Local News

  • Are N.M. voters ready for salaried legislators?

    New Mexico legislators don’t get paid much.

    Some might argue that’s just as well.

    But the Legislature’s low pay is a bit closer to changing.

    The state House of Representatives elected on Wednesday to send voters a constitutional amendment that would repeal a prohibition on the Legislature paying its members a salary. It would also create a commission that would set the salaries for statewide elected officials, such as the governor, as well as legislators.

  • Sweeping education bills get funding boost for adult learners

    By Andrew Oxford and Robert Nott, Santa Fe New Mexican 

    State lawmakers, facing an outcry over legislation defining “school-aged” students as those under the age of 22, voted Tuesday to provide a year of funding for programs that help adults get a high school education.

  • Legislative roundup, March 7

    Legislative roundup, March 7

    Days remaining in session, as of Thursday morning: 9

    Cabinet size: The Senate just voted to create a Cabinet department for early childhood education. But some lawmakers are still wondering whether the state already has too many Cabinet departments.

    Sen. Bill Tallman, D-Albuquerque, proposed creating a Cabinet reduction task force. The Senate Rules Committee on Wednesday agreed instead to task committees that meet after the session to weigh the issue.

  • How Highlands' black students experience Las Vegas

    At Highlands’ African American Culture Fair, held March 2 at the Sala de Madrid, guests were treated to a soul food potluck, including sweet potato peanut stew, turkey ribs in collard greens and cornbread, a drumming circle and African head wrapping.

  • NMHU losing money on golf course

    The NMHU Gene Torres Golf Course is currently running an annual deficit of about $200,000, according to Highland University President Dr. Sam Minner.

    Minner said that last spring he established various task forces, one of which looked at business affairs. The task force, led by Vice President of Finance Max Baca, found that the nine-hole golf course had been at a deficit.

  • Men arrested for possession of drugs after morning pursuit

    Two men were recently arrested on drug possession and other charges after the truck they were in struck a parked vehicle and was pursued through Las Vegas, police said in court documents.

    According to Las Vegas Police, Johnny Joe Gallegos, 37, and Ruben Quintana, 23, were in a brown Chevy pickup that struck a parked vehicle at about 7:45 a.m. on Feb. 8. Officers initiated a pursuit and eventually took Gallegos, who was driving, and Quintana into custody.

  • Plane crash anniversary

    Sixty years ago this month, CIA officials met with designers from the Lockheed Corporation to discuss a clandestine reconnaissance aircraft project that would eventually lead to the SR-71 Blackbird.

    In 1966, one of those SR-71s crashed near San Miguel County, and Billy Rogers and others went to the crash site.

  • Gun buyer background check bill on Gov.’s desk

    The New Mexico House of Representatives voted 42-27 late Monday to approve a bill that would expand requirements for instant federal background checks on buyers of firearms in the state.

    Exceptions would include sales of antique firearms or any sale involving immediate family members. It would not affect transactions involving guns that are loaned, gifted or inherited.

  • Mardi Gras Masquerade

    The Rotary Club of Las Vegas and the Hermit’s Peak Watershed Alliance hosted a Mardi Gras masquerade ball fundraiser in the Highlands University Student Union Ballroom on Saturday.

    Patrick Gutierrez and Jessica McGee were among those sporting masks.

    More photos from this evernt will be published in an upcoming edition of the Optic.



  • Early Childhood education: Funding proposal stalls again

    Several Democrats joined with Republicans on a state Senate committee Monday to block a proposed constitutional amendment on early childhood education funding, snubbing a priority for members of their party in the New Mexico House and posing a challenge to the agenda of newly elected Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.