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

  • SCHOOLS-CYBERATTACKS

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Cybersecurity experts say that ransomware attacks on K-12 schools have increased during the pandemic. Cyberattacks have crippled schools in recent weeks as teachers become more reliant on computers to take attendance and deliver lessons. Before the pandemic, cyber hacks of schools rarely led to canceled classes. Snow days are less frequent because children can learn from home when there's bad weather. But this month at least two schools in New Mexico and Wisconsin took "cyber snow days," canceling classes to repair the damage from attacks by hackers. Disruptions of software used to record attendance and grades make teaching even more stressful on top of COVID-19 protocols and staffing shortages. 

  • EDUCATION INDIGENOUS FUNDING

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Legislature is once again considering a suite of bills that would increase funding for Native American tribal education departments and tribal libraries. The measures are backed by tribal leaders frustrated with slow progress by the state. The school and library funding bills advanced on Monday from the House Education Committee. Supporters say the bills would help the state to satisfy a court order to improve education for Native American students. Critics are raising questions about how the effectiveness of the spending would be tracked. A third bill focusing on higher education funding for Native American teachers is also under discussion.

  • SANTA FE AIRPORT EXPANSION

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The Santa Fe Regional Airport is set to embark on the first phase of a long-planned expansion.The Albuquerque Journal reported Monday that Bradbury Stamm Construction of Albuquerque will officially break ground after the results of a utility survey, which is currently in the process. Construction is anticipated to take 12-14 months. The expansion, with a $21.5 million price tag, will include doubling the terminal size and creating a bigger parking lot. Airport officials say the airport has seen its passenger traffic nearly double from 93,000 in 2017 to 175,000 in 2019. The airport was originally designed by Santa Fe architect John Gaw Meem. 

  • BC-NM-ALBUQUERQUE SHOOTING

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Police in Albuquerque say they are investigating a shooting in the southwest part of the city. They say the shooting occurred early Sunday morning in a neighborhood. One person was taken to a hospital for treatment, but police didn't immediately release the victim's name or condition or the circumstances that led to the shooting.

  • BC-NM-VIRUS OUTBREAK-AT HOME TESTS

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Some 80,000 at-home COVID-19 tests are beginning to be handed out by city officials in areas of Albuquerque determined to need them the most. The supplies are from the federal government and the distribution has started in areas of high social vulnerability. KOB-TV reports that the Barelas Senior Center was one of the first stops. Each person who wanted the at-home tests were getting four kits, which is eight COVID-19 tests total. Albuquerque has 25 locations designated for distribution, including community centers, libraries, and local organizations. City officials say that there eventually will be test instructions in 12 different languages. 

  • LAWMAKER RESIGNS-REPLACEMENT

ALBUQUERQUE, N/M. (AP) — With the New Mexico Legislative in session, Bernalillo County commissioners are on a fast track to replace a Democratic lawmaker who resigned her House seat representing an Albuquerque district. A day after Rep. Brittney Barreras announced her resignation to focus on her mental health, the county announced Saturday that the County Commission will hold a special meeting Wednesday to appoint a replacement for Barreras. The county said the deadline to submit applications is 5 p.m. Tuesday. Barreras was halfway through her first term when she abruptly announced her resignation through a statement issued by the Democratic caucus. 

  • REFUGEES-NEW MEXICO BASE

ALAMOGORDO, N.M. (AP) — The last Afghan refugees have departed Holloman Air Force Base where they were temporarily housed while being resettled in the United States after being relocated following the U.S. military's withdrawal from their home country. Base officials said a tent city at Holloman sheltered a total of nearly 7,100 Afghans during the five months since the first arrived Aug. 31. The last refugees at departed Wednesday from Holloman where Aman Omid Village housed a rolling average of about 4,500 Afghan refugees. Holloman was one of eight U.S. military installations used for Operation Allies Welcome. Refugees remain at four of the bases.

  • WANDERING WOLF-SHOT

SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — An endangered Mexican gray wolf that drew media attention late last year after it appeared to spend five days pacing along the border fence separating New Mexico from Mexico has been found with a serious gunshot wound. The Center for Biological Diversity announced Friday evening that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service used a helicopter to track the injured wolf and used a tranquilizer dart to sedate it. The animal called "Mr. Goodbar" was then taken to the Albuquerque BioPark Zoo and veterinarians planned to amputate part or all of its injured leg. Michael Robinson of the Center for Biological Diversity says the wolf will probably be released back to the wild after it recovers.