Mar. 28 First News: WIPP Prepares To Investigate Deep Underground (Listen)

Mar 28, 2014

There’s a new development at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant: the Department of Energy says it expects to get underground next week to begin investigating a mysterious radiation leak from the nuclear waste dump. Reports cite WIPP officials saying inspections of the shafts workers will use to access the half-mile deep repository are complete and they’re preparing to send an initial crew into the mine early next week. WIPP's been closed for more than a month following the February leak.

New Mexicans and everyone in the U-S seeking health insurance through the Affordable Care Act face a deadline of ten-pm Monday, local time to sign up for or start the process to become insured through the national insurance program. And none other than Valerie Jarrett, President Obama's Senior Adviser, discussed the Act and its deadline Thursday with KSFR. Jarrett stressing the importance of signing up now: *****032814-Jarrett-3 1:00***** Jarrett speaking to us here in Santa Fe the same day President Obama announced from Rome, where he was visiting with Pope Francis, that more than six-million Americans are now insured thanks to “Obama-Care.”

Some Albuquerque City Councilors and the Duke City's Chamber of Commerce are fearing the negative impacts of the nation's attention to Albuquerque Police Officers' recent shootings. The Albuquerque Journal quotes City Councilor Rey Garduno saying the city's reputation is damaged when it's spoken of in derisive terms. And Chamber of Commerce President Terri Cole is expressing concern because she's heard from potential and repeat visitors who are worried about their safety. Even before the recent shootings, the U.S. Department of Justice had been investigating whether the Police Department has a pattern or practice of violating people's civil rights through the use of force.

The state police officer who shot a 72-year-old man who was driving the wrong way on Interstate-25 has been cleared of any wrongdoing. Motorists reported Albert Urban of New York going the wrong way on I-25 near Las Vegas on January fourth. Police were able to pull Urban over, but they say he then took off, hitting the officer’s vehicle. Officer Jonathan Wright then shot Urban, who survived. The District Attorney ruled the shooting justified saying Wright helped save other officers and motorists.

Since it began a dozen years ago, the spring Family Cancer Retreat has become the largest general cancer education program in New Mexico as well as the largest program of its type in the country. The three-day May second-through-fourth Albuquerque retreat is free for cancer patients and their families, and those interested are urged to register soon, as the event is expected to draw some 300 people. Registration packets are available at cancer-services-dot-org.

Santa Fe Weather: Sunny today, with a high near 54. Tonight-Mostly clear, with a low around 30. Tomorrow: Sunny and warmer, with a high near 64.