room in the Capitol. The board is made up of the governor, secretary of state and chief justice of the New Mexico Supreme Court.

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Regional
8:21 am
Fri November 14, 2014

Lea County Faces Lawsuit In Death Of Gay Man

Credit https://www.facebook.com/WhatsHappeningLeaCounty?fref=photo

The family of a gay New Mexico man who was abducted and brutally beaten to death is suing a sheriff's office for not protecting him.

A lawyer for the family of Leon Sanchez filed a federal lawsuit last week against Lea County Sheriff's Department and accused the agency of not properly investigating the case.

According to the lawsuit, authorities were notified in November 2011 by a security company about an alarm at the Lovington home of 49-year-old Sanchez. The lawsuit says a deputy who responded arrived to an empty house, saw unfinished meals but cleared the call.

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Regional
8:16 am
Fri November 14, 2014

Navajo Fluency Requirement Remains Unchanged

A bid to resurrect a bill that would let Navajos decide which political candidates are fluent in the tribe's language has failed.

Navajo President Ben Shelly vetoed the bill last month, saying it would benefit one presidential candidate who was disqualified for failing to show he could speak fluent Navajo.

Navajo lawmakers took up a measure to override the veto Thursday during a special session in Window Rock. It failed to get enough votes to pass.

Lawmakers approved another bill to stiffen penalties for crimes on the reservation.

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Regional
7:41 am
Fri November 14, 2014

El Paso Organization Works To House Homeless Female Veterans

In an eastside neighborhood in El Paso work is being done to make a home for female veterans who are homeless. The home will be part of the H.O.P.E. Institute, whose mission is to rebuild lives of homeless female veterans through Healing, Optimizing, Perfecting, and Empowering, (H.O.P.E.).

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Regional
6:00 am
Fri November 14, 2014

Las Cruces Minimum Wage Controversy: Concern Over Damage To Public Trust

  The Las Cruces City Council is scheduled to discuss the city’s new minimum wage law on Monday.  And some are concerned that if major changes are made to the law, it will have lasting damage to public trust in government.

A proposed amendment to the new minimum wage law calls for massive changes…including exemptions for many businesses.  Communities in Action and Faith Executive Director Sarah Nolan spoke about the prospect for those changes at a KRWG forum this week.  And she says the effort risks real damage to public trust in government.

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Regional
6:00 am
Fri November 14, 2014

Startup Weekend Winners Develop More Than New Business Ideas

  The winning team from a recent Startup Weekend event at New Mexico State University’s Arrowhead Center is working to make its project, an organizational mobile application, a reality – but team leader Kenneth Jacobs said the value of Startup Weekend is about much more than any one business launch.

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Regional
1:33 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Issues And Answers: The Minimum Wage

Issues and Answers:  The Minimum Wage

A documentary on the fight for the $10.10 minimum wage law in Las Cruces and a panel discussion with audience questions.

Panelists include:

Sarah Nolan, Executive Director-CAFe (Communities in Action and Faith)

Regional
1:16 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Push For New Mexico "Right To Work" Law Anticipated

  A Republican legislative leader says the GOP's capture of majority control of the state House means New Mexico may enact legislation to bar labor contracts that require workers to be union members.  The idea is controversial because it would allow those who benefit from union contracts to avoid paying union dues.

Senate Minority Leader Stuart Ingle says passage of right-to-work legislation would help New Mexico compete in economic development with neighboring states which already have such laws.

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Regional
1:06 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Martinez Accounted For 25 Percent Of New Mexico Campaign TV Ads

Credit Office of the Governor

  At a cost of $12.2 million, New Mexico candidates and political action committees aired 260 hours of commercials on traditional TV stations across the state for the 2014 election. Republican Gov. Susana Martinez accounted for one-fourth of that advertising -- $3.1 million -- despite facing Democratic Attorney General Gary King who spent only about $583,000. “She had a lot of money to spend, so it makes sense to spend a lot of money,” said Lonna Atkeson, a political scientist at the University of New Mexico.

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Regional
12:56 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Residents Warned Of Deed Copy Scam

  Many Doña Ana County property owners are receiving letters from a company calling itself Records Recovery Services of Santa Fe, N.M. Each letter offers a certified copy of the property-owner’s deed as recorded in the Doña Ana County Clerk’s Office for a processing fee of $87.

The Doña Ana County Clerk’s Office said the letter is a scam, and that any property owner who wants a certified copy of a deed can obtain one from the Doña Ana County Clerk’s Office for $2. A non-certified copy can be obtained for $1.

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Regional
12:53 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Texas Republican Must Testify Before Federal Grand Jury

 

  A Texas congressman and three of his aides say they have been subpoenaed by a federal grand jury in a criminal investigation.

Republican Rep. Steve Stockman of Texas lost a primary election for Senate and is retiring. He notified Congress of the subpoena but did not reveal the nature of the federal investigation. Stockman did not seek re-election to the House.

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Regional
9:11 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Plane Crash In Santa Fe County Kills One Person

Authorities say one person is dead following a fiery single-engine plane crash south of Santa Fe.

Lt. Mike Post of the Santa Fe County Sheriff's office says that the crash occurred Wednesday night just north of Clines Corners near U.S. 285, about 50 miles south of Santa Fe.

He says one person was found dead in the wreckage, and investigators don't think anyone else was on board.

Post say the privately owned plane was heavily damaged by flames.

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Regional
9:09 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Navajo Court To Hear Challenge In President's Race

A case challenging a Navajo Nation presidential candidate's qualifications is headed to court Thursday.

Onetime presidential hopeful Myron McLaughlin filed a grievance against Russell Begaye earlier this month with the tribe's Office of Hearings and Appeals. Arguments are scheduled to start Thursday morning in Window Rock.

Begaye resumed his campaign after Chris Deschene was disqualified from the president's race for failing to show he could speak fluent Navajo.

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Regional
9:06 am
Thu November 13, 2014

El Paso English Teacher Dies In Jail

El Paso authorities say a longtime teacher has died in jail after being arrested on suspicion of public intoxication.

Hudspeth County Sheriff's Office said Wednesday that 56-year-old Roberto Flores was found unresponsive at the county jail Tuesday. He was arrested around 2:30 p.m. and was pronounced dead at the jail at about 5 p.m.

Flores had taught English at Bowie High School for 12 years and had been with the El Paso Independent School District for 20 years.

Authorities say his cause of death is unclear. They have ordered an autopsy.

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Regional
9:06 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Lost High School Class Ring Found After 44 Years

A New Mexico high school class ring, lost for more than 40 years, has been found.

The Los Alamos Monitor reports that Matt Antos got his class ring back after a Los Alamos family stumbled upon it in their yard.

Seth Stradling says he spotted the Class of 1970 ring while during chores. His wife, Jennifer, then put pictures of the ring up on a Las Alamos Facebook page.

That's where Loretta Finley, the ex-wife of Antos, saw the ring. Finley says she lost it when they were dating in high school and had always felt bad about it.

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Regional
9:03 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Federal Appeals Court To Decide Tribal Land Claim

Leaders of an American Indian community in northern New Mexico are not giving up on efforts to reclaim as their own the Valles Caldera National Preserve.

Jemez Pueblo considers the nearly 140-square-mile swath of federally-managed public land as a "spiritual sanctuary" and part of its traditional homeland.

The tribe on Thursday is going before a panel of the 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in hopes of keeping its lawsuit against the federal government alive.

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Regional
8:59 am
Thu November 13, 2014

New Mexico House Clerk To Step Down Due To GOP Win

The chief clerk of the New Mexico House of Representatives will be stepping down after 31 years in the senior staff position.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that Stephen Arias' departure is a result of the general election that saw Republicans gain a majority of the House for the first time in over a half-century.

Then-majority Democrats made Arias the chief clerk in 1983.

The chief clerk supervises about a dozen employees. The clerk's office has a budget of $1.1 million.

Information from: Santa Fe New Mexican. 

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Regional
8:57 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Winter Weather Hits Parts Of New Mexico

Difficult driving conditions are reported on some eastern New Mexico highways due to packed snow and icy spots as a strong storm system moves into the state.

Difficult conditions are reported early Thursday on sections of Interstate 25 straddling Las Vegas and parts of Interstate 40 near Santa Rosa.

The National Weather Service says central and eastern New Mexico are enduring frigid cold temperatures.

Forecasters say there will be some warming midday Thursday but that much of the east-central and northeastern plains will remain below freezing.

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Regional
6:00 am
Thu November 13, 2014

Another Task For The Las Cruces Council: How To Judge The Effect Of Minimum Wage Increases

  The Las Cruces City Council is scheduled to discuss the city’s new minimum wage law next week.  Monday’s city council agenda has two items for discussion…the repeal of an ordinance that would have raised the city’s minimum wage to $8.50 by 2016 and a major amendment to the law that is scheduled to raise the wage to $10.10 by 2017.  As we first reported, Mayor Pro-Tem Greg Smith said in a KRWG forum that the amendment only referenced the January increase to $8.40.  But the Las Cruces Sun News reports in an interview with Mayor Ken Miyagishima, the Mayor said the language in his proposed am

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Regional
4:31 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

Critics: Texas Textbooks Need Climate Change Edits

Credit Courtesy: US Dept. of Education

   University professors and activists are urging two major publishers of social studies textbooks being considered for adoption in Texas classrooms to bolster climate change lessons to reflect the influence of human activity.

The advocates say there's virtually no debate among scientists that human activity is contributing to climate change. But they say proposed books by Pearson Education and McGraw-Hill are too skeptical on the subject.

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Regional
4:28 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

Report: Sandia Labs Misused Funds

   Federal officials say managers at one of the nation's premiere federal laboratories in New Mexico improperly used taxpayer funds to influence members of Congress and other officials in an effort to extend the lab's $2.4 billion management contract.

The U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Inspector General released a report Wednesday saying the use of the funds by Sandia National Laboratories was a violation of federal codes and provisions in the contract itself.

The report includes recommendations, and Sandia officials say they'll cooperate with the inspector general.

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Regional
4:28 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

Spaceship Pilot Unaware Of Co-Pilot's Unlocked Brake

  The pilot of the Virgin Galactic spaceship that tore apart over the Mojave Desert didn't know his co-pilot had prematurely unlocked its brakes, despite protocol requiring the co-pilot to announce the step.

Pilot Peter Siebold told the National Transportation Safety Board that he wasn't aware co-pilot Mike Alsbury unlocked the brakes before the rocket was done accelerating. Seconds later, SpaceShipTwo began to disintegrate.

An agency spokesman said Wednesday that protocol was to announce the unlocking. It's not clear if Siebold didn't hear it, or Alsbury never voiced it.

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Regional
4:26 pm
Wed November 12, 2014

New Mexico County Approves Drilling Ordinance

San Miguel County commissioners have voted in favor of an ordinance that imposes some of the strictest requirements on oil and natural gas exploration in the country.

The unanimous vote came Wednesday during their regular meeting in Las Vegas, New Mexico. Several dozen people were in attendance.

The measure replaces a moratorium on oil and gas development that had been in place since 2010.

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