Regional

Regional
3:01 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Hobbs Boy, 14, In Critical Condition From Crash

A 14-year old Hobbs boy remains in critical condition after four members of his family were killed in a late-night collision in the Texas Panhandle.

The Hobbs News-Sun reports that the boy is recovering this week at the University Medical Center in Lubbock, Texas.

The Texas Department of Public Safety says 30-year-old Ryan Painter of Corpus Christi died when his pickup crossed the center line shortly before midnight Saturday north of Vega and struck an oncoming Chevy van.

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Regional
3:00 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Health Center To Pay Settlement In Disability Suit

An Albuquerque health and rehabilitation center will pay $145,000 to settle a disability discrimination lawsuit involving a worker who was terminated while on leave for a heart attack and other medical conditions.

The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunities Commission says the worker was terminated by Paloma Blanca Health and Rehabilitation in January 2012, about five weeks into an approved 12-week leave under the Family Medical Leave Act.

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Regional
2:57 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

NM School Gets Extra Security After Gunman Scare

Extra security has been dispatched to an Albuquerque elementary school a day after authorities searched a nearby neighborhood following reports of an active shooter.

The beefed up security presence Tuesday follows a tense afternoon when the school was placed on lockdown and parents had to wait for hours to pick up children.

The school was on lockdown after police received reports of a man with a rifle and handgun. Sandia National Laboratories and nearby businesses also were locked down for a nearly four-hour manhunt.

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Regional
8:15 am
Tue December 2, 2014

Hobbs Facing Shortage Of Developed Land

Credit http://www.hobbsnm.org/government.html

A bustling city in southeastern New Mexico's oil patch has another problem aside from its housing crisis.

Despite the resulting construction boom, Hobbs real estate agents say the city just doesn't have enough land developers.

Real estate agent Bobby Shaw tells the Hobbs News-Sun that many homebuilders don't develop land because of the high cost of putting in streets and water, sewer and communication infrastructure. Shaw says they would rather focus simply on building homes.

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Regional
8:13 am
Tue December 2, 2014

Las Cruces Delays Parts Of Minimum Wage Plan

The Las Cruces City Council is delaying the second and third steps of a three-step plan to implement a higher minimum wage in the southern New Mexico city.

Under the City Council's vote Monday, the first increase to $8.40 will take effect Jan. 1 as previously approved.

However, an increase to $9.20 is being delayed to January 2017 instead of January 2016. And an increase to $10.10 would take place in January 2019 instead of January 2017.

New Mexico's statewide minimum wage is $7.50.

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Regional
8:08 am
Tue December 2, 2014

Doña Ana County Facing Bail Problems After Ruling

A recent state Supreme Court decision on high bail has created a jump in Dona Ana County's jail population.

The Las Cruces Sun-News reports that after the November decision, the southern New Mexico county had to change the way bail was set. That led to a lag in setting bail as officials worked through the changes.

Magistrate Court Presiding Judge Joel Cano says workers do not like the new directive.

Last month, the state's highest court ruled that judges couldn't use exorbitant bond setting to keep a criminal defendant in jail pending trial.

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Regional
8:06 am
Tue December 2, 2014

Navajo President Signs Bill For Tougher Sentences

Navajo President Ben Shelly has signed off on a bill to stiffen penalties for misdemeanor crimes on the reservation.

New jails and the confirmation of a handful of judges gave the tribe an opening to reconsider penalties. Lawmakers had eliminated or reduced penalties for nearly 30 offenses more than a decade ago because of a lack of detention facilities.

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Regional
4:36 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Loading Facility To Create 200 Jobs In New Mexico

A railroad construction and maintenance business is expanding with a new transloading facility in Albuquerque.

Gov. Susana Martinez took part in a groundbreaking ceremony Monday for New Mexico Transloading, an expansion of GandyDancer LLC. The company says it will create 200 jobs over the next several years. The initial 35 jobs will come in the first year, with an average annual salary of $84,000.

The facility in southeast Albuquerque will allow goods such as oil, propane, lumber, heavy equipment and steel to be shipped via rail lines.

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Regional
3:46 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Project Protects NM Forested Land From Development

More than 11,000 acres that adjoins the Carson National Forest has been permanently protected from development through a conservation easement.

A conservation effort on the Upper Rio Chama River property in northern New Mexico began in 2009. The final and largest piece of the 11,655-acre property became part of the easement Monday.

The $8.4 million project aims to protect the local water supply and wildlife habitat. Nearly half of the funding came from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Forest Legacy Program. The state of New Mexico and the landowner chipped in as well.

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Regional
2:55 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Texas OKs Extra $86M For Border Security 'Surge'

Texas has approved spending another $86 million on border security as it begins replacing previously deployed National Guard units with state troopers as part of its ongoing "surge."

The Legislative Budget Board's 10 state Senate and House lawmakers unanimously approved the extra funding Monday.

They did so despite Democratic concerns about a "militarized" border. Some Republicans also worried that the National Guard may yet be needed because of unintended consequences of President Barack Obama's executive action on immigration.

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Regional
2:44 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Sheriff's Sergeant Injured In Hit-And-Run Accident

A Bernalillo County sheriff's sergeant has been injured in a hit-and-run accident while riding his department-issued motorcycle.

Capt. Ray Chavez says 36-year-old Darren Sanchez has been charged with leaving the scene of the Monday accident and great bodily harm by vehicle.

He initially was arrested for driving under the influence. Chavez says authorities caught up with Sanchez after he fled the scene. Chavez says Sanchez's blood-alcohol content was above the legal limit for driving.

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Regional
2:43 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Naming Rights To The Pit In New Mexico Go For $5M

WisePies Arena
Credit wisepiespizza.com

The beloved name of New Mexico's legendary basketball arena has changed.

A local restaurant chain donated $5 million to the University of New Mexico, securing the naming rights for The Pit for the next 10 years. It will now be called WisePies Arena.

The donation is the largest cash gift ever made to the athletics department. The money will be used to pay off $60 million in renovations.

The WisePies Pizza & Salad logo will appear on signs outside the arena, on the court and on tickets.

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Regional
2:39 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Lawyer: Albuquerque Officer In Shooting Fired

A lawyer says an Albuquerque officer who fatally shot a 19-year-old woman and did not record the encounter has been fired.

Attorney Thomas Grover, who represents Officer Jeremy Dear, told reporters Monday that his client was terminated after an internal investigation. Grover says the probe centered on Dear's lapel camera use and the type of gloves he wore.

Dear had been on administrative leave since he fatally shot suspected truck thief Mary Hawkes following an April 21 chase.

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Regional
2:29 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Sheriff's Sergeant Injured In A Hit-And-Run Accident

Credit https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bernalillo-County-NM

A Bernalillo County sheriff's sergeant has been injured in a hit-and-run accident while riding his department-issued motorcycle.

Capt. Ray Chavez says 36-year-old Darren Sanchez has been charged with leaving the scene of the Monday accident and great bodily harm by vehicle.

He initially was arrested for driving under the influence. Chavez says authorities caught up with Sanchez after he fled the scene. Chavez says Sanchez's blood-alcohol content was above the legal limit for driving.

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Regional
2:24 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

New Mexico Senate Has Backlog Of Confirmations

The Democratic-led New Mexico Senate will convene in January with a backlog of pending confirmation decisions on dozens of Republican Gov. Susana Martinez appointees

The Albuquerque Journal reports that Martinez's office says the 85 first-term appointees awaiting confirmation votes includes numerous members of state boards and commissions as well as three Cabinet secretaries.

The governor has accused Senate Democrats of playing politics by slowing the pace of confirmations.

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Regional
2:24 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Naming Rights To The Pit Go For $5 Million

The beloved name of New Mexico's legendary basketball arena has changed.

A local restaurant chain donated $5 million to the University of New Mexico, securing the naming rights for The Pit for the next 10 years. It will now be called WisePies Arena.

The donation is the largest cash gift ever made to the athletics department. The money will be used to pay off $60 million in renovations.

The WisePies Pizza & Salad logo will appear on signs outside the arena, on the court and on tickets.

Read more
Regional
2:22 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Lawyer: Albuquerque Officer In Shooting Fired

 

A lawyer says an Albuquerque officer who fatally shot a 19-year-old woman and did not record the encounter has been fired.

Attorney Thomas Grover, who represents Officer Jeremy Dear, told reporters Monday that his client was terminated after an internal investigation. Grover says the probe centered on Dear's lapel camera use and the type of gloves he wore.

Dear had been on administrative leave since he fatally shot suspected truck thief Mary Hawkes following an April 21 chase.

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Regional
8:11 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Navajo Energy Company Names New CEO

An energy company owned by the Navajo Nation has named an executive whose last project sparked conflict with Oregon tribes as its new CEO.

The Daily Times reports that Clark A. Moseley has been chosen as CEO of Navajo Transitional Energy Co. LLC after a nationwide search.

The company said in a press release Thursday that Moseley has 40 years of experience in mining and energy development.

Moseley was the CEO of Morrow Pacific, a proposed coal export terminal in east Oregon that would facilitate shipments of coal down the Columbia River and to Asia.

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Regional
8:02 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Census To Hire In New Mexico

Credit census.gov

The U.S. Census Bureau will be embarking on a massive hiring campaign starting this week.

Officials say they will begin interviewing and testing candidates for temporary field representative jobs Wednesday at the New Mexico Workforce Connection office in Albuquerque.

The interviews will continue every Wednesday and Friday through March 27.

Those who are hired will help with the 2015 American Housing Survey. Their duties will include conducting telephone interviews with selected households from May through August.

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Regional
8:01 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Gov. Martinez To Light State Christmas Tree

Credit Office of the Governor

Gov. Susana Martinez will help kick off the rest of the holiday season in New Mexico with the lighting of the state Christmas tree on Monday.

The ceremony will take place outside the state capitol in Santa Fe.

The governor's office says hot apple cider and biscochitos will be served. The biscochito is New Mexico's state cookie.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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Regional
7:59 am
Mon December 1, 2014

New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange Seeks Comments On Financing

New Mexico's health insurance exchange is looking for suggestions and comments as it develops a plan to become financially stable over the long term.

The exchange will need to be fully self-sustainable by Jan. 1, 2016. That's when federal grant funds for operations will no longer be available. Starting this January, the exchange will also need to fund its program for small business health insurance options.

Officials say the exchange has been working on its plan over the past year and the goal is to have minimal impact on New Mexicans and insurance companies.

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Regional
7:57 am
Mon December 1, 2014

New Mexico Senate Has Backlog Of Confirmation

The Democratic-led New Mexico Senate will convene in January with a backlog of pending confirmation decisions on dozens of appointees of Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that Martinez's office says the 85 first-term appointees awaiting confirmation votes includes numerous members of state boards and commissions as well as three Cabinet secretaries.

Spokesmen for Martinez have accused Senate Democrats of playing politics by slowing the pace of confirmations.

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Regional
6:00 am
Mon December 1, 2014

What To Do If You Have A Car Accident During Your Holiday Shopping

Holiday Shopping has officially kicked off, and more people are heading to the store. Leading to crowded and more dangerous parking lots. Samantha Sonner has more on how to help stay safe in busy parking lots and what to do if you are in a minor accident.

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Regional
6:00 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Monday Business Watch

Every Monday at 7:51am on Morning Edition, Edmundo Resendez covers the week's top local business stories with Las Cruces Sun News Business Editor Jason Gibbs. 

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Regional
10:36 am
Sun November 30, 2014

Navajo Nation Welcomes New Delegate Following Scandal

  The Navajo Nation Council has sworn in a new delegate.

The Office of the Speaker says Leonard Haskie was confirmed Wednesday in Window Rock, Arizona.

Haskie replaces former delegate David Tom.

Tom resigned last month after pleading guilty to conspiracy to commit bribery. Prosecutors allege Tom and funneled $95,000 in tribal funds to his wife and children.

Fellow defendant Johnny Naize resigned as council speaker and lawmaker after pleading guilty to the same charge.

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Regional
10:34 am
Sun November 30, 2014

Repeat DWI Offender Accused In Hit And Run On Pedestrian

   Police in Farmington say a woman who was allegedly driving drunk and hit a pedestrian has been arrested on her third DUI.

Police say 35-year-old Gwendolyn Joe struck the female victim just after 3:30 p.m. Friday and fled the scene.

Officers found her and booked her on charges of DUI causing great bodily harm, leaving the scene of an accident and other traffic-related offenses.

They say it is the suspect's third time being charged with DUI.

The victim was taken to San Juan Regional Medical Center for her injuries and released later in the day.

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Regional
10:32 am
Sun November 30, 2014

More Atari Games From Landfill Up For Auction

  Another batch of Atari game cartridges unearthed in a New Mexico landfill are going up for auction.

Between 300 and 400 games uncovered in an Alamogordo dump in April are now open for bidding on eBay.

Joe Lewandowski, a consultant for the film companies that documented the dig, says the offerings include "Yars' Revenge," ''Super Breakout" and "E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial."

Lewandowski says 50 games at a time will be posted on eBay over the next couple of weeks.

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Regional
10:31 am
Sun November 30, 2014

Freed Texas Daycare Owners Still Want Exoneration

Former day care owners who spent 21 years in prison before being freed amid questions about their convictions on charges of child abuse involving satanic rituals say they want a formal exoneration.

But prosecutors are so far not inclined to declare Dan and Fran Keller innocent. The former couple was convicted in 1992 and released last year.

The Kellers had been sentenced to 48 years in prison after therapists testified that they helped three children recover memories of satanic rituals and sexual abuse at an Austin preschool the couple operated.

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Regional
10:30 am
Sun November 30, 2014

El Paso Faulted For Indigent Defense System

   A state commission has found that El Paso County failed to give indigent suspects access to lawyers in a timely manner and didn't fairly distribute cases among attorneys.

The El Paso Times reported Sunday that the Texas Indigent Defense Commission uncovered the issues following a review of hundreds of cases in 2013. The commission monitors counties to ensure compliance with the Fair Defense Act.

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