Kids count … for what?
The same old story is a sad one: New Mexico has ranked at the bottom for child well-being for the third time in seven years. We're also at or very close to the bottom for education, financial security and health. The annual Kids Count report from the Annie E Casey Foundation found that the American Southwest isn't the best place for families and children, despite the population boom here. Denise Tanata of the Children's Advocacy Alliance in Nevada told The New Mexican ($) that she partially blames the Western idea of everyone's responsibility to pull themselves up by the bootstraps. That's kinda hard when you're a child living in poverty.
Don’t wanna rank
Albuquerque City Council will not follow in Santa Fe's footsteps; the body rejected a bill that would see councilors elected by ranked-choice voting. A bill that would implement ranked-choice voting in ABQ for 2021 is still alive, though, so it ain't over yet. Santa Fe implemented the voting style for our mayoral election in 2018, and despite extremely late returns that evening that saw SFR staffers nodding off in city offices until after midnight (ah, we remember it well), it was much less scary than many folks thought it would be.
Some wordplay in a new medical cannabis bill could open the door for out-of-state residents to try and get New Mexico medical cannabis cards. The term "New Mexico resident" was changed to "person" in sections of the law; its authors say it was because ongoing edits of the text required the more vague word, but that the intention of the bill is still to only make the program available to New Mexicans. We'll see how this plays out in court, if it ever comes to that.
Good work if you can get it
A local casting company allegedly plans to hire 10,000 people this summer for new productions shooting in New Mexico. No, that number isn't a typo. The powers that be plan to announce casting calls via Facebook, so get social media'ing if you aren't already, and get more info over at KOB.
Man bites dog
Once bears know there's food to be found near population centers, they're likely to ignore even easy natural food sources and head to town when they come out of hibernation. That's likely what happened when a man in Cerrillos found a female bear tearing apart beehives in his backyard. He shot the bear dead ($ TNM), and Game & Fish confirms that it was a legal kill because the bear was on his property and destroying his property. The agency will sell the meat to the highest bidder among people who have expressed interest (and the story didn't say specifically how to "express interest," but here's the department's contact page if you want to try to get in on that).
The first Pride
Looking for something to do to celebrate Pride Month? Santa Fe's big official celebration is at the end of the month, but events are gearing up, including a movie screening on Wednesday of Before Stonewall, a film that details what life was like for LGBTQIA+ folks before the famous New York City riots of 1969. Remember, kids, the first Pride was a riot.
Money's gone missing at an Albuquerque Public Schools program to help homeless students, and its director has been put on leave. The missing $4,000 and the dismissed director have not necessarily been tied directly to each other, but KOAT details money that's gone, who's apologized and what may happen next.
Get ready to eat & drink
If there's anything Santa Fe loves, it's new tenants in a vacant building. Even better when those tenants are food-related. That's exactly what we're getting in the Railyard ($) pretty soon, when Santa Fe-based Wayward Sons Distillery, Rio Rancho favorite Bosque Brewing and local eatery Opuntia Café will move into the Market Station building (where Flying Star used to be). Wayward's liquor offerings will complement the beer-and-wine listings at Bosque, as well as Second Street and Violet Crown, and we're pretty psyched about that. Opuntia will relocate from its Shoofly Street location (near Baca Street).
Thanks for reading! The Word was deeply enamored of that rain yesterday, and the nearly 30-degree temperature drop wasn't too shabby either.