The Silver City Town Council met yesterday. Major moves made involved a Silver City Town Council vote to rescind an increase in property taxes previously passes by the council, which raised property tax rates in the town by one mill. The previous measure to increase property taxes was done in case the state reduced the amount of “hold harmless” funds retained to municipalities. If the “hold harmless” funds came through, which they have, it was always the intention of the council to rescind the tax increase, which the council now has.
In state-wide news, which certainly affects all of New Mexico politics, several important revisions were examined regarding “dark money” groups. Developments from a meeting yesterday, by the New Mexico Campaign Finance regulators, included making adjustments on a formal proposal for more detailed financial disclosures from nonprofit advocacy groups that attempt to influence elections such as through various forms of advertisements. Maggie Toulouse Oliver, Secretary of State, released revised rules focused on regulating so called “dark money” groups that spend unlimited amounts of money on elections. Some of the rule revisions would set the spending threshold to $2,500 at which time non-profit advocacy groups/independent expenditure groups would have to reveal their contributions.
According to an Associated Press news release from Monday, July 24th, by Russel Contreras, New Mexico student reading test scores across the state rose slightly, but math scores remain stagnant. Around 29% of students tested this past spring are proficient or better in reading, and about 20% are proficient or better in math. Still, the results revealed that since the introduction of assessments developed by the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers, or PARCC, less than a third of all New Mexico students are proficient. More than 80 percent of New Mexico public school students from grade 3 to 11 aren’t proficient in grade-level math. And around 71 percent aren’t proficient in reading. The tests, administered by New Mexico and 10 other states, are designed to show how well schools helped students from grades 3 to 11 meet Common Core standards.
In other news, a US Customs and Border Protection seizure over the weekend, at the El Paso port of entry, resulted in the seizure of 310 pounds of marijuana. The drugs had been carefully molded into tight bundles to line the bed walls and floor of the 2000 GMC Sierra truck. The value was estimated to be almost a quarter of a million dollars. Thanks to a canine unit that alerted officials to the drugs, an x-ray exam revealed the hidden cache under the bed liner. The 41 year old citizen of Mexico was taken into custody.
This past weekend, Raul Turrieta received several honors at the New Mexico Senior Olympics at UNM. Turrieta received gold medals in the 400 meter and 800 meter estimated runs, then he earned a bronze in the 800 meter event and a silver in the softball throw.
This weekend, in downtown Silver City, you won’t want to miss the Silver City Clay Festival events on Saturday. There will be a ClayFest Market, mud fun for children, mud pie contest, Texas Hold Em Clay Poker Tournament, wheel-throwing demonstrations, and hands-on activities for spectators.
For those getting ready to come back to college at WNMU, set your calendars, on Friday, August 11th, for a 7th consecutive year, WNMU and local downtown businesses will be hosting a “Welcome Back Bash” beginning at 6:30pm on Bullard street. This is a downtown party that will be fun for all.
This has been a look at some of the news in and around our listening area and things happening in the state that affect us. Thanks for listening to Silver City radio.