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KUNM Call In Show
8:22 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Poll Challengers, Poll Watchers, How to Vote, Where to Vote, When to Vote, Your Questions Answered!

KUNM Call In Show Thu. 10/11 8a: Do you need a photo ID to vote in the general election this year?  When do early voting centers open in your community? Will there be long lines at the polls on Election Day?  We'll take your questions and calls.  Email callinshow@kunm.org, post your comments online, or call in live during the show. 

Guests:

Judith Binder,  League of Women Voters

Daniel Ivey-Soto,  state association of County Clerks

Phil Sisneros, Director of Communications with NM Attorney General's office

Links:

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Local News
6:56 am
Wed October 10, 2012

Voices Behind the Vote - Part 2: Father and Son

Jason (l) and Tony (r) Orosco

If it’s a school day, chances are you’ll find crossing guard Tony Orosco manning his post on the corner of Lomas and Edith, keeping a keen eye out for school zone speeders. Armed with a small stop sign, a day-glow orange vest and one very loud whistle. Tony does his best to remind drivers to slow down when passing Longfellow Elementary School.

Tony and his fellow crossing guards are an essential part of a safe commute for many young students here, because this section of Lomas is 6 lanes wide and that 15 mile an hour speed limit is not always observed.

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Local News
11:36 am
Tue October 9, 2012

Teachers union files grievance over pilot program

A teachers union has filed a grievance against the Central Consolidated School District in hopes of backing out of a statewide teacher and principal evaluation pilot program.

The Farmington Daily Times reports that the Central Consolidated Education Association believes the district didn't consult with the union prior to agreeing to participate in a program that began this fall and enables schools to partially evaluate teachers and principals based on student performances on standardized tests.

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Local News
7:00 am
Tue October 9, 2012

Voices Behind the Vote - Part 1: Small is Beautiful

Ted Berthelote and Marcia Hoeman of Placitas.
Credit Sarah Gustavus

Elections are about people and choices. In the weeks before Election Day, KUNM is profiling families around New Mexico.

The Voices Behind the Vote includes perspectives that represent the diversity found within our state. We’ve asked people to speak frankly about the political issues they care most about this year.

Today, Sarah Gustavus introduces us to one couple who value independence and are focused on economic issues.

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Local News
4:30 pm
Fri October 5, 2012

Women's Work: From bird clubs to bans, the role of women in conservation

Wildlife artist Robert Hines and writer Rachel Carson, Florida Keys, ca. 1955.
USFWS

It’s a sunny Saturday morning at the Randall Davey Audubon Center—way up Canyon Road in the foothills of the Sangre de Cristos. Jays, chickadees, and nuthatches are all keeping a noisy watch on the feeders—and the festivities.

Audubon New Mexico is honoring Rachel Carson, whose book, Silent Spring, was published 50 years ago.

In her book, Carson wrote of how the pesticide DDT was killing wildlife and endangering humans. In particular, birds exposed to DDT were laying eggs with shells so thin they broke before hatching time.

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Local News
8:58 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Police report big drop in Santa Fe burglaries

Police in Santa Fe are reporting a dramatic drop in the number of burglaries they're attributing to a focused effort to trim the numbers.

Police Chief Ray Rael says only 33 residential burglaries were reported in the city last month. That's half the number reported in August and a 55 percent drop from September 2011.

It's also the lowest monthly total since 2006.

Local News
8:57 am
Fri October 5, 2012

'Elvis' among new balloons at Albuquerque event

Sba2

A new Elvis hot air balloon and another in the shape of a child in a wheelchair are among the new shapes scheduled take part in the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

The 41st annual event is set to begin Saturday with the launched of hundreds of hot air balloons.

Fiesta officials hope for better weather for the nine-day affair after wind and rains sidelined balloons for a few events last year cutting attendance by around 100,000 visitors.

Still, last year organizers broke a world record sending 345 balloons up at one time.

Local News
8:40 am
Fri October 5, 2012

NM launches SIDS awareness Web page

The New Mexico Department of Health has a new Web page aimed at educating parents about ways to reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome and other sleep-related causes of infant deaths.

Interim Health Secretary Brad McGrath says parents should put their babies to sleep in a bassinet or crib to keep them safe rather than sleeping in the same bed.

The Web page also stresses the importance of having infants sleep on their backs in safe places free of any soft bedding, blankets or quilts.

Local News
8:38 am
Fri October 5, 2012

Tiny presence, unknown impact for 3rd parties

Third-party candidates Gary Johnson and Virgil Goode are blips in the presidential race, but even that might make them a big deal.

Democratic President Barack Obama's campaign quietly has been keeping track of the two former Republican officeholders who could prove pivotal in key states where he and Republican challenger Mitt Romney are in a tight race.

Johnson is a former New Mexico governor running as the Libertarian Party nominee. Goode is a conservative ex-congressman from Virginia competing as the Constitution Party candidate.

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Local News
8:38 am
Fri October 5, 2012

NM forest plans to round up free-roaming cattle

Joe Burgess

Forest officials plan to round up cattle that have been roaming freely for years in the Gila Wilderness in southwestern New Mexico.

The Wilderness Ranger District announced its impoundment order this week. It stems from reports of cattle roaming along the Gila River near Turkey Creek, Johnson Canyon and Miller Springs.

Forest officials say the cattle are leftover from a 2006 impoundment effort.

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Local News
3:41 pm
Thu October 4, 2012

Despite New Rule, Undocumented Students Face Uncertain Future

Jaen Ugalde and Leslie Alvarado lead a workshop for undocumented students.

The "deferred action" plan enacted in June by the Obama administration offers certain undocumented young people two years of legal status to study or work.  Undocumented students in New Mexico already have access to college. But many face difficult choices once they leave school.

It’s 8:30 a.m. and high school students are gathering at the entrance to South Valley Academy charter school in Albuquerque.  

Students crossing campus switch between Spanish and English and a group of boys plays soccer on the basketball court.

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Local News
11:22 am
Thu October 4, 2012

NM counties and cities try to lure nuke waste

Bill Ebbesen

Four government agencies in southeastern New Mexico are getting together to try to convince the federal government to put a high-level nuclear waste site in their region.

Eddy and Lea counties and the cities of Carlsbad and Hobbs say they've partnered with French nuclear conglomerate Areva to promote a storage site for waste from nuclear power plants.

The site they have in mind is midway between the two cities. It would be used as an interim storage site for nearly 70,000 metric tons of nuclear waste now mainly stored at nuclear power plants.

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Local News
11:19 am
Thu October 4, 2012

Feds clear way for NM transmission project

Nineleven

Developers of a $350 million project in northern New Mexico have been cleared to start selling transmission rights and services to energy developers on what would be 93 miles of beefed-up power lines.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has signed off on Colorado-based Lucky Corridor's request to sell up to 70 percent of the proposed project's capacity.

The project would be able to funnel 1,100 megawatts of electricity to existing customers and hubs that connect other western markets.

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Local News
11:15 am
Thu October 4, 2012

FCC awards $18M to expand NM wireless networks

Renato Mitra

The Federal Communications Commission has awarded about $18 million to telecommunications companies to expand access to high-speed cellular phone and wireless Internet service in central and southeastern New Mexico.

U.S. Sen. Tom Udall announced on Wednesday that about $9.5 million will go to Plateau Telecommunications in Clovis, $6.7 million to Leaco Rural Telephone Cooperative in Dexter and $1.8 million to T-Mobile West.

The companies were selected by the FCC after submitting bids for building new mobile telecommunications infrastructure.

Local News
11:11 am
Thu October 4, 2012

NM blocked from resuming immigrant license checks

Governor Susana Martinez's administration has agreed to settle a lawsuit and not revive a plan to cancel the driver's licenses of immigrants who fail to verify whether they still live in the state.

The administration announced the program last year but it was suspended by a state district court in Santa Fe after the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund filed a lawsuit.

Local News
11:08 am
Thu October 4, 2012

Border governors meeting in Albuquerque

Governor Susana Martinez is hosting a meeting of border governors in Albuquerque this week.

Martinez, Arizona Governor Jan Brewer and governors from three Mexican states are expected at the gathering, which opened with a private reception Wednesday night. Texas Governor Rick Perry and governors from the other three Mexican border states were expected to send representatives for two days of private workshops.

Topics on the agenda include agriculture and livestock, competitiveness, education, border crossing, health, security and sustainable development.

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Local News
11:06 am
Thu October 4, 2012

NM court rules against residents suing oil company

The state Court of Appeals has ruled against a group of current and former Hobbs residents who sued an oil company because of illnesses and other damages allegedly from environmental contamination from oil and natural gas production in an area that became a housing subdivision in the southeastern New Mexico community.

The court on Tuesday upheld a Lea County district court decision not to grant a new trial in the case against Shell Oil Co. and Shell Western Exploration and Production Inc.

Local News
9:56 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Ranchers see increase in grass thefts amid drought

Hephaestos

Some ranchers have started cutting neighbors' fences or leaving gates open so their cattle can graze on greener pastures amid an extreme drought that has caused a spike in hay prices.

Ranchers from Missouri to Texas and west into New Mexico have sold off huge portions of their herds this year because the worst drought in decades dried up their pastures and they couldn't afford to buy food for their animals.

Local News
9:50 am
Wed October 3, 2012

NM agency proposes antelope hunting changes

Jack Dykinga

The Game and Fish Department is seeking public comments on proposed licensing changes for antelope hunting in New Mexico.

The State Game Commission is expected to consider the issue at a meeting Nov. 1 in Raton.

The department is holding meetings across the state to hear from sportsmen on establishing a licensing system for antelope hunting in parts of the state similar to that for deer hunting.

A drawing would be held for public land hunts. Licenses could be purchased over-the-counter to hunt on private lands and hunters would arrange access from the landowner.

Local News
9:39 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Former NM gov Johnson not in presidential debates

Former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson says there's no hope a judge will allow him to participate in Wednesday night's presidential debate.

Johnson is running as the Libertarian Party candidate for president. He sued the Commission on Presidential Debates last month in federal court to try to force them to admit him to the debates.

Local News
9:36 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Departing NMSU president to get salary, $454,000

AllenS

Departing New Mexico State University President Barbara Couture will be paid nearly $454,000 when she leaves her post in January.

That's on top of the salary she'll earn while on paid administrative from now until she officially leaves at the end of the year. At an annual salary of $392,700, she'll earn about $100,000 for the next three months leave.

The state Board of Regents accepted Couture's resignation in what board Chairman Mike Cheney described as a mutually agreeable separation on Monday.

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Local News
9:33 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Woman killed when struck by Rail Runner train

A woman walking along the railroad tracks south of Santa Fe has been struck and killed by a Rail Runner Express train.

Rail Runner spokeswoman Augusta Meyers says the woman was walking along the tracks about 6:30 p.m. Tuesday and apparently decided to cross the tracks just ahead of the train.

The Albuquerque Journal reports the woman was then struck by a southbound train. She has not been identified.

Rail traffic has resumed but the incident stalled trains in both directions for a couple of hours.

Local News
8:35 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Ranchers see increase in grass thefts amid drought

Some ranchers have started cutting neighbors' fences or leaving gates open so their cattle can graze on greener pastures amid an extreme drought that has caused a spike in hay prices.

Ranchers from Missouri to Texas and west into New Mexico have sold off huge portions of their herds this year because the worst drought in decades dried up their pastures and they couldn't afford to buy food for their animals.

Read more
Local News
7:30 am
Wed October 3, 2012

Officials Struggle to Curb Tribal Violence

Rebekah Apachito at her home

The rate of violent crime among Native Americans is more than twice the national average, according to federal crime reports.  KUNM’s Colleen Keane looked into how this law is fairing two years after it was passed and found that violence is often close to home and that most tribes don’t have the funding to implement the law. 

You can read more on this story in this week's edition of the Santa Fe Reporter.

Local News
2:48 pm
Tue October 2, 2012

Arrest Prompts Wave of Violence in Nuevo Laredo

The recent arrest of a high ranking drug cartel member in Mexico is being blamed for a wave of violence that has hit Nuevo Laredo. Texas Public Radio’s David Martin Davies reports for Fronteras.

More than 15 people were killed in Nuevo Laredo over the last weekend. According to Mexican authorities 13 died in gun battles between rival criminal organizations and two more were killed in a run-in with the Mexican Army.

Nuevo Laredo is across the Rio Grande from Laredo Texas and is 150 miles South of San Antonio.

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Local News
8:40 am
Tue October 2, 2012

Tribal capital improvements receive $13 million from New Mexico

 

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A state board has awarded about $13 million for capital improvement projects for 16 Indian tribes and pueblos in New Mexico.

The Department of Indian Affairs said 28 projects received funding from the Tribal Infrastructure Board.

The largest amount was nearly $1.7 million for a wastewater collection system for Santa Clara Pueblo.

About $1.2 million was approved for infrastructure for Santa Ana Pueblo's Adobe Acres subdivision and $1.3 million for an enterprise zone for Zia Pueblo.

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Local News
7:24 am
Tue October 2, 2012

NM game officials consider hunting proposals

American pronghorn
US Department of the Interior, BLM

The New Mexico Game and Fish Department is considering a proposed agreement with private landowners that would expand public hunting opportunities for deer and Barbary sheep.

The department says the agreement would open some private lands to hunting in southeastern New Mexico in exchange for closing areas managed by the Bureau of Land Management.

The department has had these types of agreements involving state trust lands for more than 20 years. It's now proposing expanding the agreements to include BLM lands.

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Local News
7:11 am
Tue October 2, 2012

NM forests prep for prescribed fires

Two national forests in New Mexico are planning prescribed fires this week that are designed to clear out hazardous fuels from hundreds of acres.

Officials with the Santa Fe National Forest in northern New Mexico plan to treat more than 200 acres east of Santa Fe as long as the weather cooperates.

The treatment is focused on improving the health of Santa Fe's watershed.

Smoke will likely be visible from Santa Fe, Pecos, Los Alamos and as far south as Albuquerque.

Local News
10:38 am
Mon October 1, 2012

Lab's $425M in design spending falls short

The Los Alamos National Laboratory has spent about $425 million on designs for its proposed new plutonium facility without reaching the level of confidence needed to prepare a reliable budget or begin building.

The proposed Chemistry and Metallurgy Research Replacement Nuclear has been delayed at least five years under President Barack Obama's budget proposal for the fiscal year that begins Monday. The budget cut funding for the program.

Local News
10:36 am
Mon October 1, 2012

Santa Fe group mulling plastic grocery bag ban

Amanda Wills, Earth911.com

An emerging push to ban plastic grocery bags in Santa Fe will get its first public airing this week.

A city advisory committee is considering an ordinance calling for a prohibition on plastic carryout bags at stores in the city. The new law also would impose a fee stores must collect if they provide paper bags.

The idea is already facing lobbying against it from the plastics industry representatives and large-scale retail operators.

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