Here’s a look at today’s headlines:

The New Mexico Department of Transportation has made the necessary roadway repairs throughout NM 152 that was initially closed due to flooding in September.  The NMDOT has lifted the closure for NM 152 in Kingston as crew members have repaired various sections of the road in order to have it passable and safe for the traveling public.  However, the NMDOT Maintenance Section will be working on NM 152 around mile marker 30, as this section of the roadway will need to be closed in order to repair the culvert.  Work began this morning, and is expected to be complete by 3 pm tomorrow.

The Silver City Town Council, at it’s Monday meeting, heard many concerns and reports, including questions regarding the single-use plastic bag ordinance.  Mayor Michael Morones replied to the comment by stating that most of the questions can be answered by staff of the affected vendors.  Councilor Cynthia Bettison commented that certain issues with the current animal control ordinance need to be addressed.  Also mentioned at the meeting were the painting of two water tanks by WNMU, and a reminder of the upcoming March 3rd municipal election.

US SenatorTom Udall released a statement after voting against a bill to mandate approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline.  Udall stated “I support responsible oil and gas production in New Mexico, which provides millions of dollars a year for education in our state, and I will fight as hard as anyone for investing in American infrastructure and jobs. But few energy issues have been as politicized as this one, and that’s a big part of why I voted no today. I do not believe Congress should intervene and pass a law simply to mandate approval of one specific pipeline for one private company.”  The bill failed to win the support needed to move forward.

Every department and caregiver at Gila Regional Medical Center (GRMC) are looking at ways to create operational efficiencies. Wayne Heath, Director of Behavioral Health Unit and Security, identified the need for the continued use of the GRMC golf cart for patient transport. Mike Martin, GRMC Senior Telecommunications Specialist, volunteered to refurbish the cart. It took him over 20 hours of his personal time to fix the old cart. Today it is officially back in use on the GRMC campus where it is used to meet various patient transport needs.  This collaborated effort between these two GRMC departments not only saved the hospital money but resulted in a way to better serve our patients and community.

The Deming Elks Lodge 2750 recently donated $500 to the Gila Reading Council of Deming.  Each year, the Gila Reading Council hosts a Literacy Showcase, in which teachers choose the work of students, and a book is filled with the stories and poems, and then published by the school.  The program is committed to showing local children the joy of writing, and teaching them a lifelong love of reading.  The donation from the Elk’s Lodge will help the Gila Reading Council host the Literacy Showcase in February next year.