Local News

Local News
7:25 am
Sat December 13, 2014

Headlines: Congress Clears Way For New Mexico Land Measures, Navajo VP Seeks To Save Artifacts...

The Valles Caldera is among the lands that will be under new management if President Obama signs the legislation the Senate passed Friday.
Credit timmenzies via Flickr

Congress Clears Way For New Mexico Land Measures The Associated Press

A new swath of wilderness would be designated in northern New Mexico and management of the Valles Caldera National Preserve would be transferred to the National Park Service under a defense bill that has cleared Congress.

The U.S. Senate voted in favor of the legislation Friday. The House passed the bill earlier this month. It now goes to President Barack Obama for approval.

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Friday News Roundup
8:32 am
Fri December 12, 2014

Headlines: DOJ Says Tribes Can Legalize Pot, Judge Refuses To Shut Down Lyft...

Credit prensa420 via Flickr

DOJ Says Tribes Can Decide Whether To Legalize Pot  - The Associated Press

The U.S. Justice Department says Indian tribes can grow and sell marijuana on their lands, even in states that haven't legalized pot. 

Oregon U.S. Attorney Amanda Marshall was co-chair of a group that developed the policy announced yesterday.

Marshall says the policy was developed after a handful of tribes asked how legalization of pot in states like Oregon and Washington would apply to them.

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Thursday News Roundup
8:34 am
Thu December 11, 2014

Headlines: Tapia Documentary Set To Air, Man Sought In ABQ Manhunt In Custody...

Credit HBO

Tapia Documentary Set To Air On HBO On Dec. 16The Associated Press

A documentary on the rise and fall of Albuquerque-born, world champion boxer Johnny Tapia is slated to air on HBO next week.

The network says 'Tapia,' using first-person narration and archival footage, will be shown Dec. 16.

The film premiered at the Los Angeles Film Festival last year and was shown at the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival, where it won the Grand Jury Award for best documentary.

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Local News
4:29 pm
Wed December 10, 2014

Activists Petition DOJ To Indict Police Officers

Ken Ellis II, second from the left, started a petition called No One Is Above The Law. It asks for indictments for 13 city police officers who have used deadly force.
Credit Rita Daniels

 

A coalition of people who’ve had family members killed by the Albuquerque Police Department delivered a petition on Wednesday to New Mexico’s U.S. Attorney calling for 13 police officers to be indicted. 

Activists said they were disheartened but hope their efforts are not in vain.

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Wednesday News Roundup
8:26 am
Wed December 10, 2014

Headlines: APD & DOJ Hold 'Frank' Meetings, APD Indictments Sought...

Credit hugovk via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Albuquerque Police, DOJ Hold 'Frank' Meetings  - The Associated Press

Albuquerque police and U.S. Justice Department officials have held a series of private but contentious briefings following a signed agreement on reforms.

Officials say officers and federal authorities gathered Tuesday for the last of five meetings on how reforms will be adopted. But some officers expressed anger on how the Justice Department investigated Albuquerque police and pressed federal officials on why they only focused on certain excessive force cases.

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Local News
5:20 pm
Tue December 9, 2014

Heinrich: C.I.A. Interrogation Techniques Immoral

Sen. Martin Heinrich speaking on the Senate Floor on December 9, 2014.
Credit Screenshot from YouTube video courtesy of Martin Heinrich.

U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich serves on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, which released a damning report today on the C.I.A.’s detention and interrogation techniques after the September 11, 2001, attacks under President George W. Bush.

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Tuesday News Roundup
8:48 am
Tue December 9, 2014

Headlines: Ex-Official Pleads Guilty On Bribe, $1M Lottery Prize Unclaimed...

Credit Foodie In Disguise via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Santa Fe County Ex-Official's Guilty Plea RevealedThe Associated Press and Santa Fe New Mexican

New Mexico prosecutors in a fraud case against a contractor have disclosed that a former Santa Fe County official previously pleaded guilty to taking a bribe.

The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that the 2012 guilty plea by former county road supervisor James Martinez was revealed for the first time yesterday as testimony began in the fraud case.

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Local News
8:16 am
Tue December 9, 2014

WIPP Incidents Result In $54M Proposed Fines

Credit energy.gov / public domain / via Wikimedia Commons

KUNM Call In Show 12/11 8a: The New Mexico Environment Department has fined the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant and Los Alamos National Laboratory a total of $54 million related to two incidents at the nation's only underground nuclear waste repository earlier this year. An underground fire and a release of radiation in February contaminated 22 workers and shuttered the facility. 

What are the fines for? And what must WIPP and LANL do to come into compliance with hazardous waste permits? Are the fines enough?

Guests:

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Local News
5:34 pm
Mon December 8, 2014

Feds Not Surprised By Nuclear Fines

The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant was fined $17.7 million for accepting mislabeled nuclear waste and not appropriately filing paperwork. LANL was fined another $36.6 million for mishandling their waste.
Credit energy.gov

The Department of Energy wasn’t surprised when they were hit with tens of millions of dollars in fines by the state environment department for mishandling of nuclear waste.

A spokesperson for the federal agency said they self-disclosed that both Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant were in violation of their hazardous waste permits.

Back in February a container of nuclear waste from LANL that was being stored at WIPP ruptured and at least 20 workers were exposed to radiation.

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Monday News Roundup
8:32 am
Mon December 8, 2014

Headlines: Senators Welcome NMED Fines, Bernco DA Investigated...

Credit US Department of Energy

Senators Welcome Fines For Nuke Repository MishapsThe Associated Press

New Mexico's two U.S. senators are welcoming more than $54 million in penalties being levied against the U.S. Department of Energy for numerous violations that resulted in the indefinite closure of the nation's only underground nuclear waste repository.

The state Environment Department on Saturday announced it was imposing the penalties for 30 state-permit violations at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in southeastern New Mexico and at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

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Local News
4:01 pm
Sat December 6, 2014

Environment Department Fines WIPP, LANL $54M

Credit By ENERGY.GOV [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

New Mexico is fining the U.S. Department of Energy $54 million for incidents at the nation’s only underground nuclear waste storage facility.

The Waste Isolation Pilot Plant stores nuclear weapons waste deep in underground salt caverns. There was an underground fire in February, followed by a release of radioactivity that contaminated 22 workers and shuttered the facility.

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Local News
9:01 am
Sat December 6, 2014

Headlines: Alcohol Abuse In Gallup, Teens Wanted For Murder...

Credit Romana Klee via Flicker.com

Alcohol Abuse Focus Of Meeting In Troubled Gallup The Associated Press

State officials are looking into solutions at tackling alcohol abuse in one of the most violent cities in the state.

State Sen. George Munoz is set to hold a public meeting Monday in Gallup on alcoholism in the troubled city.

The Gallup Democrat says he's concern about the city's high crime rate and the high number of alcohol-related deaths.

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Friday News Roundup
8:41 am
Fri December 5, 2014

Headlines: King Owes $700K Campaign Debt, APD Briefing At Legislature...

Defeated NM Dem Governor Hopeful $690K In DebtThe Associated Press

New Mexico Democratic gubernatorial challenger Gary King not only lost by a historical margin against Republican Gov. Susana Martinez. Records show he was left with a nearly $700,000 debt.

Campaign finance disclosures filed Thursday showed that King's unsuccessful big left him with $691,000 in unpaid bills and an ending balance of only $6,500.

Meanwhile, Martinez reported spending more than $574,000 from Nov. 1 to Thursday and had an ending balance of $246,000.

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Local News
12:16 am
Fri December 5, 2014

BLM Considering Oil Pipeline Proposal

Exploratory drilling for oil has been occurring over the past few months near Lybrook, New Mexico, along US Highway 550.
Credit Laura Paskus

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management is considering a proposal to build a pipeline that would move oil to markets from northwestern New Mexico. The agency hosted a public meeting on the plan Thursday night in the town of Lybrook, south of Farmington.

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Local News
6:07 pm
Thu December 4, 2014

Santolina Plan Advances Despite Opposition

Questions around how the Santolina project would be built out over the next 50 years are still up in the air.
Credit WALH Master Plan

The Bernalillo County Planning Commission has voted to move a plan for a massive development up the chain of command for consideration. 

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Thursday News Roundup
8:28 am
Thu December 4, 2014

Headlines: NAACP Leader Hired For Police Reform, Changes At LANL...

Albuquerque Hires NAACP Leader On Police ReformThe Associated Press

The city of Albuquerque has hired a local NAACP leader to help with upcoming changes into the city's troubled police.

But some advocates are criticizing the move.

The city announced this week NAACP Albuquerque president Harold Bailey will be paid $20,000 as a consultant for a team that will oversee changes. Bailey says he will help the team with community engagement.

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Local News
5:12 pm
Wed December 3, 2014

West Mesa Development Plan Sprawls Forward

Speaking to the Bernalillo County Planning Commission opponents of the Santolina development wore bright pink and yellow shirts that said WTF-What's The Future?
Credit Rita Daniels

On Wednesday the Bernalillo County Planning Commission voted to recommend a development plan for almost 40,000 new homes and commercial spaces on Albuquerque’s West Mesa. The vote occurred despite some 75 people who spoke out in opposition citing concerns over the economic and environmental impacts.

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Local News
5:34 pm
Tue December 2, 2014

Bernalillo County To Consider Huge Development

Opponents of the Santolina development say it will become a "zombie development" and compare it to the failed Mesa del Sol project.
Credit Contra Santolina

 

The Bernalillo County Planning Commission is expected to vote Wednesday on whether to approve a massive development on Albuquerque’s West Mesa.

The proposed Santolina development would spread out across 21 square miles of sand dunes just off Interstate-40, about 5 miles west of the Rio Grande.

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Local News
5:17 pm
Mon December 1, 2014

Albuquerque Police Officer Involved In Shooting Fired

Attorney Thomas Grover, who represents Jeremy Dear, will appeal his termination.
Credit Rita Daniels

 

An Albuquerque officer who fatally shot a 19-year-old woman and did not record the encounter has been fired.

Today Albuquerque Police Chief Gorden Eden released a statement that Officer Jeremy Dear was terminated after an internal investigation. 

He says the probe found that Dear violated department policies and wasn't truthful.

As KUNM's Rita Daniels reports, Attorney Thomas Grover told reporters the firing was unjust because the departments camera policy is erratic. Grover represents Dear.

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Monday News Roundup
8:36 am
Mon December 1, 2014

Headlines: State Senate Confirmations Backlog, Census Jobs...

New Mexico Senate Has Backlog Of ConfirmationsThe Associated Press and Albuquerque Journal

The Democratic-led New Mexico Senate will convene in January with a backlog of pending confirmation decisions on dozens of appointees of Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

The Albuquerque Journal reports that Martinez's office says the 85 first-term appointees awaiting confirmation votes include numerous members of state boards and commissions as well as three Cabinet secretaries.

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Local News
9:46 am
Sun November 30, 2014

Albuquerque Officer Involved In Shooting May Be Fired

Credit davidsonscott via Flickr

An attorney for an Albuquerque police officer who fatally shot a 19-year-old Mary Hawkes and did not record the encounter says the officer will likely be fired.

The Albuquerque Journal reports a lawyer representing Officer Jeremy Dear, who has been on administrative leave, says police supervisors are recommending his termination.

Attorney Thomas Grover says their conclusion is because of an internal affairs investigation that looked into several issues, including a history of alleged lapel camera policy violations.

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Local News
8:59 am
Sat November 29, 2014

Headlines: Labs And Museum To Push STEM, Grand Canyon Mining Ban...

The Sandia Labs - New Mexico Science Museum partnership is focused on exposing young people to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.
Credit VEX Robotics via Flickr.com

Sandia Labs To Help Develop Museum Programs The Associated Press

Sandia National Laboratories is teaming up with the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science.

The two have signed a memorandum of understanding in which the lab will help identify and develop programs and exhibits that focus on space exploration, renewable energy, water and nanotechnology.

The museum will evaluate initiatives of interest to Albuquerque and the region.

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Friday News Roundup
8:24 am
Fri November 28, 2014

Headlines: Loon Seen In ABQ, Murder Suspect Returns...

Credit Davelnman via Flickr

Rare Loon Takes Flight In Albuquerque - The Associated Press and Albuquerque Journal

A "common loon" has been making uncommon visits to an Albuquerque pond.

The Albuquerque Journal reports Bernalillo County bird watchers have been eyeing a bosque pond to glimpse the loon after it was spotted earlier this month.

Bird watcher Nancy Hetrick first spotted the bird Nov. 16 in the pond near Tingley Beach.

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Local News
4:36 pm
Thu November 27, 2014

Mayor Berry Seeks Money From Han Family

Credit Courtesy of Han Family

Where 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. 

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Thursday News Roundup
8:55 am
Thu November 27, 2014

Headlines: Regulators Approve Solar Plan, Ferguson Decision Opens Wounds...

Credit jmoran24 via Flickr

Regulators Approve PNM Solar Plan - The Associated Press

PNM's plan to build four more solar-powered generating stations has been approved by state regulators.

The Public Regulation Commission voted unanimously Wednesday to approve the utility's renewable energy procurement plan for next year. The solar arrays will represent a more than $79 million-dollar investment.

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Wednesday News Roundup
8:42 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Headlines: ABQ Demo For Michael Brown, Hobbs Voter ID Election...

Credit Ed Williams

Albuquerque Activists Hold Ferguson ProtestThe Associated Press

Around 200 Albuquerque protesters joined demonstrators nationwide after a grand jury's decision not to indict a white police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black teenager in Missouri.

The demonstration last night forced Albuquerque police to momentarily close traffic in the city's International District but the protest remained peaceful.

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Local News
5:58 pm
Tue November 25, 2014

Bosque As Wild Landscape Or Urban Park?

The City of Albuquerque proposed developing sections of the bosque but advocates are working to keep it wild.
Credit Adam Kludt

The City of Albuquerque released an environmental monitoring report for a section of the bosque they hope to develop between Central Avenue and Montaño, but advocates are focused on protecting the wildness in the area. 

The public has until November 30, 2014, to comment on the report that was supposed establish baseline data about the environmental health of the bosque that runs through the heart of Albuquerque and is important habitat for animals.

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Tuesday News Roundup
8:51 am
Tue November 25, 2014

Headlines: Prosecutor Eyes Charges In S.F. Police Shooting, Man Survives Fall And Elements...

Credit hugovk via Flickr / Creative Commons License

Prosecutor Weighs Santa Fe Police Shooting ChargesThe Associated Press and Albuquerque Journal

A southeastern New Mexico prosecutor is considering whether two Santa Fe police officers will face any charges in the nonfatal shooting of a motorist.

According to the Albuquerque Journal, Roswell-based District Attorney Janetta B. Hicks says she expects to decide on possible charges by early next year.

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Local News
8:50 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

Gila River Diversion Plan Is Approved

Credit Laura Paskus

The New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission approved a controversial proposal Monday to divert water from the Gila River in southwestern New Mexico.

The project will draw water from the river, store it in reservoirs, then pipe it over the Continental Divide, to the New Mexico town of Deming. It will take 20 years to build and cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

Silver City resident Dutch Salmon said he’s disappointed by the commission’s vote but he’s still hopeful the project isn’t set in stone.

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Monday News Roundup
3:55 pm
Mon November 24, 2014

Headlines: House Dems Elect Leadership...

New Mexico House Democrats Elect Egolf As Leader - The Associated Press

New Mexico House Democrats have chosen a new leader now that they'll be the minority in that legislative chamber.

Democratic representatives over the weekend elected Rep. Brian Egolf of Santa Fe to serve as the House minority leader when the Legislature begins its 2015 session on Jan. 20.

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