Political News

Williams: Focusing Downtown On Retail

By SEAN WILLIAMS
Los Alamos County Councilor

Since taking office—and as I promised on the campaign trail—I’ve been working on policy to bring us the kind of downtowns we all want. This has culminated in a draft ordinance for a new Pedestrian Retail zone that limits downtown ground-floor spaces to customer-oriented businesses.

Specifically, it would limit the downtown areas to “pedestrian-oriented ground floor mixed use retail sales, entertainment, restaurants, including food and beverage, and personal and medical services with upper floor residential and professional offices.”

Zoning


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New State Law Helps Senior Citizens Called To Jury Duty

NMSC News:

SANTA FE — A new state law will make it easier for senior citizens to permanently excuse themselves from jury service.

The new law applies to state residents 75-years-old or older who have been summoned to jury duty. They no longer will be required to submit an affidavit – a sworn, notarized statement – if they want to be excused from jury service.

Starting June 18 when the new law takes effect, those qualifying New Mexicans can request an excusal online through the state court system’s jury website. Another option is to call the local court for more information.

“New Mexico courts sought


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NMDOH: Majority Of State Turquoise … Progress Sustained

NMDOH News:
SANTA FE – The New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH) today announced today the updated statewide COVID-19 map for the two-week period beginning April 7.
Twenty New Mexico counties are now at the Turquoise Level and three at the Green Level.
The majority of the state’s counties are now at or approaching the least restrictive levels.
Ten counties are at the Yellow Level as of March 24. None are at the Red Level, signifying the highest risk.
Twelve counties advanced to a less restrictive level since the most recent biweekly map update: Chaves, Cibola, Colfax, Curry, Eddy, Harding, Lincoln,

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New Mexico COVID-19 Update: 222 New Cases, Total 192,989 With 3 Deaths And 174,409 Patients Recovered

STATE News:

SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials today announced 222 new COVID-19 cases.

Los Alamos County reports 2 new cases today bringing the total 505 people who have tested positive for COVID-19. (County totals are subject to change upon further investigation and determination of residency of individuals positive for COVID-19.)

Today’s update includes 3 new deaths in New Mexico related to COVID-19.

The New Mexico Department of Health reports today’s most recent cases:

  • 60 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 1 new case in Catron County
  • 4 new cases in Chaves County
  • 3 new cases in Cibola

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Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham Signs Legislation Protecting New Mexico Students From Sexual Abuse

The Roundhouse in Santa Fe. Post file photo

From New Mexico House Democrats:

SANTA FE — Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Tuesday signed House Bill 128, legislation protecting students in New Mexico from sexual and ethical misconduct by teachers and school employees. 

Sponsored by Rep. Debra M. Sariñana (D-Albq.), Rep. Christine Trujillo (D-Albq.), Rep. Susan Herrera (D-Embudo), Rep. Joy Garratt (D-Albq.) and Rep. Marian Matthews (D-Albq.), House Bill 128 enacts an extensive set of both preventative and responsive measures to address ethical and sexual misconduct in New Mexico’s


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Heinrich Thanks New Mexico National Guard And Health Care Workers For Ramping Up Vaccine Distributions

U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich meets with members of New Mexico National Guard. Courtesy photo

U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich with members of the New Mexico National Guard. Courtesy photo

From the Office of U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich:

ALBUQUERQUE — U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) visited Tuesday with the New Mexico National Guard and health care workers assisting with efforts to help more New Mexicans receive the COVID-19 vaccine.

“We secured provisions in the American Rescue Plan to ramp up vaccine distribution and help communities and businesses recover. They mark the beginning of the end of the


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State Senate Confirms 25 College And University Regents To Boards Across New Mexico

NMHED News:

SANTA FE — Twenty-five highly-qualified New Mexicans have been nominated by Gov. Lujan Grisham and confirmed by the State Senate to serve on Boards of Regents at public colleges, universities, and special schools across the state.

“This year’s cadre of regents includes individuals with a high level of experience and enthusiasm for higher education, which will be key for guiding our state institutions forward in the coming years,” Higher Education Department Secretary Stephanie Rodriguez said. “We look forward to collaborating with them and all higher education leadership


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New Mexico Governor Signs Fair Independent Redistricting

Sen. Brenda McKenna

NM House Democrats News:

SANTA FE — As the once-in-a-decade redistricting process is set to begin Tuesday, legislation creating an independent Citizens Redistricting Committee was signed into law by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.

Sponsored by Sen. Brenda McKenna (D-Corrales), Senate Bill 304 increases redistricting transparency by including Graphic Information System (GIS) data of all 33 counties on the Secretary of State’s website.

In addition, the bill combines many of the bi-partisan elements from the 2021 60-day Session’s Senate Bill 15, co-sponsored by Speaker


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New Mexico COVID-19 Update: 181 New Cases, Total 192,773 With 8 Deaths And 174,338 Patients Recovered

STATE News:

SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials today announced 181 new COVID-19 cases.

Los Alamos County reports zero new case today so the total remains 503 people who have tested positive for COVID-19. (County totals are subject to change upon further investigation and determination of residency of individuals positive for COVID-19.)

Today’s update includes 8 new deaths in New Mexico related to COVID-19.

The New Mexico Department of Health reports today’s most recent cases:

  • 81 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 3 new cases in Chaves County
  • 4 new cases in Cibola County
  • 3 new cases in Curry

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County, Nambe Drugs Host Mass Vaccination Clinic April 25

COUNTY News:

Los Alamos County is partnering with Nambe Drugs to conduct a large-scale vaccination clinic 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 25 at Griffith Gymnasium on the Los Alamos High School campus.

The event is open to anyone to register for an appointment with the New Mexico Department of Health (NMDOH), according to County Emergency Manager Beverley Simpson.

Simpson said she anticipates several hundred youth ages 16 to 18 may be able to get the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at the event.

“Now that the State of New Mexico has opened the availability of the vaccine up to all phases, we have enough supply


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U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich And Colleagues Reintroduce Impact Aid Bill To Fund School Infrastructure Projects

From the Office of U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich:

WASHINGTON D.C. — U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) and a group of Senate Democrats introduced the Impact Aid Infrastructure Act (IAIA)  which would provide $1 billion in supplemental funding for school infrastructure construction grants in Fiscal Year 2022 through the Impact Aid program. Similar legislation was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives.

“Every student in New Mexico deserves to go to school in a safe learning environment,” Heinrich said. “I am proud to support this legislation to provide the Impact Aid funding that public


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Governor Signs New Mexico Special Education Ombud Act

From the Office of the Governor:

SANTA FE — Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham signed into law Monday a measure establishing an office within the Developmental Disabilities Council to advocate for the educational rights of students seeking special education services.

The special education ombud will serve as an independent advocate and watchdog for public school students and provide comprehensive support for families navigating the special education system. Duties will include ensuring that students and parents receive complete and accurate information about the student’s rights, adequate


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Interior Secretary Haaland To Visit Utah To Discuss Bears Ears And Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland

DOI News:

WASHINGTON — This week, Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland will travel to Utah to discuss stewardship of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments.

During her time in Kane and San Juan counties, she will see the national monuments and meet with Tribes, elected federal, state and local leaders, and other stakeholders.

Consistent with Executive Order 14008, the Interior Department is leading a review of the boundaries and management conditions of the two national monuments.

To date, administration officials from


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New Mexico Governor Greets Students At Aspen School

LAPS Superintendent Kurt Steinhaus and student greeters 6th grader Analise Natal and fifth grader MJ Martinez welcome Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham this morning to Aspen Elementary School. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com

Aspen Elementary Principal Michele Alther, center, Sen. Leo Jaramillo, second from right, and others walk with Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, left, and Superintendent Kurt Steinhaus, right, this morning as she tours Aspen. Photo by John McHale/ladailypost.com

BONNIE J. GORDON
Los Alamos Daily Post
bjgordon@ladailypost.com

New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham


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Governor Signs Impact Aid Legislation, Boosting Financial Support For Many New Mexico Public Schools

From the Office of the Governor:

  • Measure provides certain school districts with access to more than $60 million; tribal leaders herald the long-awaited breakthrough

SANTA FE — Alongside tribal leaders from all across New Mexico, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham on Monday afternoon signed historic legislation ending credits for impact aid payments in the public school funding formula, providing school districts with federally impacted land access to more than $60 million to better serve their students, including many Native Americans.

In addition, a recurring $67 million appropriation


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New Mexico COVID-19 Update: 96 New Cases, Total 192,595 With Zero Deaths And 174,339 Patients Recovered

STATE News:

SANTA FE – New Mexico state health officials today announced 96 new COVID-19 cases.

Los Alamos County reports 1 new case today bringing the total 503 people who have tested positive for COVID-19. (County totals are subject to change upon further investigation and determination of residency of individuals positive for COVID-19.)

Today’s update includes zero new deaths in New Mexico related to COVID-19.

The New Mexico Department of Health reports today’s most recent cases:

  • 49 new cases in Bernalillo County
  • 1 new case in Chaves County
  • 3 new cases in Cibola County
  • 1 new case in Curry

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State Enters Phase 2 And Announces All New Mexicans 16+ Are Now Eligible To Receive COVID-19 Vaccine

NMDOH News:

SANTA FE — The Department of Health (NMDOH) announced this morning that all New Mexicans 16+ are eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccine. 

“President Biden directed states to make all adults eligible for vaccine by May 1. New Mexico will hit that target nearly a month early,” NMDOH Cabinet Secretary Dr. Tracie Collins said.

NMDOH will continue to prioritize vaccine invitations for Phase 1A, New Mexicans 75 years and older, and New Mexicans 60 years and older with a chronic condition.

NMDOH has chosen to open Phase 2 – the final distribution phase – because providers in some parts of the


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