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.

In Depth: New Mexico behavioral health care system gets federal review

Jul 8, 2017

  The federal Health and Human Services Department will inspect if New Mexico is properly serving New Mexicans in need of mental illness and addiction services.

The review by the Inspector General of the federal Health and Human Services Department, confirmed in late June and made public Friday afternoon, comes roughly four years after Gov. Susana Martinez’s administration disrupted care for tens of thousands of New Mexicans when her Human Services Department accused 15 organizations of Medicaid fraud and potentially overbilling the government by nearly $36 million.

In the health technology industry, innovation is a constant. New ideas for devices, products and services are always emerging, but it can be difficult to access the potential customer base that’s needed to test the feasibility of these innovations in a timely manner.

That’s where Arrowhead Center at New Mexico State University can help, with a new accelerator program targeting health tech startups across the state in need of customer discovery research opportunities and a network of regional industry contacts to draw from.

US Government To Review New Mexico Behavioral Health Access

Jul 7, 2017

  ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The investigative arm of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has agreed to review the level of access that New Mexicans have to behavioral health care services through the Medicaid program.

Members of New Mexico's congressional delegation made the request earlier this year, citing significant access issues that remain following a shake-up among nonprofit providers who served some of the state's most needy residents.

The inquiry will be one of a handful being conducted by the agency's inspector general.

Suit Claims New Mexico Inmates Don't Have Enough Space

Jul 7, 2017

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Representatives of New Mexico prison inmates have filed a lawsuit claiming four state prisons are in violation of an agreement to give inmates adequate cell space.

The representatives filed the lawsuit this week in U.S. District Court, claiming the four prisons are in violation of the Duran Consent Decree, which guarantees each inmate at least 60 square feet (5.6 square meters) of "living and sleeping space," the Santa Fe New Mexican reported.

The Latest: Senate Hearing Delves Into Indian-art Fraud

Jul 7, 2017

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The Latest on a Senate hearing in New Mexico about preventing counterfeit American Indian art sales (all times local):

1 p.m.

Former U.S. Senator and jewelry maker Ben Knighthorse-Campbell has dropped in on a Senate hearing in New Mexico about ways to prevent counterfeit Indian arts and crafts.

Knighthorse-Campbell said Friday that enforcement of the Indian Arts and Crafts Act has grown more complex since the 1990s.

Progressive Summit Planned For Las Cruces July 15

Jul 7, 2017

Progress Now New Mexico is planning a "Progressive Action Summit" Saturday, July 15, on the east mesa campus of Dona Ana Community College.  From :

Our last summit sold out quickly so don’t wait. Get your tickets now.

We’ve got some exciting panels from local folks as well as some great leaders from around the state. We’ve got something for everyone including:

Hobbs Police Trained To Use Overdose Antidote

Jul 7, 2017


HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — A police department in southeastern New Mexico is the latest to join the ranks of law enforcement agencies armed with a medication that can reverse opioid overdoses.

The Hobbs Police Department announced Thursday that it has trained all of its commissioned personnel in the use of naloxone and has supplied each with two doses to have on hand while on duty.

Rio Rancho To Replenish Aquifer With Treated Water

Jul 7, 2017

RIO RANCHO, N.M. (AP) — One of New Mexico's fastest growing cities is celebrating the completion of a $25 million project that will allow for recycled water to be used to help recharge the aquifer.

The city of Rio Rancho depends on the aquifer for drinking water.

Starting this summer, the city will put up to 1 million gallons of treated water per day into the aquifer via an injection well. That's about 10 percent of the daily average the city pumps out.

Udall, Heinrich Search For Solutions To Counterfeit Indian Art

Jul 7, 2017
Senator Tom Udall (D-NM)
Senator Tom Udall (D-NM)


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Efforts to prevent the sale of counterfeit tribal art and jewelry will be the focus of testimony as two U.S. senators hold a field hearing in New Mexico about protecting legitimate American Indian artists and markets from fraudulent goods.

Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich plan to gather suggestions Friday from top federal officials responsible for enforcement of the Indian Arts and Crafts Act.

Your Weekend Pulse!

Jul 7, 2017

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, Rio Grande Theatre announces classic cinema favorites, the night market is back and roller derby is season kicks off.  

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US Senator Martin Heinrich (D-NM)

  Commentary: Today, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) hosted a press conference in Albuquerque with local and statewide advocates to highlight the damaging impact Senate Republicans' health care legislation would have in New Mexico.

19 AGs Sue DeVos For Delaying For-Profit College Rules

Jul 6, 2017
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos

Democratic attorneys general from 18 states and the District of Columbia sued U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on Thursday over her decision to suspend rules that were meant to protect students from abuse by for-profit colleges.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court in Washington, says DeVos violated rule-making laws when she announced a June 14 decision to delay so-called borrower defense to repayment rules, which were finalized under President Barack Obama and scheduled to take effect July 1.

Roswell Man Is Formally Charged In May 2015 Fatal Car Crash

Jul 6, 2017

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say a Roswell man has been formally charged in a five-vehicle crash that fatally injured a woman more than two years ago.

Roswell police say 68-year-old Orlando Padilla is accused of driving under the influence of a prescription drug when he allegedly caused the May 2015 crash.

Padilla is charged with homicide by vehicle and driving under the influence of a medication used to treat insomnia.

The criminal complaint and arrest warrant were filed June 28 in Roswell Magistrate Court.

Las Cruces Police arrested a man suspected of wrestling away $130 in cash from his 75-year-old grandmother.

Antonio Esparza, 23, is charged with felony counts of robbery and false imprisonment. He’s also charged with misdemeanor counts of battery against a household member and interference with communications.

Police were dispatched to the report of a disorderly man on the 700 block of Pinon Street at about 10 a.m. on Thursday, July 6.

Las Cruces Progressive Groups Plan Public Meeting Next Week

Jul 6, 2017

Las Cruces—“Partnering with Progressives” will be the focus of the July 11 meeting of WE’RE IN: Las Cruces Indivisible.  Representatives of the ACLU, the NEA, Reproductive Rights and ProgressNowNM, will lead group discussions on how WE’RE IN might partner with their groups.  The July 11 meeting runs from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Thomas Branigan Memorial Library, second floor.

Order: Faster, More Efficient Oil, Gas Drilling On US Lands

Jul 6, 2017
Ryan Zinke

CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is pushing for more oil and gas development on federal lands with faster permitting and more frequent sales of drilling rights.

Zinke signed an order Thursday requiring federal oil and gas lease sales be held in each state at least quarterly. Sales lately are occurring less often than that.

New Mexico City Takes Ten Commandments Case To Supreme Court

Jul 6, 2017
United States Supreme Court

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico city is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear its appeal of a lower court ruling requiring the removal of a Ten Commandments monument outside City Hall.

Attorneys representing the city of Bloomfield filed a petition with the nation's highest court Thursday, following through on the wishes of city councilors who voted earlier this year to pursue the case.

Economist Testifies That New Mexico Skimps On Poor Students

Jul 6, 2017

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — An economist is testifying that the state of New Mexico provides only a tiny financial boost to school districts with high percentages of children who live in poverty or are learning English as a second language.

Public-finance economist Stephen Barro testified in state district court Thursday that the New Mexico's per-student funding formula provides districts in impoverished areas with funding that is 2 percent or 3 percent above average.

Native Americans Say Grizzly Bear Decision Violates Religion

Jul 6, 2017

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Native American tribes, clans and leaders from seven states and Canada say the U.S. government's recent decision to lift protections for grizzly bears in the Yellowstone National Park area violates their religious freedom.

They are suing to block the government from allowing Montana, Wyoming and Idaho to hold grizzly bear hunts. They say government officials did not consult with them adequately and should have considered their religious and spiritual beliefs when making the decision.

Kids EXPO 2017 Coming To Plaza de Las Cruces

Jul 6, 2017 of las cruces

The Parks and Recreation Department’s “Kids EXPO 2017” will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 29, at the Plaza de Las Cruces.

The annual family event is free and open to all ages.  “Kids Expo 2017” celebrates the summer with games, contests, giveaways, arts and crafts, food vendors, and music. 

Information will be provided on extracurricular activities and services that are available for youth in the Las Cruces area. Local businesses, groups, and agencies will be on hand providing information about the services they offer. 

Cloudcroft – The New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) will be holding a project meeting to review plans for the U.S. 82 tunnel ceiling reinforcement project.  The public is invited to stop by anytime during the two-hour period to learn more about the project and provide comments.

The meetings will take place:

·         High Rolls, NM, High Rolls Senior Center, 56 Cottage Row, Tuesday, July 11th from 6:30pm – 8:30pm

Commentary: WASHINGTON – Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing the city of Bloomfield, New Mexico, asked the U.S. Supreme Court Thursday to take up a case involving a Ten Commandments monument on the lawn of Bloomfield’s city hall. In February, a divided U.S. Court of Appeals for the 10th Circuit declined to reconsider a three-judge panel’s decision that upheld a district court’s order to remove the monument.

Sunland Park Receives State Funding for Waste Tire Collection

Jul 6, 2017

Funds from the New Mexico Environmental Department (NMED) and the New Mexico Tourism Department (NMTD) will give Sunland Park residents the opportunity to discard their old tires, rather than disposing of them illegally.

The NMED Solid Waste Bureau and NM Tourism Department will disperse over $50,000 to the City of Sunland Park via, NMED’sRecycling and Illegal Dumping (RAID) grant and NMTD’s NM Clean and Beautiful grant.

New Mexico Sues Secretary DeVos & Department of Education for Abandoning Student Protections

Jul 6, 2017
Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos

Commentary: Albuquerque, NM – New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas today joined a coalition of 19 states in suing the U.S. Department of Education and Secretary Betsy DeVos for abandoning critical federal protections for students that were set to go into effect on July 1, 2017. The complaint, filed in U.S.

Holloman Pilot Named Instructor Of The Year

Jul 6, 2017
Maj. John R. Widmer, flight commander and F-16 instructor pilot does pre-flight checks.

HOLLOMAN AIR FORCE BASE, N.M. – The Air Force announced the recipients of the 2016 Air Force Fighter Annual Awards in May 2017.

Of the five recipients, one of Holloman’s Airmen, Maj. John R. Widmer, 314th Fighter Squadron flight commander and an F-16 instructor pilot, was named the Air Force’s Fighter Instructor Pilot of the Year.

The Last Howlelujah Tour Comes To Alamogordo

Jul 6, 2017

A Book-signing and Beer tasting event for readers, animal-lovers, and everyone else!

Ex-US Attorney Martinez Joins New Mexico Law Firm

Jul 6, 2017

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Former U. S. Attorney Damon Martinez has joined the Albuquerque law firm, Modrall Sperling.

The law firm recently announced that Martinez was joining to the firm as Of Counsel.

Martinez served as the top federal law enforcement official in New Mexico after his confirmation in 2014.

He is a Lieutenant Colonel in the U.S. Army Reserve.

The law firm says Martinez will offer his legal services to businesses concerned about cyber-security and other issues relating to national security.


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico State Police say a crackdown over the holiday weekend resulted in hundreds of citations and dozens of drunken driving arrests.

With the increased volume in traffic over the Fourth of July holiday, state police conducted high intensity traffic operations around the state through Tuesday evening in the hopes of curbing bad behavior and thus reducing the number of crashes.

Court: Detained Immigrant Children Entitled To Court Hearing

Jul 5, 2017

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal appeals court says immigrant children who cross the border without their parents have the right to a court hearing to challenge any decision to detain them instead of turning them over to family in the U.S.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday that two laws passed by Congress didn't end the right to a bond hearing for unaccompanied immigrant children detained by federal authorities.