Thursday Morning Roundup

Jul 11, 2013

Taos Pueblo To Honor Nixon's 100th Birthday - Associated Press

A northern New Mexico American Indian tribe is scheduled to honor the late President Richard Nixon for what would have been his 100th birthday.

The Taos Pueblo is set to pay tribute to the California-born Republican on Friday with a special honor at a pow wow.

Nixon is highly regarded among the Taos Pueblo and other American Indians for agreeing to return to some lands to tribes. In 1970, for example, he returned around 48,000 acres of sacred lands to the Taos Pueblo.

Tribal officials say the president's younger brother, Ed Nixon, will accept the honor and give remarks on behalf of the Nixon family.

Hopis Sue Over Access To Religious Sites On Navajo - Associated Press

When the Navajo and Hopi tribes ended a decades-long land dispute in northern Arizona, they agreed not to interfere with each other's religious practices.

Under the 2006 agreement, religious practitioners from one tribe could venture onto the other tribe's reservation.

But the Hopi Tribe says the Navajo Nation has breached that agreement by citing a practitioner for trespassing on part of the Navajo reservation that belongs to an individual tribal member rather than the Navajo Nation.

A lawyer for the Hopi Tribe argues in a federal lawsuit filed this week that the Navajo Nation clearly relinquished its right to enforce trespassing and wildlife laws when it comes to religious rights.

The Navajo Nation says the Hopi Tribe must get permission from individual land owners on the reservation if practitioners plan to cross their land.

Former NM Governor To Lie In State At Capitol - Associated Press

Former Gov. David Cargo, who died last week at the age of 84, is returning a final time to the state Capitol.

Cargo will lie in state in the marble-walled Rotunda on Thursday. A memorial service is planned in late afternoon and Gov. Susana Martinez is among those scheduled to speak.

Cargo served consecutive two-year terms as governor, from 1967 through 1970. He took office at age 37, the youngest man ever to serve as governor of New Mexico.

Cargo was a maverick Republican known as "Lonesome Dave." He received the nickname for traveling alone while campaigning in small towns and rural areas during his first bid for governor in 1966.

A funeral mass will be Friday at the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi in Santa Fe.

New Fairgrounds Racino Opens Thursday - Associated Press

The new casino at the New Mexico State Fairgrounds opens Thursday.

The $30 million Downs Racetrack and Casino has almost 700 slot machines, a fine dining restaurant, a bar and a food court. Downs Chief Operating Officer Scott Eldredge tells the Albuquerque Journal that this week's debut is a soft opening for the casino, restaurant and bars. A grand opening will be held when the three-month horse racing cycle kicks off Aug. 2.

The new racino replaces the previous facility that consisted of a racetrack flanked by a grandstand and an antiquated 300-slot machine casino.

Ruidoso Water System Has Precautionary Boil Alert - Associated Press

A precautionary boil alert remains in effect for the Village of Ruidoso's water system.

The Village of Ruidoso Utility Department was continuing to work Wednesday on stabilizing the Grindstone Water Production Plant while working on a chemical imbalance in the water.

Officials say the water being produced at that facility is being closely monitored and progress is being made.

After consulting with the New Mexico Environmental Department, the precautionary boil alert may be lifted as soon as the water storage tanks reach 50 percent capacity.

However, the timetable for that to happen isn't immediately clear.

Gallup To Take Over Detox Center Next Week - Associated Press and the Gallup Independent

Starting next week, the city of Gallup will be running a nonprofit corporation that aims to reduce public intoxication.

The Na'Nizhoozhi (NAH'-nih-zho-zhih) Center Inc. serves a largely American Indian population in northwestern New Mexico. It was established in 1992 with funding from the McKinley County liquor excise tax, the state and federal government.

But funding dropped continuously and the center that served about 24,000 people annually ran out of money last year and was about to close its doors.

The Gallup Independent reports that the City Council voted unanimously Tuesday for a takeover of NCI.

City workers will run NCI as a detoxification center beginning on July 16.

The City Council authorized as much as $500,000 in operating expenses for 25 weeks.

1 Pilot Dead, Another Injured In Taos Plane Crash - Associated Press and KOB-TV

Authorities say one pilot is dead and another injured after a small plane crashed at Taos Regional Airport.

Taos police say the two pilots were conducting training exercises around 11 a.m. Wednesday when the single-engine, light sport aircraft crashed on airport property.

Authorities say the plane crashed 200 feet short of the runway.

Taos police didn't immediately release the names of the pilots.

Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Lynn Lunsford says FAA and National Transportation Safety Board officials are on their way to the scene to investigate the cause of the crash.

KOB-TV reports that the crash isn't affecting other flights at the airport.