Thursday morning on the KUNM Call-In Show we'll be talking about what's being done to clean up the estimated eight million gallons of fuel that leaked from an underground pipe at Kirtland Air Force Base over the course of decades. Officials tracking the flow of the fuel and dissolved pollutants say no contamination has reached Albuquerque's drinking water wells. And they say they are working as fast as possible to clean the spill before that happens.
Governor Susana Martinez's administration is reviewing New Mexico's agreements to honor concealed handgun permits issued by other states. Public Safety Secretary Gorden Eden said Tuesday that New Mexico has agreements with 19 states to recognize their licenses for people to carry a concealed handgun.
UPDATE (3:00 PM) The horse racing industry Wednesday lined up behind a proposal to adopt tougher oversight and penalties at the state's tracks, which were recently identified as having the worst safety record in the nation.
Horse and track owners and a jockey's union were among those who spoke in support of a New Mexico Racing Commission proposal to adopt model regulations developed by the Association of Racing Commissioners International. No one spoke against the proposal.
First Lady Michelle Obama is in Albuquerque this afternoon wrapping up a four-state campaign swing. The first lady landed at Kirtland Air Force Base just before 2 p.m. and was greeted by about three dozen airmen and women and their families.
Mrs. Obama spent about 20 minutes with them, thanking them for their service and telling them how great it was to be in New Mexico. She was then whisked off to speak at a private fundraiser for the president's re-election bid.
Under the state’s renewable portfolio standard, investor-owned utilities were supposed to get ten percent of their electricity from clean energy sources by 2010. Of the state’s three such utilities, PNM is the only one not currently meeting that mandate. The target jumps to 15 percent in 2015.
The House of Representatives has passed a bill, HR 491, that would add about 900 acres to the northern end of the Cibola National Forest. The Crest of Montezuma, which forms the backdrop to the village of Placitas, is currently controlled by the Bureau of Land Management. The bill was sponsored by Representative Martin Heinrich, who says, aside from being visually stunning, the parcel is also an important wildlife corridor.
With summer break just around the corner, it's tempting to forget all about the hot issues currently going on in New Mexico on the subject of education. So before that final recess bell rings, KUNM's Rita Daniels takes a visit to some classrooms, and brings us this audio postcard.
Horses have been in the news in New Mexico in recent weeks. The owner of a slaughterhouse applied for a permit to produce horse meat for human consumption and Governor Susana Martinez responded by asking the USDA to reject the application. The New York Times did an expose on the horse racing industry, citing New Mexico for some of the most grievous cases of drugging and abuse. And a horse auction company in Los Lunas found itself under fire after an animal rights group released a video of abused horses.
Opening arguments are slated to begin Friday in what could be the state's last death penalty trial. A jury will hear arguments from lawyers in Santa Fe on whether Michael Astorga should face the death penalty or life in prison. Astorga was convicted of killing Bernalillo County Sheriff's Deputy James McGrane Jr. during a traffic stop in 2006.
A federal judge has reversed a jury verdict clearing four Albuquerque police officers of excessive force in the arrest of a drunken man who was subdued using stun guns, bean bag rounds, and a police dog.
U.S. District Court Chief Judge Bruce D. Black's ruling says upholding the October jury verdict in favor of the police and city would be a miscarriage of justice.
Our newest poll finds Martin Heinrich leading Heather Wilson 48-43 and Hector Balderas with a 44-43 advantage. Both match ups have seen only a small change from when PPP polled the state in December. At that time Heinrich led Wilson 47-40 and Balderas and Wilson were knotted at 43%.
The Albuquerque Journal reported today on an Albuquerque Police commander's email defending officers and placing blame for nearly two dozen officer involved shootings on a myriad of other organizations and agencies.
The report, "Beyond the Border Buildup," was produced by the Washington Office on Latin America, a think tank that advises U.S. policymakers, and Mexico's Colegio de la Frontera Norte, a prominent research college with branches in Tijuana and Juárez.
By The Associated Press and The Albuquerque Journal
Grand juries reviewing police shootings in Bernalillo County and Albuquerque operate under a highly unusual process where they don't have the power to indict an officer even in the most egregious cases. Police officials for years have countered criticism of dozens of officer-involved shootings by noting that every case has a grand jury review.
Laguna Pueblo has given permission to Disney filmmakers to use some of their land during filming of "The Lone Ranger." KOAT-TV reports the Laguna Pueblo tribal council recently approved filmmakers and actors, including Johnny Deep, to use Laguna Pueblo land for parts of the movie in production in New Mexico.
Pictures of Depp in full Native American dress have drawn some criticism and humor from advocates. But tribal leaders say they hope the experience and the film will draw attention to the American Indian community.
New Mexico Congressmen Ben Ray Luján and Martin Heinrich are calling on the federal government to take urgent action to clean up hundreds of abandoned uranium mines on the Navajo Nation.
In letters to the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency and Indian Health Services, Lujan, Heinrich, Arizona Congressman Raul Grijalva and four other House members say they are they deeply troubled by the federal government's failure to address the ongoing problem. They say the federal neglect is leaving future generations exposed to life-threatening radiation.
Public media's teamed up and created the American Graduate Initiative to try and tackle the high school dropout crisis in our country. In New Mexico, 2 out of 5 students don't finish high school. PBS' Newshour correspondent Ray Saurez visited the Duke City this week to see why.
A state Livestock Board official says an inspector took appropriate action when he was told about four dying horses at a Las Lunas auction. But the inspector has been reprimanded for how he dealt with animal rescue group members.
Livestock Board Executive Director Myles Culbertson tells the Albuquerque Journal that inspector B.J. Winchester is back on the job.
Albuquerque water officials will likely need to raise customers’ rates in the next several years in order to pay for improvements to aging infrastructure.
At a board meeting of the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Utility Authority, chief executive Mark Sanchez said the utility would be asking for five percent increases in 2016 and 2018. A rate hike for 2013 has already been approved. Each increase would raise average customer rates by about 3 dollars.
The state Court of Appeals has ruled a national online retailer must pay more than a half million dollars in taxes on sales of books, music and movies in New Mexico.
The court's ruling today involved a subsidiary of Barnes&Noble.com which was assessed gross receipts taxes for sales in New Mexico from 1998 to 2005. The company protested and a state agency hearing officer said the online retailer was not required to collect the New Mexico tax because it had no presence in the state. Company offices are outside of New Mexico.
Officials at Kirtland Air Force Base say, starting Monday, they’ll begin burning off 400 gallons of jet fuel per day from a decades-old underground spill in Albuquerque.
For now, they’ll be using the same passive soil vapor extraction technology that’s been pulling out roughly 135 gallons a day for the last eight years. Two new wells drilled in more concentrated areas of the spill account for the increase in efficiency.
Officials at Bandelier National Monument in northern New Mexico are asking for the public's help in developing a management plan for dozens of archaeological sites that are separate from the main portion of the park.
The plan will focus on the Tsankawi unit, which is home to more than 150 sites that range from petroglyphs to stone pueblo structures. The plan is aimed at improving protection of the archaeological resources as well as visitor understanding of the area.
A 30-day scoping period began Monday. The public has until May 15 to submit comments.
The criticism, leveled in a letter Friday, comes after the latest Air Force data show contamination from a decades-old leak migrating northeast beneath southeast Albuquerque with no clear picture of how close the fuel is to the wells that provide drinking water to area neighborhoods.