Here’s a look at area news:
State officials say two inmates at a southern New Mexico prison have come down with chickenpox, and authorities are trying to limit the varicella virus that causes illness from spreading any further. Besides the two inmates at the Otero County prison facility, 135 inmates in addition to prison staff that may have been exposed to the virus and have been offered blood screening to determine their immunity. Those who have not been deemed immune will be quarantined.
The Wilderness Ranger District is planning to burn piles through the winter and spring as weather conditions permit. The plans for the Wilderness RD pile burns include several locations off Highway 35. Smoke will be monitored to ensure that the New Mexico Environment Department’s Air Quality Bureau regulations are being met. Smoke-sensitive individuals and those with respiratory or heart disease should take precautionary measures. For more information, visit fs.usda.gov/gila.
For the holiday weekend beginning Friday December 29th, at 4:00 P.M. and ending Monday January 2nd, at 8:00 A.M, Officers of the Silver City Police Department responded to 67 calls for service, had 135 self-initiated activity, and made 12 arrests including 1 for DWI.
New Mexico State Senator, Bill Tallman, of Albuquerque has proposed legislation that would allow state employees to gain access to short personal loans through their paychecks in an effort to combat predatory lending. This year, New Mexico is capping interest rates on small loans at 175%. Tallman’s proposal would limit interest rates to 30 percent for qualified state employees, and cap repayment at 12 percent of gross salary or wages with the goal is to lower costs and debt burdens on state workers.
A bicyclist was struck by a 2005 Ford Ranger driven by Jose Rubio, of Deming. The accident occurred on J Street in front of the Luna County Sheriff’s Department last Saturday afternoon. Rubio reportedly admitted that he looked down at his cell phone before striking David Cornwell, of Sanford, Florida. Rubio was cited for careless driving and no proof of insurance. Cornwell was transported by ambulance to the hospital with several injuries related to the accident.
The first baby to be born in Grant county this year was welcomed at 10:00 P.M. on New Year’s Day at Gila Regional Medical Center. Ryan Lloyd Montoya, was born weighing 6 pounds, 12 ounces and received a donation of toys and other baby essentials from the Gila Regional Auxiliary. The items were donated by W&N Enterprises, Dr. Victor Nwachuku, and Dr. Greg Koury.