Morning Word: Lab Documents Improperly Classified
FBI seizes Tommy Rodella's scholarship fundsMorning WordWednesday, January 28, 2015
It's Wednesday, January 28, 2015.
National security information was improperly released by a Los Alamos National Labs contract employee who misclassified documents at least half a dozen time and then failed to report the breaches, according to federal investigators.
A week after former Rio Arriba Sheriff Tommy Rodella was sentenced to more than 10 years in prison for violating a driver's civil rights, the FBI has seized money from his scholarship fund bank account. The money, agents believe, was extorted from other motorists by Rodella and other deputies in lieu of being issued a traffic citation.
Unemployment claims in New Mexico have dropped for the second month in a row. The state's unemployment rate, according to New Mexico Workforce Solutions, is 6.1 percent.
Four City of Albuquerque employee union local chapters have struck a deal for new 18-month contracts and a 2.86 percent pay raise after state District Court Judge Alan Malott ordered mediated negotiations last fall.
Blue collar workers in Doña Ana County will also be getting a .17 cents an hour pay raise after a bigger 3 percent raise in 2014.
The US Securities and Exchange Commission wants former Santa Fe developer Charles Kokesh to pay a huge $35 million dollar fine for using company assets for personal use.
Kokesh was a colorful businessman who moved to Santa Fe in the early 1990s. In addition to his startup investment funds, he was active in the community, supported local charities and purchased the Santa Fe Horse Park, which he opened to public events such as polo, soccer and an annual Halloween festival.Last October, a federal jury found evidence to support all the financial abuse allegations.
She was one of dozens of youths under age 18 in all 50 states who filed similar petitions or lawsuits at the same time in an unusual campaign, arguing that under an old but rarely tested legal concept called the public trust doctrine, state governments have a responsibility to protect the atmosphere from greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.
At the same time, the the Tourism Department is also scaling back it's original $3.5 million marketing budget request to extend it's New Mexico True campaign to San Francisco.
Albuquerque Mayor Richard Berry has responded to The New Yorker magazine's scathing story on the aggressive culture and use of deadly force by city cops.
Berry is also defending the city's position to ask for a independent investigator to review police shootings in the future. Berry says his administration isn't retaliating against District Attorney Kari Brandenburg, who filed murder charges against two officers in the shooting death of a homeless camper last April.
Big new highway construction and road projects may be ahead. Gov. Martinez is proposing $300 million for the work over several years.
The former governor of Santa Ana Pueblo who had pled guilty to multiple charges involved with defrauding the US government and embezzlement in connection developing land at the old Albuquerque Indian School is expected to change is not guilty plea.
Currently, when alcohol or drugs contributes to injury or death, the employee or survivors are eligible to receive 90 percent of workers’ compensation. Under the new legislation, that amount would be reduced by a minimum of 35 percent up to a maximum of 85 percent, depending on the degree to which the intoxication contributed to the injury or death.