Court Rules Against Physician-Assisted Suicide, Safelite To Hire 900 In Rio Rancho

Jul 1, 2016

New Mexico High Court: Doctors Can't Help Patients End LivesAssociated Press

New Mexico Supreme Court has ruled that terminally ill patients cannot end their lives with help from doctors.

In a 5-0 opinion issued Thursday, the high court overturned a previous district court decision that doctors could not be prosecuted under the state's assisted suicide law, which classifies helping with suicide as a fourth-degree felony.

The legal challenge began in 2012. It involves a Santa Fe woman with advanced uterine cancer who wanted courts to clarify New Mexico's laws preventing her from ending her life and putting doctors in legal trouble.

The justices were asked to throw out the state's assisted suicide law.

The New Mexico Attorney General's Office argued the final decision on the legality of the practice should be left to state lawmakers, not the courts.

New Mexico Gov. Martinez Announces 900 Jobs In Rio Rancho – Associated Press

New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez has announced that a vehicle glass repair and replacement company will create 900 jobs in Rio Rancho.

The announcement on Thursday is the largest number of jobs unveiled in one place during the governor's term and comes after Intel said it would see company-wide layoffs.

According to the governor's office, Safelite AutoGlass will use the Rio Rancho site for insurance claims processing and support jobs.

The Albuquerque Journal reports it’s not clear how much the jobs will pay, but the company will access $3 million through the Local Economic Development Act. It will also receive funds through the Rapid Workforce Development Fund for training employees in Spanish terminology related to insurance claims.

The company will open in a facility that once housed a Sprint call center, which closed in February.

Hiring will begin later this year.

Earlier this month, executives with El Segundo, California-based PCM, a direct marketing technology company, said the company would add more than 200 sales positions in Rio Rancho.

Intel has a massive plant in Rio Rancho and the plant's workforce has shrunk over the years.

Forest Service: Wildfire Sparked By Forest Thinning Effort The Associated Press

The U.S. Forest Service says preliminary investigations indicate a wildfire that destroyed a dozen homes in the Manzano Mountains of New Mexico was caused by a wood chipping machine being used to clear wood and brush to prevent fires.

Forest Service Special Agent Robin Poague said Friday at a news conference in Chilili that he was confident that a wood masticator caused the Dog Head Fire that began June 14 in the mountains south of Albuquerque.

The fire is 95 percent contained. The wood chipper was operated by a contractor hired by the Forest Service under an agreement with the Pueblo of Isleta.

The crew operating the machinery first reported the fire.

Investigators continue to examine evidence are creating a detailed timeline from emergency dispatch records for public release.

State Settles With Oil Company Over Wastewater Dumping Associated Press

New Mexico has settled with a natural gas and oil company after it dumped wastewater on two northern New Mexico roads.

The state came to the agreement with Enterprise Products Operating LLC to settle for $500,000 on Thursday for the improper disposal in Santa Fe and Lea counties in 2013 and 2014.

The New Mexico Energy, Minerals and Natural Resources Department says 300,000 will go to educating workers to help prevent any more disposal violations. It says $195,000 will go to the state's general fund.

Enterprise workers discharged around 330,000 gallons of hydrostatic test water on Santa Fe County Road 57A instead of on private property as required. Another 300,000 gallons were dumped on Monsanto Road in Lea County, which wasn't reported for months.

Farm Workers Eligible For Worker's Comp After New Ruling Associated Press

The New Mexico Supreme Court has sided with farm and ranch laborers who say they are entitled to worker's compensation when injured on the job.

The case stems from a 2012 incident in which a woman who worked as a chile picker in Doña Ana County broke her wrist and requested worker's comp but was denied.

The Supreme Court held on Thursday that denying farm laborers worker's comp is unconstitutional.

The New Mexico Farm and Livestock Bureau said it was disappointed in the ruling and that it will be a financial blow to farmers and ranchers.

New Laws Take Effect At Mid-Year In New MexicoAssociated Press

New laws going into effect July 1 in New Mexico run the gamut from new sentencing requirements for drunken drivers to stepped-up financial disclosures for lobbyists.

The state also is entering a new budget year that calls for reduced general fund spending, as revenues lag amid low energy prices.

Tougher sentencing guidelines will apply to some repeat DWI convictions and for homicide by vehicle while under the influence.

Another new law requires political lobbyists to file periodic disclosure reports on expenditures, even if it is a statement that no activity took place.

And in a nod to the growing popularity of craft beer, licensed liquor stores will be able to fill and sell carry-out jugs of beer, better known as growlers.

Pueblo Becomes Latest Tribe To Buy Swath Of Ancestral Land By Mary Hudetz, Associated Press

A sprawling ranch near the edge of the Albuquerque metro area is being purchased by a Native American pueblo that has become the latest tribe to buy back a swath of its ancestral land.

The Santa Ana Pueblo governor plans Friday to discuss the purchase of the 100-square-mile Alamo Ranch, which the family of former Gov. Bruce King listed in February for $33 million.

Neither party has disclosed the final sale amount.

The purchase comes as more tribes buy land with cultural or historical significance, and the U.S. government places hundreds of thousands of acres of those lands into trust for the tribes.

It remains unclear when — and if — the pueblo would petition to have the land taken into trust, which would open the way for it to become part of the pueblo's reservation.

Fourth Hantavirus Death Reported In New MexicoAssociated Press

State health officials say a 20-year-old woman from Torrance County in central New Mexico has died of hantavirus.

The Health Department said Thursday it marks the state's sixth case of Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome this year. Four of the cases have been fatal.

The patient's name wasn't released.

Hantavirus is a deadly disease transmitted by infected rodents through urine, droppings or saliva. People can contract the disease when they breathe in aerosolized virus.

Health officials say the deer mouse is the main carrier for the strain found in New Mexico.

Public health veterinarian Paul Ettestad says deer mice can be found throughout the state so people everywhere should be taking precautions.

Symptoms include fever and muscle aches, possibly with chills, headache, nausea and abdominal pain. Symptoms can develop up to six weeks after exposure.

WNMU Forms 'Partnerships' With 2 Universities In Mexico Associated Press

Western New Mexico University has entered agreements with two universities in Mexico to share research and allow students to study on both sides of the border.

The Silver City school signed last month an agreement with Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon that outlines collaboration and the possibilities of faculty and student exchanges.

In addition, WNMU signed another agreement with the Universidad Autonoma de Chihuaha, a public university based in the city of Chihuahua, Mexico with more than 25,000 students.

Under that deal signed this week, both schools will work on joint research activities and publications and the exchange of scholars to participate in conferences and symposiums.

AMC Renews 'Preacher' For 2nd Season, Filmed In Albuquerque Associated Press

The AMC network has announced that it has renewed the series "Preacher" and will expand the second season to 13 episodes.

The show, which is filmed in Albuquerque and just completed its first season, follows a West Texas preacher named Jesse Custer, who is inhabited by a mysterious entity that causes him to develop an unusual power.

It is based on the popular cult comic book franchise of the same name

Produced by AMC Studios and Sony Pictures Television, the series was developed for television by Seth Rogen, Evan Goldberg and Sam Catlin.

Dominic Cooper stars as Custer. He's joined by Ruth Negga, Joseph Gilgun, Lucy Griffiths, Ian Colletti and Earl W. Brown.