Business is booming

The tourists of the world just keep on discovering Santa Fe and heap a little more praise on our wee hamlet every year. Our latest honor is from Travel + Leisure, where the magazine's annual Readers Choice Awards choose the best destinations in the world; Santa Fe has been voted the 14th best city in the world and the second best in the country (behind only Charleston, South Carolina). SFR talked to some folks about New Mexico and Santa Fe's tourism industry to see if it is as good as magazines say it is (hint: seems to be).

Epstein not a sex offender in New Mexico

The convicted pedophile Jeffrey Epstein, who is back in the news for new sex trafficking charges as well as his friendships with the rich and famous (including current and former American presidents), owned a property in New Mexico until at least 2013. As a result, he was made to register as a sex offender in 2010; but a month later, he was told he no longer had to, apparently because of differences between Florida and New Mexico laws.

That’s a lot of digits

Oil and gas has made for record high revenues from public lands in New Mexico; revenues reached $852 million for the 2018 fiscal year, and if predictions hold, the 2019 fiscal year will mark a nearly 40% increase, pushing it to a possible $1.1 billion. Other revenues, including ones from renewable energy, were also not too shabby, says state Land Commissioner Stephanie Garcia Richard.

We had the license plate first

The Word tried to ignore the controversy heating up in our great state yesterday, but today it's become clear that hiding our heads in the sand will not save us from the great Battle of the Capsaicinoids. The New Mexico-Colorado Chile War is in full swing, with Colorado Gov. Jared Polis calling New Mexico chile "inferior" on Twitter. Don't worry, though, folks; New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham shot back, reminding Polis that "if Colorado wants to go chile to chile, no question that New Mexico can bring the heat."

Can we live?

Santa Fe Mayor Alan Webber talked at a Santa Fe Area Home Builders Association luncheon this week about how his administration is finally putting into action all the great ideas they claim to have to alleviate our city's housing shortage ($ TNM). It is estimated that Santa Fe needs thousands of units (anywhere between 2,000 and 6,000, depending on who you ask), but the mayor says "we've got a very good strategy" about an estimated 330 units currently under construction.

Sue ’em

Santa Fe has been designated by the federal Office of Drug Control Policy as a "High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area" with regards to the country's current opioid epidemic, and the city of Santa Fe is joining in a corresponding legal epidemic in suing drug manufacturers, retailers and doctors for their part in marketing opioids as safe. The big defendant named is Purdue Pharma, but also included are Walgreens, CVS, Walmart and Santa Fe practitioners who have been convicted of improperly prescribing the drugs.

Something to talk about

Bummer news for those New Mexicans who chartered a plane to get to Minnesota to support the New Mexico United soccer team: It fell to Minnesota United yesterday, getting walloped 6-1. So are dashed New Mexico's hopes at getting to the US Open Cup. But not all fans are bummed out; one guy said, "It really brings new life to the community, and you know, we have something that we can talk about."

The state of the outside

Another hot one. What else can we say? We are a puddle of goo.

Thanks for reading! The Word made even more banana bread last night, and still has enough mashed-up banana for one more loaf. Now this is an epidemic we can get behind.