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Governor Martinez Announces Seventh Straight Record-Breaking Year For Economic Impact Of Tourism

on November 20, 2017 - 10:18am
Gov. Susana Martinez
 
STATE News:
 
SANTA FE  Nov. 16, Gov. Susana Martinez announced that in 2016 the tourism industry generated the largest economic impact in state history for the seventh consecutive year, injecting $6.4 billion into New Mexico’s economy.
 
This represents a 2.1 percent increase over 2015, or $133 million more, and equates to nearly $730,600 spent by visitors to New Mexico every hour last year.

“Tourism plays a vital role in diversifying our state’s economy,” Martinez said.

‘Finally!’ Secretary Zinke Welcomes Confirmation Of Reclamation Nominee Brenda Burman

on November 20, 2017 - 8:55am
Brenda Burman
 
DOI News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. The U.S. Senate Friday confirmed Brenda Burman as the U.S. Department of the Interior Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner. She is the first woman to ever lead the Bureau.
 
“Finally! After more than 142 days, I'm excited to welcome Brenda Burman to lead the Bureau of Reclamation,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke. “Brenda is a veteran of the Bureau and her extensive experience on water projects across the country will be an incredible asset for the Department.

RCLC To Address Revenue Stabilization And Tax Policy Committee On Lab Prime Contractor GRT Issue

on November 19, 2017 - 3:50pm

RCLC News:

The Revenue Stabilization and Tax Policy Committee of the New Mexco Legislature is meeting Monday and Tuesday in room 322 at the State Capitol.

An important item for Los Alamos County, on the agenda at 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, is related to excluding prime contractors that operate national laboratories in New Mexico from paying Gross Receipts Tax (GRT).

Regional Coalition of LANL Communities (RCLC) Chair and Santa Fe Mayor Javier Gonzales and RCLC Executive Director Andrea Romero are scheduled to present information on a proposal to exclude prime contractors that operate national

Udall: Passage Of Major National Defense Bill Will Strengthen New Mexico and Nation

on November 19, 2017 - 6:20am
U.S. Sen. Tom Udall
 
U.S. SENATE News:

WASHINGTON — Thursday, U.S. Sen. Tom Udall joined the Senate in voting for final passage of a major national defense bill, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), to support troops and military families, and to strengthen national defense programs in New Mexico and across the country.
 
The bill, which will now be sent to the president, includes several measures that Udall has championed to benefit the national security mission being carried out at New Mexico’s national laboratories, military bases and installations, to strengthen the

New Mexico Delegation Calls On New Army Secretary To Bring Active Duty Mission To WSMR

on November 19, 2017 - 6:17am
CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  In a letter to incoming Secretary of the Army Mark Esper, U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and U.S. Representatives Steve Pearce (R-N.M.), Ben Ray Luján (D-N.M.) and Michelle Lujan Grisham (D-N.M.) urged him to consider White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) as a garrison host for a Security Force Assistance Brigade (SFAB), which could bring close to 500 Army officers to WSMR.
 
Secretary Esper was confirmed by the Senate on Wednesday afternoon.

NNSA Delivers Annual Reports To Congress On Progress Of Stockpile Stewardship, Nuclear Nonproliferation

on November 18, 2017 - 9:39pm
NNSA News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  Wednesday, the Department of Energy’s National Nuclear Security Administration (DOE/NNSA) released the Fiscal Year 2018 Stockpile Stewardship and Management Plan (SSMP) and the Prevent, Counter, and Respond—A Strategic Plan to Reduce Global Nuclear Threats (NPCR).
 
These annual reports to Congress outline the strategic direction for maintaining a safe, secure, and effective nuclear deterrent and for reducing the threat of nuclear proliferation and terrorism.

Balderas Announces Sen. Phil Griego Convicted On Five Counts In Corruption Trial

on November 18, 2017 - 7:44am
Attorney General Hector Balderas
 
AG News:
 
SANTA FE  Attorney General Hector Balderas announced Thursday that a Santa Fe jury found former Sen. Phil Griego guilty on five counts in the corruption trial prosecuted by the Office of the Attorney General.
 
After a two and half week trial, the jury found Griego guilty of Violation of Ethical Principles of Public Service, Violation of Ethical Principles of Public Service (Requesting or Receiving Thing of Value), Bribery, Fraud (Over $20,000), and Unlawful Interest in a Public Contract (Over $50).
 
The case involves the 2014 sale of

Heinrich Statement On DHS Decision To Accept DACA Applications Delayed By Postal Service

on November 17, 2017 - 8:49am
U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich
 
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) released the following statement regarding the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) decision to allow those rejected because of mail delays to resubmit their renewals for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). Senator Heinrich led a group of Democratic Senators in sending a letter to DHS calling on the department to take immediate action. 
 
“I’m pleased that Dreamers whose applications were rejected due to Postal Service delays will be able to resubmit their renewals for

Balderas Urges Congress To Repeal Law That Supports Opioid Oversupply & Handcuffs The DEA

on November 17, 2017 - 7:58am
Attorney General Hector Balderas 
 
AG News:
 
ALBUQUERQUE  Attorney General Hector Balderas sent a letter late Monday to congressional leaders, urging them to repeal a 2016 federal law so registered drug manufacturers and distributors who have willfully contributed to the nation’s oversupply of pain killers (opioids), can be held accountable.
 
The “Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act of 2016” (P.L. 114-145) has severely limited the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) response to the opioid crisis.

Heinrich, Flake, Shaheen Press DOD For Unpublished Domestic Violence Reporting Data

on November 16, 2017 - 7:29am
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Sens. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.), and Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) today sent a letter to the Defense Department (DOD) raising serious questions about how and where the agency is reporting domestic violence related convictions adjudicated in military court, and the recent FBI’s assertion that it cannot determine how many, if any, of these convictions have been reported to one of three databases used to prevent the sale of firearms to statutorily-barred individuals.
 
As the letter notes, currently available data shows only one

O’Leary: Council Approves MOU With NCRTD

on November 16, 2017 - 5:58am

By Vice Chair Susan O’Leary

Los Alamos County Council

In our consent agenda during Tuesday's Council meeting, we approved a request to provide North Central Regional Transit District with $350,000. This transit district serves a number of counties in Northern New Mexico and this funding is in addition to county funding for the county's Atomic City Bus service.

The Council agreed to this specific action in April as part of our budget process and tonight’s action was merely fulfilling that agreement. Reading tonight’s agenda documents, I was reminded that Los Alamos County has provided $7

Ray Powell Ends Bid For Land Commissioner ... Endorses Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard

on November 15, 2017 - 2:52pm

Ray Powell

POLITICAL News:

ALBUQUERQUE – Former Land Commissioner and current Democratic candidate for Land Commissioner Ray Powell today announced his decision to end his bid for Land Commissioner and endorsed Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard of Los Alamos.

Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard

Powell released the following statement:

“New Mexico’s land, animals, and working families are my love and passion. Working to protect their well-being is the reason I decided to run again for New Mexico State Land Commissioner. I want to let you know that I recently learned that I have a rare auto-immune

Lujan Grisham Votes To Pass Defense Policy Bill

on November 15, 2017 - 12:51pm
U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham
 
CONGRESSIONAL News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham voted Tuesday to pass the National Defense Authorization Act, which includes provisions that are important to the large national laboratory and military presence in New Mexico.
 
The defense policy bill includes critical funding for military bases and national laboratories, including 2.4-percent pay increases for service members.

Udall Urges Protection Of New Mexicans Right To Due Process, Opposes Civil Asset Forfeiture

on November 15, 2017 - 12:49pm
U.S. Sen. Tom Udall
 
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Sen. Tom Udall joined a bipartisan group of senators in urging a U.S. Senate Appropriations subcommittee to protect New Mexicans' constitutional due process rights by defunding the practice of seizing – without a hearing – property that law enforcement believes is connected to a crime.
 
The practice, known as civil asset forfeiture, violates due process protections outlined in the Fifth Amendment of the U.S.

Heinrich Questions DOD Nominees On Domestic Violence Reporting Loophole, Other Key Issues

on November 15, 2017 - 11:15am
U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich
 
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) participated in a Senate Armed Services Committee hearing to consider the nominations of Anthony Kurta to be Principal Deputy Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, James McPherson to be General Counsel of the Department of the Army, and Gregory Maggs to be a Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces.
 
 
During the hearing, Heinrich secured a commitment from Army

Pearce Votes To Increase Pay For Troops And Modernize Defense Department

on November 15, 2017 - 10:55am
U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce
 
U.S. CONGRESSIONAL News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce released the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives Tuesday passed the Conference Report to Accompany H.R. 2810, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2018:
 
“The NDAA is by far one of the most important pieces of legislation that comes before Congress each year. It authorizes crucial training, equipment, and resources our nation’s military relies upon to complete its mission.

Udall Leads Indian Affairs Committee Hearing On Safeguarding Tribal Objects Of Patrimony Act

on November 14, 2017 - 7:54am
U.S. Sen. Tom Udall
 
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Tom Udall, vice chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, led a legislative hearing to review the Safeguarding Tribal Objects of Patrimony (STOP) Act, a bill to curb the theft, illegal possession, sale, transfer, and export of Tribal cultural items.
 
Tribal cultural items have immense historical, traditional, and spiritual importance. It is illegal under federal law to own or sell Tribal cultural patrimony domestically, but federal law does not explicitly prohibit exportation abroad.

Los Alamos Democrats Host Monthly Meeting Tonight!

on November 13, 2017 - 8:15am

POLITICAL News:

The Democratic Party of Los Alamos is hosting its monthly meeting at 6:30 p.m. today at UNM-LA Building 05, 4000 University Dr.

Topics on the agenda include the organization's budget and plans for the upcoming 2018 campaign season.

Luján Introduces Two New Bills To Address Veterans

on November 13, 2017 - 6:18am
U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján
 
CONGRESSIONAL News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) has introduced two bills to address the needs of the nation’s veterans.
 
Luján’s bills would raise the minimum wage for veterans attending school through the GI Bill, and reauthorize a program that provides rental assistance to Native American veterans experiencing homelessness.
 
“As we gather this weekend in communities large and small to honor those who have served our country, we must remember that the true measure of how we honor our veterans will be determined by how we treat them

State Auditor Releases Audit Of UNM Athletics

on November 13, 2017 - 6:12am
 
State Auditor Tim Keller
 
STATE News:
 
ALBUQUERQUE  State Auditor Tim Keller released a special audit of the University of New Mexico (UNM) Athletics Department Friday and its related institutions including the UNM Foundation and the Lobo Club.
 
The Office of the State Auditor (OSA) initiated the audit in May after receiving multiple complaints from concerned citizens.

Luján Introduces Legislation To Improve Deployment Of High Speed Internet In New Mexico And Rural Areas

on November 12, 2017 - 8:12am
U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján
 
CONGRESSIONAL  News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján (D-NM) has introduced the Broadband Infrastructure Finance Innovation Act (BFIA), a bill that leverages public-private partnerships and uses a fresh approach to spur deployment of high-speed internet in New Mexico and other parts of the country.
 
Lujan’s bill is especially important for rural communities where broadband infrastructure often lags behind urban areas.
 
Luján’s bill will beef up low interest financing opportunities for public-private partnerships, as well as state and local

Udall, Heinrich Urge USDA To Use Clear, Consumer-Friendly On-Package GMO Labeling

on November 12, 2017 - 6:15am
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich have pressed the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to clearly label genetically engineered food to ensure all New Mexicans have the right to know what is in their food.
 
In a letter, the senators urged USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue to prioritize clear, consumer-friendly on-package text labels and discouraged the use of electronic codes and labeling that would require access to a smartphone or broadband internet and would not help the thousands of New Mexicans living in rural communities. 
 
“All

Luján: Thank Them For All They Do

on November 11, 2017 - 4:30pm

By U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján:

Today, we honor the brave men and women who have served in our armed forces, who stood guard for our nation at home and abroad, and who fought to protect our freedom and uphold our democracy. 

On Veterans Day, we thank them. We show gratitude to those who put the good of others ahead of their own. They risked life and limb to protect our country, and for that, we are eternally grateful.

Our freedoms should never be taken for granted and they all rest upon one fundamental truth: the ultimate price was paid innumerable times for our benefit. 

We, as a nation, are

Reporters Without Borders: After Lack Of Medical Care In Prison, Chinese Blogger Dies

on November 11, 2017 - 7:40am
RSF News:
 
Reporters Without Borders (RSF) is saddened to learn that the dissident Chinese writer and blogger Yang Tongyan died this week as a result of inadequate medical care while imprisoned for nearly 12 years by the Chinese state, suffering the same fate as Nobel peace laureate Liu Xiaobo.
 
Aged 56, Yang Tongyan died Nov. 7 after being “released on medical grounds” in August from Nanjing prison in the southeastern province of Jiangsu and undergoing an operation to remove a brain tumour.
 
A well-know member of the pro-democracy opposition who wrote under the pen name of Yang

Video: Secretary Zinke Honors Vietnam War Fallen

on November 11, 2017 - 7:30am
DOI News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  Wednesday, U.S. Secretary of the Interior and retired U.S. Navy SEAL Commander Ryan Zinke participated in the Reading of the Names and the Vietnam War Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.
 
The secretary read 60 names. The event marks the 35th anniversary of The Wall. It spans three days and features over 1,000 volunteers reading every name of the fallen who are enshrined on The Wall.

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