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Local news and weather for Las Cruces, El Paso, Alamogordo, Silver City, Ruidoso, Anthony, Cloudcroft, Deming, Truth or Consequences, Elephant Butte, and all of Southern New Mexico and Far West Texas.

Facebook / White House

  WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump spent a decade unsuccessfully pursuing projects in China, operating an office there during his first run for president and forging a partnership with a major government-controlled company. That's according to a report in The New York Times Tuesday. China is one of only three foreign nations — the others are Britain and Ireland — where Trump maintains a bank account, according to a Times analysis of the president’s tax records. The foreign accounts do not show up on Trump’s public financial disclosures, where he must list personal assets, because they are held under corporate names.

On your ballot this fall, you’ll see some judges in contested elections, and others up for what’s called judicial retention. That’s because after a judge is appointed, they must run in a partisan election. After their first term, in order to stay on the bench, they just need 57% of voters to approve. For voters unsure of whether to check ‘yes’ or ‘no’ on a judge, the volunteer Judicial Performance Evaluation Commission (JPEC) was charged by the state Supreme Court to make recommendations on judicial retention. JPEC vice chair and retired district judge Jim Hall says the panel evaluates each judge in four major areas. 

Department of Energy

  ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — State environmental regulators are reviewing an application from the federal government to renew its permit to operate the nation's only underground nuclear waste repository in southern New Mexico. It will be next year before a final decision made, but watchdog groups raised concerns with state lawmakers during a meeting Wednesday. They say the U.S. Energy Department wants to make operations at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant open-ended, removing any reference in the permit to 2024 as the date when closure and decommissioning were supposed to start. They say allowing the change will mark another step toward solidifying New Mexico as the nation's dumping ground for nuclear waste.

  A voting rights group says that caravans of flag-waving President Donald Trump supporters appeared to obstruct and intimidate voters at two polling location in predominantly ethnic-minority neighborhoods last weekend in the Albuquerque area. Common Cause New Mexico Director Heather Ferguson said Wednesday that the incidents took place on the first day of balloting at voter convenience centers in the South Valley area and the western reaches of Central Avenue. The areas are heavily Latino. She estimates that dozens of potential voters in each location left without voting as a result of the incidents. Local prosecutors say they are investigating.

El Paso's Workforce Solutions Borderplex Closes All Centers

48 minutes ago

In response to concerns related to the surge of Coronavirus (COVID-19) cases, Workforce Solutions Borderplex (WSB) announces that all job centers will be closing effective immediately.  All centers will be closed to the public and resource rooms will no longer be available for internet, printing and computer access.   WSB is still eager to assist with case management and job assistance, but all support will be handled virtually. 

For updates, please visit the WSB resource website at www.borderplexjobs.com/covid-19 or email WSB at callcenter@borderplexjobs.com.  The general WSB website, www.borderplexjobs.com, also serves clients through its chatbot feature on the bottom right corner of the page.

New Mexico COVID-19 update: 827 new cases, totaling 38,715

4 hours ago

SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials on Wednesday announced 827 additional COVID-19 cases and 8 deaths.

As of today, there are 202 individuals hospitalized in New Mexico for COVID-19. This number may include individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 out of state but are currently hospitalized in New Mexico. This number does not include New Mexicans who tested positive for COVID-19 and may have been transferred to a hospital out of state.

John Swicinski

Second grade teacher John Swicinski will be the first to tell you of the positive strides being made within the education system this year.

“I think the overall positive effect is COVID caused our administrators, our state, the government to start spending more money so that every single kid has a computer now,” Swicinski said. “Prior to that, I had five computers I shared with 20 kids, and rotated them every day. Now each child has their own computer.”

Yet, for all the new technology, the Truth or Consequences Elementary School teacher will freely admit to the struggles many in the teaching community have been facing during the pandemic.

Sierra County, NM - On Tuesday at approximately 10:45 p.m., New Mexico State Police officers were requested by the United States Border Patrol for assistance in apprehending a male subject driving a black passenger car that had fled from the U.S Border Patrol checkpoint located on Interstate 25 near milepost 26 north of Las Cruces, NM.

In an attempt to safely stop the fleeing vehicle, a New Mexico State Police officer and a Sierra County Sheriff’s deputy deployed tire deflation devices near milepost 68 on Interstate 25. The suspect drove the vehicle over the tire deflation devices but continued to flee north on Interstate 25.

Election 2020 – NM State Representative District 36

6 hours ago

Election 2020: State Representative District 36 with moderators Fred Martino from KRWG and Dale Yeo from the League of Women Voters of Southern New Mexico. The show features Democrat Nathan Small. The Republican candidate Brandi Polanco declined the invitation. 

Election 2020 – NM State Representative District 35

6 hours ago

Election 2020: State Representative District 35 with moderators Fred Martino from KRWG and Dale Yeo from the League of Women Voters of Southern New Mexico. The show features Democrat Angelica Rubio and Republican Richelle Ponder.

  SANTA FE – New Mexico has been awarded two federal grants: $6 million from the Department of Justice to support those impacted by illicit opioids, stimulants and other drugs of abuse and, $3.6 million from the Federal Emergency Management Agency to address the growing behavioral health needs of the homeless and justice-involved population impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, the New Mexico Human Services Department announced today.

 

“These two grants will help the state and local providers respond to the pressing behavioral health needs of so many New Mexicans who are facing difficult challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Dr. Neal Bowen director for the Behavioral Health Services Division.

 

Las Cruces Museum System Temporary Closure

6 hours ago

Consistent with the latest public health recommendations from the Governor’s office, the Las Cruces Museums has opted to close to the public effective October 23 through November 14, 2020.
 
The Branigan Cultural Center, Las Cruces Museum of Art, Museum of Nature & Science, and Railroad Museum are closing to on-site visitation temporarily in our ongoing effort to minimize the risk of community spread of the COVID-19 virus. We continue to offer free programs and experiences online via our Facebook and Instagram @LCMuseums. You can also find activities on our website at museums.las-cruces.org.
 

pnm.com

  ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The parent company of New Mexico's largest electric utility will become part of energy giant Iberdrola's global holdings under a multibillion-dollar merger. Under the agreement announced Wednesday, Iberdrola's majority-owned U.S. subsidiary Avangrid will acquire PNM Resources. Officials say the transaction is part of Iberdrola's strategy for investing in regions where regulations related to renewable energy are stable and offer opportunities for growth. New Mexico in 2019 adopted ambitious mandates to become carbon-free by 2045, and Public Service Co. of New Mexico has vowed to meet that standard by 2040 through the addition of more solar generation and battery storage. The deal will have to be approved by regulators.

  SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Department of Health has erroneously sent old coronavirus test results to about 30,000 people, of whom 1,600 were awaiting new test results when they received the notification. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported that department spokeswoman Marisa Maez said thousands of people received a repeated notification about an old test because of a technical hiccup caused by a software update. Maez said the department and software provider sent out follow-up messages apologizing for the error and asking people to disregard the notifications. She said the messages were not a result of any “malicious attack."

city of el paso

  The University of Texas at El Paso and the City of El Paso have formed a partnership to help the community get tested for COVID-19.

 

Beginning Oct. 21, 2020, UTEP will host a drive-through State Testing Site open to the public at the Schuster 1 parking lot off Schuster Avenue at the Spur 1966 roundabout, on the south side of campus.

 

The drive-through will be available for all El Pasoans from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday-Sunday.

 

city of las cruces

  Tutoring Services offered at the East Mesa Recreation Center, 5589 Porter Drive, are postponed until further notice.

A future news release will be issued when programming will resume.

For information, call the Parks and Recreation Department at 575/541-2610 or 575/541-2550.

Ben Horne

Converge Las Cruces Fine Art’s latest online 3D virtual exhibition Between The Wind; Photographs by Ben Horne is now on display at www.ConvergeLasCruces.com. This 28 image exhibition will be on display until December 30, 2020 and includes many of the images contained in Mr. Horn’s book by the same name.

Las Cruces police, the DEA and other law enforcement agencies along with the Center for Health Innovation are hosting a prescription drug drive-thru take-back event Saturday at several locations within the community.

Residents are encouraged to drop off expired, unused or unwanted prescription drugs – in pills or patch forms – during the event. Unfortunately, the DEA cannot accept liquids or needles during the take-back event. The service is free, anonymous with no questions will be asked.

In addition to the take-back event partner agencies will have prescription drug handbooks for parents, and educational material on safeguarding prescription medications and proper methods of disposal of medications.

KRWG News at 7:45 a.m.

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KRWG News at 6:45 a.m.

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  LAS CRUCES, N.M. (AP) — A man in New Mexico has been sentenced to nearly two years in federal prison for impersonating a Border Patrol agent. Prosecutors say 45-year-old James Christopher Benvie received a 21-month prison term after being convicted in the case in March. Court records show Benvie was a leader and spokesperson for a group of vigilantes who camped at the border in Dona Ana County. Authorities say many members of the group wore badges, camouflage and other military-style clothing, often covered their faces with masks, and carried pistols and assault rifles. They say Benvie misrepresented himself as a Border Patrol agent in April 2019 when stopping and interrogating immigrants he suspected of crossing into the country illegally.

Silver City Report

12 hours ago

Reporter Geoffrey Plant discusses a plan to collaborate on mental health between the major local healthcare providers, a local Halloween event draws interest and Silver City and Bayard Mayors share commitment to public health ahead of the holiday. 


There are many ways to vote in New Mexico this election season. If you’ve requested an absentee ballot, you can return it by mail or in person. And if you’re not yet registered, or need to update your voter registration, you can still do that in person with same-day registration at many voting locations through the end of October.

Albuquerque Journal / Pool photo

New Mexico’s testing positivity rate has climbed to almost 6.5%, prompting Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham to announce new pandemic restrictions.

“New Mexico has a third less hospital and healthcare capacity per capita than any other state in the country,” Grisham said. “That means we have to get it right. And we have to do everything we can to make sure people can get routine care.”

Effective this upcoming Friday, state-operated museums and historical sites must close their doors and all retail establishments must close by 10 p.m.

Food and drink establishments will be required to complete the state’s Safe Certification Training program by Oct 30 if they want to operate indoor dining at 25% capacity.

Election 2020: U.S. Senate Debate

Oct 20, 2020

New Mexico COVID-19 update: 599 new cases, totaling 37,896; seven additional deaths

Oct 20, 2020

SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials on Tuesday announced 599 additional COVID-19 cases.

As of today, there are 205 individuals hospitalized in New Mexico for COVID-19. This number may include individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 out of state but are currently hospitalized in New Mexico. This number does not include New Mexicans who tested positive for COVID-19 and may have been transferred to a hospital out of state.

New Mexico Announces New COVID-19 Restrictions Taking Effect Friday

Oct 20, 2020

New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham announced new restrictions Tuesday as the testing positivity rate climbs to an unprecedented 6.47%.  

Effective Friday, all retail businesses must close by 10 p.m. and state-operated museums and historical sites will close completely.  

The governor also announced new guidelines for restaurants, including a mandate for all food and drink establishments to complete the state’s Safe Certification Training program by Oct 30 if they want to continue offering indoor dining at 25% capacity.   

Facebook / White House

  WASHINGTON (AP) — Back fully campaigning after COVID-19 sidelined him, President Donald Trump returned to familiar form, spreading a litany of falsehoods.

Over the weekend, he asserted yet again the virus was “rounding the corner” when it isn't, misrepresented Democratic rival Joe Biden's tax proposals and resurrected unfounded claims about Biden and the business dealings of his son, Hunter Biden, in Ukraine.

Las Cruces Man Suspected of Kidnapping New Friend, Stealing His Car

Oct 20, 2020

A man suspected of befriending another man, accepting money and hanging out with him for a few days, is now charged with kidnapping and stealing the victim’s vehicle.

Matthew Troy Croker, 37, of the 4400 block of Miramar Arc, is charged with a first-degree felony count of kidnapping and a fourth-degree felony count of unlawful taking of a motor vehicle.

Las Cruces police detectives learned that a local man, the victim, was staying at a local Motel 6 when he met Croker. The two became quick friends. Investigators learned the victim gave Croker money to help improve Croker’s circumstances.

Reaching Young Voters In New Mexico

Oct 20, 2020
NMSU Las Cruces / New Mexico News Connection

A Pew Research Study projects Generation Z and Millennials will make up 37% of the vote nationwide. 

“Young people make up the largest and most diverse group of potential voters in the history of the country,” said Mia Tontodonati. 

 

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