By Motown31 via Wikimedia Commons

Headlines: Judge Fines PED For Records Law Violation, Martinez Wants Tougher Three Strikes Law

PED Fined For Records Law Violation – Albuquerque Journal The New Mexico Public Education Department must pay a $485 fine and opposing attorney’s fees for violating the state’s open records law. The Albuquerque Journal reports that Santa Fe District Judge Sarah Singleton ruled PED made a reasonable attempt to find the records requested by a teachers’ union. However it did not respond in a timely and thorough manner. The state chapter of the National Education Association filed a lawsuit in...
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Just A Few Important Words About The 'Declaration Of Independence'

"We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness."It's Independence Day. Let's take a break from parades, patriotic songs and pyrotechnics to think about the Declaration of Independence, which was adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776.The line at the top of this post has the words that are probably most remembered. But...
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Dick Thomas Johnson

UPDATE 6:05 pm - NEA New Mexico's Charles Goodmacher was in the courtroom late this afternoon and said the judge ruled in favor of the union. We will be following this story as it unfolds. Check back for updates.

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A district judge heard arguments Thursday in a case against the Public Education Department. A union representing teachers sued the agency over a mysterious statistic.

Billy Wilson Photography via Flickr / Creative Commons License

You can let the fireworks fly in Bernalillo County this Fourth of July, as long as they don’t fly too far. Abundant rain this year kept Bernalillo County from banning fireworks and other fires.

Larry Gallegos has been with the Bernalillo County Fire Department for six years. He said this is the first time he’s experienced enough rain to prevent a county-wide fire ban before the Independence Day holiday.  

Rita Daniels

Key players in New Mexico’s energy economy came together Wednesday in Albuquerque to talk about some of the challenges they face.

The energy summit was hosted by the New Mexico Business Coalition and was dominated by concerns that federal regulations are stymieing the oil and gas industry. According to the New Mexico Oil and Gas Association, the state produces 120 million barrels of oil in a year.

Laura Paskus

There used to be big talk about a big boom coming to the San Juan Basin. Industry thought they’d sink 20,000 new oil wells. Companies wanted to take advantage of oil deposits squeezed into tiny fissures in tight shale deep underground.

An Elegy For The American Character

Jul 1, 2015
Ardfern via Wikimedia Commons / Creative Commons License

As we approach the 4th of July holiday, commentator Andrea Mays says we need to reflect on how racism is a central part of the ‘American character.’

Andrea Mays is an American Studies scholar who lives in Santa Fe. Her bi-weekly column, Here’s The Thing, is published by the Santa Fe Reporter. Find the full piece online here.

andre dos santos via Flickr / Creative Commons License

A Harvard University report released last week shows that for renters making less money, Albuquerque is among the toughest U.S. cities for affordable housing.

via Engaging Peace

The U.S. Supreme Court ruling this week on a law limiting mercury and other emissions from power plants will not affect a coal-fired plant in northwestern New Mexico.

Sheila Stephenson

Mental health care and substance abuse treatment here has been in flux since Medicaid payments to providers were frozen in 2013. And two counselors are striking out on their own in a rural part of the state.

Sheila Stephenson and her business partner Heather Miranda used to work at Teambuilders Counseling Services in Clovis and Portales before it was taken over by an Arizona firm. Earlier this year, that firm—Turquoise Health and Wellness—left.

Holtzman via Flickr

U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich announced Monday that he will propose legislation to address poverty across multiple generations. 

EcoFlight

If you are a member of the Navajo Nation with respiratory problems and you live near the Four Corners Power Plant, you may have more access to health care soon.

The owners of the power plant struck a deal with the EPA and clean air advocates last week to create a $2 million pot of money for medical treatments for people with respiratory illnesses who live near the plant.

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Public Health New Mexico

County OKs Santolina Agreement

Bernalillo County Commissioners voted to approve the Santolina development agreement in a contentious meeting Wednesday. The plan could bring about 40,000 new homes to a privately owned development on the West Mesa outside of Albuquerque. The 3-to-2 vote to approve Santolina came after hours of debate over the language in the agreement. Protesters and acequia farmers sat through the hearing with tape over their mouths—a symbolic objection to the commission’s decision not to allow public...
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