New and more aggressive measures to clean up the massive underground jet fuel spill at Albuquerque's Kirtland Air Force Base have been announced. The Albuquerque Journal says that the New Mexico Environment Department and Air Force officials have agreed that 1.5 million gallons of contaminated water will be pumped from the ground by the end of October. The Air Force will also expand use of vacuum pumps to remove contaminated soils at the spill's epicenter.
In today's features, we talk with progressive advocacy group Progress Now New Mexico as Doña Ana County begins to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples -- we also speak to the county clerk responsible. And the NM Department of Health talks about some strides made against obesity here in our state. Those items and more plus 60 Seconds with Christopher Hagen.
Teachers throughout the Santa Fe Public School District have had their first pay raise in six years ratified by the school board. They, along with some other staff, are getting a one-and-a-half percent increase in wages. 1% of that was made possible by state lawmakers during the legislative session in a raise for all state workers. The additional half-percent pay bump is expected to cost the school district about $400,000 annually.
Among today's features: A conversation with New Mexico Voices for Children as the New Mexico Lottery Scholarship Fund nears depletion. Attorney General Gary King talks about issues of imporrtance for our state's seniors as a 2-day conference on ageing gets underway in Albuquerque. Those items and more plus 60 Seconds with Christopher Hagen.
Senator Martin Heinrich is urging the US Department of the Interior to support the 500-mile long SunZia Southwest Transmission Line's route across southern New Mexico as it stands. The Army's White Sands Missile Range has voiced opposition, saying a 45-mile stretch of it will disrupt vital operations there. The SunZia project manager has warned that any re-routing will likely kill the enterprise as it would require new environmental impact studies that would take years to complete.
Among today's features, the Audubon Society in New Mexico approves of Governor Martinez' plans to spend at least $1.5 million on river restoration efforts throughout the state. A partnership among the state's Economic Development Department and our two nearby nation laboratories seeks to help small businesses in need of their technical expertise. A new energy efficiency program is up and running at Santa Fe Community College. Those items and more plus 60 seconds with Christopher Hagen.
The public is invited to attend a memorial service for Representative Stephen Easley tomorrow at 2PM in the Roundhouse rotunda. The Eldorado resident was a freshman democratic representative for District 50 and died at age 60 last week of undisclosed causes after a recent hospitalization. Easley’s district runs through Santa Fe, Bernalillo, Torrance and Valencia counties. Commissioners in each can nominate a replacement of their choosing irrespective of party affiliation with Governor Martinez making the final selection.
In our features, we speak with the New Mexico Center on Law & Poverty about their discrimination suit filed against the Department of Workforce Solutions. We also speak with Santa Fe's Water Conservation Manager as residents have successfully reduced consumption. And Congressman Ben Ray Luján talks about the need for the US Dept. of Human Services to address New Mexican's concerns of the Medicaid payment freeze to providers of mental health services. Plus....60 Seconds with Christopher Hagen.
Governor Martinez has announced that she plans to dedicate $1.5 million in capital outlay funding for river restoration efforts in New Mexico. The governor says she will seek to leverage those state funds to secure federal and local partner contributions of as much as $2.6 million in additional funding for what’s called the River Stewards Initiative. It will clear vegetation in river areas, lower river banklines, replant native species vegetation, and install erosion control measures.
In features today, a conversation with the US Small Business Administration about federal loans for concerns suffering financial damages in the wake of the nearby Tres Lagunas Fire. We also speak with the UNM College of Nursing as $5 million has been awarded to prepare nurses to work with veterans' health needs. Those items plus 60 Seconds with Christopher Hagen.
The suspension of Medicaid payments to in-state providers of mental health and substance abuse services in the wake of fraud allegations now has democratic members of New Mexico’s congressional delegation calling for a public forum. Tom Udall, Martin Heinrich, Ben Ray Luján and Michelle Lujan Grisham say they’ve heard too many reports of services delayed and/or cancelled. They’ve asked the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to meet with constituents in the next two weeks to hear their grievances and concerns.
In today's features, we talk with the State Investment Council on the state's good returns for Fiscal Year 2013. We also have a talk with the NM Environmental Law Center as the Bureau of Land Management plans to change rules regarding fracking on public lands. Those items and more, plus 60 Seconds with Christopher Hagen.
An alleged embezzlement has seen the Santa Fe Fiesta Council approach the Police Department for further investigation. The matter involves deposit of some $6,000 of the non-profit's money into the personal bank account of Deborah Leyba Dominguez, a committee member. She has resigned from her duties as the matter comes to light and repaid the entire amount. Leyba Dominguez is the wife of city councilor Carmichael Dominguez and the couple has a longtime association with Fiesta activities. No charges have been filed.
In today's features, we hear about the bold, new "Technology Transfer" initiative at Santa Fe Community College in collaboration with the Los Alamos and Sandia National Laboratories. We also get a status update on New Mexico's Medical Cannibis program. And...Santa Fe Public Schools starts the new term tomorrow -- we get some parent and student safety advice from the SFPD. Those items plus 60 Seconds with Christopher Hagen.
A move to promote urban agriculture in Santa Fe has been approved by the city's Public Works and Land Use Committee. The resolution would have the City collaborate with local non-profit organizations to create farm stands, which would sell fresh produce from community gardens and orchards. The matter is headed to full city council at the end of the month and has already received support from the Sustainable Santa Fe Commission and the Food Policy Council.