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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.

Red or Green Confidential

Sep 4, 2020

The Red or Green Confidential - with Edmundo Resendez, Dr. Paul Bosland and Juan Morales. It's Chile season in New Mexico!

  Children ages one to 18 are now eligible to receive free meals from Las Cruces Public School distribution sites, thanks to a waiver issued Friday from the USDA. The waiver ensures all children will be fed while schools remain fully online during the COVID-19 crisis. Free meals for all students in Las Cruces will begin on Tuesday, Sept. 9.  

 

More Las Cruces Parks to Open After Labor Day

Sep 4, 2020
Sam Graft Park / Las Cruces

  The Las Cruces community’s hard work to follow COVID guidelines is paying off and because conditions are improving citywide, the City of Las Cruces Parks & Recreation Department will reopen additional parks effective Tuesday September 8, as an expansion of its Phase Two reopening plan already in place.

The phased plan, presented to and approved by the Mayor and City Council at a special work session on May 8, was designed to align with directives from New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s extended public health order, which remains in place, and the New Mexico Department of Health guidelines. The Las Cruces community is encouraged to continue practicing social distancing, hand sanitizing or washing, not gathering in groups larger than 10, and wearing masks in public settings. 

New Mexico COVID-19 update: 96 new cases, totaling 25,902

Sep 4, 2020

  SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials on Friday announced 96 additional COVID-19 cases and 3 deaths.

As of today, there are 69 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.

COVID-19 Testing On Labor Day In Las Cruces

Sep 4, 2020

A drive through COVID-19 testing will be held on Labor Day, Monday, September 7 from 7 AM to 9 AM at the Department of Health, 1170 N. Solano in Las Cruces.  Although registration will be available at the testing site on Monday morning, those interested are encouraged to pre-register at cvtestreg.nmhealth.org

Although the testing is a “drive through” bikes and pedestrians are also welcome.

EPSO

  The El Paso Symphony Orchestra (EPSO) celebrates a momentous occasion — it’s 90th anniversary! — by going on tour this fall. 

 

The longest continuously running symphony in the Lone Star State, which has been part of downtown El Paso’s art scene since 1930, is not able to perform this fall in the Plaza Theatre. But that is not stopping EPSO. 

 

Sponsored by TFCU and Bill and Becky Holmes, EPSO’s 90th Anniversary Fall Tour of El Paso consists of eight biweekly concerts, featuring small groups of our musicians, from mid-September through December at outdoor locations throughout the city. 

 

New Mexico State University stands to save thousands of dollars by participating in the electrical load management program offered by El Paso Electric.

The program provides rebates for customers who are able to modify their energy consumption during strategic times of the day when energy is under high demand. NMSU is participating in the program this summer, thanks to efforts led by Patrick Chavez, director of Utilities and Plant Operations for NMSU’s Facilities and Services.

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Sep 4, 2020


El Paso Matters

Sep 4, 2020
El Paso Matters CEO Robert Moore

El Paso Matters CEO Bob Moore covers the story of a health care worker whose husband (also a healthcare worker) died of COVID-19. She believes a delay in testing may have played a role in his death. Moore also reports on the mounting evidence of climate change locally. El Paso Matters is named a finalist for the Online News Association's General Excellence in Online Journalism Award.   

County Treasurer Warns About Las Cruces Area Scam

Sep 4, 2020

Several residents recently received fake notices claiming taxes are owed to Doña Ana County, the State of New Mexico, or the United States Government.

Appearing official in nature and claiming to originate from local, state or federal government agencies, fake calls, letters or emails notify taxpayers that they owe taxes and their property will be seized, unless a payment plan is arranged.

“We only send out a Tax Bill in November, a Second Half notice in April and a Delinquent notice in June,” said Doña Ana County Treasurer Eric Rodriguez.  “Any other correspondence from our office should be carefully reviewed by the taxpayer.”

Local Newscast 1

Sep 4, 2020


Las Cruces Utilities Says Goodbye to Its Biggest Supporter

Sep 4, 2020

“A gentleman and a scholar, that describes Dr. Jorge Garcia,” said City of Las Cruces (City) Mayor Ken Miyagishima of retired Las Cruces Utilities (LCU) Director Dr. Jorge A. Garcia, P.E. Dr. Garcia retired on August 28, 2020, after nearly 31 years. He had been the director since 2001 after hiring on as a design engineer in 1989.

In masked and social distanced groups, people from throughout Utilities and the City came to visit with Dr. Garcia and express their sincere thanks for his dedication and support of many different programs. With each person, he still managed to snag a word or two of advice. “It’s the projects that are the most exciting,” he said. “The co-gens, the solar power...that’s really what I’ll miss.

  A fourth Fairacres Elementary School employee tested positive for COVID-19 Thursday. The school has been closed since Aug. 28 when two other employees tested positive following an initial case earlier in the month.  

Las Cruces Public Schools administration notified school staff of Thursday’s news, although no one has been in the building since last Friday’s closure. A deep sanitation of the school took place on Tuesday.   

Following district protocol and guidance from the CDC, the New Mexico Department of Health and the Public Education Department, the building will remain closed until Tuesday, Sept. 15. Remote learning under the district’s Red Plan will continue during that time. 

 

Samantha Corral, Twitter

18-year-old Matthew Gardea could have used his time before starting college to catch up on his favorite television shows or get some much-needed sleep. Instead, he’s been hard at work as the youngest planning and zoning commissioner in Horizon City history.

Gardea was unanimously appointed to his position by the city council this summer, after support from Councilwoman Samantha Corral. He says hearing so many people talk about his age makes him take the responsibility even more seriously.

“Having city council members express to me you are the youngest ever to sit on this commission,” Gardea said. “For me it wasn't hearing it once, hearing it twice or three times —hearing it from almost every city council member, and even going into city hall and being sworn in, and just that being repeated over and over again, at some point, the reality does start to sit in. That daunting moment would be as the youngest on this commission, I feel that it's very important that I set the example.”

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico land and wildlife managers say they have finished work that will result in more access to state trust land for licensed hunters.

The Land Office and the Game and Fish Department made the announcement in time for the start of the deer and elk hunting season, which kicked off this week. The Game and Fish Department paid the State Land Office $800,000 for an easement that allows access to 8.8 million acres of trust land.

www.daimler.com

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Daimler Trucks and allied vehicle software company Torc Robotics are expanding their testing of self-driving trucks to public roads in New Mexico along major long-haul freight routes.

New Mexico COVID-19 update: 202 new cases, totaling 25,812

Sep 3, 2020

  SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials on Thursday announced 202 additional COVID-19 cases and 1 death.

 

As of today, there are 75 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.

 

Dr. David Scrase / New Mexico Human Services Secretary

  SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A top state health official is warning that COVID-19 infections are far more prevalent in low-income areas of the New Mexico, potentially straining Medicaid health care. Human Services Secretary David Scrase said Wednesday that an analysis of infection rates by census tract shows that highly impoverished areas have infection rates seven times higher than the most affluent zones. Health officials announced 154 newly confirmed infections statewide, led by Dona Ana County in southern New Mexico with 33, and three related deaths. State health officials are wary that festivities over the Labor Day holiday weekend could lead to renewed surges in COVID-19 infections.

  WASHINGTON (AP) — As the 2020 presidential race between President Donald Trump and Democrat Joe Biden heats up, Attorney General William Barr warned of the potential of substantial fraud in voting by mail — but he omitted necessary context, and states that rely on the process say there is little evidence of such activity.

He also suggested that China poses more of a threat to election security than Russia, even though that was not the conclusion of an official intelligence assessment last month.

New Mexico State University Arrowhead Center’s Innoventure Challenge is seeking middle and high school students who are entrepreneurs, inventors and future business leaders.

Thanks to the generous support of the Daniel Fund, Innoventure Challenge focuses on getting students to think like an entrepreneur, learning both business development and prototype design, to create a simple prototype of an innovative product. Depending on age, students will compete against their peers through independent rounds spaced through the academic year.

New Mexico quarantine requirements eased for certain states

Sep 3, 2020

SANTA FE – Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Thursday issued a revised executive order amending the mandatory quarantine for individuals arriving into the state of New Mexico, exempting travelers and residents arriving from states with lower COVID-positivity rates while retaining the quarantine requirement for those arriving from high-risk states. The governor also announced a change to the state’s operative emergency public health order, amending occupancy limits for hotels. The changes are effective Friday, Sept. 4.

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SANTA, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico state taxation authorities on Wednesday urged grocery stores to stop unnecessarily collecting sales taxes on groceries that are delivered during the coronavirus pandemic. The state remained under a stay-at-home order Thursday that discourages unnecessary outings and public gatherings. At the same time, online shoppers have discovered gross receipts tax charges on home-delivered groceries that are tax free when purchased in stores, undercutting the incentive to stay home. The Taxation and Revenue Department published a guidance memo that outlines exact circumstances for waiving taxes on food. State law provides for a tax deduction for sales at retail food establishments.

SANTA FE – The New Mexico Human Services Department is pleased to announce that New Mexico households receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits will again receive the maximum amount for their household size for the month of September.

Beginning in March 2020, SNAP households that were not already receiving the maximum SNAP benefit amount for their household size received an increase to their benefits to bring them to the maximum amount each month. These increases were made to help ease circumstances for New Mexicans during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Bulletin on the Radio

Sep 3, 2020

This week’s Las Cruces Bulletin includes an update on an NMSU grad working to find a vaccine for COVID-19 and Las Cruces’ own Tonight Show …of sorts. KC Counts talked with Editor Jess Williams.

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Sep 3, 2020


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Sep 3, 2020


Daines Appointed Las Cruces Police Acting Deputy Chief

Sep 2, 2020

Kiri Daines, the lieutenant who oversees the Las Cruces Police Department’s Community Outreach unit, has been appointed acting Deputy Chief in charge of Investigations and Support Services.

Daines’ new assignment follows the promotion of Miguel Dominguez who was appointed interim Chief of Police on Aug. 2. Dominguez oversaw Investigations and Support Services as a Deputy Chief since 2016.

Investigations and Support Services includes the Criminal Investigations Section, Intelligence Unit, the Law Enforcement Academy, Community Outreach, Administration Programs and Metro Narcotics.

33 New COVID-19 Cases In Doña Ana County, Most In New Mexico

Sep 2, 2020

  SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials on Wednesday announced 154 additional COVID-19 cases and 3 deaths.  33 new cases were reported in Doña Ana County, the highest of any county in the state.

As of today, there are 71 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.

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — The Texas Supreme Court has stopped, for now, a plan to send more than 2 million mail-in ballot applications to registered Houston-area voters before the November election.

The ruling Wednesday comes after GOP activists sued Harris County elections officials over a plan to send a mail ballot application to every registered voter in the state's most populous county, regardless of whether they’re eligible by law to vote by mail.

Texas generally limits mail-in voting to citizens with disabilities or those 65 or older. 

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A top state health official is warning that COVID-19 infections are far more prevalent in low-income areas of the New Mexico, potentially straining Medicaid health care.

Human Services Secretary David Scrase said Wednesday that an analysis of infection rates by census tract shows that highly impoverished areas have infection rates seven times higher than the most affluent zones. Scrase and Children Youth and Families Secretary Brian Blalock gave a briefing Wednesday on public health trends and the state’s coronavirus response.

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