This month’s guest is New York Times writer and Pulitzer Prize winner author Timothy Egan whose latest work is a biography, Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher. Shadowcatcher was the name given to acclaimed photographer Edward Curtis by American Indians as he traveled the country taking their photos and documenting their tradions, language and culture in the early 20th Century.
Early childhood programs would receive a dramatic increase in funding under a legislative proposal that calls for increasing how much is paid out each year from one of New Mexico's endowment funds.
A coalition of religious groups, business leaders, labor unions and social advocacy organizations is backing a constitutional amendment to raise the payout from the more than $11 billion Land Grant Permanent Fund to 7 percent from 5.5 percent currently.
Thurs. 1/31 10a: The musical group, PANdemonium, teams up with the Odara Dance Ensemble to celebrate the Carnaval traditions of Cuba, Trinidad, Brazil and New Orleans, February 8 and 9 at Albuquerque's National Hispanic Cultural Center. Spencer Beckwith gets a preview of the celebration from the leader of PANdemonium, percussionist, vocalist and composer Frank Leto.
This month, educators gathered in Albuquerque for the first New Mexico Ted conference to focus on education. Over a dozen presenters gave short talks at the event, affiliated with the national nonprofit conference organizer “Ted.” Presenters spoke of the innovation required in an era of standardized tests. As schools have seen the arts squeezed out of their schedules in favor of academics, several speakers argued for preserving the critical role of art in education.
Dozens of immigrants and supporters of their cause rallied at the state capitol today. They applauded the national movement by Congress and the President towards immigration reform, and they spoke in favor of New Mexico's law that grants driver's licenses to undocumented immigrants.
They came from as far away as Belen to listen to lawmakers and authorities tout the momentum of immigration reform, including State Senator Jerry Ortiz y Pino of Albuquerque:
Grant county commissioners, and the Forest Service are meeting to open up restricted roads in the Gila National Forest, and it has environmentalists worried.
The Center of Biological Diversity claims the proposed measure will critically endanger Gila's native wildlife, and plan to rally at the meeting.
They and other environmentalists argue opening up the forest will further endanger animals needing protection, including Mexican gray wolves. The Mexican gray wolf has been the subject of concern for some time.
Wed. 1/30 10a: An opera for young people and their families, "A Way Home," by composer Ethan Frederick Greene, will be on the stage of the Journal Theater at Albuquerque's National Hispanic Cultural Center on February 1. The production is presented by Opera Southwest. Spencer Beckwith speaks with the young mezzo-soprano from Houston who's singing the central role in "A Way Home," Cecilia Duarte.
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico lawmaker wants to end what he calls the practice by public officials of creating "monuments to me."
Republican Sen. Mark Moores of Albuquerque says he has introduced a bill that would prohibit any public building from being named after a living person. He says the practice can turn embarrassing, as in the case of the Manny Aragon library at Lowell Elementary School in Albuquerque. Aragon is a former Senate leader serving time in federal prison for accepting kickbacks.
A House committee has shelved a proposal by Republican Gov. Susana Martinez to stop New Mexico from issuing driver's licenses to illegal immigrants but the issue isn't likely to go away in the Legislature.
The Labor and Human Resources Committee voted 5-4 along party lines Tuesday to keep the measure bottled up in the panel — a possible way for majority Democrats to try to delay action on the politically thorny issue until the Legislature adjourns in mid-March.
The other day, when I was supposed to be doing something else, I was casually reviewing my own profile on Linked In -- the online network for professionals, a sort of serious version of Facebook -- when Linked asked – oh, so innocently! -- if I’d like to add more people to my list of professional contacts.
Sure, why not? I hit the Yes button.
Minutes later I got an unexpected email. The name was vaguely familiar. Oh yeah, that guy. Somebody I’d quoted in a news story, what, 10 years ago?
We've been hearing from Third Congressional District Congressional Representative Ben Ray Lujan this week. KUNM's statehouse reporter Deborah Martinez visited with him at his office, and she has part two of her interview.
The third-term democrat spoke on a variety of subjects he's passionate about, including the Violence Against Women Act, which he hopes to vote on during this session of Congress:
Bernalillo County District Court judges are barring District Attorney Kari Brandenberg's office from using investigative grand juries to probe shootings involving police officers.
Chief Judge Ted Baca and another judge say in a letter to Brandenberg that there's an appearance of a lack of impartiality.
The judges' letter says that's because the investigative grand juries are used only in officer-involved shootings and only after there's been a determination that there's no probable cause for criminal charges against the officers.
A judge has ordered the District Attorney of Bernalillo County not to reinstate a controversial process of presenting police officer involved shooting cases to an investigative grand jury.
The Albuquerque Journal reports Bernalillo County District Court Judge Ted Baca sent a letter to DA Kari Brandenberg saying she had failed to cite the legal authority that supports the use of the special grand juries in officer involved shooting cases.
Congressman Ben R. Lujan is spending some time in his district that includes the northern and eastern parts of the state. Tuesday he'll address state legislators. he also dropped by the studio to talk with our statehouse reporter Deborah Martinez. Here's part one of that interview.
KUNM Call In Show Thu. 1/31 8a: A bill introduced in the state legislature would make it a crime to coerce or facilitate an abortion with the intention of destroying evidence for a woman who has been the victim of rape or incest. The bill's sponsor, Representative Cathrynn Brown (R-Carlsbad), is defending the measure and says she has made changes in the language of the bill to make it clear she is trying to prevent rapists from coercing women to have abortions. What would a law like this mean for abortion rights in New Mexico?
Advocates of the Violence Against Women Act have reintroduced the bill to congress this week. Also known as "VAWA", the bill could have major impacts on how authorities respond to domestic violence against Native Americans, Undocumented Immigrants, and members of the LGBT community. However, as KUNM News Intern Christine Trudeau reports, the bill could also be killed by house republicans, again, if a compromise can't be met.
Seven in 10 births in New Mexico are paid for by Medicaid.
The Albuquerque Journal cites (http://bit.ly/VpAkxz) a recent analysis by the state Legislative Finance Committee that shows 71 percent of the nearly 27,800 babies born in New Mexico during 2010 were paid for by the state and federally funded health insurance program for the poor.
Experts say the large number of Medicaid births reflects a slew of problems in New Mexico, such as high rates of unemployment, drug use, school dropout and teen pregnancy.
New Mexico lawmakers are turning their attention to a proposal that will require criminal background checks of people buying firearms from private sellers, including at gun shows.
The House Judiciary Committee is scheduled Monday to consider the legislation by Democratic Rep. Miguel Garcia of Albuquerque.
Federal law requires background checks for sales by licensed dealers in stores or at gun shows. However, the law doesn't cover firearm sales between private individuals, whether at a gun show or someone's home.
Court papers allege that somebody fraudulently obtained more than $1 million in parts from Dell Computers by making hundreds of calls while pretending to place orders for Sandia and Los Alamos national laboratories in New Mexico
The Albuquerque Journal (http://bit.ly/VfQh5P ) reports that the alleged fraud reportedly started in 2007 and continued until 2010.
The case was turned over to the Secret Service that year after a security investigator for Round Rock, Texas-based Dell contacted Albuquerque police.
The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service have proposed endangered species protection for the Zuni Bluehead Sucker. The proposal includes 293 miles of streams considered critical habitat for the fish in New Mexico, and Arizona.
A biologist for the Center for Biological Diversity, Tierra Curry says the Zuni Bluehead Sucker is only found in the Zuni river watershed in New Mexico and in the Little Colorado River watershed, and Canyon de Chelly watershed found in Arizona.