ENMU raising tuition, fees next year

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By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer The Eastern New Mexico University Board of Regents voted Tuesday to increase tuition and fees at all three of its campuses next year. Regents Randy Harris, Chad Lydick, Marshall Stinnett and Pauline Ponce voted Tuesday for the increases. Student Regent Robert Wachter voted against them. Tuition and fees at […]

County counts consistent

By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico Nearly a month after Census questionnaires were mailed to residents, return rates are approaching the numbers seen 10 years ago. As of Monday, Clovis has had a 54 percent mail-in return rate and Portales has had a 52 percent return, according to www.census2010.gov. Officials have said in the 2000 […]

Experts: Milk industry financial troubles causing unemployment jump

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By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico Local officials say financial ripples in the milk industry are the major reason unemployment has jumped across Curry and Roosevelt counties. Those same officials believe it will be short lived as the industry emerges from its economic difficulty. The latest data released Thursday shows in February, unemployment in Roosevelt […]

County could see property tax increases

By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer Many Roosevelt County property owners are facing an increase in property values for 2010, which could mean an increase in tax payments. For property the state Taxation and Revenue Department determined to be undervalued, rates are to increase 3 percent a year for residential property and 20 percent a […]

Robinson wins only contested council seat

By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer Oscar Robinson, a retiree, school bus driver and lawn care business owner, won the only contested city council race in Portales Tuesday. Robinson received about 62 percent (209) of the votes in Ward B. His opponent, Roosevelt County Electric Cooperative Inc. engineer Antonio Sanchez Jr. had approximately 38 percent […]

Report: Larceny, assault, vehicle thefts dropped in 2009

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By Argen Duncan: PNT Senior Writer Portales saw drops in the number of reported cases of larceny, assault, motor vehicle theft and criminal damage, but an increase in burglary in 2009, according to information from the Portales Police Department. Police Chief Jeff Gill and Deputy Chief Lonnie Berry presented their annual report for 2009 at […]

Jobless rate nearly doubles

By Argen Duncan: PNT senior writer The unemployment rate in Roosevelt County has almost doubled compared to a little more than a year ago, and officials are blaming hard times in the dairy business. Matt Barela, co-manager of the Curry County Workforce Connections office and spokesman for the Roosevelt County office, said Roosevelt County unemployment […]

ENMU reporting record enrollment

By Argen Duncan: Freedom New Mexico Eastern New Mexico University has a record spring enrollment this semester. The university has 4,359 students taking classes, an increase of 8.4 percent over last spring, according to a news release from ENMU. The enrollment is the second-highest of any semester in the school’s history. According to the release, […]

Fixes proposed for contentious property tax law

By Phaedra Haywood: Santa Fe New Mexican What to do about “tax lightning” will be debated during the state Legislature’s upcoming session. Lawmakers, who convene Tuesday for a 30-day session, will consider various ways to fix a New Mexico property tax law that can cause a dramatic increase in a home’s taxable value when it […]

Rental homes dwindling

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By Argen Duncan PNT Senior Writer Portales has very few vacancies among residential rental properties, which underlines the need for more housing to sustain population growth, the local economic development director says. Roosevelt County Community Development Corporation Director Greg Fisher said he conducted a telephone survey Monday of 581 units, almost 25 percent of those […]

Commander focuses on housing issues at meeting

By Sharna Johnson: CNJ staff writer Housing continues to be a big concern for Cannon Air Force Base as personnel relocate to the region and staffing numbers rise. With more than 1,000 personnel still headed to Cannon, base housing is at 82 percent occupancy and local housing options are slim, commander Col. Stephen Clark told […]

Labor put forth by jobholders enriches lives

Freedom New Mexico Labor Day for most Americans has evolved into just another excuse to have a three-day weekend, perhaps with a nod to the unofficial end of summer and a celebration of the first week of college football. Perhaps this is appropriate considering that of the federally mandated holidays this is the one that […]

Big government on president’s true agenda

Freedom New Mexico It is almost difficult to parody the incoherence of the Obama stimulus plan and administration statements about the state of the economy in the past couple of days: Although only 6 percent of the $787 billion stimulus package passed in January has been spent, it has done the trick nicely, and the […]

Survey: Majority of potential Cannon airmen have families

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By Sharna Johnson: Freedom New Mexico The majority of airmen who could call Cannon Air Force Base home in the future are married and have more than one child, and almost 30 percent plan to buy another home if they relocate to Cannon, according to a survey conducted to plan for a growing military community. […]

Government’s hand doesn’t belong in banks

Freedom New Mexico With the government, under a Republican president, taking equity positions in banks as it has injected money into various financial institutions, the talk around Washington is whether under a Democratic president the government will go ahead with what seems to some the next logical step: Why not just nationalize certain banks and […]

Cigarette tax hike proposed

By Kate Nash: The Santa Fe New Mexican Anti-tobacco advocates say they have one way to help the state solve its budget crisis and help prevent smoking: Raise the tobacco tax in the state by $1 a pack. The idea could bring in $29.7 million in the first year. Although a bill has yet to […]

Retiree mortality rate needs study

By Tom Philpott: PNT columnist Department of Defense actuaries have discovered significantly higher mortality rates among active duty retirees compared to reserve retirees, and the disparity stretches back decades. In any given year, looking at populations of non-disabled military retirees age 60 and older, the death rate for active duty enlisted retirees is 20 to […]

County’s teen smokers above state averages

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In a recent statewide study commissioned by the New Mexico Department of Health, 34 percent of Roosevelt County high school students admitted they smoked cigarettes — a rate much higher than surrounding counties. With such high numbers, it was important for Terry Teti, executive director for community resources, to come to Portales High School to […]

George defeats Paternoster for probate judge

By Thomas Garcia: PNT staff writer Approximately 67 percent of the registered voters in Roosevelt County voted for Republican Barbara A. George as the probate judge. George defeated Democratic opponent Mark B. Paternoster by 2,274 votes. “I feel that I can be of a great help to the residents of Roosevelt County,” George said after […]