Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 6:20 a.m. MDT
New Mexico GOP seeks to overturn congressional map
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Attorneys for the Republican Party of New Mexico are urging a state district court judge to throw out a congressional map that divvies up the conservative southeast of the state into three congressional districts. The lawsuit by the GOP and seven allied plaintiffs holds implications for a congressional swing district in southern New Mexico where Republican Yvette Herrell ousted a first-term Democrat in the 2020 election. GOP attorney Christopher Murray argued Monday that the congressional map from Democratic lawmakers dilutes the conservative vote and violates state constitutional rights to impartial government. Attorneys for the Legislature and governor defended the state's redistricting as properly vetted.
NMSU ending option of COVID-19 testing; vaccination required
LAS CRUCES, N.M (AP) — New Mexico State University will require all students on campus to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by July 1, ending the option of submitting weekly tests as an alternative. Chancellor Dan Arvizu also said in a memo to students, faculty and staff Monday that NMSU no longer will require weekly testing for students and employees who decided against getting a booster or received an exemption from vaccination. The new policy applies to all branch colleges, It requires new and/or transfer students to provide their COVID-19 vaccination records or an approved exemption by Aug. 1. Arvizu said more than 91% of students and 99% of faculty are now vaccinated.
Santa Fe's transparency regulations withstand final appeal
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to hear a challenge to Santa Fe campaign disclosure requirements stemming from a failed city ballot initiative in 2017 to tax sugary beverages. The Supreme Court decision Monday upholds the rejection of a lawsuit from the Rio Grande Foundation that sought to shield future financial contributions from public disclosure, in defiance of requirements enacted by the city of Santa Fe. The failed city ballot initiative to fund early childhood education was marked by millions of dollars in campaign spending.
US wildlife officials aim to address illegal wolf killings
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Prompted by a court order, federal wildlife managers have issued a new draft plan for managing Mexican gray wolves in the Southwestern U.S. The changes aim to address illegal killings of the endangered predators through education, outreach and other means. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently reported that the Mexican wolf population marked another year of growth but that illegal killings are among the factors that have tempered that growth. Meanwhile, managers also struggle to curb wolf-livestock conflicts. Ranchers in Arizona and New Mexico say wolves are killing cattle despite efforts to scare the animals away from their herds.
Hobbs woman OK after being attacked by 5 pit bulls
HOBBS, N.M. (AP) — A Hobbs woman is recovering after police say she was mauled by five dogs. Hobbs police said in a news release Monday the 46-year-old woman was recuperating at home. The incident happened Saturday after she was dropped off at a friend's house. Police determined she had been walking when five pit bulls attacked her. Investigators say the woman fended the dogs off with a knife. One pit bull was found dead. A second was euthanized by animal control officers at the scene. The remaining pit bulls are being quarantined and will be euthanized. The dogs' 61-year-old owner has received several citations for having animals loose.
Police deny permit requests from Albuquerque 4/20 festival
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Organizers of an Albuquerque festival for 4/20, the date known for celebrating marijuana, have had two permits denied by local police. The 420 Fest, scheduled for Wednesday in downtown Albuquerque, had submitted permit requests for streets to be blocked off. A New Mexico 420 Fest organizer told KOB-TV that she and her team have been communicating with the city about this since June. A police spokesman said the request was rejected because the department doesn't have the manpower to block off streets in the middle of the work week. This month New Mexico joined 17 other states that have legalized recreation marijuana.
Migrant crossings spike as US plans to lift curb on asylum
WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of migrants attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border has surged in recent weeks as the U.S. prepares for even larger numbers with the expected lifting of a pandemic-era order that turned away asylum seekers. Immigration authorities stopped migrants 221,303 times along the Southwest border in March, a 34% increase from the month earlier and the highest in nearly two decades. U.S. Customs and Border Protection filed the data with a federal court in Texas. CBP was expected to publicly release the monthly statistics soon, before the looming expiration of a public health order that enabled U.S. authorities to turn back most migrants, including people seeking asylum.
Roswell police: 2 teens found dead at park in homicide case
ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — Police say two teenagers have been fatally shot at a Roswell park and it's being investigated as a homicide. They say the boys _ ages 15 and 16 _ were found dead at Cahoon Park. Their names are not immediately available. Police believe the teens were at the park to purchase a gun. They say officers were called to the scene around 5 p.m. Saturday According to investigators, the two teens were in a parked car when another car arrived. Police say multiple people got out of the second car and at least two people shot at the teenagers. They say one of the victims was found inside the vehicle and another was on the ground nearby. Police say they still are searching for suspects in the case.