Here’s a look at today’s headlines:
The National Council for Home Safety and Security announced their ranking of the safest cities in New Mexico for 2018. The data was compiled from the most recent FBI Uniform Crime Reports statistics along with collected population data and other research. Cities with populations under 10 thousand were eliminated from the study. The rankings were based on the number of reported violent crimes and property crimes per 1000 people. These variables were weighted, with violent crimes assigned a value 1.5 times (due to the severity) that of property crimes. The top ten are: Los Alamos; Sunland Park; Rio Rancho; Lovington; Alamogordo; Santa Fe; Las Vegas; Portales; Carlsbad; and Las Cruces. Deming placed at number eleven, with a population of 14,457, and 87 violent crimes, in addition to 623 property crimes. Silver City was not included in the study because the population is below 10,000 according to the last census. The National Council for Home Safety and Security is a trade association comprised of home security and professionals across the United States.
The Silver City/Grant County Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon featured Grant County native and Silver Consolidated Schools District Superintendent, Audie Brown. Brown based his program on advocating public education and reasonable reform and his personal journey of becoming an educator. His goal is to have every school in the district reaching a B grade at the state level.
Freeport-McMoRan’s Mining operation production decreased in the last three months ending on December 31st with Chino at 47 million recoverable pounds of copper in 2017 as opposed to 69 million in 2016. The Tyrone mine produced 20 million pounds in 2016 which decreased to 14 million in 2017. For the total year of 2017, Chino Mine produced 215 million recoverable pounds, down from 308 in 2016, and Tyrone produced 61 million in 2017 down from 76 million in 2016. The production decreases have occurred across Freeport’s overall operations. Freeport stated that the main reason for the decrease in sales is attributed to the diminishing quality of the copper. Even with sales down in 2017, the prices for North American copper increased from of $2.45 per pound during fourth quarter in 2016 to $3.15 in the fourth quarter of 2017.
The New Mexico House Business and Industry Committee unanimously approved House Bill 212 to establish a family-friendly workplace income tax credit for New Mexico small businesses. HB 212, sponsored by local Representative, Rebecca Dow, provides a tax credit for small businesses that have implemented family-friendly workplace policies such as parental paid leave and part-time employee benefits. Employers could claim $1,000 per full-time employee and $500 per part-time employee. Eligible businesses must employ 50 or fewer employees and must earn “Gold” level recognition by New Mexico Family Friendly, a statewide non-profit organization that promotes family business policies in New Mexico. HB 212 has been referred to the House Taxation and Revenue Committee.