State Sees Spike In Overdose Deaths – The Associated Press & The Santa Fe New Mexican
Health officials are attributing a spike in overdose deaths to a rise in prescription opiate abuse.
The Santa Fe New Mexican reports health officials saw two years of improving numbers before this year's 20 percent jump in drug-related deaths from 2013.
New Mexico's overdose deaths reached 26.4 per 100,000 people, among the worst in the country.
Department of Health epidemiologist Dr. Michael Landen says the new data shows the state is right back where it was two years ago.
He said prescription opiates like oxycodone have become more available in the last decade and are responsible for just over half of the overdose deaths statewide.
Santa Fe County's Health and Human Services Division director Rachel O'Connor says the public needs more education on the dangers of prescription drugs.
Senator: Compensate Residents Near Site Of Atomic Bomb Test – The Associated Press
A U.S. senator says those who lived near the site of the first atomic bomb test in the New Mexico desert and later developed cancer and other health problems need to be compensated.
Democratic U.S. Sen. Tom Udall said Thursday that the federal government neglected residents of the historic Hispanic village of Tularosa near the Trinity Site, where the weapon was detonated July 16, 1945.
Udall made his remarks on the Senate floor on the 70th anniversary of the test that took place as part of the Manhattan Project, the secretive World War II program that provided enriched uranium for the atomic bomb.
Tularosa residents say many of those living in the area weren't told about the dangers and suffered rare forms of cancer. They say they want acknowledgement and compensation from the U.S. government.
Zuni Pueblo Awarded $3.1M Federal Grant For Airport Project – The Associated Press
A northwestern New Mexico pueblo and more than a dozen communities across the state are getting federal funding for airport rehabilitation and development projects.
The total of $6.1 million of Federal Aviation Administration grants announced Thursday by Sen. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich include $3.1 million awarded to the Zuni Pueblo for construction of a new airport and related work.
The senators said the grants will help boost local economies by increasing travel access, support economic development and encourage business expansion.
Communities receiving grants include Truth or Consequences, Moriarty, Carrizozo, Hobbs, Las Cruces and Lordsburg.
Grants also were awarded to Ruidoso, Carlsbad, Spring, Vaughn, Hatch, Farmington, Espanola and Silver City.
New Mexico Supreme Court To Review 'Copper Rule' – The Associated Press
The New Mexico Supreme Court has agreed to review an appellate court's upholding of regulations that govern groundwater pollution by copper mines.