Tough sell 

Gov. Martinez rolled out another tough-on-crime legislative package that's had limited success in past session. This is her last, though, before she's forced out by term limits, and the governor is sticking to her guns. Martinez wants to bring back the death penalty for certain offenders who kill kids and cops. She also wants to impose life sentences for people convicted of three violent felonies. Regardless of how you feel about those ideas, the biggest issue may be that they're more or less non-starters with the Democrats who control the Legislature.

Water you thinking?

Attorneys for New Mexico and Colorado argued to the US Supreme Court yesterday that the federal government does not have the right to intervene in water compact disputes among states. Texas and the US, however, say it does. The Lone Star state has sued New Mexico, claimed it violated the Rio Grande Compact by allowing farmers south of Elephant Butte Dam to divert surface water and to pump groundwater that should have been sent to Texas. New Mexico Attorney General Hector Balderas hired a private attorney to argue on the state's behalf.

Family worry

Santa Fe waitress Ana Chavez says she's worried her El Salvadoran brother, Oscar, will be forced to move back to his native country after the Trump administration announced plans to stop extending Temporary Protected Status to immigrants who fled to the US after earthquakes in 2001. The administration says those people now have 18 months to make arrangements to return home. Chavez, a naturalized US citizen, says her brother hasn't been to El Salvador in two decades ($) and deporting him under a blanket policy makes little sense.

The reset button

Such a thing doesn't really exist, but people love to pretend it does. The mayor of Albuquerque isn't necessarily looking to press such a button, but Tim Keller and the city's Police Department (now under new management) will begin meeting next week with the independent monitor hired to oversee reform at APD. It's hard to imagine how the relationship could have soured more in the last few months of the Berry administration, with the deputy chief of police secretly recording the monitor in a failed attempt to show bias. The federal judge handling the settlement agreement between the Department of Justice and APD rebuked the city for its subterfuge.


Hooray for acronyms. Albuquerque's bus rapid transit system took its first trip last year, but the darn thing still isn't working right. Nobody saw that coming like the 7:42 Rapid Ride. The new mayor has said there are mechanical issues with the new buses, but not much more than that. There's a news conference planned today and the Word bets it's not to praise the former administration.

Plaza potty

Santa Fe is considering a "loo" public bathroom a block off the Plaza next to the art museum. There aren't any public bathrooms in the area, and the simple plan would feature a flush toilet and hand sanitizer. There wouldn't be any heat, as the structure is designed to use natural ventilation, which would make for some cold winter, uh, wees. There's a rendering in the link, which seems stunningly accurate in its portrayal of a confused guy looking at the door handle and some dude clearly walking in the street.

SF Brewing may finally open a location in … Santa Fe

Seems a little odd, but Santa Fe's largest brewer doesn't actually have a presence in the city. Now, the Santa Fe Brewing Co. is asking the city to approve a taproom on Galisteo Street just north of Paseo de Peralta. It's close to the Capitol and Restaurant Martín.

How bad is it?

If you're asking that question about snowpack, it's really bad.Santa Fe-based Outside Magazine says it could be the worst winter in 60 years for the West. Many ski areas have laid off staff and are almost entirely reliant (here in January) on man-made snow to keep the lifts turning. The mountains could see a big hit of snow starting tonight and through tomorrow, but most of the state will be more impacted by high winds. Yuck.

Thanks for reading! The Word thinks the world could use more piano players in restaurants and bars.

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