Staycation may be cost-effective spring break option

Gabriel Monte With fuel costs inching to $4-a-gallon, long-distance spring break trips may be out of reach for many students and families. But spring break doesn’t have to feel like an prison sentence of inactivity. Enjoying spring break in your own backyard may be better than not doing anything. According to AAA, the average national […]

Budget may raise TRICARE costs

Out-of-pocket health care costs for military retirees and for users of the TRICARE retail pharmacy network would jump next October if Congress approves President Obama’s fiscal 2013 budget request delivered last week. Annual active duty pay raises also would be impacted but not until January 2015 when raise caps would begin and last three years. […]

TRICARE Prime option available to young adults

By Brian P. Smith: TriWest Healthcare Alliance Military families have a new TRICARE Prime option for young adults without healthcare coverage. TRICARE Young Adult Prime gives eligible family members TRICARE Prime medical (and pharmacy) coverage with low out-of-pocket costs for a $201 monthly premium. Military family members who are not married, who have “aged out” […]

Energy conservation: Preparing for cooler weather

By Caroline Ward: 27th Special Operations Civil Engineer Squadron As we approach the winter months, we should begin preparing our homes and offices for colder temperatures. Un-insulated pipes and improperly maintained heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems caused Cannon Air Force Base more than $400,000 in damages during the last freeze in February 2011. In […]

Obamacare trips on long-term care costs

Freedom New Mexico One of the significant purported cost- savings of President Barack Obama’s massive health care overhaul was supposed to be the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports program, CLASS, which was to operate like a private insurance program collecting premiums upfront to pay later for long-term care. On Friday, the Department of Health […]

N.M. can’t afford Rail Runner costs

The Rail Runner has percolated below the surface as a political issue since it went into service in 2006. Originally marketed at a price of $122 million and as possibly being “high-speed,” the RailRunner shuttles (mostly) tourists and government employees from downtown Albuquerque to Santa Fe and from Albuquerque south to the bedroom community of […]

Postal service leading way in cutting costs

Freedom New Mexico There’s good bad news and good news in Washington, D.C., for the U.S. Postal Service, a semi-independent federal agency, which is only slightly propped up with tax dollars. The bad news is that like many businesses, the USPS has fallen on hard times, suffering through consecutive years of operating deficits. Unlike other […]

Military digest: Board says military retirement overly generous

By Tom Philpott Gen. Martin Dempsey, Army chief of staff, seemed to splash figurative cold water on ideas surfacing at the Pentagon and elsewhere to cut future retirement obligations and other personnel costs, deeply and soon. Testifying at his confirmation hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee to become the next chairman of the Joint […]

Hay prices continue to rise

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CNJ staff photo: Tony Bullocks Cassandra Campbell of Clovis loads wheat hay Monday with help from Austin Hale, an employee with One Stop Feed. Campbell, who owns four horses, said her hay prices have increased $1.50 a bale in just the past month. Sharna Johnson Without rain and in light of high demand, the cost […]

Jail officials compiling inmate costs for state reimbursement

Sharna Johnson The state is paying less than the costs its inmates incur at the Curry County jail based on recent calculations by jail administrators, who are trying to compile data to get reimbursed. In one quarter last year — from January to April 2010 — the cost of housing 19 inmates locally for the […]

Affordable housing plan ordinance introduced

Kevin Wilson Amid questions of commitments, costs and the Hotel Clovis, the city commission made a first step Thursday in the introduction of an affordable housing plan. By a 6-1 vote, an ordinance was introduced for the city’s affordable housing plan, which the commission requested in January 2010. The plan will be discussed during a […]

Dairy owners say high feed costs bringing down profit margins

Argen Duncan After a few months of good milk prices, dairy farmers say they are again seeing their profit margins drop, but forecasts indicate rising milk prices later in 2011. In 2009, milk prices were low and feed costs high, meaning dairies lost money. Roosevelt County dairy owner Alan Anderson said dairies came back a […]

Proposal raises costs for military

Military personnel and federal civilian workers would see pay levels frozen for three years and their out-of-pocket medical costs rise under a proposed plan to cut federal budget deficits by $200 billion a year by 2015. The 58-part “illustrative” plan was unveiled Wednesday by former Republican Sen. Alan Simpson (Wyo.) and Erskine Bowles, chief of […]

Energy conservation: Preparing for cooler weather

By Caroline Ward: 27th SOCES As the weather shifts to cooler temperatures, we need to shift our focus from ways to stay cool to ways to insulate the home to reduce heat loss. Energy prices are on the rise, and as a result, heating costs will consume an increasingly larger portion of your household’s energy […]

County manager: Judicial complex operating costs hinge on tax increase

Sharna Johnson It will cost Curry County an estimated $1.2 million more a year to staff and operate a proposed judicial complex. And meeting those operating costs hinges on voters passing an increase in gross receipts tax, according to County Manager Lance Pyle. Voters will decide Nov. 2 if the county will raise taxes to […]

Press release: Seniors to receive $250 checks to help close prescription costs

Peanut retail costs going up

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Freedom New Mexico: Argen Duncan Wilba Duggan of Las Cruces shops at Sunland Inc.’s retail store Thursday. She and her husband, Dan, said they always stop when they come through Portales and buy peanuts for relatives in Oklahoma. Higher-than-normal wholesale peanut prices this year are expected to drive up retail costs. By Argen Duncan: Freedom […]

Prepare to pay higher costs for health care

Freedom New Mexico Proponents of the recently passed health care bill often stated that the United States should have universal health care “like Canada,” “like Europe,” “like other advanced nations.” Opponents were quick to point out that like all those other nations, nationalized health care in this country would lead to long waits and worse […]

Health care individual obligation

By Tibor Machan: Freedom columnist Here is what some would consider a hard case: Someone very ill is attempting to purchase insurance but companies refuse to provide it because they have a pretty good idea that covering the illness will cost big bucks, way above what the insured and others with similar conditions can help […]

Software glitch delays GI payments

By Tom Philpott: CNJ columnist Amanda Collier started college last August armed with a certificate of eligibility to use Post-9/11 GI Bill benefits that her dad, a Coast Guardsman of 22 years, had earned and transferred to her. Next week Amanda will take final exams for her first semester at the University of Central Oklahoma. […]