Latest New Mexico news, sports, business and entertainment at 11:20 a.m. MDT

Jun 8, 2021

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich is weighing in on a long-running dispute in New Mexico over public access to rivers and streams that flow through private property. The Democratic lawmaker is urging a panel of state officials to deny pending applications from landowners seeking certifications that would allow them to prohibit access. In a letter to the state Game Commission, Heinrich wrote that granting the applications would open the door to giving wealthy private landowners control over every watercourse in New Mexico and would violate state law. The commission is set to consider the applications at a special meeting June 18.


SAN DIEGO (AP) — The Biden administration says it has identified more than 3,900 children separated from their parents at the U.S.-Mexico border under former President Donald Trump's "zero-tolerance" policy on illegal crossings. The Family Reunification Task Force report issued Tuesday provides one of the more detailed accounts of a chapter in U.S. immigration history that drew widespread condemnation. The Biden administration is reviewing additional cases, which means the final count may be higher. Its report provides data that hasn't been previously released. Nearly 60% of children separated under the zero-tolerance policy were Guatemalan. The Border Patrol's Yuma, Arizona, sector recorded the highest number of separations.


BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — President Joe Biden's nominee to oversee vast expanses of public lands in the U.S. West is encountering Republican pushback over her involvement in partisan politics as a longtime Democratic aide and environmentalist. Tracy Stone-Manning has been nominated to serve as director of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. During a Tuesday hearing, Republicans questioned if the former chief of staff to former Montana Gov. Steve Bullock could work across party lines. Stone-Manning said she would honor the outcome of the 2020 election after backing Bullock in his failed bid to unseat Republican Sen. Steve Daines.


AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — It had been six years since Glenda Valdez said goodbye to her 3-year-old daughter, Emely, in Honduras. Then, last month, she caught a glimpse of a televised AP photo of a little girl in a red hoodie and knew that Emely had made the trip alone into the United States. On Sunday,  the child was returned to her mother's custody in Texas. Now, they wait for judges to decide the girl's fate in the United States. Her mother says the plan is to remain together forever.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The mayor of Albuquerque plans to release details this month of a plan to invest $1 million in the city's Black community. The Albuquerque Journal reported Monday that Mayor Tim Keller will elaborate on the investment program during the city's Juneteenth Festival. It's been a year since Keller first proposed funding for Black-owned businesses in response to the racial reckoning sparked by the killing of George Floyd in May 2020.The prop osal was approved by the Albuquerque City Council after lengthy talks about how the money would be allocated. A city spokeswoman, told the newspaper the city has been working closely with the Black business community and other partners on a plan.


ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — U.S. wildlife managers say they have placed a record 22 captive-born Mexican gray wolf pups into dens in the wild to be raised by surrogate packs. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service made the announcement Monday, calling this year's cross-fostering season a success. Officials have said the fostering program has helped to boost the genetic diversity of the wild population in Arizona and New Mexico. Some environmentalists say the fate of many of the cross-fostered wolves released over the last four years is unknown and that federal officials should release family groups instead. Ranchers also remain concerned about the effects of the endangered predators on livestock.


SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The state Supreme Court says that New Mexico has no obligation to compensate businesses for financial losses and expenses due to emergency health orders during the COVID-19 pandemic. The unanimous opinion on Monday scuttles about 20 lawsuits filed last year in district court. The original plaintiffs argued that aggressive health restrictions from the governor's administration constituted a regulatory taking much like the taking of land for public works projects. The governor urged the Supreme Court to block the lawsuits. Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has signed into law a variety of temporary grants, minimal-interest loans and tax breaks on businesses in response the pandemic.


CARSON CITY, Nev. (AP) — Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak has signed legislation to make the state the first in the U.S. to ban certain kinds of grass. The measure signed Friday will ban water users in southern Nevada from planting decorative grass so they conserve water. The grass ban starting in 2027 applies to office parks, entrances to housing developments and street medians. But it does not apply to single-family homes or parks. Water officials say the ban will eliminate about 31% of the grass in the region. The ban comes as western states that rely on the Colorado River for water prepare for the federal government to issue its first-ever official shortage declaration.