Bills seek to rein in exempt jobs

By Kate Nash: The Santa Fe New Mexican The issue of exempt employees on state government’s payroll hasn’t gone away this session, despite layoffs of 59 of the governor’s political appointees in January. Sen. John Ryan, R-Albuquerque, again is pushing a measure that would limit the number of exempt state employees to about 400. “The […]

County commission to vote on burn ban

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Commissioners are expected to vote today on a burn ban for Curry County. The ban would prohibit open fires for a period of 45 days, at which time commissioners would reevaluate the ban, according to a resolution distributed to commissioners. Covered propane and charcoal grills would be exempt from […]

Bidding proposed for Valles elk licenses

By Staci Matlock: The New Mexican If a bill titled HB 11 passes the state Legislature this session, avid elk hunters might one day be able to bid on a license for a bull elk in the grand Valles Caldera National Preserve on eBay. Rep. Jeannette O. Wallace, R-Los Alamos, is sponsoring the legislation, which […]

Business Digest: Xcel Energy adding jobs

By Jean Verlich: CNJ news editor Xcel Energy’s Texas-based operating company, Southwestern Public Service Co., is adding 65 positions to enhance service to its growing regional customer base, according to a company news release. The utility will re-establish regional divisions based in Amarillo, Lubbock and Roswell, serving the Texas Panhandle, the Texas South Plains and […]

Republicans seek investigation into ’temporary’ hires

Staff and wire reports SANTA FE — Republican lawmakers have asked the state attorney general’s office to investigate the Richardson administration’s practice of hiring temporary exempt employees. A March 18 letter from Sen. Kent Cravens, R-Albuquerque, signed by two dozen other GOP lawmakers, said Gov. Bill Richardson’s practices have resulted in “numerous unauthorized hirings.” Lawmakers […]