Here’s a look at today’s headlines:
The Interstate Stream Commission voted Monday to go ahead with plans to divert the Gila River by a vote of eight to two. The decision ended eight years of debate on the issue. The recommended diversion project would divert the river into storage areas and conserve an average of 14,000 acre-feet of water that wouldn’t otherwise exist due to evaporation and seepage. The federal government promised $66 million to four New Mexico counties to use for water-related issues, including Grant, Luna, Hidalgo, and Catron counties.
In other news, federal officials have proposed expanding the area where endangered Mexican gray wolves can roam and tripling the current number of wolves in the Southwest. The program’s goal is to increase the genetic diversity of the wolves while reducing impacts to rancher and potential prey on tribal lands. A decision is expected to be made by the US Fish and Wildlife Service in January.
Gila Regional Medical Center’s Board of Trustees at their recent meeting discussed a quality and safety update for the hospital after hospital rankings were released by Leapfrog, an independent group that focuses on hospital transparency. Also discussed were possible bylaw changes that would allow minor changes to future proposals. The board decided to table the issue for next month’s meeting.
Organizations from throughout New Mexico gathered in Santa Fe November 12-14, 2014 for the first annual Building Creative Communities Conference. The conference explored community revitalization through arts, culture, tourism, and historic preservation. This educational and networking event was hosted by New Mexico MainStreet, New Mexico Historic Preservation Division, and New Mexico Arts. The inaugural conference was constructed around three interconnected themes: Building upon local history; building strong alliances; and expanding economic opportunities while preserving local culture. Silver City, Grant County organizations in attendance included Silver City Arts and Cultural District (SCACD), Mimbres Region Arts Council (MRAC), Silver City MainStreet, and Ft. Bayard Historic Preservation Society.