SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A New Mexico water official has been selected by President Barack Obama to run the Bureau of Reclamation, which manages dams, reservoirs and hydroelectric power plants across the West.
Interior Secretary Sally Jewell issued a statement Thursday praising the president's plan to nominate Interstate Stream Commission Director Estevan Lopez as commissioner of the Bureau of Reclamation.
If confirmed by the U.S. Senate, Lopez will administer an agency with a $1 billion budget and more than 5,000 employees.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez is calling on political opponents to tone down harsh rhetoric and asking that critics of President Barack Obama respect his office despite political differences.
The Republican rising star and nation's only Latina governor made the remarks Wednesday during a conference call with reporters on GOP efforts to recruit more women and minority candidates.
Her comments come after the president of a prominent Latino advocacy group called Obama the "deporter in chief."
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — State Police Chief Pete Kassetas says the Department of Public Safety soon will release new state police training material critics say gives officers more leeway to use deadly force.
Kassetas told The Associated Press on Wednesday drafts of the material will be released next week. But he said a small portion will be redacted since it deals with sensitive tactical training and could put officers in danger if it is made public.
The draft of the new curriculum still needs approval from the Law Enforcement Academy Board.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Energy is planning a town hall to release more information on its efforts to recover from a radiation leak at the nation's only underground nuclear waste dump.
Residents from throughout the Carlsbad area are expected to attend Thursday's meeting.
Questions about what caused the leak at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, the extent of the contamination and the future of the federal government's national nuclear cleanup efforts have been swirling for weeks.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The U.S. Department of Energy says further testing shows employees who were exposed to radiation during a leak at the nation's only underground nuclear waste dump aren't likely to experience any health effects.
The agency and the contractor that operates the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant near Carlsbad made the announcement Wednesday.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A proposal to ban texting while driving in New Mexico has become a state law.
Gov. Susana Martinez signed the bill Sunday afternoon while at the New Mexico Office of the Medical Investigator in Albuquerque.
The proposal will prohibit drivers from sending or reading text messages and emails, or making Internet searches from smartphones or other hand-held wireless devices. There would be a $25 fine for a first violation and $50 for subsequent violations.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico's U.S. senators are backing legislation they say would help conserve water and promote sustainability.
Sens. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich say the measure would expand grants and increase federal funding for conservation and drought-mitigation projects. It would also provide resources for collecting data and analyzing water supplies and use.
The bill was introduced by Democrat Sen. Brian Schatz of Hawaii. It's scheduled for a hearing Thursday.
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — Officials say it is too soon to speculate about the health effects a radiation leak at the nation's underground nuclear waste dump might have on workers.
The U.S. Department of Energy and the contractor that runs the Waste Isolation Pilot Project Wednesday confirmed that 13 workers who were above ground the night of the leak have tested positive for radiation exposure. And they say more workers are being tested.
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Democratic Rep. Ernest Chavez of Albuquerque is the sixth legislator to announce plans to retire from the 70-member House.
The 77-year-old Chavez said Monday his age and health were among the reasons he will not seek re-election. He missed the 30-day legislative session because of medical problems, but will continue serving through December when his term expires.
Chavez has represented an Albuquerque area district since 2004.
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico State University history professor Jon Hunner has been tapped to serve as interim director of the New Mexico History Museum and the Palace of the Governors
Hunner will start in early May after the spring semester.
The museum's current director, Frances Levine, will be heading to St. Louis this spring to take over at the Missouri History Museum. Her last day is March 16, when the exhibition Cowboys Real and Imagined is set to close.