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Morning Word: Mom, Dad ... Are We Poor?

March 31, 2017, 7:30 am

State Cash Crunch: Real or Fiction?
Democrats and some Republicans say they've gone through the state budget three times since first passing it last year and it still looks solid to them. But the governor has threatened shutdowns and furloughs and dispatched her finance secretary to argue that the worry is real.

The Governor's Message
Get her message out and find the news outlet that will be most amenable to doing it—that's what Enrique Knell, who was the spokesman for Gov. Susana Martinez until 2015, says taxpayers paid him $80,000 a year to do. Knell's testimony highlighted day two of SFR's suit against the governor for violating open records law and restricting a free press.

Martinez Vetoes Anti-Racism Bill
The measure would have required state agencies and groups that receive state funding to assess and address institutional racism, but the governor said she didn't think it would work. There's a little more than one week for the governor to handle the rest of the legislation on her desk.

Wilson's Confirmation Hearing
Former New Mexico congresswoman Heather Wilson faced relatively gentle questions in her confirmation hearing for secretary of the US Air Force. The Senate panel quizzed her on weapons systems, manpower and money she's made working for defense contractors she'll have sway over should she be confirmed.

Sanitized Science
SFR's cover story this week looks at why New Mexico hasn't updated the science standards for students in schools across the state. The secretary of education has had a unanimous recommendation to adopt new standards (a recommendation that came from a hand-picked panel of hers) sitting on her desk for four years. The big sticking points seem to be climate change and evolution.

Navajo Nation Wants Feds to Subsidize Coal Prices
Leaders of the largest Native American reservation in the country have an eye toward jobs that are scarce and coal that is plentiful. They'd like the federal government to subsidize coal costs from a mine that helps both Navajo and Hopi tribal members with jobs. The coal goes to the Navajo Generating Station, which is set to be shuttered after 2019 because of the cost to run it.

Gov Nixes Film Production Credit Change
A veto handed down by the governor yesterday stopped cold a change to the film and TV production tax credit that was targeted to smaller operations. The governor said the state's production incentives already fuel a robust industry.

Ready? OK!
New Mexico State University bounced away from a national cheerleading competition with a win. The NMSU squad has fared pretty well over the past few years. This is their second recent victory. GIMME A "V!"

Thanks for reading! The Word thinks a bagel and a cup of coffee sound pretty good right now.

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