ENMU employees to get 5.5 percent raise

By William P. Thompson, PNT Staff Writer Eastern New Mexico University employees and faculty will earn at least 5.5 percent more for the 2006-2007 school year. The board of regents approved adding at least 1 percent to a state-funded 4.5 percent pay raise for ENMU faculty and made the 5.5 percent total raise effective for […]

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 […]

House bill would stop treasurer from taking contractor contributions

By Barry Massey SANTA FE — The House approved a measure Thursday to prohibit the state treasurer from accepting campaign contributions from contractors who do business with the office. The measure is part of an anti-corruption package that Gov. Bill Richardson recommended to the Legislature in the wake of a kickback scandal involving two former […]

Bank’s transition to new name, ownership expected to be smooth

By Tony Parra Access Bank is now officially the First Community Bank and banking officials said customers will notice the transition, but they’re confident that customers will only experience minor inconveniences. Linda Wedeen, senior vice president of First Community Bank, said the Access Banks in Portales and Clovis officially became First Community Banks in January. […]

Ethics bills move through committees

By Deborah Baker: The Associated Press SANTA FE — A piece of Gov. Bill Richardson’s ethics package got unanimous committee endorsement Monday and headed to the full House for a vote. A Senate panel also approved a much broader measure, barring people who do business with the state from contributing to statewide officials — including […]

Merricks open Ashley Furniture store in Portales

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By Tony Parra June Merrick said one customer entered the Ashley Furniture store this week and said, “It was like she left Portales and entered the big city.” The furniture store has undergone a complete facelift and employees made the transition into the new store this week. Monday was the first day the locally-owned furniture […]

Call center opens in Clovis

Freedom Newspapers The SEI call center in the works since May opened Monday with eight technicians and two supervisors, according to company officials. Located in the former ClientLogic Building on Seventh Street, the technology-based Customer Care Service, or computer help desk, supports inbound customer requests related to technical issues with computer hardware and software. Susan […]

Local charities omitted from state brochure

Marlena Hartz: Freedom Newspapers Eastern New Mexico charities are absent from a non-profit charity list created as a reference guide for state employee donations. The list includes more than 100 charities, however, almost half of all the charities listed are based in Albuquerque or central New Mexico. United Way of Eastern New Mexico Executive Director […]

Hospital bans tobacco

Marlena Hartz : Freedom Newspapers Plains Regional Medical Center will no longer permit tobacco use on its property in attempt to promote a culture of health, according to a hospital official. The smoking ban begins today. The hospital, part of the Presbyterian Health Care Services system, has disbanded its designated outdoor smoking areas, hospital officials […]

Flu vaccine plentiful despite epidemic scare

Tonya Garner: Freedom Newspapers The month of October brings pleasant changes in the form of shorter days and cooler weather. The beginning of fall, however, is also the onset of flu season. Chris Minnick of the New Mexico Department of Health said flu shot shortages were not expected to be a worry this year. “We’re […]