New Mexico’s Public Regulation Commission has been in the news a lot in recent years, both for controversial rate increases and the fact that two commissioners were removed for felony convictions.
Last month, voters responded by approving changes for the agency in three constitutional amendments.
The Public Regulation Commission makes crucial regulation decisions. When utilities want to raise rates, PRC commissioners decide if you will pay more for water, gas, electricity and telephone service.
This election year, we’ve heard from New Mexico families in KUNM’s Voices Behind the Vote series.
In our final installment, we meet an Albuquerque man who is a vigorous defender of 2nd amendment gun rights and believes these rights are connected to other rights in a democracy. He also makes a distinction between issues of the head and issues of the heart.
Tom Tomasi is a bit soft spoken but he has strong opinions about politics. He spends most days working for the federal government, but he also runs his own business as a firearms instructor in Albuquerque.
Brianne Bigej has been really busy the past few years. She just finished law school at the University of New Mexico. Her partner, Eric Tomala is an academic advisor at UNM. He started a doctoral program in the Sociology department this fall. After work and school, Brianne and Eric try to squeeze in some time for fixing up a house they bought in Albuquerque in 2009.
BRIANNE: with all home projects, you have to have time and money…three years out will still have little bits and pieces left…laughing….
A new poll of Latinos in New Mexico shows that potential voters are concerned about the economy and immigration policy this year.
Latino Decisions, a national organization, conducted the poll of 400 registered Latino voters in New Mexico.
Voters were also asked whether they support the New Mexico policy of grating driver’s licenses to undocumented immigrants. Republican Governor Susana Martinez has pushed to repeal it since taking office two years ago. She says it’s a public safety issue.
KUNM Call In Show 9/20 8a: New Mexico has the highest rate of poverty in the nation. Recent census data also shows that the number of people living in poverty is on the rise, especially in rural New Mexico. This week on the KUNM Call-In Show, we'll look at the latest numbers and talk about what's being done to assist rural and tribal communities.
Do you live or work a rural county? What do you think would create new opportunities for work or development? Guests:
Albuquerque, New Mexico – This summer, KUNM and Generation Justice have been interviewing teens, researchers and educators about what can be done to help more young people succeed in school and stay through graduation. Here are some voices of young New Mexicans and the Oye Conference, that's Organizing Youth Engagement, at the University of New Mexico last month.
Albuquerque, NM – In this week's Business Report on KUNM, Megan Kamerick from the New Mexico Business Weekly tells us how some Albuquerque restaurants are using iPads to take orders from customers. We'll also look at a rate hike request on the table in Santa Fe right now for Public Service Company of New Mexico, PNM.
Albuquerque, NM – Nenna Arnold is an Albuquerque nurse who has been deployed several times by Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) or Doctors Without Borders. She recently returned from the Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya. Arnold spoke about her experiences and medical needs in the camp with KUNM
Here are some links to NPR coverage of the Dadaab refugee camp:
Albuquerque, NM – More New Mexico college students are taking out loans and graduating with debt. Megan Kamerick from the New Mexico Business Weekly joins us to talk about the extra strain of debt for recent grads in a touch economy. We'll also hear about the "new normal" for small business owners around New Mexico.
Albuquerque, NM – The Las Conchas wildfire is burning near Los Alamos. It has threatened both the town and nearby Los Alamos National Laboratory. The fire, along with other wildfires burning across the state, is also making potential tourists stay away from New Mexico. Megan Kamerick from the New Mexico Business Weekly joins us to talk about how business owners are coping.
Albuquerque, NM – More immigrants are being deported from the United States than ever before and it's not all happening at the border with Mexico, it's from communities like Taos, Albuquerque and Farmington.
KUNM's Sarah Gustavus reports on how a federal program called Secure Communities is becoming an important tool for immigration officers.
Sarah Gustavus is a fellow with the Institute for Journalism's Immigration in the Heartland program.
Albuquerque, NM – As our neighboring states of Arizona and Texas draw national attention over controversial policies to crack down on undocumented immigrants. New Mexico has remained relatively calm - even under the radar - in the national conversation.
In the first part of a series this week on immigration policy, we look at what makes our state different.
Thurs. 7/7 at 8am: The Obama Administration has deported more undocumented immigrants than any previous administration. Collaboration between Immigration and Customs Enforcement and local police and sheriff's departments has made it possible to identify more people who are living in the US illegally. Should local law enforcement be giving information to Immigration and Customs Enforcement?
Los Alamos, NM – Thick smoke from the Las Conchas wildfire filled the empty streets of Los Alamos today. Most of the town's 12-thousand residents left during mandatory evacuations yesterday. That's turned attention to the safety of radioactive and hazardous materials stored at nearby Los Alamos National Laboratory. A one acre spot fire jumped a road onto lab property Monday, but was put out.
Albuquerque, NM – As wildfires rage in New Mexico, many people are asking why fireworks are still available for the upcoming 4th of July weekend. New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez has been saying the same thing for days "Please, do not purchase or use fireworks during the season. Be a good patriot go to a public event where it is safe."
Albuquerque, New Mexico – As wildfires rage in New Mexico, many people are asking why fireworks are still available for the upcoming 4th of July weekend. KUNM's Sarah Gustavus reports on how one business voluntarily pulled fireworks from their stores this week.
Los Alamos, NM – The Las Conchas wildfire began yesterday afternoon and has already grown to about 49,000 acres.
Authorities ordered a mandatory evacuation evacuation of Los Alamos. The town is famous for the nearly Los Alamos National Lab, where the atomic bomb was developed during World War II. Nuclear materials are stored on lab property today.
Albuquerque, NM – Every Friday we talk about business news around the state. Megan Kamerick has a story in today's Business Weekly about a state law that was created to protect people who've had their identities stolen.
KUNM's Sarah Gustavus checked in with Megan about why the law has taken years to be implemented.
Albuquerque, NM – Many New Mexicans were alarmed last night by heavy smoke in the Rio Grande Valley. It seemed like a wildfire must be nearby, but it was actually from the Wallow fire in southern Arizona.
April 26, 2011 – There's an important job that's defined by solitude and patience.
This summer, fire lookouts in forests around the country will be watching for the first signs of a wildfire. Phil Connors, author of the new book, Fire Season, talks about what he's seen in almost a decade of working in the Gila National Forest.