August 31st, 2016: Local Headlines

Here’s a look at today’s headlines:

April Matthews, who has been at Western New Mexico University for the last 28 years, was recognized as Employee of the Year by her peers.  Matthews implemented the Help Desk system for student and employee technology troubleshooting, and initiated a process where paper documents are now filled out and traced online. She also employed a document imaging system where student records are available online to university personnel on campus.  Matthews will be retiring from WNMU in September and she is looking forward to spending a lot of her time away from the computer screen.

A 29-year old man from Deming was sentenced in federal court in Las Cruces to 21 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release for violating the federal firearms laws.  He was arrested in October last year and charged with a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition after having previously been convicted of a drug trafficking felony in Texas.

The New Mexico State Forestry Division in sending help to western states affected by ongoing wildfires.  116 personnel, including 30 members of the Returning Heroes Wildland Firefighter Program, are supporting teams on fires in California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, and Utah.

The Bureau of Land Management yesterday announced that it is implementing authority provided by Congress giving the agency the flexibility to conduct online lease sales.  The move is a continuation of the BLM’s ongoing efforts to modernize the oil and gas program by increasing program efficiency and generating savings for taxpayers.  The BLM’s Eastern States Office will hold the first auction under this new authority on Sept. 20, 2016, when it offers 14 parcels encompassing 4,398 acres of Federal mineral estate in Kentucky and Mississippi.  The BLM is evaluating other opportunities to hold additional online sales.

Posted in News

August 30th, 2016: Local Headlines

Here’s a look at today’s headlines:

The National Parks Service held a Centennial Celebration at Gough Park on Saturday to celebrate the National Parks Service’s 100th birthday.  Several collaborating agencies set up booths in the park, including the Grant County Search and Rescue volunteer team, the Gila Amateur Radio Society, National Forest offices, and of course, Smokey Bear.

The 37th Annual Great American Duck Race was held last week and over the weekend.  An estimated 10,000 plus fans visited the McKinley Duck Downs and took part in the races on wet and dry tracks, along with the Duck Royalty Pageant, the Tournament of Ducks Parade, Outhouse Races, Tortilla Toss, Horseshoes, and other events.

New Mexico CYFD has seen a rise in abuse reports over the weekend in the wake of Victoria Marten’s death.  CYFD Cabinet Secretary Monique Jacobson says now is a perfect time to remind New Mexicans to say something if they see something and be extremely specific while making an abuse report.  Jacobson also says operators are being flooded with questions about how to spot abuse and get involved in prevention programs and reminds New Mexicans that those questions can be answered at www.pulltogether.org.

A highly contested rate increase request that officially hit the one-year mark on Saturday looks headed for a decision next month. Public Service Co. of New Mexico on Monday declined an offer from the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission to reopen its rate case in order to add additional information.

Posted in News

August 29th, 2016: Local Headlines

Here’s a look at today’s headlines:

Harry Browne, Aldo Leopold Charter School business manager and teacher, noted that two leases for a proposed expansion for the school have been written.  The first is a straight lease for the property of what used to be Billy’s BBQ.  The second of the leases continues to be adjusted and, when finalized, should be sent to the state for approval.  State approval on the lease is expected to take around six months, but work can continue slowly on construction and renovations.

The Regional Office has completed their internal review of the Gila NF draft assessment report. The Gila NF planning team is now making some adjustments to the document based on the internal review recommendations. The Gila National Forest expects to release the draft assessment report for public/stakeholder feedback in late summer/early fall. After the draft is released, we will have more community meetings in fall 2016 to discuss key assessment findings and collaborate to determine needs-for-change to the 1986 Gila Forest Plan.

For the fourth consecutive year, Freeport McMoRan has been named to the Civic 50 list of most community-minded companies in the US, and this year also was named the top company in the materials sector.  The national survey and ranking initiative sets the standard for corporate civic engagement and recognizes companies for their commitment to improving the quality of life in the communities where they do business.

Police have arrested a 53 year-old man for a hit-and-run that killed a 6 year-old boy in Anthony.  The boy was riding his bike when the man hit and killed the boy then drove off in his truck.  He is charged with leaving the scene of an accident involving death and failing to stop and render aid.

Last week, Governor Susana Martinez directed the activation of New Mexico Emergency Operations Center to assist in the coordinated response to flooding across the state, including Rio Arriba, Sierra, Dona Ana, and Eddy counties. These counties, including other areas of the state, have been hit with heavy rain, which is expected to continue throughout the week.

Posted in News

Great News for Quemado Lake Recreationsists!

Quemado Lake Recreation Area – Potable Water Available

 QUEMADO, NM; August 25, 2016 For Immediate Release – Campgrounds in the Quemado Lake Recreation Area including; Juniper, Pinon, El Caso, and the Cove boat ramp all have potable water available to visitors.  The well pump that services these facilities was struck by lightning and electrical repairs were necessary.  These repairs are complete.  Juniper and Pinon Campgrounds will remain open through the end of September.

Posted in News

August 26th, 2016: Local Headlines

Here’s a look at today’s headlines:

Girl Scouts of the Desert Southwest is pleased to announce the fourth annual Women of Distinction luncheon honoring Southern New Mexico women for their achievements and contributions.  Honorees receiving this year’s awards include Representative Diane Hamilton and Priscilla Lucero of Silver City, and Arianna Parsons, Olivia Lerma McDonald, LaJune Smith, Renay Scott, Ann Palormo, Lori English, and Barbara Hubbard of Las Cruces.

The National Park Service was founded 100 years ago yesterday, August 25th.  In celebration of this historic landmark, all parks are free this weekend.  National Parks close to our area include Carlsbad Caverns National Park near Carlsbad, NM; Guadalupe Mountains National Park near Salt Flat, TX; Saguaro National Park outside of Tucson, AZ; and Petrified Forest National Park near Sun Valley, AZ.  New Mexico is also home to numerous National Monuments, including the Gila Cliff Dwellings, White Sands, Bandelier, and Petroglyph National Monument.

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack issued the following statement on the first forecast for US agricultural exports for fiscal year 2017.  Vilsack said, “these numbers once again demonstrate the resiliency and reliability of US farmers and ranchers in the face of continued challenges.  The projected $133 billion in total exports is up $6 billion from last forecast and would be the sixth-highest total on record.  The United States has continued to post an agricultural trade surplus since recordkeeping began in the 1960s,” said Vilsack.

The Grant County 4-H would like to extend a Thank You to everyone who bought raffle tickets to support the 4-H Hunting Team’s trip to Grand Island, NE to compete in the National 4-H Shooting Sports Championships.  Congratulations to Shawn Brabson, who won first place in the Grant County 4-H Hunting Team Raffle – winning a Remington 700ADL BA SYN; Bill Marek won the 45 Quart YETI cooler from Ace Hardware; Lita Perez won the jewelry gift basket donated by Renae Calloway with Tailgate Gypsy Bling as well as a massage donated by Jolene Jones from The Massage Place.  A list of sponsors is available on our website, and the 4-H Hunting Team extends a big thank you to everyone who dated and sponsored the team.

Posted in News

4-H Sponsor and Donor Thanks!

Hunting Team Sponsorships:

PTI

LWP Trucking (Wesley Peterson)

NM Gas Company

James Hamilton Construction

AAA Trailers

Circle Heart

Griffin’s Propane

Gila Valley Electric

United Archers

Rockin R Archery

W & N Enterprises (Snappy Mart)

Robert Rydeski

H & S Electric

Copper Cowbelles

Tharp Flowers

Cliff McDougal

Gila Regional Medical Center

Brett Kasten

Joe S. Ramirez

Ken Griffith Jr. Corporation

Leavitt Group

Jeb W. Fowler Investment Accountant

R & L Service Center

Kevin and Tanya Thompson

Stacy and Frank Baptiste

Oldham’s Feed and Supply

Tim and Terry Summers

Amy A. Burns

Gaylan Clark

Clay and Julie Means

Country Girls Nursery

Fawn and Time Heidrick

Steward and Connie Rooks

Junior and Kay Lewis

William and Terri McCauley

Rose Shoemaker

Louise Cash

John M. Munoz

Robert and Gaylene Agnew

Paula Quesada

Jenna Peek-Fowler

Stephen and Sheree Richins

No Excuses Gym

A BIG THANK YOU TO EVERYONE WHO DONATED AND SPONSORED THE TEAM!

Posted in Business

August 25th, 2016: Local Headlines

Here’s a look at today’s headlines:

The Silver School Board attended a special session with Dr. Dan Patterson from the New Mexico School Board Association.  Dr. Patterson was selected to help the Board with the superintendent search, and in the most recent session he helped the board consider the time schedules needed to bring the proposed search to a successful hiring.  Patterson recommended the board begin advertising on September 4th and to consider a community forum to introduce about six finalists by the end of October, with interviews to follow immediately after.

Luna County voters responded in one of the best turnouts in recent history to approve the special hospital gross receipts tax to fund emergency ambulance services.  Once the results are approved by New Mexico Taxation and Revenue, the one-eighth of one percent tax will resume being collected on January 1, 2017.  All the funds generated by the tax are passed along to the emergency response agencies through agreements for service.

Justin Henwood, project manager for the New Mexico Department of Transportation, recently gave the presentation on new Catwalk Access options.  The options include building a new road from Hwy 159 at Whitewater Mesa down to the Catwalk parking lot; improving Catwalk Road 174, with widening and other improvements beginning past Circle Drive; or do nothing except possibly repave 174 as it is.  The project will be funded by the Federal Lands Access Program.

US Senator Martin Heinrich visited Las Cruces yesterday to learn more about how Las Cruces became the first community in New Mexico to achieve functional zero for veteran homelessness and discuss ways to build on that success across New Mexico.

A recent survey by the state Public Education Department shows a 7 percent jump in the number of schools earning an A or B grade in the state, while D or F schools dropped 2 percent.  In New Mexico, 38 percent of the 849 public schools earned an A or B while 37 percent of schools earned a D or F.  The grades come a week after the state released results from its latest student tests. Those results showed that scores were up across the state, but less than a third of students remained proficient or better in reading and math.

Posted in News

Open for Keith Urban!

OpenForUrban

KEITH URBAN’S OCTOBER 18 CONCERT IN LAS CRUCES OFFERS UNIQUE TWIST THROUGH LOCAL CONTEST

 

L A S   C R U C E S,  N M. . .Keith Urban’s “ripCORD WORLD TOUR 2016” concert, scheduled for October 18 at NMSU’s Pan American Center, will feature something markedly different than any other show on Urban’s current tour—a local opening act.

ACTS (American Collegiate Talent Showcase), in conjunction with the Department of Special Events at New Mexico State University, is sponsoring a contest open to country music performers in southern New Mexico and northwest Texas. The winner, determined by a panel of judges associated with the Las Cruces concert, will play a 20-minute set prior to Urban’s performance at the Pan American Center.

Entrants–which can be solo acts, duos, trios, bands or groups–are invited to submit live performance videos that will be seen and heard by the panel of judges. Semifinalists will play before a live audience and the judges at Whiskey Dick’s in Las Cruces on Wednesday, September 14. The grand prize winner will be selected and notified soon after the semifinal event takes place.

“We are excited to offer this contest to local musicians,” stated Barbara Hubbard, founder of ACTS and a longtime fixture of New Mexico’s entertainment community. “Performing on Keith Urban’s stage, in front of his many fans, will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” Hubbard said.

Details on how to enter, as well as contest rules, have been posted at PanAmCenter.com. Deadline for entry is midnight on Friday, September 2.

Posted in Promotional

August 24th, 2016: Local Headlines

Here’s a look at today’s headlines:

The Silver City Town Council at its Tuesday meeting approved a resolution adopting the Town of Silver City Bicycle Master Plan.  Also at the meeting, Silver City Police Chief Ed Reynolds stated that 35 citations have been issued for the new hands-free mobile device regulation, which went into effect July 23rd.  Council approved two public celebration permit applications and a waiver of the rule prohibiting dispensing of alcoholic beverages within 300 feet of a church or school for the first Silver City Gay Pride Festival.  Council also approved a resolution authorizing the submission of an application for financial assistance and project approval to the New Mexico MainStreet Program to improve visitor access from the Visitor Center to downtown.

The Universidad Tecnologica de Camargo (UTCam) based in the state of Chihuahua, recently signed an agreement of understanding with WNMU.  The agreement has four points of cooperation including the exchange of faculty members and students for study and research; the practice of joint research activities and publications; the exchange of scholars to participate in conferences and symposiums; and the exchange of information in fields of interests to both universities.

NMSU was recently awarded a $4.4 million grant from the US Department of Agriculture for research and extension to support American farmers.  The goal of the project is to breed more productive pecan trees that will lead to improved production of pecans.  According to NMSU Research Associate Professor Jennifer Randall, they are “going to start pin-pointing genes that are important for disease resistance and salinity tolerance, and look at flowering and tree architecture.”

The New Mexico Department of Health’s Women, Infants and Children program was recognized nationally for supporting breastfeeding mothers.  New Mexico’s program was one of only eight in the nation to receive the Loving Support Award of Excellence from the USDA.

The US Department of Agriculture recently announced plans to purchase approximately 11 million pounds of cheese from private inventories to assist food banks and pantries across the nation, while reducing a cheese surplus that is at its highest level in 30 years.  The purchase, valued at $20 million, will be provided to families in need across the country through USDA nutrition assistance programs, while assisting the stalled marketplace for dairy producers whose revenues have dropped 35 percent over the past two years.

Posted in News

The Hidalgo County Fair is this Thursday through Sunday

hidalgo rodeo 082416

“There’s a good thing growing” at the Hidalgo County Fair happening Thursday, August 25th through Sunday, August 28thThat means rodeo time in the southwest!  The rodeo kicks off Thursday night at 7pm with the Iron Cowgirl Rodeo.  Friday morning at 2 pm will be the Ranch Horse Competition.  Want to experience the flavor of the southwest? The Friday 7pm Open Ranch Rodeo should be your destination with calf branding, doctoring, trailer loading and steer dressing and Open Ranch Bronc Riding!  Saturday morning is the Junior Rodeo, for cowboys and cowgirls 14 years and under, at 8am. Saturday night wraps up with the PRCA “Rodeo de Hidalgo” at 7pm. Sunday morning is the “Draw Pot Team Roping” at 10 am.  For more information check out Hidalgo County Fair Rodeos on Facebook.

Posted in Event