Ed Williams

Some of the nurses at the University of New Mexico Hospital say they are understaffed, overworked and overlooked by the hospital’s management.

At a press conference in front of UNM Hospital in Albuquerque, nurse Lorie MacIver said the staffing problems have gotten so bad, it can be hard to give patients the care they need.

"One of a nurse’s greatest fears is that she’s so overwhelmed and so busy that she fails to notice something small, and then it gets worse. And I’ve seen nurses in break rooms crying," MacIver said.


A program that started in New Mexico is taking on the global shortage of child doctors.

Project ECHO uses video conferencing to mentor rural doctors in specialized medicine with experts in Albuquerque and elsewhere. Now, the project is teaming up with the world’s largest pediatric organization to bring healthcare to rural kids.


Generation Justice

Inmates and their relatives pay steep phone bills to keep in touch, and prison phone companies rake in billions. The Federal Communications Commission moved to cap those rates last week because it isn’t only the inmate who pays the price.

Rashad Mahmood-Public Health New Mexico

There is a problem with the groundwater in Albuquerque—a big problem. A plume of poisonous dry cleaning chemicals is flowing beneath the Sawmill and Wells Park neighborhoods, just north of downtown. The contamination stretches farther than the Kirtland Air Force Base jet fuel spill, and is much closer to the surface.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

Untreated minor health concerns can grow into big, expensive ailments, maybe even fatal illnesses. That’s true for people who are in jail, too. Many of the state’s jails charge inmates copays for their medical care, but some say the fees deter inmates from seeking the help they need before health problems get out of control. 

Low Turnout for Municipal Election

Oct 7, 2015
Sarah via Flickr / Creative Commons

Albuquerque voters went to the polls Tuesday to elect two city councilors for the Northeast Heights and Southeast Heights, and decide several bond issues to fund public transportation, the zoo and BioPark and and modernizing city water facilities.

Night Owl City via Flickr / Creative Commons License

New Mexico’s new teacher evaluation system relies heavily on student test scores and classroom observations. It’s divided educators over how to determine whether a teacher is effective. Testimony continued Tuesday in a case that could decide the future of the teacher evaluation system in New Mexico.

UNM To House Population Health College

Oct 3, 2015
suny_cortland via Flickr / Creative Commons License


New Mexico will be home to the nation's first population health doctoral program. The new program was inspired by the Affordable Care Act to help grow the workforce for our healthcare system. The college will feature a multi-disciplinary degree program that aims to train the students who will provide healthcare services.

In his most recent book, Falling Upwards: How We Took To The Air, biographer Richard Holmes tells the stories of the "first aeronauts," the men and women in Europe and America who pioneered the science and art of ballooning in the 18th and 19th centuries.  The paperback edition of his "unconventional history of ballooning" was published last year by Vintage Books.

Mike_tn via Flickr / Creative Commons License

The volume of reported spills from the oil industry in New Mexico jumped by 61 percent in one year. The increase was disproportionate to the increase in what was actually pumped out of the ground. That data is raising questions for environmental groups.

The state Oil Conservation Division said that producers are using new technology that brings more oil and waste to the surface, which could explain the surge in the number of spills.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

FARMINGTON, N.M.—Nationwide, the number of people who die in jail is rising. Here in New Mexico, three deaths in three months in San Juan County’s lockup caught the attention of attorneys and the local newspaper

Rita Daniels

Ranchers and farmers gathered in Albuquerque this week, in part to raise awareness about claims that the U.S. Department of Agriculture continues to discriminate against them.

In the past the USDA has settled discrimination claims with women, blacks, Latinos and Native Americans, in some cases for denying grazing permits.

Local Division Over Planned Parenthood Funding

Sep 30, 2015
Adam Fagen / Creative Commons via Flickr


Planned Parenthood hosted a Pink Out Day event at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque Tuesday. Much like lawmakers in Congress, attendees at Albuquerque’s Pink Out Day rally were also divided on whether to fund the healthcare provider.

Rita Daniels

The future of the endangered Mexican gray wolf remains precarious in New Mexico. The state game commission denied a federal appeal to release wolves in New Mexico on Tuesday.

Ed Williams

Finding employment can be a challenge for anyone entering the job market. For people with disabilities, those challenges can be even greater—the unemployment rate for that group is twice that of the overall population.

Judge Teachers Honorably

Sep 29, 2015
Olympia School District, State of Washington

Teachers unions filed a lawsuit earlier this year saying that the state Public Education Department’s evaluation of teachers using student standardized test scores is punitive. 

PED recently decided to de-emphasize test scores in teacher evaluations and to make allowances for instructors whose subjects are not evaluated on standardized tests—like music and art.

Commentator Andrea Mays says this is a good first step toward assessing the difficult work teachers do.

Bicanski via

Antiques Roadshow rolled through Albuquerque in July last year for PBS.   Three episodes filmed in the Duke City air on September 28 and October 5 and 12 on New Mexico PBS/KNME Channel 5.   The show features antique experts who appraise items for people who are hoping to hit the jackpot.  

Marsha Bemko is the executive producer of the program.  She spoke with KUNM's Chris Boros about the episodes filmed in New Mexico. 

Courtesy Josh Stephenson, Durango Herald

The state’s top environmental regulator testified at a joint congressional hearing recently, criticizing the Environmental Protection Agency for withholding information about the Gold King Mine spill. 

ABQ Youth Fight Curfew Proposal

Sep 25, 2015
Carlos Lowry / Flickr Creative Commons

New Mexico representative Nate Gentry is proposing an amendment to the Children’s Code that will let local governments set curfews for youth. The proposed bill, aimed at curbing youth violence, has been receiving heavy criticism.

Ed Williams

When state environment workers were taking groundwater samples in downtown Albuquerque back in the 1990s, they discovered a large plume of a solvent called trichloroethylene, or TCE—a toxic chemical that causes cancer and birth defects—just 35 feet below the ground. 

Rita Daniels

Mild temperatures and the turning of the leaves are reminders that summer is officially over. In the coming months New Mexico is well positioned to trap significant amounts of moisture from the third strongest El Niño on record

Rita Daniels

During the summer months, southern New Mexico hosts one of the largest bat populations in North America. The Jornada Bat Caves, just west of White Sands Missile Range, are now becoming more accessible to the public.

Grandparents Filling The Family Void

Sep 18, 2015
FeeLoona via Pixabay / Creative Commons License

In New Mexico lots of grandparents raise their grandkids – more than 70,000 children under the age of 18 here live with family other than their parents.

A new exhibit in Santa Fe is attempting to tease out the qualities that make Georgia O'Keeffe's work instantly recognizable.  "O'Keeffe in Process," on view through January 17, 2016 at the New Mexico Museum of Art, looks at the artist's emphasis on color, line and form, and the techniques she used to achieve those elements. 

CNM Receives $2.9 Million Apprenticeship Grant

Sep 17, 2015
Remit Training via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Apprenticeship programs across the country are getting an infusion of cash.  The U.S. Department of Labor divided a record $175 million between 46 apprenticeship and trade institutions across the country.  The grants represent the largest award towards apprenticeships in U.S. history. 

Rita Daniels

People living on Pajarito Mesa may have an easier time getting help in the case of an emergency. That’s because Bernalillo County has a new system set up to serve the settlement west of Albuquerque.

Dave LaFontaine via Flickr

The Environmental Protection Agency is finalizing stricter limits on ground-level ozone, which the agency says is harmful to human health. That has some manufacturers in New Mexico concerned that the new rule will increase the cost of doing business.

Laura Paskus

Away from any cities or streetlights, the nights here at Chaco Culture National Historic Park are dark. Looking up, it takes a little longer than usual to spot even the most familiar constellations. That’s because there are so many more stars visible across Orion’s shoulders or surrounding Gemini’s twins.

Rita Daniels / KUNM

First responders who work on the front lines are worried that their collective bargaining rights may be on the line because of a pending case in front of the U.S. Supreme Court.

With financial assistance from the state government, small cities and towns across New Mexico are putting their historic movie theaters, many of which were abandoned for years, back into operation.  Since 2013, New Mexico MainStreet's Historic Movie Houses Initiative has supplied funds to renovate the theaters' unique architectural details and to install updated projection and sound equipment.