Netflix Picks Albuquerque For U.S. Production Hub, Santa Fe Celebrates Indigenous Peoples Day

Oct 8, 2018

Netflix Chooses New Mexico For New Us Production Hub - By Susan Montoya Bryan, Associated Press

Netflix has chosen New Mexico as the site of a new U.S. production hub and is negotiating to buy an existing multimillion-dollar studio complex in the state's largest city.

It is the company's first purchase of such a property, and local officials said Monday that upcoming production work by Netflix in Albuquerque and other New Mexico communities is expected to result in $1 billion in spending over the next decade.

More than $14 million in public economic development funding is being tapped. Republican Gov. Susana Martinez and Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller, a Democrat, both touted the investment and said years of work to put New Mexico on the movie-making map are paying off.

Previous Netflix series produced in New Mexico include the Emmy-winning limited series "Godless" and "Longmire."

Officials did not release details about the sales price of Albuquerque Studios. The property includes several sound stages, production offices, mill space and a back lot.

Suspect Shot After Barricading Himself In Crowded Restaurant Associated Press

Albuquerque police say nobody else was injured when officers shot a suspect barricaded inside a Chinese restaurant filled with people.

Authorities continue to investigate a string of crime scenes Monday, a day after a robbery suspect gave chase before fleeing into the busy restaurant.

Police spokesman Simon Drobik says the ordeal began Sunday afternoon when officers responded to a robbery.

They learned the suspect was on foot and possibly breaking into a home.

Drobik says the suspect then either shot at a vehicle or tried to carjack it.

He then went into Lin's Grand Buffet which was occupied by 80 staff and patrons.

Drobik says a SWAT team immediately moved in.

The suspect was shot and taken to a hospital. His condition was not immediately known Monday.

Santa Fe Celebrates Indigenous People With Day Of Dancing – Associated Press

Indigenous Peoples Day is being celebrated for the third consecutive year in the New Mexico capital with prayer, dancing and music throughout the morning and afternoon.

A center for Native American culture, Santa Fe in 2016 designated the second Monday in October as Native American People's Day in recognition of 23 designated indigenous communities throughout the state. About one in 10 residents of New Mexico is identified as Native American.

Dozens of cities and at least four states use the day to honor Native Americans, and in some instances have abolished Columbus Day.

Santa Fe this year abandoned an annual costumed re-enactment of the 1692 return of Spanish conquerors to New Mexico after a Native American revolt, amid complaints that the pageant glossed over historic mistreatment of indigenous people.

Amtrak Plans To Keep Southwest Chief Train Route RunningAssociated Press

Amtrak says the Southwest Chief train route connecting Chicago to Los Angeles with stops in Colorado will stay in operation as is for at least another year.

The Colorado Sun reports the national rail carrier had considered suspending rail service between Dodge City, Kansas, and Albuquerque, New Mexico, and replacing it with buses next year.

Amtrak's proposal stemmed from repairs needed to a 219-mile section of track between Trinidad, Colorado, and Santa Fe, New Mexico.

A bipartisan group of U.S. senators from states along the route have been fighting Amtrak against implementing the busing option.

Scot Naparstek, Amtrak's executive vice president and chief operating officer, told a Senate committee last week that it is committed to keeping the train going at least through September 2019.

University Head To Recommend Covering Murals - Associated Press

A University of New Mexico official says the school's president and provost want a set of Great Depression-era murals to be covered amid complaints about the depiction of Hispanics and Native Americans in one of the pieces on campus.

Alex Lubin, associate provost for faculty development, said Monday that the proposal would temporarily address decades-old concerns.

The image at the center of the dispute shows a blonde, blue-eyed man holding the hands of a faceless Hispanic man on one side and a faceless Native American on the other.

The proposal to cover the murals with curtains must go before the Regents Historic Preservation Committee for consideration.

The New Deal's Public Works of Art Project commissioned the murals in 1939 to depict Native Americans, Hispanics and whites of New Mexico.

For years, the murals have been the subject of protests — and sometimes vandalism.

Depression-Era Murals In New Mexico Targeted For Removal – KRQE-TV, Associated Press

A set of Depression-era murals at New Mexico's largest university are being targeted by some faculty and students for their depictions of Hispanic and Native Americans.

KRQE-TV in Albuquerque reports some students want the "West Wing Murals" at the University of New Mexico's Zimmerman Library removed.

Taos artist Kenneth Adams in 1939 was commissioned by the New Deal's Public Works of Art Project to paint images depicting Native Americans, Hispanics and whites of New Mexico. The murals also were paid for by a Carnegie Corporation grant.

But the murals have been the subject of protests for years.

A task force is investigating options for the murals' future.

New Deal programs put Americans to work in public works projects, such as the Adams murals, in response to the Great Depression.

New Mexico's First Gentleman Gets Job In Las Cruces – KVIA-TV, Associated Press

The first gentleman of New Mexico is the new deputy assessor in a southern New Mexico county.

Chuck Franco told KVIA-TV in El Paso this week that he and his wife, Gov. Susana Martinez, are moving back to Las Cruces and he will be Doña Ana County's deputy assessor.

Franco says the governor, formerly the Doña Ana County district attorney, will likely return to law after she leaves Santa Fe.

Franco replaces County Assessor Andy Segovia's outgoing deputy. Segovia terms out in November.

Franco will only have the position for the next three months.

Martinez is barred from running for a third term for governor.

Indian Center Offers Its Vacant Lot For Tiny Homes Village – Albuquerque Journal, Associated Press

An Albuquerque nonprofit that serves the local Native American population is offering to open up a vacant lot on its property for Bernalillo County's planned "tiny homes" village for the homeless.

The Albuquerque Journal reports local officials have struggled to find a welcoming location for the project, but the Albuquerque Indian Center is laying out its welcome mat.

District 1 County Commissioner Debbie O'Malley confirmed last week that the center has reached out to the county to offer the vacant lot behind its building as a location for the village of up to 30 tiny homes.

O'Malley says while the county has $2 million for the project from a voters-approved general obligation bond, locating at the Albuquerque Indian Center can ultimately save a lot of money.

Police Chief Worried About Run Of Officer-Involved Shootings – Las Cruces Sun-News, Associated Press

The Las Cruces police chief expressed concern about a recent string of police shootings in the southern New Mexico city, while also deflecting some of the responsibility from officers.

The Las Cruces Sun-News reports Las Cruces police officers have shot at suspects in six different incidents this year — three times in the last month — and Chief Patrick Gallagher said last week that he is troubled by the trend.

Gallagher says that the speed at which such incidents develop often make it difficult for officers to try to defuse the situation without firing their guns.

Gallagher also deflected some of the responsibility for such incidents from police. He says many incidents in which officers fire on suspects involve people with a history of mental illness, substance abuse and domestic violence.

Balloon Fiesta's Mass Ascension Is Canceled Due To Winds– Associated Press

Strong winds led to the cancellation of the balloon glow at the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

The Sunday evening event was called off after the morning mass ascension also was canceled to due to upper-level winds. The balloons were only inflated, but not launched.