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.

NMSU Autism Diagnostic Center open for telehealth appointments

While the pandemic has delayed the physical opening of the new Autism Diagnostic Center at New Mexico State University, the center is now offering telehealth services to children under 36 months old in need of a diagnostic evaluation for Autism Spectrum Disorder.

In order to receive treatment, a child must have a medical diagnosis of ASD from a qualified evaluation provider. Since the center opened last year, staff has seen a high demand from parents and children not just in southern New Mexico, but from around the state.

While there are several autism evaluation providers, the only other diagnostic center in the state is located at the University of New Mexico, and there is up to a two-year wait for a diagnostic assessment. Such a lengthy wait could result in delayed access to necessary intervention services, an increased lifetime cost of care and less favorable outcomes.

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New Options Available for Substance Abuse Affected Individuals in NW New Mexico

Four Corners Detox Recovery Center Now Available to Treat Patients

SANTA FE – The State of New Mexico Emergency Operations Center ESF6 Shelter Operations, in partnership with McKinley County, the City of Gallup, and Santa Fe Recovery, a nonprofit rehabilitation and long-term treatment facility based in Santa Fe, opened Four Corners Detox Recovery Center in December of 2020 to address the need for more addiction rehabilitation and recovery services in an area hard hit by COVID-19. 

At the start of COVID, Na Nizhoozhi Center Inc. (NCI), the only detox facility in McKinley County, closed its doors. In response, the State opened Substance Use Disorder housing, COVID housing, and a wellness hotel to provide respite for people experiencing homelessness in the community. 

The state also worked with NCI to reopen its doors and maintain staffing levels. 

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NMSU Labor Management Relations Board to meet March 1

The New Mexico State University Labor Management Relations Board will meet at 9 a.m. Monday, March 1. Due to public health emergency mandates issued by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, the meeting will be available via webcast. In compliance with the Open Meetings Act, copies of the agenda will be made available at least 72 hours prior to the meeting and accessible on the public university website at https://hr.nmsu.edu/labor/.

The meeting will be available by webcast through the link at https://nmsu.zoom.us/j/92121383574.

Public comment will be available at this meeting. Please contact the Employee & Labor Relations Office at elr@nmsu.edu for additional information about how to participate in public comment, or if you need any other additional information regarding this meeting.

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LOR Foundation and Taos MainStreet Help Rural Businesses Launch E-Commerce Sites 

Initiated last spring, Taos MainStreet’s Business Alive program helped COVID-19-embattled merchants expand their customer bases by building online stores. Now the learnings from that program are available in a LOR tool kit that guides other businesses looking to do the same. 

TAOS, NEW MEXICO: When tourism slowed to a halt and Taos storefronts closed at the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, local merchants—an estimated 40 to 50 percent of whom lacked e-commerce capabilities—were left reeling. In response to the urgent need, Taos MainStreet, supported by a grant from the LOR Foundation, created Business Alive. The program connected shop owners with Taos High Tech, a local firm that built online stores for each business at minimal cost. 

Five businesses in Taos piloted the program and have seen encouraging results, with some merchants recording their first-ever online sales and others reporting revenue increases up to 10 percent.

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New Mexico Student Awarded a Grand Prize for National 811 Video Project on Safe Digging

(SANTA FE, NM--FEBRUARY 23)—The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission was thrilled to learn that New Mexico student Saisravya Bandla from Quay County was one of the Grand Prize Winners of the national annual video contest "Know What's Below — Call 811 Before You Dig," which promotes calling 811 to locate utility lines before any digging projects. In the contest, created in partnership by the US Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Material Safety Administration and the National Energy Foundation, the New Mexican winner tied with a student from Pennsylvania for Grand Prize. Bandla's winning video can be viewed here: https://youtu.be/QEjDdJu1-Kg. The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (NMPRC) would like to offer congratulations to all of the winners and express our appreciation for bringing awareness to public safety on this topic. Damage prevention is a shared responsibility. NMPRC reminds the public to always call 811 prior to an excavation project of any size.

All contest winners receive technology equipment, including laptops or iPads, to support their continued education.
The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (NMPRC) regulates the utilities, telecommunications, and motor carrier industries to ensure fair and reasonable rates, and to assure reasonable and adequate services to the public as provided by law.

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Former New Mexico state representative to give lecture at NMSU on electric grid

New Mexico State University’s College of Engineering will host Abbas Akhil as the 46th Distinguished Bromilow Lecturer at 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26, via Zoom at https://nmsu.zoom.us/j/95094114702. His lecture is titled, “Through the Looking Glass – Past, Present and Future of the Electric Grid.”

Akhil was elected state representative for New Mexico House District 20 in 2018. Akhil continues to serve as the principal of Renewable Energy Ventures, LLC, a consulting practice he started after he retired from Sandia National Laboratories in 2012.

Akhil worked at the Sandia National Laboratories-managed United States Department of Energy’s Energy Storage Program for 22 years primarily investigating the role and benefits of energy storage in the electric grid. This work led to several energy storage projects on the lower 48 states, Hawaii and Alaska.

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DVS to Host Live Facebook Discussion About Its New Rural Veterans Transportation Program

SANTA FE-The New Mexico Department of Veterans Services (DVS) will host a live Facebook discussion about the agency’s new Rural Veterans Transportation Program tomorrow (Tuesday, February 23) at 10:30am on the DVS Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/nmdvshealthcare2015/.     

DVS Healthcare Division Director Jemia Warner will have information about this DVS effort to provide free round-trip transportation for veterans in Cibola, Colfax, Guadalupe, and Socorro counties to any VA or VA-approved non-VA medical appointments.This is the first phase of the program’s launch. Director Warner will provide information about how to access the program, and will also discuss future expansion to other rural counties in the state.

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