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Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 3:20 p.m. MDT


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Progressive mayors have won second terms in both Albuquerque and Santa Fe amid concerns about urban crime and a state capital in the throws of rapid growth. Uncertified election results showed Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller winning 56% of the vote to defeat a Democratic sheriff and conservative talk show host. Publishing entrepreneur and Santa Fe Mayor Alan Webber won almost 55% in uncertified results, defeating a Democratic city council member and a Republican who flouted local mask requirements last year. Tuesday's elections were a preamble to statewide and congressional contests in 2022, including a reelection bid by Democratic Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico health are applauding the federal government's move to clear the way for COVID-19 vaccinations for children ages 5 to 11. Deputy Health Secretary Dr. Laura Parajon said Wednesday that children who don't get the shots will remain vulnerable. About one-quarter of the confirmed coronavirus infection cases reported in New Mexico over the past week were among children. But there are still many parents who have been reticent about getting their children inoculated. Almost two-thirds of U.S. parents polled recently by the Kaiser Family Foundation said they would either wait or not seek out the vaccines for their kids. 


McALLEN, Texas (AP) — President Joe Biden recognized migration flows would spike if he scrapped his predecessor's hardline border policies without a new asylum system in place. He was prepared for traffic to return to highs of 2019, but arrivals exceeded expectations almost immediately. Some issues could not have been predicted, and major structural problems predate him. But a review of the past year by The Associated Press and AIM Media Texas shows Biden, surrounded by many immigration advocates, was unprepared for the challenge, which included record arrivals in the Rio Grande Valley and a camp of about 15,000 mostly Haitian refugees in a small Texas border town.


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A hearing examiner is recommending that New Mexico regulators reject a proposed merger involving the state's largest utility, Public Service Co. of New Mexico, with Spanish energy giant Iberdrola. The recommendation by Public Regulation Commission hearing examiner Ashley Schannauer says the potential downsides of the merger outweigh the benefits. Under the merger, Connecticut-based Avangrid and parent firm Iberdrola would acquire PNM Resources and its subsidiaries. If approved, the $4.3 billion transaction would affect about 800,000 homes and businesses. Critics have sounded the alarm over the proposal, citing a sordid track record of reliability and customer service by Avangrid.


BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Interior Department is preparing to offer oil and gas lease sales on large tracts of public land despite concluding that burning fossil fuels from those parcels could carry huge costs and contribute to climate change. Burning oil, natural gas and coal from federally owned lands accounts for about 20% of energy-related U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. But officials with the Biden administration's Bureau of Land Management say in newly released planning documents that they can't accurately determine the climate impacts from upcoming oil and gas lease sales in western states. Officials proposed delaying sales of some tracts in Wyoming, Colorado and other states over concerns drilling could harm wildlife.


Federal judges have a thorny question to consider when they sentence military veterans who stormed the U.S. Capitol in January. Do they deserve leniency because they served their country or tougher punishment because they swore an oath to defend it? The Justice Department has adopted the tougher position. In at least five cases, prosecutors have argued that a rioter's military service weighs in favor of a jail sentence or house arrest because it made their actions on Jan. 6 more egregious. An Associated Press review of Capitol riot court records shows that at least three of two dozen sentenced defendants so far are veterans.


HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — Todd Bailey, editor of the Hobbs News-Sun, died Sunday of cancer. He was 49. News-Sun Publisher Daniel Russell wrote in a front-page column that Bailey was surrounded by family when he died in the community that he loved and that loved him. Bailey grew up in Hobbs. He began his newspaper career there and returned to the News-Sun in 2012 after stints with other newspapers. Bailey was diagnosed with cancer in his left leg in 2020, leading to an amputation that fall. Just recently, cancer had spread to his lungs. Bailey's sister said plans are pending for memorials in Hobbs and Albuquerque. 


PHOENIX (AP) — Tribal grassroots groups say the Arizona Corporation Commission has approved a portion of the recommended funding for tribal and rural communities to transition from coal economies. Navajo grassroots groups say a judge overseeing the proceedings had recommended a minimum payment of $50 million to the Navajo Nation, nearly $1.7 million to the Hopi Tribe and $5 million to Navajo County communities. But the groups say the commission voted Tuesday to give the communities far less. The commission is meeting this week as part of proceedings for a rate increase request from Arizona Public Service Co.