KUNM

Correction

DOE Photo / Creative Commons

The U.S. Department of Energy is hoping to send tons of weapons-grade plutonium waste to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, or WIPP, near Carlsbad.

Wikimedia Commons

ACLU Urges 'Smart Justice' On New Mexico Public Safety Bills Associated Press

The American Civil Liberties Union of New Mexico is urging state lawmakers to think through various public safety proposals and consider their possible effects on civil rights.

Marisa Demarco / KUNM

    

The Asian Family Center in Albuquerque works to help immigrants overcome language barriers so they can access things like health care and education. Advocates there also say the stereotype that Asians are model immigrants can translate to a lack of services for the population. 

It’s 3:30 in the afternoon at the Japanese Kitchen, a sushi bar and Teppanyaki restaurant where chefs prepare the food on a tabletop grill. Employees ate their midday meals before service began again. 

Legislature May Require Public Comment

Mar 16, 2015
opensourceway via Flickr / Creative Commons License

You may not want to listen to your nutty neighbor badger the city council about chemtrails or aliens, First Amendment advocates say allowing public comments—even wacky comments—is essential. A bill moving through the state Legislature would make it the law.

J.N. Stuart via Flickr

    

 

Many counties and municipalities in New Mexico have passed restrictions on mining, oil and gas that go beyond state laws. These are things like: dictating how close wells can be to homes or imposing weight limits on trucks.

A controversial bill (HB 366) that would limit that local control, and give the state exclusive power over all matters relating to oil and gas, passed the House Tuesday.

VIDEO: Citizen Lobbyists Learn The Ropes

Feb 11, 2015
Gwyneth Doland

They don’t have big expense accounts or cozy relationships with powerful lawmakers. They don’t even know where the bathroom is. They’re citizen lobbyists, and they got some training at the Roundhouse in Santa Fe Wednesday.

Members of 20 conservation groups converged on the state capitol and a few dozen of them attended a training session held by the Sierra Club.

They were teachers, writers and retired engineers, passionate about ending coyote-killing contests, cleaning up uranium mines and preventing the diversion of the Gila River.

PNM's Energy Future At A Crossroads

Jan 30, 2015
Rita Daniels

New Mexico’s largest utility company has a plan to use fossil fuels and nuclear power for the next 20 years. But opponents of the plan want to see the utility shift to wind and solar.

Two coal-burning stacks at the San Juan Generating Station will be shuttered in 2017 in order to reduce emissions.

PNM, which provides power to half a million people in New Mexico, wants to use a mixture of coal, nuclear and natural gas energy, plus a little bit of solar energy to make up for the loss.

yooperann via Flickr

Project Protects NM Forested Land From Development – The Associated Press

More than 11,000 acres that adjoin the Carson National Forest have been permanently protected from development through a conservation easement.

A conservation effort on the Upper Rio Chama River property in northern New Mexico began in 2009. The final and largest piece of the nearly 12-thousand-acre property became part of the easement Monday.

Mayor Berry Seeks Money From Han Family

Nov 27, 2014
Courtesy of Han Family

There was a development this week in the Mary Han saga. Mary Han was a civil rights attorney who often represented clients with claims against the Albuquerque Police Department.

She was found dead in her home in 2010 and according to police records, within hours of the discovery of her body, APD brass and city administration officials swarmed her home. 

In 2013, the New Mexico Attorney General's office issued a findings letter detailing how the crime scene had been contaminated and the investigation terribly mishandled. 

Art by Nani Chacon courtesy of Young Women United

Bernalillo County voters overwhelmingly came out on Tuesday in favor of a tax increase to pay for more mental health services. 

Bernalillo County residents with addictions or mental health problems may be closer to having more access to treatment, now that voters here have showed their support for a one-eight percent tax increase to fund more behavioral health services.

Caden Crawford via Flickr / Creative Commons License

The state Human Services Department will hear public testimony Friday on proposed changes to SNAP, the state’s food assistance program.  

Public Domain

One year ago, KUNM reported on the effects of the Trinity Test. Thursday, July 16, 2015, is the 70th anniversary of the day the world's first nuclear bomb detonated in New Mexico.

Audit Of HSD Finds Problems With 2013 Behavioral Health Transition

Feb 27, 2014
publik15 via Flickr

The chaotic transition a state agency forced last year from 15 New Mexico-based health organizations to five Arizona companies had many problems, an annual audit has found.

USDA Awards $2M To NM Forest Restoration Program

Jan 13, 2014
US Forest Service

A forest restoration project in central New Mexico has been awarded an additional $2 million by the USDA. The money will allow state and federal agencies to cover more ground with fire prevention activities such as tree thinning, hazardous fuel removal and controlled burns.

Advocates with The Nature Conservancy said the funding is a much needed shot in the arm for efforts like the Isleta Project, a Forest Service restoration project taking place in Albuquerque’s east mountains. 

Whooping Cough Cases Prompt Officials To Push Vaccinations

Nov 13, 2013
Centers for Disease Control

State health officials are urging parents to get their teenagers immunized in the wake of a whooping cough outbreak at a northeast Albuquerque high school.

Even if teens had the pertussis vaccination early on, they need to get boosters to prevent infection and transmission of the highly contagious illness.

Dr. Chad Smelser is an epidemiologist with the New Mexico Department of Health. He said teens need the booster because, over time, immunity fades.

A History Of Horse Slaughter In The United States

Nov 7, 2013
Rita Daniels

Recently a federal appeals court issued an emergency injunction against the U-S Department of Agriculture that halts all inspections at domestic horse slaughter plants.

The move effectively freezes the opening of the Roswell Valley Meat Company in Southern New Mexico  as well as a processing plant in Missouri that was set to open its doors during the first week of November. 

Earlier this year the Humane Society and other groups sued the USDA, citing a lack of environmental oversight at the plants. Human Society President Wayne Pacelle says horses are companion animals.