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Morning Word: Immigration Nation

February 13, 2017, 7:30 am

Governor Opines on Immigration
Gov. Susana Martinez says incendiary immigration rhetoric isn't solving the problem—or even helping. The governor made broad remarks this weekend in support of deporting criminals, but questioned how best to respond to other immigrants who are living and working in the US, often with young children.

ICE Says Immigration Raids are More of the Same
The Immigration and Customs Enforcement branch of the US Department of Homeland Security says that the hundreds of immigrants detained, and in many cases deported, were part of a routine action similar to those in past years. But President Trump calls it a crackdown that made good on a campaign promise.

State Mulls Cuts to Food Assistance Program
New Mexico's supplementary payments—usually about $25 monthly—to people on federal nutrition assistance programs is on the chopping block. The program costs $1.2 million dollars each year and is about a decade old. Legislators are considering doing away with the supplemental payments as the state scrapes every last dollar to balance next year's budget.

Ethics Bored
There's been a lot of talk at the Legislature about creating an ethics commission. Santa Fe County already has one, but it's rather dusty. The county ethics board stopped holding regular meetings last spring. Efforts by the board to revamp the county's conduct rules and give them some bite failed. And county attorneys have yet to refer a case to the panel.

Teacher Evaluations
A pair of bills related to public school teachers met different ends in the House Education Committee. The panel approved a bill to let teachers use sick leave without having it impact their effectiveness score, but it rejected a measure that would have reduced the weight of student test scores in teacher evaluations. The latter bill would have ensconced the evaluation system in state law, making it harder to change in the future.

Left Behind
Local filmmakers are bemoaning what they see as a too-often-exclusionary film production industry in New Mexico. A number of state training programs designed to put more locals in prominent production roles have gone by the wayside. 

This Doesn't Happen Often
When a college football team wins a bowl game and sports a winning season, the university doesn't usually lower ticket prices. But UNM did, saying it hopes a 10 percent cut in season ticket prices along with a planned free parking area can increase attendance. The Lobos sold just over 10,000 season tickets last year. Three straight one-win seasons from 2009 to 2011 apparently left fans skeptical.

It Snowed
It snowed last night across much of the state and today. Most of the closings and delays are out west and down south. More is on the way. Yippee!

Thanks for reading! The Word thinks we acted hastily with regard to Pluto.

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