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SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A new report credits New Mexico with continuing to improve the quality of its early childhood education programs and investing more money in the initiatives. The Santa Fe New Mexican reported Tuesday that many experts believe the programs are the key to boosting educational measures and helping combat poverty. The National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University says New Mexico is meeting nine of 10 benchmarks for providing high-quality prekindergarten education.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — A federal investigator says that a crack on the interior of a jet engine is what led to the failure that shot debris at the plane, leading to the death of a passenger. National Transportation Safety Board chairman Robert Sumwalt said at a news conference Wednesday that one of the 24 blades in the Southwest Airlines 737's engine fractured from metal fatigue. Sumwalt says he is very concerned about Tuesday's engine failure, but would not extrapolate that to the CFM56 engines or the entire fleet of Boeing 737s. The plane is the most popular airliner ever built.

AZTEC, N.M. (AP) — Authorities say they're wrapping up a months-long investigation into a school shooting that left two students dead and rocked a rural community in northwestern New Mexico.

DENVER (AP) — Tension over the drought-stressed Colorado River escalated into a public feud when four U.S. states accused an Arizona utility of manipulating supply and demand, potentially threatening the river's future. The four states said the Central Arizona Project was trying to avoid a reduction in its share of the river while others are voluntarily conserving to avoid a crisis amid a prolonged drought. The accusation was made by Colorado, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming, along with Denver's water utility. The Central Arizona Project denied the allegations.

PIE TOWN, N.M. (AP) — The Postal Service is providing assurances that it is committed to providing full services in Pie Town, a tiny western New Mexico community where the current post office is closing. Postal Service spokesman Peter Hass says operations are being temporarily suspended at the current location because of a loss of lease but he says officials are working to move the services to a new location. Hass says officials also are working with residents to identity a place for temporary group mailboxes to serve post office box customers in the meantime.

SILVER CITY, N.M. (AP) — A national forest in southwestern New Mexico along the Arizona border has been placed on "high fire danger." The Silver City Sun-News reports warmer temperatures and high spring winds are increasing fire danger on the Gila (HEE'-luh) National Forest as officials report an increase in abandoned campfires.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — An estate known for its owners' hosting of lavish Santa Fe Opera parties is for sale. The Albuquerque Journal reports the 11-acre Pueblo Revival estate in Santa Fe is on the market for $11.5 million. Current owners Bob and Miryam Knutson say the property earned its nickname while it was the home of Peggy Driscoll, a Santa Fe Opera board member and donor. She used her home to host extravagant opera gatherings. The property includes a six-bedroom main residence, three guest houses, a tennis court, a swimming pool and spa and expansive gardens.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The New Mexico Motor Vehicle Division has run out of the special paper required to print new vehicle registration stickers. Agency spokesman Ben Cloutier confirmed Tuesday that the division ran out April 9 as the contract for the paper provider expired. The contract has since been renewed and registration stickers for all affected customers are expected to be mailed by the end of the month.

LOS ALAMOS, N.M. (AP) — Officials at the Los Alamos National Laboratory ordered a partial evacuation of a nuclear research building after a report of a bulging hazardous waste drum. The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that the lab officials called for the evacuation Monday afternoon. The order was ended later in the day and the drum, which did not contain radiological waste, had been rendered safe. Laboratory personnel and the Los Alamos Fire Department responded to the Sigma Facility on the lab's main campus, about two miles from the city center.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Two teenagers who police said Tuesday bragged to friends about shooting a homeless man near downtown Albuquerque have been arrested. According to police, the boys — ages 15 and 17 — had been coming and going from a hotel party early March 18 when they shot and killed 50-year-old Ronnie Ross. An autopsy for Ross showed he was shot nearly a dozen times — including multiple times in the back. Friends and acquaintances of the boys told detectives that the two suspects had been showing off a gun at the party, and had said to others that they had shot a man.

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — The Latest on a plane making an emergency landing in Philadelphia (all times local): 7 p.m. A bank executive and mother of two from New Mexico has been identified as the woman who died after a Southwest Airlines jet plane blew an engine and got hit by shrapnel that smashed a window. News of Jennifer Riordan's death was first shared by the assistant principal of the Albuquerque Catholic school attended by her two children.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Facebook will be visiting New Mexico as part of a program to boost small businesses and build the digital skills of people both on and off the social networking site. Facebook has opened registration for its community boost program, which kicks off April 30 at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque. Thirty cities will be visited and Albuquerque is among the initial stops.

LAS VEGAS, N.M. (AP) — Two former employees of a northern New Mexico city are suing after they were fired before their contracts were set to expire. The Las Vegas Optic reports former Las Vegas, New Mexico City Attorney Dave Romero and former City Manager Elmer Martinez recently filed their lawsuits over their terminations shortly after Mayor Tonita Gurule-Giron took office. Lawyers for Romero, who had been the city's attorney since 2012, said in a complaint no reason was given for his termination.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The Albuquerque City Council plans to vote on a measure Monday evening that would prevent federal immigration officers from entering a prisoner transport center without a warrant, and prohibit local tax dollars from being used to enforce federal immigration laws. The measure seeks to bolster the New Mexico city's "immigrant friendly" status — which briefly came under scrutiny within the Trump administration last year as the Justice Department sought to pressure cities into cooperating with federal immigration authorities.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The Albuquerque City Council plans to vote on a measure Monday evening that would prevent federal immigration officers from entering a prisoner transport center without a warrant, and prohibit local tax dollars from being used to enforce federal immigration laws. The measure seeks to bolster the New Mexico city's "immigrant friendly" status — which briefly came under scrutiny within the Trump administration last year as the Justice Department sought to pressure cities into cooperating with federal immigration authorities.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Education Secretary Christopher Ruszkowski is upholding a decision to close a charter school in northern New Mexico with 200 students. Public Education Department spokeswoman Lida Alikhani confirmed Sunday that Taos International Charter School is having its operating charter revoked. The school unsuccessfully appealed a December vote of the Public Education Commission to close the school. The commission opposed the school's initial charter in 2012, but was overruled by the administration of Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Administrators at the University of New Mexico are considering the elimination of multiple sports teams as part of an effort to get finances under control, but advocates for the men's soccer team at the state's flagship school are speaking out. Coach Jeremy Fishbein on Monday said he was told his program was among those being "very seriously" considered for elimination. Fishbein and other alumni plan to address the Board of Regents regarding proposed cuts at a meeting Tuesday.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A Latina Democrat in a closely watched race for an open congressional seat along the U.S.-Mexico border in New Mexico is seeing a fundraising surge, Federal Election Commission filings show. Xochitl Torres Small raised $313,000 during the first three months of 2018 — filing her first campaign fundraising report after joining the race late last year. Federal campaign reports also show the water attorney outpaced all Republican candidates seeking to keep the seat in GOP hands.

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A Native American candidate for an open Congressional seat in central New Mexico has widened her financial advantage over a crowded field of candidates for the Democratic nomination. Laguna Pueblo member of former state Democratic Party chairwoman Debra Haaland has raised about $298,000 during the first three months of the year. Campaign finance statements filed on Sunday with the Federal Election Commission show that Haaland's campaign has a $684,000 cash balance. Former U.S.

GRANTS, N.M. (AP) — Firefighters report making progress on wildfires burning near Grants in northwestern New Mexico in advance of expected windy conditions Monday. The fires are burning on a mountain and a mesa about 15 miles (24 kilometers) northwest of Grants. They started Thursday, one from an abandoned campfire and the other from an unknown cause. As of Sunday, authorities say one wildfire has charred about 9.5 square miles (2,741 hectares) while the other wildfire some four miles to the north has burned nearly 4 square miles (1,024 hectares).

SANTA FE COUNTY, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico State Police say a Santa Fe man is dead after a car crash. They say 66-year-old Dennis Raymond Branch died Friday in a single-vehicle accident on Interstate 25 in Santa Fe County. State Police say their preliminary investigation indicates that Branch's vehicle drifted into the center median and then struck the center barrier. They say Branch was pronounced dead at the scene. State Police say the crash remains under investigation.

GRANTS, N.M. (AP) — Firefighters report making progress on wildfires burning near Grants in northwestern New Mexico in advance of expected windy conditions Monday. The fires are burning on a mountain and a mesa about 15 miles (24 kilometers) northwest of Grants. They started Thursday, one from an abandoned campfire and the other from an unknown cause. As of Sunday, authorities say one wildfire has charred about 9.5 square miles (2,741 hectares) while the other wildfire some four miles to the north has burned nearly 4 square miles (1,024 hectares).

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Officials in New Mexico's film and television industry say a new governor may help boost business for film production in the state. The Santa Fe New Mexican reports there is a sense within the industry that the changeover promised by the November election is to buoy the business of film and television work in New Mexico. Gubernatorial hopefuls seeking to succeed term-limited Gov. Susana Martinez say some potentially consequential tweaks to the state's film and television tax incentive program could round out this increasingly prominent piece of the state economy.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's two U.S. senators are concerned that tariffs implemented by the Chinese government on dozens of American product lines, including pecans, could hurt growers in the state. New Mexico is one of the nation's top pecan-producing states. Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich wrote a letter Friday urging U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer to consider the effects restrictive import tariffs on pecans will have on U.S. growers and rural agricultural businesses.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A series of town halls are planned over the coming weeks as one of the state's largest hospital systems seeks a new chief executive officer. Officials at University of New Mexico Hospitals say the meetings will give employees a chance to meet the three finalists. The first will be April 17. The finalists include Herb Buchanan, most recently the president of Methodist and University Hospitals, the academic medical centers for Indiana University Health.

ROSWELL, N.M. (AP) — U.S. Air Force officials continue trying to ease concerns over an idea to expand military training airspace in southeastern New Mexico. The Roswell Daily Record reports local business and government leaders fear that the proposed expansion could affect the residents' lives and the local economy. Holloman Airspace Manager Juan Lavarreda Perez and Ed Chupein, deputy chief of operational training systems and infrastructure with Air Force Headquarters, held meetings on Wednesday and Thursday in Carlsbad, Artesia and Roswell to clear up some concerns and answer questions.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Possession of small amounts of marijuana will no longer be a criminal offense in New Mexico's largest city. Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller signed legislation Thursday amending the city's criminal code, making low-level pot possession of an ounce (28 grams) or less without a valid medical marijuana referral a citable offense. Instead of jail time and a criminal penalty fee, police would issue a $25 fine. City officials say the new law will go into effect next week. Albuquerque joins a growing list of U.S.

GRANTS, N.M. (AP) — Cibola National Forest officials say a prescribed fire near Grants has escaped its containment and is now a wildfire that has burned an estimated 300 acres. They say the fire is located in the Zuni Mountains about 5 miles outside of Bluewater State Park and 15 miles west of Grants. Forest officials say the prescribed burn that was started earlier this week jumped its containment lines due to high winds Thursday. McKinely County officials say residents in Bluewater Acres were briefly put on standby to evacuate around 5:45 p.m.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A Koch brothers-funded group is hosting a New Mexico forum as part of a national effort aimed at convincing Hispanic voters that the GOP-sponsored tax reforms help them. The LIBRE Institute is scheduled Saturday to hold an event in Albuquerque and is inviting Hispanic business leaders to attend and speak on how they've benefited from the tax cuts signed by President Donald Trump last year. The conservative-leaning group is organizing similar forums in other states with a large number of Latino voters who could swing midterm elections.

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Federal water managers say they will be facing some difficult decisions as the worsening drought is significantly affecting flows on the Rio Grande. The U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released their operating plan for the river Thursday. Officials say some of the lowest snowpack reports on record will leave managers with very little water and they will have to decide how and when to best move water for downstream users and for the Rio Grande silvery minnow. The tiny fish is protected under the federal Endangered Species Act.

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