Non-Local News Releases

This category will feature news releases from out-of-area government agencies and representatives, as well as events that are not taking place in the four-county area of Grant, Catron, Hidalgo or Luna. For those events please visit Local News Releases.

Las Cruces: The New Mexico Department of Transportation District One office (NMDOT) along with White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) has posted an alert for Friday May 18, 2018 for US 70 at and will last approximately one hour.
The roadblock is scheduled to be blocked at 4:00 a.m. for approximately 1 hour and should be lifted at 5:00 a.m. This block will be located at Red Block (top of ST. Augustin Pass) and Yellow Block (White Sands National Monument). LC Gate, Owen Road and Nike Ave will also be affected.

All roadblocks are subject to change without notice, please call 575-678-1178 or for updates go to New Mexico Department of Transportation: www.nmroads.com.

Washington, DC – This morning, Congressman Pearce met with Department of Veterans Affairs Acting Secretary Robert Wilkie to discuss the Veterans Choice Program and its benefits for veterans who live in rural and underserved communities. Later today, the House will vote on the VA MISSION Act, which will end the Veterans Choice Program entirely. The meeting centered around Congressman Pearce's concern with ending the Veterans Choice Program and the impact that would have on access to care.
"As a veteran from a rural community, I know firsthand the challenges veterans in rural and underserved communities face accessing the quality healthcare they need and deserve," said Pearce. "While not perfect, the Veterans Choice Program has created a sense of certainty and clarity for these veterans. The changes made within the VA MISSION Act not only end the Veterans Choice Program, but sets in motion an entirely new process to provide all veterans with care. From the start, I have been uncertain that a new process is what our veterans need to safeguard their access to care, however, I believe it is essential to engage in any discussion that will impact veterans."

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) issued the following statement after voting against Gina Haspel to be Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence today. Haspel was favorably reported out of the Committee by a vote of 10-5 and her nomination will now be considered by the full Senate.

"Our leaders should be a reflection of our shared American values. Based on my extensive examination of Gina Haspel's record, both classified and unclassified, and the many New Mexicans I heard from who told me they wanted more information about her past, I voted against Ms. Haspel's nomination. The American people deserve transparency regarding the background of a nominee who will be asked to represent them, and their values, around the world.

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Representative Ben Ray Luján urged the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) to include New Mexico counties in the list of rural counties that will be prioritized for federal funding to fight the opioid epidemic.
HRSA will soon award grants as part of a new Rural Communities Opioids Response Planning Initiative focused on counties considered "at risk" based on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) recommendations. However, the CDC's list of 220 counties prioritized counties based on confirmed HIV and acute hepatitis C virus (HVC) infection rates rather than opioid overdose rates, and does not include any counties in New Mexico – including Rio Arriba County, which ranks in the top five in the nation for rates of overdose deaths involving opioids. The lawmakers are concerned that the list of counties was not based on a comprehensive assessment of what rural counties are experiencing related to the opioid epidemic and that the $100,000,000 that Congress appropriated for this initiative will not be spent as Congress intended.

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Representatives Michelle Lujan Grisham and Ben Ray Lujánintroduced bicameral legislation to improve access to assistance for certain groups of farmers. The Assist Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Act of 2018 would reauthorize, strengthen, and improve the Outreach to Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Program at the Department of Agriculture (USDA).

For nearly three decades, the Outreach to Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Program at USDA has been the primary tool to help our nation's underserved producers gain access to USDA services. New Mexico has received over two dozen grants through this program since 2003. The program is administered by the Office of Outreach and Advocacy and helps ensure that veteran, minority population, and immigrant farmers and ranchers have opportunities to successfully own, operate, and retain farms and ranches, and to equitably participate in USDA programs. The bill reauthorizes the Outreach to Socially Disadvantaged and Veteran Farmers and Ranchers Program, which expires this year, through 2023. It also makes several programmatic improvements to strengthen the operation of the program.

Gallup, NM – Back for its second year, the Gallup Native Arts Market will take place August 9–11, with this year's event being presented in partnership with the Keshi Foundation — a nonprofit organization dedicated to benefiting the people of the Zuni Pueblo through arts and education. The three-day event will feature one-of-a-kind artwork, wares and demonstrations from the award-winning Native artisans and emerging artists in Downtown Gallup — known for its incredible Native American Art.
"It's an honor to partner with the Keshi Foundation for this year's Gallup Native Arts Market," said Jennifer Lazarz, Tourism and Marketing Manager for the City of Gallup. "Their involvement allows our event to have a significant impact in benefiting the people of the Zuni Pueblo, and creates a vibrant, cultural event that will be inspiring for artists, aspiring artists, art lovers, and all attendees. We invite everyone to visit Gallup, explore the incredible Native culture and art, and to support these immensely talented artists."

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 15, 2018) – During a Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources hearing today, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) called for the permanent protection of the area surrounding Chaco Culture National Historical Park. The area holds much meaning to the Navajo Nation, whose lands surround the park, and New Mexico Pueblos who consider the sites sacred.

VIDEO: Heinrich Calls For Permanent Protection Of Greater Chaco Region

In March, at the urging of Senator Heinrich along with members of the delegation and hundreds of New Mexicans, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke agreed to cancel a planned oil and gas lease sale in the greater Chaco region and return to a joint planning process that began in 2016.

Senator Heinrich secured a commitment last year from the Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) will continue to partner with the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) in considering future energy development in the area around Chaco Culture National Historic Park. Senator Heinrich has long advocated for the collaboration of BLM and BIA to protecting important cultural religious sites while planning for future energy development, as well as the need to incorporate tribal priorities into the planning process.

The purpose of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources hearing today was to consider the nomination of Aimee Kathryn Jorjani to be Chair of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation for the remainder of a four-year term expiring on June 10, 2021.

The full webcast of the hearing is available here.

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 15, 2018) – Today, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) questioned William Evanina during a Senate Select Committee on Intelligence confirmation hearing on his nomination to continue his service as the Director of the National Counterintelligence and Security Center (NCSC).

VIDEO: Heinrich Presses National Counterintelligence Director Nominee On Security Threat Posed By Chinese Company ZTE, Protecting Energy Grid From Cyber-Attacks

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