May 21 First News: Senator Udall Calls For V-A Health System To Address Allegations (Listen)

May 21, 2014

As KSFR reported Monday, charges of mismanagement and cover-ups at the Veteran’s Administration Hospital in Albuquerque accuse the hospital with delaying care for some of the most urgent needs of veterans. Not only that, there are indications of an on-going effort to file reports showing that the ill vets were treated appropriately. Many find the news outrageous. And New Mexico Senator Tom Udall is one of them. At the same time, the Democrat continues to have faith in the agency: *****052114-Udall-2 (q: our veterans deserve) :14***** Udall is calling for a full investigation and immediate action on the charges.

Retired Santa Fe Police Captain Jerry Trujillo’s name has been added to the list of finalists for Santa Fe Police Chief. The New Mexican reports Trujillo has been added to the names of three others under consideration for the post, despite his not being recommended by a citizen screening committee.

Summertime….(almost!)… and the living for motorists in Santa Fe County won’t be well, easy. Miguel Gabaldon is District Engineer at the New Mexico Department of Transportation’s District Five. Gabaldon says summer is peak roadway construction and maintenance time: *****052114-Gabaldon-2 (q:at the Tesuque interchange) :42***** Gabaldon urges motorists to use caution as they proceed through highway construction sites.

Santa Fe’s school board has given its okay to a 182-million dollar annual budget. The New Mexican reports the spending plan approved Tuesday funds pay raises to teachers and staff and includes bond funds approved by voters in 2012 for education technology.

"Midnight dumpers" are leaving contaminated water from oil production in Lea County.  KSFR's Karen Joyce has the story. ******

The New Mexico Department of Public Safety holds its annual Law Enforcement Memorial Service today at 10-a.m. at the D-P-S Law Enforcement Academy on Cerrillos Road in Santa Fe. The event is to honor the memory of the New Mexico Law Enforcement Officers who have given their lives in the line of duty. This year’s service will pay special tribute to Sandoval County Sheriff Sergeant Robert Baron, who lost his life last December while assisting with a traffic accident on I-25 during a snow storm.

The donkey statue that has been part of downtown Santa Fe’s Burro Alley had its tail disappear recently, and now the City of Santa Fe is working to replace the mysteriously stolen metal art-piece. The Santa Fe Arts Commission announced Tuesday it's working with artist Taylor Mott to reconstruct and replace the tail on the burro sculpture. The sculpture by artist Charles Southard, part of the city's collection of some 75 pieces of public art, was commissioned in 1988. It's valued at nearly 13-thousand dollars. Meantime, Mott is reportedly working to create a replacement tail for the artist's review and approval. When approved, officials say the tail will be welded in place.

By a close vote, a policy to monitor the ethics of University of New Mexico investments has been withdrawn.  KSFR's Dave Marash has the story. *****

Santa Fe Weather: Mostly sunny and breezy today, with a high near 78. Tonight Partly cloudy, with a low around 48. Tomorrow: Partly sunny with a 20-percent chance of showers and thunderstorms after noon.