Here’s a look at today’s headlines:
The Gila National Forest Service wishes to notify the public that bridge work will begin on Forest Road 150 on Wednesday, March 22nd. This project will replace three aging bridge structures on Forest Road 150: one at Indian Creek, the second at a small tributary to Black Canyon, and the third is the main bridge at Black Canyon. Construction work is expected to continue through September.
A reduction in force was completed at Gila Regional Medical Center after a strategic review of staffing levels. Twelve positions were eliminated including four at the executive/director level and eight from administrative and support areas. Seven others that are currently vacant will not be filled in the immediate future. Direct patient care areas were not affected by this action. The action was taken due to a decrease in patient volume and staffing levels not keeping pace with the reduction in patients, according to interim CEO Alfredo Ontiveros.
A single-wide mobile home caught fire in the 1400 block of Gold Street on Saturday around 10:30 pm. The cause of the fire has not been released. The home was occupied, but no one was home at the time of the fire. The home was a total loss.
New Mexico State Police Investigations Bureau agents responded to the scene of a homicide on March 17th. US Border Patrol agents called in after locating a deceased female in a vehicle on Highway 9 near Hachita. The victim, 57 year old Connie Lopez of Florida, was found in the driver’s seat with a leather belt tied around her neck. Isais Lovato Rodriguez, 61, who had been traveling with Lopez, was located at the scene and taken into custody.
Yesterday, the New Mexico Department of Health and the Department of Veterans Services announced plans to expand long-term care services for veterans at Fort Bayard Medical Center. To make this change possible, the Department of Health will relocate drug and alcohol abuse treatment services currently offered at its Yucca Lodge Chemical Dependency Treatment Center (located at Fort Bayard) to the New Mexico Rehabilitation Center in Roswell. The move will enable Fort Bayard to focus its efforts on long-term care services and expand veterans’ services utilizing the space left vacant by the transition.
In sports news, the Western New Mexico University cross country team opened their spring season this weekend at the Willie Williams Classic hosted by the University of Arizona. This was the first of five meets for the Mustangs this year.