- State Auditor Hector Balderas is upset that he received an altered version of the behavioral health audit from the state Human Services Department. A sentence that said there was "no credible allegations of fraud" was omitted from the version Balderas received. The HSD says this was because the auditing company did not have the authority to make that determination.
- Speaking of audits, an audit found that Bernalillo County Treasurer Manny Ortiz violated state law as well as county investment policies and county ethics rules.
- Here's the story from KRQE, who has been all over the story.
- State Rep. Luciano "Lucky" Varela will run for office just one more time. If he wins in 2014, as he will be favored to, the veteran legislator will have served for 30 years when he retires.
- The Santa Fe New Mexican says a complaint against Santa Fe mayoral candidate Patti Bushee by Bushee's former campaign manager gives insight into the inner workings of Bushee's campaign.
Lonna Atkeson, a political science professor at The University of New Mexico, said the information disclosed by Nix in the complaint leaves Bushee “very exposed.”
“This seems like a lot of sour grapes to me. You’re talking about basically providing all of her campaign information into a public forum. If she’s just filing an ethics complaint about a particular contribution, then most of that doesn’t seem necessary,” Atkeson said.
- U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich had an op-ed in the New York Times calling to "end the N.S.A. dragnet." Heinrich wrote the op-ed with Sens. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and Mark Udall, D-Colo.
- Two groups are looking for help from the EPA on the Kirtland Air Force Base spill.
- Immigrant families challenged Rep. Steve Pearce at a book signing.
For two hours, the immigrant protesters chanted outside the museum where Pearce was signing copies of his book. They criticized the Congressman for being one of several Republicans who continue to block a path to citizenship for immigrant families despite the hefty contributions they make to his district economically. They also pointed out his personal financial connections to immigrant labor.
"He has profited greatly from the oil industry, personally and politically," said Angel Escarcega, an immigrant oil worker in Lea County. "Our families help make that possible. We work hard in the fields and are vital to New Mexico's economy. Pearce says he wants us to keep working in this country, but he doesn't think we deserve to become American."
- The abortion fight will head to the legislature, but it won't be the main attraction.
- The Shiprock Chapter of the Navajo Nation submitted a resolution opposing the liability waiver for BHP Billiton as part of the Navajo Nation's purchase of a coal mine.
- Las Vegas City Schools are blaming the auditor for late audits.
- Santa Clara Pueblo signed a deal with FEMA that allows the pueblo to seek funds from FEMA without first going through the state of New Mexico. This is designed to speed up the pace of the money getting to the pueblo.
- Missed this last week, but KOB's Heather Mills is moving on to Denver according to ABQ Newscastic.
- The Los Alamos Daily Post was named the small business of the year by the Los Alamos County Council.
- Lincoln County commissioners want an investigation into a decision to ban or modify grazing allotments in the Cibola National Forest.
County Manager Nita Taylor reminded commissioners that at their Aug. 13 meeting, Ranger Karen Lessard presented her reasoning to remove livestock, which hinged on giving the drought-stricken area a full year without grazing to allow natural grass seed heads to mature and reseed.
"A number of permittees had a difference of opinion and contended livestock is beneficial in scattering seed," Taylor said, They complained that the period provided to remove livestock was too short to plan properly. "They are stewards of the land and should have input," she said, adding that they contend the U.S. Forest Service district did not handle the issue properly and "didn't do its part."
- A proposal to crack down on underage drinking at all-age events would stop liquor from being served in restaurants. In other words, the proposal would be DOA in the legislature in its current form.
- Voters in unincorporated San Juan County will decide if restaurants can issue beer and wine licenses to restaurants in the area.
Earlier this year, Chris Taylor, the owner of Fisheads San Juan River Lodge, a fly-fishing guide service in Navajo Dam that also operates a restaurant and lodge, collected enough signatures to force the county to hold the election.
If voters approve the measure, to qualify for a license, 60 percent of a restaurant's gross receipts would have to come from the sale of food. Beer and wine could only be served with a meal by a waiter, and the restaurant would have to close by 11 p.m., according to the New Mexico Regulation and Licensing Department website.
- There are protests over water rights transfers in Lincoln County.
- The Alibi shopping guide is actually pretty cool with some local gift ideas.
- I went to lunch with my mom the other day at a Dion's that's across from a Hastings store. My mom wondered how Hastings was still open. Albuquerque Business First spoke to the CFO of Hastings about this.
- Some states bar department stores from opening on Thanksgiving. New Mexico is not one of those states.
- KOB is the latest to report on e-cigarettes. I preferred the Santa Fe Reporter story from last month on e-cigarettes.
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