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Local and State News

  • FILM-COMEBACK TRAIL

Big names headed to New Mexico to film 'The Comeback Trail'SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Oscar winners Robert De Niro, Tommy Lee Jones and Morgan Freeman soon will be on their way to New Mexico to start work on "The Comeback Trail."The feature film will begin shooting in early June in Albuquerque, Tojajilee and other locations. Work is expected to last about a month and will include more than a dozen New Mexico actors and about 300 extras.Directed by George Gallo, the film is about two movie producers who owe money to the mob.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A woman who oversees regulatory compliance at a private medical practice in southern New Mexico has been named to the state's fledgling ethics commission.Republican House minority leader James Townsend announced Thursday his appointment of Judy Villanueva of Carlsbad to the seven-member commission.A news release says Villanueva previously held administrative posts at Texas Tech University and El Paso Community College. Townsend credits Villanueva with being fair and thorough.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Oscar winners Robert De Niro, Tommy Lee Jones and Morgan Freeman soon will be on their way to New Mexico to start work on "The Comeback Trail."The feature film will begin shooting in early June in Albuquerque, Tojajilee and other locations. Work is expected to last about a month and will include more than a dozen New Mexico actors and about 300 extras.Directed by George Gallo, the film is about two movie producers who owe money to the mob.

  • SUPREME COURT-MURDER CASE

Court upholds Albuquerque man's 2nd-degree murder conviction
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Supreme Court has upheld the second-degree murder conviction of an Albuquerque man for a fatal shooting in a dispute over a $30 drug debt.
But the state's high court threw out a first-degree felony murder conviction for the same killing.
Jason Comitz was sentenced to life in prison plus an additional 15 years for the murder and other crimes during the shooting at the home of Paul Randy Rael in February 2015.

By MORGAN LEE Associated Press
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's congressional delegation appears to be in no hurry to initiate impeachment hearings against President Donald Trump.
Two of the state's three House representatives — all Democrats — indicate they favor tough oversight of the president without endorsing impeachment hearings, while a third declined to state her position.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Supreme Court has upheld the second-degree murder conviction of an Albuquerque man for a fatal shooting in a dispute over a $30 drug debt.
But the state's high court threw out a first-degree felony murder conviction for the same killing.
Jason Comitz was sentenced to life in prison plus an additional 15 years for the murder and other crimes during the shooting at the home of Paul Randy Rael in February 2015.
Rael died and his son and stepson were wounded.

LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — A Las Cruces man has been sentenced to nine years in prison in a vehicular homicide case.
Prosecutors say 40-year-old Angel Saenz also must serve three years of probation with 100 hours of community service in the 2017 death of his ex-girlfriend Sonia Castillo.
He faced charges of homicide by vehicle and knowingly leaving the scene of an accident.
Saenz was convicted for running over the 42-year-old Castillo with his pickup truck in December 2017.
Authorities say Castillo died at a hospital from multiple injuries sustained in the incident.

  • NEW MEXICO SETTLEMENTS

Agreements prompt review of New Mexico's settlement system(Information from: KRQE-TV, http://www.krqe.com)SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Questions about $1.7 million in payouts by New Mexico to settle legal claims have prompted a review of policies and procedures regarding such agreements.Albuquerque television station KRQE reports the settlements were made near the end of former Gov. Susana Martinez's administration.

  • ENDANGERED WOLVES-ILLEGAL KILLINGS

Politics, killings stifle wolf recovery amid hefty price tagRALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — Illegal killings and political resistance have undercut the return of two species of endangered wolves despite more than $80 million in government spending.Wildlife officials warn the red wolves of North Carolina could be gone from the wild within a decade.

  • GENDER NEUTRAL RULEBOOKS-NEW MEXICO

She can take it, but not 'him': Gender-specific nouns nixedSANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The first female to oversee New Mexico's multibillion-dollar mineral resources is proposing to do away with gender-specific pronouns such as "he," ''his" or "him" in state agency rulebooks.Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard says her agency will hold a public hearing Friday in Santa Fe on the proposed changes.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Secretary of State and U.S. Senate candidate Maggie Toulouse Oliver says it's time for Congress to start impeachment proceedings against President Trump over concerns about obstruction of justice.Toulouse Oliver said Wednesday in a statement that it's time to hold the president accountable for possible obstruction of justice and that there is more than enough evidence to move forward with the impeachment process.The rival contender for the Democratic nomination is U.S.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The first female to oversee New Mexico's multibillion-dollar mineral resources is proposing to do away with gender-specific pronouns such as "he," ''his" or "him" in state agency rulebooks.Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard says her agency will hold a public hearing Friday in Santa Fe on the proposed changes. Gender-specific pronouns would be replaced by more neutral or specific references.Garcia Richard says current agency rules use male pronouns throughout to refer to her position.

  • PRETRIAL DETENTION -NEW MEXICO

DA wants changes to New Mexico's pretrial detention systemALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The top prosecutor in New Mexico's busiest court district is calling for another constitutional amendment that would further change how judges decide who remains jailed before trial.Bernalillo County District Attorney Raul Torrez said Tuesday that the current system under a 2016 voter-approved amendment has been successful in ensuring fewer petty and low-level criminals are jailed.

WINDOW ROCK, Ariz. (AP) — U.S.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Military Museum has temporarily closed its indoor space to prepare for new exhibits commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Vietnam War and women serving in World War I.The museum plans to re-open in July.Until then, the outdoor World War I exhibit, the vehicle and equipment park and meditation gardens will remain open to the public.Officials say the closure also will allow for renovations.The New Mexico National Guard and the museum recently procured a traveling replica of the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington, D.C.

  • PRETRIAL DETENTION -NEW MEXICO

DA wants changes to New Mexico's pretrial detention systemALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The top prosecutor in New Mexico's busiest court district is calling for another constitutional amendment that would further change how judges decide who remains jailed before trial.Bernalillo County District Attorney Raul Torrez said Tuesday that the current system under a 2016 voter-approved amendment has been successful in ensuring fewer petty and low-level criminals are jailed.

HOUSTON (AP) — U.S. border agents have temporarily closed their primary facility for processing migrants in South Texas one day after authorities say a 16-year-old died after being diagnosed with the flu at the facility.In a statement released late Tuesday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said it would stop detaining migrants at its processing center in McAllen, Texas. CBP says "a large number" of people in custody were found Tuesday to have high fevers.

  • COAL ASH-NEW MEXICO

Coal ash contamination on agenda of PNM shareholdersALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A group of shareholders wants the state's largest electric provider to prepare a report on how the investor-owned utility plans to deal with waste generated by its coal-fired power plant in northwestern New Mexico.The shareholders say the San Juan Generating Station produced more than 1 million tons of coal ash in 2017. It's used to backfill the mine that feeds the plant, but they have concerns about future liabilities , citing contamination in other states.U.S.

Republicans say New Mexico should re-deploy border troops

May 21, 2019

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A dozen Republican state legislators want Democratic Gov.

  • NEW MEXICO-ACCIDENT BILLS

New Mexico mayor's plan would charge for emergency costs(Information from: Albuquerque Journal, http://www.abqjournal.com)ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (AP) — A New Mexico mayor has proposed billing drivers involved in car accidents resulting in hazardous material cleanup or victim extractions.The Albuquerque Journal reported Saturday that Mayor Tim Keller's budget proposal for fiscal year 2020 includes a new "cost recovery" channel for Albuquerque Fire Rescue.The proposed update of the city's fire code ordinance says fees would range f

ALBUQUERQUE, New Mexico (AP) — A New Mexico mayor has proposed billing drivers involved in car accidents resulting in hazardous material cleanup or victim extractions.The Albuquerque Journal reported Saturday that Mayor Tim Keller's budget proposal for fiscal year 2020 includes a new "cost recovery" channel for Albuquerque Fire Rescue.The proposed update of the city's fire code ordinance says fees would range from $400 for hazard mitigation and cleanup to $1,305 for use of "heavy rescue tools and other equipment" to remove victims from vehicles.Officials say the department could also bill $

  • LITTLE LEAGUE-HYPODERMIC NEEDLES

New Mexico little league park plagued by hypodermic needles
(Information from: Albuquerque Journal, http://www.abqjournal.com)
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico little league park is fighting a battle against discarded syringes with attached hypodermic needles amid the region's outgoing opioid epidemic.
The Albuquerque Journal reports Atrisco Park, home of the Atrisco Valley Little League, in Albuquerque is racing to clean up syringes littering fields and the ground.

  • NAVAJO NATION-ELECTRICITY

No longer in the dark: Navajo Nation homes get electricityKAIBETO, Ariz. (AP) — A project to connect homes on the country's largest American Indian reservation to the electric grid is wrapping up.Utility crews from across the U.S. have volunteered their time from March through May to hook up about 300 Navajo Nation homes.The Navajo Tribal Utility Authority typically connects from 400 to 450 homes per year.

By SUSAN MONTOYA BRYAN Associated PressALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Proponents of New Mexico's energy industry say emails exchanged among environmentalists and a key member of Gov.

  • FACEBOOK DATA CENTER

New Mexico panel rejects reconsideration of Facebook billSANTA FE, N.M.

  • LAWYER DISCIPLINED

New Mexico high court suspends lawyer for disregarding rulesSANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Supreme Court has suspended an Albuquerque attorney's law license for at least 18 months for failing to obey court rules and an initial disciplinary order.The justices' unanimous opinion Thursday says Daniel M.

By MORGAN LEE Associated PressSANTA FE, N.M.

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