The Grant County Commission, voted unanimously to retain ownership of Gila Regional Medical Center during their meeting yesterday morning. The commission began exploring ownership options last year with the hiring of consultant, Juniper Advisory. In addition, during a special meeting on July 10th, the Grant County Commission approved a letter of recommendation to the U.S. Department of Transportation, requesting that the Essential Air Service (EAS) contract be awarded to Advanced Air, replacing the current provider, Boutique Air. The commission’s recommendation will be considered by the U.S. Department of Transportation, whereby a final decision will be rendered. Essential Air Service is a U.S. government program enacted to guarantee and keep small and rural communities across America connected to the national air transportation system.
The New Mexico Department of Health is hosting “Back to School Immunization Clinics” at its public health offices statewide to assist parents in getting their children immunized before the start of the 2018-2019 school year. NMDOH will provide recommended vaccines at no cost to children up to age 18. The special clinics are part of the “Got Shots?” immunization campaign that partners the New Mexico Department of Health, the New Mexico Immunization Coalition, the New Mexico Primary Care Association, and healthcare providers from across the state. The clinics are scheduled to run from July 29th through August 12th. A list of locations for the “Got Shots?” program can be found at nmhealth.org.
CYFD officials have reported that the New Mexico child abuse tracking system has become outdated since its launch over 20 years ago. The system, called FACTS, or Family Automated Client Tracking System, has been difficult to use, according to users, with problems including the inability to log in through a smart phone or laptop, and disappearing information. Lawmakers are discussing upgrading the case management system for CYFD in addition to the department launching a new web portal that gives access to basic information to law enforcement and other workers in the field.
The U.S Small Business Administration has issued an announcement that small nonfarm businesses located in Grant, Hidalgo, Luna, Sierra, and Dona Ana counties are eligible to apply for low-interest federal disaster loans. The focus of the of the assistance is to address the economic effects on businesses that are dependent on farmers and ranchers who have incurred losses due to the drought. Eligibility is based on the financial impact of the disaster and not on property damage. The U.S Secretary of Agriculture declared the counties to disaster status on July 3rd. Business owners have until March 4th of 2019 to apply.