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Local News

  • Women file gender lawsuit

    The Associated Press

    ALBUQUERQUE — Seven women in Bernalillo County’s budget department have filed a federal lawsuit against the county alleging gender discrimination and demeaning behavior from male supervisors.

    The lawsuit filed in September claims Bernalillo County violated state and federal civil-rights laws through “systemic county-wide discriminatory treatment” of its female employees. The lawsuit also said the women suffered “numerous gender-stereotyping or disparaging comments on account of gender.”

  • Tobacco payments declining for NM

    The Associated Press

    SANTA FE — Big Tobacco’s payments to New Mexico for smoking-related deaths are declining, joining a number of states that are seeing drops due to falling national smoking rates, a state economist told state lawmakers.

    The Las Cruces Sun-News reports that state economist Elisa Walker-Moran said Monday that New Mexico expects to receive $38.6 million from tobacco companies this year, down from $40.9 million in 2010.

  • In Brief - News - Nov. 2, 2011

    From The Associated Press

    Businessman to challenge Lujan
    SANTA FE — Incumbent Democrat U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Lujan will have a challenger.

    The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that Rick Newton, a Taos businessman whose career includes high-profile deep-sea recovery projects, is slated Tuesday to formally announce that he will challenge Lujan as Republican.

  • Bandelier reopens to auto traffic

    The Associated Press

    LOS ALAMOS — Bandelier National Monument reopened the prehistoric park Monday to vehicular traffic for the first time since the Las Conchas fire this summer.

    The Los Alamos Monitor reports that the park allowed automobile traffic back after what officials are calling a successful shuttle project.

    The park also returns to dawn-to-dusk hours, with the temporary visitor center open from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. The Upper Falls Trail has been cleared and partially rerouted to the Upper Falls overlook.

  • State soccer quarters Thursday

    Uncharted territory awaits the Robertson High soccer programs, which play in the Class A-3A state quarterfinals Thursday at the Albuquerque Public Schools Soccer Complex.

    The opponents are familiar, at least.

    Robertson’s girls play district rival Taos at 9 a.m. Taos owns two regular-season wins over the Lady Cardinals, including a 2-1 squeaker Oct. 11 in Las Vegas and a similarly close 1-0 shutout Oct. 22 in Taos.

  • Deal frees up scholarship funds

    The New Mexico Highlands University Foundation has purchased 1.25 acres of prime land in Rio Rancho, and the financing deal it struck with the Bank of Las Vegas frees up more than $120,000 a year for student scholarships, university officials said Thursday.

    The foundation is a separate, nonprofit organization that raises money for the university. It owns the Highlands Rio Rancho Center and leases it to the university. Highlands offers several degree programs at the Rio Rancho site.

  • Green and Gold parade
  • A bleak winter water forecast

    Climatologists are predicting about a 40 percent chance of lower than average precipitation for the area this winter, which means Las Vegas could be in for another tough year of water restrictions.

    Andy Feldman, a city councilor and president of the Las Vegas Community Water Board, provided the overview Friday during a daylong water board coalition building meeting on the New Mexico Highlands University campus.

    The forecast doesn’t bode well for a good snowpack in the watershed.

  • Convicted killer gets life in institution

    The man who attacked and killed a Las Vegas native just five blocks away from his home in Richmond, Calif., in 2009 was sentenced earlier this month to a life sentence in a state mental institution.

    A doctor determined that Michael Villalobos, 23, was insane when he committed the crime, and a judge found him not guilty by reason of insanity, according to the West County Times.

  • Gov. orders posting of employee salaries

    SANTA ANA PUEBLO (AP) — Gov. Susana Martinez says she is ordering the state’s official transparency website to list the names, titles and salaries of all state employees.

    The move is a major expansion of the public’s ability to see who works for state government and how much they earn. Currently, only “exempt” state employees who work at the pleasure of the governor are listed on the site.

    Most state workers instead are covered by civil service protections.