KUNM

Elaine Baumgartel

News Director

Elaine volunteered to answer phones during a KUNM pledge drive in 2003 and she's been unable to drag herself away from public radio ever since.  And why would she want to?  She wore many sets of headphones at the station before becoming KUNM's News Director - local anchor of NPR's Morning Edition, reporter in the KUNM newsroom, and host and producer of the KUNM Call In Show.  

As a graduate student in the Communication and Journalism MA program at UNM, Elaine completed her thesis project on the West Mesa murders and coverage of violence against women in the media.

In her spare time, Elaine likes to garden and work with ceramics in addition to spending time with her family.  

Ways to Connect

NASA

In 2014, NASA announced they’d found that the largest plume of methane gas in North America was right here in New Mexico.

At the time, scientists didn’t know exactly where the methane was coming from – but now they’ve completed some research and published their findings.

It can be stressful and sometimes scary to be pulled over by a police officer for a traffic stop. Some local actors, writers and artists are planning an interactive role-playing event this weekend at Warehouse 508 in Albuquerque for cops and people from the community to come together to learn about each other and practice how to avoid conflict. It's called CommUNITY Conversation - Positive Policing: Reimagining the Traffic Stop.

Tony Webster via Flickr / CREATIVE COMMONS

Sheriff Takes Over Duties In Hatch, Town MournsThe Associated Press

Dona Ana County Sheriff's deputies have taken over public safety duties in the village of Hatch following the fatal shooting of one of its eight officers.

Laura Paskus/New Mexico In Depth

During the irrigation season in New Mexico, the Rio Grande is allowed to go completely dry in some stretches. Even Saturday’s intense thunderstorm in Albuquerque hasn’t sustained flows in some regions of the river south of the city.

insunlight via Flickr / Creative Commons License

There’s been a lot of focus lately both locally and nationally on how police officers use force—sometimes deadly force—against people.

Now, New Mexico’s largest jail is back in the headlines after it was revealed that two inmates may have been the victims of excessive use of force.

hugovk via Flickr / Creative Commons License

KUNM Call In Show 7/14 8a: This week, we want to hear your response to recent police shootings of African Americans—and the killing of five Dallas police officers. How do you think the shootings of officers in Dallas have affected the national conversation on race and policing? What are the ripple effects of these deaths right here at home in New Mexico? How has the widespread anger and fear affected police officers and their ability to do their jobs? How are activists taking care of themselves in the face of a problem that's hard to gain ground with? 

grotevriendelijkereus via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Federal Lawsuit Targets Cougar Trapping In New Mexico – Associated Press

Environmentalists are suing the New Mexico Game Commission in federal court, arguing that expanded cougar trapping threatens endangered Mexican gray wolves and jaguars.

Kevin Dooley via Flickr

It looks like state officials have scrapped a $1 billion proposal to divert water from the Gila River in southwestern New Mexico – but they’re still looking to spend $80 million to $100 million to take water from the river for towns and farmers.

Elaine Baumgartel/KUNM

Just hours after LGBT folks celebrated Albuquerque’s 40th pride on Saturday night, hundreds gathered Sunday evening for a candlelight vigil to commemorate the people who were killed in the mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida.

New Mexico PBS

KUNM teamed up with New Mexico PBS for a New Mexico primary election special featuring results and analysis from political observers and reporters. Gene Grant of New Mexico in Focus and Ed Williams of the KUNM Public Health New Mexico project hosted the conversation. 

MoDOT Photos via Flickr / Creative Commons License

When you think of a drug sting operation, you might think of busting drug dealers. Last week the chief of the Albuquerque Police Department defended a reverse drug sting operation in which undercover officers posed as dealers in early May and arrested mainly homeless people and people with mental health issues who tried to buy drugs.

Elaine Baumgartel/KUNM

      

    

    

Elaine Baumgartel/KUNM

Thousands of Donald Trump supporters lined up outside the Albuquerque Convention Center Tuesday to hear the apparent Republican presidential candidate, Donald Trump, speak. Here’s a bit of what some of them had to say about why they plan to vote for him.

***

Elaine Baumgartel / KUNM

KUNM Call In Show 5/26 8a: 

Protests outside Donald Trump's Albuquerque rally became a national story after people stormed police barriers and threw rocks at officers. But before all of that went down, hundreds demonstrated peacefully for hours. 

Elaine Baumgartel/KUNM

Donald Trump rallied supporters at the Albuquerque Convention Center Tuesday night.

The apparent Republican nominee for president’s speech included familiar themes – the U.S economy, global trade, immigration and his plan to build a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Elaine Baumgartel / KUNM

Protesters confronted Donald Trump supporters at his rally in Albuquerque Tuesday. 

Police barriers created a sort of gauntlet where lots of Trump supporters walked past a protest on their way to see the apparent Republican presidential nominee speak at the Albuquerque Convention Center.

Protesters chanted and performed a traditional ceremony, and by the time Trump took the stage inside, tensions were rising at the demonstration outside. Protestors pushed past police barriers and threw objects at officers who used smoke at one point to push back the crowd.

Cristian V. via Flickr / Creative Commons License

For decades, the New Mexico Human Services Department has faced criticism for failing to properly process applications for Medicaid and food assistance, or SNAP benefits.

Several former and current Human Service Department workers testified last month that it was department policy to alter the information on emergency SNAP applications so that people wouldn’t be eligible for benefits.

Marisa Demarco

UPDATE 6/8: In the race for the Democratic nomination for Bernalillo County District Attorney, Raul Torrez handily beat Ed Perea with 67 percent of votes. KOB-TV reports the former deputy U.S. Attorney General will face Republican Simon Kubiak in November.

Kari Brandenburg, who has served as Bernalillo County DA for 15 years, did not run for re-election this year. 

***

Arpingstone via Flickr / public domain

Governor Susana Martinez and her administration haven’t had a lot to say after the state attorney general cleared the last 2 of 15 behavioral health organizations that were accused of fraud in 2013. Their Medicaid funding was frozen and many of them have shut down.

A statement from the Human Services Department spokesman echoed what the Governor said this week - that Medicaid dollars should be used to help the people who need it most and that the attorney general is turning a blind eye to wealthy CEO's who squandered funds on private planes.

Wikimedia via CC / creative commons license

The University of New Mexico Board of Regents recently made changes to how UNM’s Health Sciences Center is governed. UNM Hospital, UNM Medical School, UNM College of Nursing – these are all part of the Health Sciences Center.

BRRT via Pixabay / public domain

KUNM’s Public Health New Mexico project has been reporting on a plume of toxic chemicals in Albuquerque’s groundwater for over six months.

We obtained public documents from the New Mexico Environment Department that show the groundwater plume has been spreading underneath a mile-and-a-half-long swath of Albuquerque’s Sawmill and Wells Park neighborhoods. Our investigation shows the contamination has the potential to reach people on the surface and could pose a serious health risk to people living and working in the area.

hugovk via Flickr / Creative Commons License

The Albuquerque Police Department is in the middle of a reform process after the U.S. Department of Justice found a pattern of excessive use of force by officers. An independent monitor tasked with overseeing the process presented the second of a series of reports earlier this month.

Public Library of Science journal via Wikimedia / Creative Commons License

A congressional investigation into researchers who use fetal tissue and the abortion clinics that provide the tissue has recently expanded to include New Mexico.

Jeffrey Smith via Flickr / Creative Commons License

The U.S. Supreme Court this week declined to hear a case challenging a gun control law in Illinois and gun control advocates are seeing the move as a green light for states and local governments to pass gun laws.

Jacksoncam via Flickr / Creative Commons License

KUNM Call In Show 12/10 8a: In the wake of the terrorist attacks in Paris and San Bernardino, California, there's been an uptick in anti-Muslim rhetoric in response to the shootings. 

NMPBS

Tonight at 7p on Public Square on New Mexico PBS/KNME, grandparents raising grandkids. When parents die, are incarcerated, or experience addictions or mental illness, often children are raised by their grandparents. Host Megan Kamerick explores the issue with a distinguished panel. 

National Weather Service

UPDATE 10/21 5a: Much of New Mexico east of the central mountain chain is under a flood or flash flood watch today. The National Weather Service says storms may produce 1 inch of rain per hour and some hail may clog drainages, exacerbating flooding.

chadmiller via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Governor Susana Martinez has ordered a review of background check policies in all New Mexico school districts after a man with pending criminal charges was hired into a top administrative post in Albuquerque. 

Sascha Bruck via Wikimedia / Creative Commons License

Pollution of the Animas River was going on for over 100 years before gold and silver mining died down near Silverton, Colorado in the 1990s. So the recent 3 million gallon spill isn’t the first time the Animas River has been contaminated with mine waste.

Pages