Archives for May 2015

WIPP’s environmental safety plan recertified

WIPP’s environmental management syetem has received recertification.

Independent contractors have conducted an audit through the DOE.

The Current-Argus reports these auditors have examined 17 components at WIPP that define its program.

Parts of this include the facility replacing half of the recycling bins to include color coding for imporved recycling categories.

The plan also includes finishing the interim ventilation system, which may improve air quality in the WIPP underground.

Legislative education study committee needs new leader

The director of the New Mexico Legislative Education Study Committee has decided to retire at the end of the year.

Frances Ramirez-Maestas has informed the committee of her plan to resign as leader of the panel that studies educational issues and recommends public education funding levels.

Lottery scholarships getting a leg up

Expect more assistance for New Mexico’s lottery scholarships because of higher lottery revenues.

The New Mexico Higher Education Department says the in-state tuition assistance for students should cover 90 percent of tuition costs next school year.

Tricarico’s appeal denied, county to put lien on property

Time has run out for Rod Tricarico.

Chaves County commissioners have decided to move forward with a cleanup of his property, and to place a lien on it for the costs.

Tricarico’s property sits at North Main Street and East Gallina Road.

County leaders ordered him to clean it up last month.

The property has several partially deconstructed mobile homes and debris.

A resolution describes it as “a menace to the public health, safety and general welfare.”

Several commissioners have told the Roswell Daily Record that they have run out of patience with Tricarico.

Lincoln Co. moves forward on LCMC renovation process

Making over Lincoln County Medical Center has moved forward.

The Ruidoso News reports county commissioners have authorized the manager to work with RBC Capital Market on how to take the next step.

The commissioner continues thinking of ways to finance the hospital’s expansion and renovation.

Unemployment rate rises

New Mexico’s unemployment rate has risen to 6.2 percent.

That represents a slight uptick from the previous month.

However, the state has continued a long string of over-the-year job growth.

The Department of Workforce Solutions says the economy has added 12,600 nonform jobs compared to the same time last year.

It calls this month the 32nd consecutive month in New Mexico with over-the-year employment growth.

The construction and financial activity sectors have lost jobs, but all of the others report gains.

Udall says normal relations with Cuba “weeks away”

Sen. Tom Udall sees the United States and Cuba just weeks away from full diplomatic relations.

The movement towards full relations began with a detente in December.

While leading a congressional delegation to Cuba, Udall calls the steps leading to that goal nearly complete.

He also says bipartisan support continues building in Congress to removing, at the very least, some elements of the embargo that has blocked commerce with Cuba for five decades.

Members of Congress in both parties now support ending at least some of the embargo’s elements.

Light offers to donate money for seating at Cavern City Theater

A former state lawmaker and county commissioner has helped the Cavern City Theater.

Bob Light has offered to donate money to buy seating for it.

This follows Light donating the theater to Carlsbad last year.

The total cost estimate for renovating the theater runs

The Current-Argus reports a task force the mayor assembled continues looking for more funding sources.

The goals include asbestos removal, applying for grant money, and creating a nonprofit support organization to receive funds.

Task force chairman Ken Britt mentions developing a social media presence among other goals.

Investigation continues into death of child pulled from pool

Investigators continue debating whether or not to file any charges following a drowning in Roswell.

The Roswell Daily Record reports a two-year-old girl died after an incident involving an above ground pool in a backyard.

A 911 call yesterday morning informed police the girl’s father had taken a nap after working the night shift.

He found the toddler, and she apparently had blue lips and pruned fingers.

Officials at Eastern New Mexico Medical Center pronounced her dead.

Todd Wildermuth from the police department says officers took the father into custody on an unrelated warrant.

County approves $600M bond

County commissioners have approved a $600 million industrial revenue bond.

A private company must pay back this bond.

Enterprise Products in February announced plans to build a natural gas processing plan 17 miles outside Loving.

While building the plant costs just $412 million, the bond sells for the higher amount because of the interest.

The bond keeps the company exempt from some taxes. It also gives it incentive to keep building the project in Eddy County.

The Current-Argus reports Enterprise may bring 250 jobs to the county over the next couple years.