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New Mexico Telegram » Morning Word » Morning Word: Government shutdown continues to reverberate throughout NM

Morning Word: Government shutdown continues to reverberate throughout NM

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  • Rep. Steve Pearce says he will not vote for clean funding bill, saying that he will instead seek an end what he calls an exemption from the Affordable Care Act as a condition for funding the government.

    Various factcheckers have debunked the claim that Congress exempted itself and its staff from the provisions of the Affordable Care Act that require Americans to buy health insurance or pay a penalty.

  • The DCCC is sending out robocalls on Pearce’s votes on the shutdown. NM Telegram has the transcript:
    While you were sleeping, Congressman Steve Pearce shut down the government. You heard that right. But even worse – Congressman Pearce is still getting paid – and he’s not listening to our frustration. All because of his demand to take away your benefits and protect insurance company profits.

    Call Congressman Pearce at (855) 4-PEARCE to end the shutdown.

  • The Journal calls the effects of the shutdown “wide-ranging.”
  • Albuquerque Business First looks at seven ways the shutdown impacts New Mexico. For example:
    A US Economic Development Administration grant that would allow UNM to purchase a building to start its Innovate ABQ center is in limbo. As of Monday, that grant was pending by the agency.

  • Press secretaries are furloughed.
  • Tomorrow’s KUNM Call-In Show will focus on what the shutdown means for New Mexico.
  • The Las Vegas Optic looks at the impacts on the area from the government shutdown.
    “We are joining 401 other national park sites in closing due to the federal shutdown,” Strickfaden said. “What that means is the park will be closed to visitors. We will be furloughing 23 employees, and we will have several employees designated as essential to maintain security, utilities and infrastructure and essential administrative functions only.”

    It was much the same way at federal offices throughout the country as employees deemed non-essential were sent home and essential employees carried on key functions.

    A recording at the U.S. Forest Service’s Las Vegas Ranger Station notifies callers that “we are on furlough due to the lapse of federal government funding. . . I look forward to returning your message once funding has been restored.”

  • The Carlsbad Current-Argus reports on the shutdown of Carlsbad Caverns.:
    “To have the doors closed to us is really disappointing,” Valerie Gohlke, public information officer at the Carlsbad Caverns.

    According to Gohlke, the Park’s approximately 100 employees have been placed on furlough. There is no indication how long the closure will last.

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  • White Sands is also shut down.
  • And in Dona Ana County, via the Las Cruces Sun-News:
    Mitch Elfers, the chief deputy clerk of New Mexico’s federal courts, said Tuesday that U.S. courts nationwide are planning to run that way for 10 working days. If the shutdown continues, more staff could be furloughed and those that are deemed “necessary” will continue to work, but won’t be paid until the gridlocked Congress resolves the budgetary issue.

    On average, the 17 government shutdowns since 1977 have lasted three days, according to USA Today. The most recent shutdown ended in January 1996, lasting 21 days.

  • The Clovis News Journal on the effect of the shutdown on Cannon Air Force Base:
    While Cannon’s military personnel will see no lapse in work, just more than 250 of the base’s nearly 400 civilian workers were placed on emergency shutdown furlough Tuesday, according to 27th Special Operations Wing public affairs spokesman Capt. Derek White.

    Employees will not receive pay during the furlough.

    White also said 135 mission essential civilian workers will remain on the job during the shutdown.

  • The Taos News reports on how the shutdown has impacted the area.
  • New Mexico In Depth looks at how schools try to keep immigrant students focused on school when their families are at risk of deportation.
    David Varela is a senior at the South Valley Academy just outside Albuquerque. He found out last year that his parents and grandmother are living in the United States without legal status.

    “What would happen with my family if they ever get deported?” he asks. Now that he knows, David says it’s hard to keep the possibility his family members will be deported out of his mind: “What am I going to do, where am I going to stay? I don’t know if I could ever survive without them.”

    The story is “he first in a two-part series on the toll deportation can take on the children who are left behind” and is a partnership between NM In Depth and the Fronteras: Changing America Desk.

  • One business owner says the Affordable Care Act will save him $1,000 per month in premiums.
  • New Mexico Capitol Report says the Affordable Care Act had a “busy but rocky start.”
    Twenty-nine small businesses signed up for health plans during the first 45 minutes of the Affordable Care Act, said Mike Nunez, CEO of the New Mexico Health Insurance Exchange. By noon, about 100 businesses had enrolled, he said.

    All the companies have a maximum of 50 employees. They could obtain a tax credit by offering an insurance plan for their workers.

    Computer glitches plagued the first day of open enrollment throughout the nation.

  • Businesses were able to navigate the first day of enrollment easily, while individuals saw glitches, the Associated Press reported.
    “It’s been a bumpy start, which is not unusual. It’s more on the fed side than our side, for sure,” said Dr. J.R. Damron, a Santa Fe physician and chairman of the exchange’s governing board.

  • UNM Hospital is being sued over its treatment of children with cancer over the last 20 years.
  • Capitol Report New Mexico had problems finding a quote.
  • There will be a public meeting on the Taos Pueblo Indian Water Rights Settlement.
  • A company that wants to mine for gold in the Ortiz Mountains in Santa Fe County says it is a homegrown company.
  • The decision to fire the Tucumcari city manager is being questioned by two commissioners and the city attorney.
    City Attorney Randy Knudson said the surprise 3-2 vote Thursday may expose the city to potential liability. Knudson said there are serious questions regarding whether Commissioners gave proper public notice, a requirement of the state’s Open Meetings Act.
    Knudson noted the Powers matter wasn’t listed as an action item on the Commission agenda. Instead, he said, it was listed as an item for discussion.

  • Bernalillo County chief deputy treasurer Fidel Bernal has some tax problems, KRQE reports.
  • The National Review took a break from giving a mindest into the House Republicans to write about the attempt to ban abortions after 20-weeks in Albuquerque. Gov. Susana Martinez is staying away from the controversial topic.
    So far, the issue of banning late-term abortions doesn’t appear to have gained significant traction in the Land of Enchantment as a whole. A spokesman for Republican New Mexico governor Susana Martinez did not respond to a request for comment on the ordinance.

  • Houston Johansen dropped out of his race for Santa Fe city council to pursue a career in law. He endorsed city planning commissioner Signe Lindell for the District 1 city council seat.
  • Two Las Cruces city council hopefuls who had their candidacies derailed when they were ruled to have too few signatures to qualify for the ballot next month are challenging their disqualification. Meanwhile, the approved candidates drew lots for ballot position.
  • Interim committee watch:

    The New Mexico Finance Authority Oversight Committee finishes its multi-day meeting today at Spaceport America. The agenda says a tour of the Spaceport is on tap.

    The Legislative Health & Human Services Committee will meet at New Mexico Junior College for three days, starting today.

    The Capitol Buildings Planning Commission meets on Friday at the state capitol. Here’s the agenda.

  • The report cards on the state government are mixed, per Thom Cole at the Albuquerque Journal.
  • A charter school in the Four Corners area had its application denied, along with three others, the Farmington Daily-Times reported.
    Dream Diné was one of five charter schools seeking approval. Two applications — Health Science Academy in Gadsden and Explore Academy in Albuquerque — were approved. Dream Diné, the Columbus Community School in Columbus and the RISE New Mexico Charter School in Albuquerque were not approved.

    Carolyn Shearman, chair of the state public education commission, said commission members are not commenting on any of the denied applications until written details are released later this month.

  • The Santa Fe Reporter talks to Valerie Plame as her new book was released on Tuesday.
  • A citizen who was suing the city of Raton dropped his lawsuit, saying the city now has better management.
    Bob Beaudette, who filed his original complaint last November, filed a motion to dismiss the suit — a motion to which the city concurred — Aug. 28 in District Court. The next day, a judge granted the dismissal.

    In summarizing his reason for ending the suit, Beaudette last week said the city’s management is “a lot better than it was,” adding that he thought Butch McGowen taking over as city manager earlier this year was a positive step. Beaudette complimented McGowen’s desire to make sure the city is fiscally responsible.

  • The Santa Fe Reporter looks at the art in storage at the New Mexico Museum of Art — the art that people don’t get to see.
  • A Michael Douglas movie filmed in downtown Farmington.
  • Tarantulas are on the move in southern New Mexico, the Carlsbad Current-Argus reports.

Written by

Matthew Reichbach has blogged about New Mexico politics since 2006. Matthew was a co-founder of New Mexico FBIHOP with his brother and part of the original hirings at the groundbreaking website the New Mexico Independent. Matthew has covered events such as the Democratic National Convention and Netroots Nation. In addition to politics, Matthew is an avid sports fan, especially of the Los Angeles Dodgers, and TV fan.

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