July 9 First News: Flash flooding kills Santa Fe woman. (listen)

Santa Fe's mid-afternoon cloudburst Monday is being blamed for the death of a 51 year old woman who apparently got caught in turbulent flash-flooding of an arroyo near Siringo Road. Tina Vigil's body was spotted around 6PM.  Extremely heavy rain and hail caused channels leading to the Arroyo Chamisos to flood to an estimated depth of eight feet at the storm’s peak run-off.

Governor Martinez’ office was evacuated and locked down Monday afternoon after a white powdery substance spilled from an incoming envelope that was being sorted.  Two employees immediately put themselves in isolation and summoned representatives from the Department of Public Safety and Homeland Security.  A City of Santa Fe Hazmat team found the substance to be non-toxic but the FBI will conduct further testing as it now takes over investigation of the incident. 

The Los Alamos National Laboratory says the shipping of its transuranic waste materials off-site to New Mexico’s Waste Isolation Pilot Plant and other facilities has reached an accelerated pace even faster than last year.  It’s part of the ongoing effort to rid the Lab of some 3700 cubic meters of radioactive materials stored in above-ground containers at Area G by June 30th of next year. So far, more than half of it has been removed. The transuranic waste products consists of clothing, tools, rags, debris, soil and other items contaminated with radioactive material, mostly plutonium, accumulated at the Lab over decades of nuclear research and weapons production.

Later today, a memorial simulcast will take place on the Santa Fe Community College campus as Prescott, Arizona honors the memory of the 19 firefighters who lost their lives battling a wildfire last week.  The Granite Mountain Hotshots team was well-known to the Santa Fe community as they worked with our local fire department and assisted efforts just a few weeks ago in battling the Thompson Ridge Fire in the Jemez. SFCC will broadcast the ceremony in its Jemez Room with the posting of colors and invocation at 11:45 followed by a noon memorial.

Santa Fe Community College has a new overseer of all academic functions, including the institution’s six schools as well as credit and non-credit offerings, grants management, contract training and academic support services. Randy Grissom has been appointed Vice President of Academic Affairs for a one-year term by SFCC President Ana “Cha” Guzmán. Grissom has a long history with the school going back to its opening in 1983 when he was part of its business faculty.

Today, the Drug Policy Alliance, veterans’ groups, elected officials and others are introducing a campaign to protect New Mexico’s military veterans’ legal access to medical marijuana. They're hoping to eradicate employment discrimination against medically-prescribed users and lessen stigmatization by some members of the state's medical community.  In 2009, ours became the first medical marijuana state to specifically include post-traumatic stress disorder as a qualifying condition. An attempt to deny PTSD sufferers access to cannibis was taken to the Department of Health in 2012, which they rebuffed in May.

The body of former New Mexico Governor David F. Cargo will lie in state in the Capitol Rotunda on Thursday. The 84 year old Cargo passed away over the July 4th holiday weekend. The youngest person to serve as New Mexico's governor, Cargo served two consecutive two-year terms after winning election in 1966 at age 37. A funeral mass is scheduled for the Cathedral Basilica on Friday with Cargo to be laid to rest in the Santa Fe National Cemetery.

Weather for Santa Fe – partly sunny today and tomorrow with a 30-to-40% chance for afternoon and evening thundershowers.  High temperatures in the upper 80s and overnight lows in the mid 60s.