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Local News

  • Ex-Mora County clerk working for Jerome Block

    Former Mora County Clerk Charlotte Duran has a new job in Santa Fe.

    She is the executive assistant to state Public Regulation Commission member Jerome Block, who started representing northern New Mexico on Jan. 1.

    “I’m excited to be a part of the PRC and look forward to a career in state government,” Duran said. “It’s very different from being county clerk.”

  • Program teaches responsibility

    Union Elementary second-graders Sammy Vigil, Gabriella Gonzales and their classmates at the school learned about cooperation, acting responsibly, how to prevent conflicts and how to demonstrate tolerance among their peers.

    Partners in Character Education director Gloria Ortega-Romero said the Stop and Think curriculum was recently featured in an article as being supported by President-elect Barack Obama and features 10 basic and 10 advanced social skills at each of the four developmental levels.

  • Official to speak to council after all

    City officials are reopening the lines of communication with a federal housing official whom they previously said they didn’t want to see.

    Floyd Duran, a top official in New Mexico for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, is set to speak to the City Council at its meeting at 5:30 p.m. today.

    In October, one of Duran’s former subordinates accused Duran of trying to “torpedo” the Las Vegas housing authority because he believes local politicians are inherently corrupt.

  • Madrid takes staffers to task

    In some of his toughest words on the issue, City Councilman Morris Madrid says city staffers have no excuses for leaving the council out of the loop in changing the purpose of $1.2 million in state money.

    Madrid mentioned only one city staffer by name in an interview about the money last week — George Du Four, the city’s utilities director.

  • City likely to increase heating bills

    City officials expect to see an increase in residents’ heating bills.

    City utilities director George Du Four asked the mayor and the City Council for permission to negotiate prices with natural gas provider Zia Natural Gas Company during a recent meeting.

    The request centered on a discussion of the increase in the city’s cost of natural gas by Zia and the current cost to customers to avoid operating in a deficit.

  • DWI suspects must go to hospital

    City and state police are questioning a policy at the San Miguel County jail that requires medical clearances for all DWI offenders.

    The jail warden counters that his facility is simply following a national standard.

    The police agencies said it would take longer for officers to process the offenders, keeping them off the streets to catch still more. The medical clearances require that officers take offenders to the hospital.

  • Only one DWI arrest over New Year’s

    A DWI saturation patrol on New Year’s Eve yielded one drunken driver, an official says. A checkpoint two days later didn’t result in any DWI arrests.

    The state police enhanced its anti-DWI efforts last week as it usually does during the New Year’s holiday.

  • City may require more of tenants

    City Council members are considering a change in the city’s ordinance that would put more of the burden for filling out required forms for utilities on the tenant and the city.

    That would be a change. As it stands, landlords bear most of the burden, much to their chagrin.

    During public input at a recent council meeting, landlords took the city to task on the city’s landlord-tenant agreement that requires that landlords fill out form with their tenants and then take it to customer service, sometimes making multiple trips.

  • Richardson withdraws bid

    WASHINGTON — New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson abandoned his nomination to become commerce secretary under pressure of a grand jury investigation into a state contract awarded to his political donors — an investigation that threatened to embarrass President-elect Barack Obama.

  • Man dies in crash on U.S. 84

    A Tecolotito-area man died in a car accident on an icy road Sunday, state police said.

    Valentin Montoya, 69, was pronounced dead at the site of the accident, state police Lt. Craig Martin said. The crash happened shortly before 10 a.m.

    Montoya was headed south on U.S. Highway 84, 21 miles south of Interstate 25, when he lost control of his car because of the icy road, Martin said. Montoya struck a car going north on the highway.