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Regional
9:30 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Traffic Alert For I-10 Bridge Project In Las Cruces

  Las Cruces: The New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) District One office and La Calerita Construction have switched traffic over to the eastbound lanes on I-10 at the Avenida de Mesilla exit. This has been done in order to begin the demolition of the westbound bridge at Avenida de Mesilla.

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Regional
9:06 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Los Alamos Historical Society To Host Trinity Tour

The Los Alamos Historical Society is sponsoring a tour of the site of the first man-made nuclear explosion.

The group is selling $150 tickets for a visit to the Trinity site in southern New Mexico scheduled for April 5.

As part of the tour, visitors will see a restored house where nuclear core was assembled and visit the spot where the bomb was detonated.

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Regional
6:00 am
Mon March 17, 2014

Monday BusinessWatch

  Every Monday at 7:51am on Morning Edition, Fred Martino covers the week's top local business stories with Las Cruces Sun News Business Editor Brook Stockberger.  Subscribe to our podcast on the right side of this page so you never miss a segment.

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Regional
7:30 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

Aggies Play Thursday In Spokane In NCAA Tournament

Steve Fisher's San Diego State Aztecs are in the NCAA tournament for the fifth straight year, earning the No. 4 seed in the West and a matchup against some old friends with 13th-seeded New Mexico State.

The Aztecs (29-4) and Aggies (26-9) will play Thursday in Spokane.

New Mexico State coach Marvin Menzies was on Fisher's first staff after he was hired at SDSU in 1999. One of their first recruits, Aerick Sanders, is on Menzies' staff.

Says Fisher: "There will be a San Diego State connection. We'll look forward to the challenge."

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Regional
12:18 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

New National Science Foundation Director Has New Mexico Ties

An internationally recognized astrophysicist with ties to New Mexico has been tapped to serve as the next director of the National Science Foundation.

The nomination of France Cordova was approved by the U.S. Senate this week.

Cordova, a Santa Fe resident, is a former president of Purdue University. She's also on the governing board of the Smithsonian Institution and she worked at Los Alamos National Laboratory between 1979 and 1989.

U.S. Sen. Tom Udall says he looks forward to working with Cordova.

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Regional
12:17 pm
Sun March 16, 2014

Teens Arrested For Vandalism Spree

Police have arrested four teenagers suspected of damaging property around Alamogordo over the last month.

19-year-old Justin Broberg, 19-year-old Jesse Hardway, a 16-year-old boy and a 14-year-old girl were arrested Saturday on 15 counts of criminal damage to property — but more charges may come.

Sgt. Roger Schoolcraft says the 19-year-olds face counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

The 16-year-old faces unlawful taking of a motor vehicle and DWI charges.

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Regional
6:00 am
Sun March 16, 2014

NMSU To Host Youth Ranch Management Camp

New Mexico State University’s Cooperative Extension Service hopes to build on the success of its New Mexico Youth Ranch Management Camp when it hosts the event June 8-13 at the Valles Caldera National Preserve in northern New Mexico.

“The camp has been a great success,” said Tom Dominguez, Otero County Extension agricultural agent and co-chairman of the camp. “The event is designed to be a unique educational experience and the first two camps definitely exceeded expectations.”

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Regional
6:00 am
Sun March 16, 2014

Alamogordo Event Will Examine Issues Facing Cattle Producers

ALAMOGORDO – Cattle producers face many challenges, from perennial concerns like the health of the cattle and the chances of drought to new worries about the spread of wild hogs. New Mexico State University’s Cattleman’s Current Issues Program will give producers an opportunity to get the latest updates on these topics and more March 28.

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Regional
4:16 pm
Sat March 15, 2014

Lawsuit Against Santa Fe Hospital Now Class Action

A lawsuit alleging a Santa Fe hospital denied employees unpaid lunch breaks may gain hundreds of more plaintiffs. A judge has granted class-action status to the lawsuit brought against Christus St. Vincent Regional Medical Center.

The ruling means an estimated 1,200 to 1,500 previous and current employees who worked between 2008 and the present can join in the litigation.

Seven plaintiffs originally filed the suit in 2010.

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Regional
8:30 am
Sat March 15, 2014

"Life In New Mexico" Film Project Now Taking Submissions

  SANTA FE –The New Mexico Film Foundation, in partnership with the New Mexico Post Alliance, Friends of Film, Video and Arts, and the New Mexico Tourism Department, is now seeking submissions from the New Mexico public to complete a media project entitled “Life in New Mexico.”

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Regional
6:00 am
Sat March 15, 2014

A New Name At NMSU Las Cruces: Department Of Educational Leadership And Administration

The Department of Education Management and Development (EMD) at New Mexico State University’s College of Education will now be known as the Department of Educational Leadership and Administration (ELA), following the Board of Regents’ approval to change the name at the March 10 meeting. 

“We have been talking about a name change on and off for years,” ELA department head Mary Prentice said. “We believe that this name change will make our department more visible to potential students who are seeking a degree in educational administration or educational leadership.” 

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Regional
6:00 am
Sat March 15, 2014

NMSU Las Cruces Part Of National Pilot Program Examining Behavioral Health

  Grappling with behavioral health problems, especially substance use and abuse and mental health, is a continual struggle for many communities across the country. The challenge for leaders in those communities is that the occurrence of these issues can vary greatly from place to place, but accurate local data for a community can be hard to come by.

A team from New Mexico State University is part of a national pilot project to address that challenge in communities like Dona Ana County.

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Regional
9:29 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Officials: Attacked Immigrants Were Surrendering

A federal law enforcement official and a Border Patrol agent say three immigrants who said they were kidnapped and assaulted by a border patrol agent were in the process of surrendering to the agent when the ordeal began.

The agent, who officials say later committed suicide, is accused of driving the women away from the river after they surrendered and assaulting them. A border agent involved in the later search said the agent cut the adult woman, assaulted one teenager and fled with a second teenage girl. That girl was later found in the agent's home in Mission, in South Texas.

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Regional
9:28 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Sunland Peanut Plant To Be Auctioned Next Week

  A New Mexico peanut-butter processing plant that went bankrupt after a salmonella outbreak shuttered its operations and prompted a nationwide recall last year is headed to the auction block.

The reserve price for all bidders in Thursday's auction is $18.5 million. That's the amount California-based Ready Roast Nut Co. already has offered to buy the defunct Sunland Inc. plant.

The sale seemed imminent when a bankruptcy trustee backed Ready Roast's offer. But the Clovis News Journal reports another potential buyer has emerged.

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PUENTES
6:56 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

J. Paul Taylor, Living History, Part 1

J. Paul Taylor in his dining room, 2014.

  March 14, 2014 – Las Cruces, NM - On this edition of PUENTES, Emily Guerra bridges the community with 93-year-old retired educator, historian, arts patron, community leader and State Representative, J. Paul Taylor. Still very active in the community, he talks about his home in Mesilla, the Taylor-Barela-Reynolds State Monument, and their donation to the Museum of New Mexico. Taylor also recalls his involvement with the legislature and his passion for advocating for the elderly and children.

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Regional
1:43 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

New Mexico County Wants Drilling Ban Extended

The San Miguel County Commission is being urged to slow work on a proposed ordinance on oil and gas drilling.

The Planning and Zoning Commission says it's not ready to address perceived shortcomings in the proposed ordinance and that a moratorium on exploration should be extended for another two years.

The moratorium has been in effect for more than three years.

The Las Vegas Optic reports that the planning panel presented its recommendation to the proposed ordinance to the commission on Tuesday.

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Regional
1:39 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Albuquerque School District Fires Police Chief

The Albuquerque public school district has fired the head of its police force and the Bernalillo County Sheriff's Department confirms that it's now conducting a related criminal investigation.

The district board decided Friday morning to remove Steve Tellez as chief due to what the district calls a "personnel issue."

However, sheriff's Sgt. Aaron Williamson says the investigation centers on missing ammunition.

Williamson says more information should be released after the investigation is completed in about a week.

Tellez became chief about four years ago.

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Regional
1:33 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Udall, Heinrich: WIPP Report "Deeply Concerning"

U.S Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich issued the following statement on the release of the U.S. Department of Energy's accident investigation report for the underground mine fire involving a salt haul truck at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) near Carlsbad, New Mexico.

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Local Viewpoints
9:33 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Rep. Pearce Responds To Report On WIPP

Credit Rep. Steve Pearce (R) New Mexico

  Today, Congressman Steve Pearce responded to the Department of Energy’s WIPP Underground Fire Accident Investigation Report. The report provides a detailed examination into the fire that took place on February 5, 2014. 

“This transparent report highlights the sloppy procedures that caused the fire,” Pearce said, “including failure to regularly clean oil and grease off the engines of mining equipment.  The report concludes with the steps the WIPP team and the Department of Energy intend to take to prevent future incidents at the facility.

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Regional
9:19 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Vandals Strike Santa Fe Center For Homeless Youth

A Santa Fe center that serves homeless youth is making repairs and cleaning up in the wake of extensive vandalism.

Vandals damaged computer equipment, scattered food and tagged walls with graffiti at the Street Outreach Resource Center. They also stole a car that was crashed nearby.

The center serves hundreds of teens annually, most coming from northern New Mexico. Aid includes food, clothing and medical assistance.

The vandalism occurred Wednesday evening.

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Regional
8:23 am
Fri March 14, 2014

Future Unknown For Fort Bayard

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Regional
9:45 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

NM Lottery Scholarship Safe...For Now

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Intermezzo
5:20 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

DALO brings “Orpheus in the Underworld” to Las Cruces

John Carlo Pierce, director of DALO's production of "Orpheus in the Underworld."
Credit Leora Zeitlin

The heartrending ancient myth of Orpheus and Eurydice hardly seems like material for a scathing satirical opera, but that’s exactly what the 19th-century French composer Jacques Offenbach turned it into in his “Orpheus in the Underworld.” This week, the Dona Lyric Opera performs the opera, and Artistic Director John Carlo Pierce came by to talk with Intermezzo host Leora Zeitlin about the myth, the parody, its most famous can-can music, and more. Recorded on March 13, 2014.

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Online EXTRA
3:41 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Transcript: President's Statement On Plans To Expand Overtime Protections

  REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT

ON OVERTIME PAY

 

East Room

 

2:27 P.M. EDT

THE PRESIDENT:  Thank you, everybody, thank you.  (Applause.)  Thank you so much.  Please.  Thank you, guys.  Please have a seat. 

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Regional
3:32 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

New President For Carlsbad Nuclear Waste Site

The president of southeastern New Mexico's troubled nuclear waste dump has been ousted as investigations into a truck fire and radiation release near completion.

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Regional
1:29 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

King Challenges New Mexicans' "Right To Die"

Credit via www.garyking.org

New Mexico Attorney General Gary King is appealing a court ruling that terminally ill patients can seek a physician's help in dying.

King tells the Albuquerque Journal that one of the problems with District Judge Jan Nash's January ruling is that it doesn't apply statewide.

King also says he wants to protect the assisted suicide law. That law classifies helping with suicide as a felony.

The case centers on Aja Riggs, a Santa Fe resident who was diagnosed with an aggressive uterine cancer. Her cancer is in remission, but doctors expect it to return.

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Regional
1:27 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

New Mexico DWI Deaths At Record Low

Gov. Susana Martinez says alcohol-related traffic deaths in New Mexico have reached a record low.

Martinez said Thursday preliminary numbers show the state saw 133 fatal alcohol-related crashes last year, a nearly 14 percent drop from 2012. Officials say that's the lowest number of alcohol-related traffic deaths in the state's recorded history.

The state's previous low was in 2008 when New Mexico saw 143 alcohol-related traffic deaths.

Martinez attributed the recent decline to aggressive programs by law enforcement agencies and better awareness from the public.

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Regional
1:26 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Border Patrol Agent Found Dead; Three Hurt

The FBI says a Border Patrol agent found dead in South Texas is the focus of an investigation prompted by the kidnapping and assault of three females.

Both the FBI and U.S. Customs and Border Protection released few details Thursday on events that unfolded the night before. The CBP says authorities encountered an injured woman who told them that she and the two others had been attacked by a man. Authorities then later found the second injured female.

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Regional
12:38 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

New Mexico High Risk Pool Insurance Rates Skyrocket

Insurance rates for people covered by New Mexico's high-risk pool will go up nearly 24 percent, partly because enrollment is shrinking as more previously uninsurable people find coverage through health insurance exchanges.

The head of the pool created by the state nearly 30 years ago says another reason for the premium increase taking effect July 1 is that the premiums are being brought more in line with those of other insurance products on the market.

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Regional
12:36 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Alamogordo Woman Gets 16 Years For Hurting Daughter

An Alamogordo woman who had said she threw her infant daughter on the ground in 2011 because she thought it was possessed by the devil now faces 16 years in prison.

The Alamogordo Daily News reports that 28-year-old Samantha Noriega was sentenced Wednesday in District Court after she pleaded no contest in October to felony child abuse with great bodily harm.

The 7-month-old child suffered a brain hemorrhage which was considered life threatening but prosecutor Kirby Wills says the child has made what the prosecutor called a "miraculous recovery."

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