Thank you again to all who attended this year's convention. We had some of the highest turnouts in convention history!
Feel free to send feedback on the convention to firstname.lastname@example.org
With over 1,550 entries to the Better Newspaper Contest we had the largest contest ever. Awards were handed out at the banquet on Saturday night. For a list of winners CLICK HERE. We are working on getting PDFs of all winning entries available for viewing and will be linked to the list of winners.
NMPA Hall of Fame
This year's recipient was Scot Stinnett. 250 attendees were on hand to congratulate Scot. A video presented at the ceremony can be viewed HERE.
Mark your calendars.
We will return to the Tamaya in 2013 for our convention Sept 26-28.
With great prizes available and the overwhelming generosity of attendees we raised $2,070.00 for the Foundation. This money will go toward scholarships to college journalism students and to high school students at the summer workshop. Thank you for your support.
AG's Office Publishes Updated IPRA Compliance Guide
FOG heralds the arrival of the 2012 revision to the New Mexico Attorney General's Compliance Guide for the Inspection of Public Records Act. This is a much-needed update that will incorporate changes to the law made by the state Legislature as well as updated guidance reflecting several recent court decisions.
Here's the guide: Compliance Guide
County denies access to records
The Santa Fe New Mexican filed an Inspection of Public Records Act request with Santa Fe County on Sept. 13, seeking documents that would reveal all claims made against the county since Jan. 1, 2012, and the manner in which the cases were settled. On Sept. 28, the county's records custodian denied the request in a three-page response.
The letter argues that the county's contract with its insurance company gives the firm "the sole authority to evaluate, adjust, settle or reject claims." Read more
Feds Confirm Email Probe
The U.S. Attorney's Office has confirmed in a letter to Gov. Susana Martinez that prosecutors and the FBI are investigating her complaint that her campaign emails were stolen.
According to the letter, released to the Journal on Friday by the Governor's Office in response to an Inspection of Public Records Act request, U.S. Attorney Kenneth Gonzales late last month confirmed that an investigation had been initiated. Read More
Redacted Documents Upset Environmentalists
Environmentalists on Tuesday accused federal wildlife managers of keeping secret some of the details behind decisions that led to the capture of a female Mexican gray wolf whose pack was blamed for several cattle killings in southwestern New Mexico.
The criticism comes after a public records request by WildEarth Guardians.
Nearly 80 percent of the 870 pages released by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Wildlife Services were redacted, said Wendy Keefover, director of the group's carnivore protection program. Read more
'Santa Fe New Mexican' to sell downtown office building
Robin Martin, owner of The Santa Fe New Mexican, announced plans Monday to sell the company's downtown office building and move employees to the printing facility on the southwestern edge of Santa Fe.
"The mission statement of The New Mexican emphasizes that we are a company committed to informing the community and serving the public interest," she said. "It says nothing about maintaining buildings." Read more
Group: 'Drafts' Public
The New Mexico Court of Appeals got it right the first time when it said drafts are public documents under state law that must be available for public inspection.
So says the Foundation for Open Government in arguing that the court should affirm its July ruling in a case with broad implications for the public and news organizations, Edenburn v. the New Mexico Department of Health.
The health department did not prevail in its argument that drafts should be kept secret and asked the court for a rehearing. Read more
Judge dismisses claim against Gallup newspaper
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.-Former Gallup Mayor Harry Mendoza said he will challenge the dismissal of the final claim in a lawsuit he filed against a newspaper and its publisher.
Mendoza contends that the Gallup Independent and Robert Zollinger portrayed him in a false light and invaded his privacy when they alleged that he participated in the 1948 gang rape of a 16-year-old girl. Mendoza has denied involvement.
District Court Judge Louis DePauli recently ruled that Mendoza cannot seek damages on that claim because he undoubtedly was a public figure, the Albuquerque Journal (http://bit.ly/QOsDKJ) reported in a story published Tuesday. DePauli said he mistakenly ruled the opposite way during a trial on the lawsuit that ended when jurors announced they were deadlocked. Read more
Hayes takes over newspaper assets
The Rio Rancho Observer, LLC - the company that published the Rio Rancho Observer, Kirtland AFB Nucleus, and a host of other specialty publications since May 2009 - sold all newspaper publishing assets to Rockford M. Hayes on Oct. 1.
Hayes, who has been publisher of the Observer and Nucleus for the past 3.5 years, has formed a new company - RR Community Publishing, LLC - and will continue with all current operations and employees. Read more
Alamogordo News Wins Fight Over Study
The City of Alamogordo finally released a study of its Public Safety Department after several requests, news stories and a scathing editorial in the Alamogordo News.
The City had denied the requests, saying the study contained opinion that was exempt from disclosure.
"The exemption for matters of opinion is meant to provide confidentiality to things like letters of recommendation for job applications and annual performance reviews that are kept in individual personnel files. It was not intended to provide blanket secrecy for a $50,000 comprehensive study of the Alamogordo Department of Public Safety," FOG Executive Director Gwyneth Doland told the paper.
The study found serious complex problems within the department.
2012 Dixon Awards Announced
Albuquerque Mayor Richard J. Berry, attorney Dolph Barnhouse, journalist Jeff Proctor, public information officer Charles Wollmann and attorney Jim Dines were all honored with the 2012 William S. Dixon First Amendment Freedom Award. Read more
Keep up the good work! Readers respond.
Grateful for community, schools and paper
As we head from harvest season to Thanksgiving, I wanted to share elements of life in Socorro and environs that I really appreciate. First of all, for a small town this newspaper is terrific. The Chieftain covers the community news, both good and bad, as well as presenting local opinion from the right and left. I especially enjoy the focus on regional history, with regular excellent articles by Marc Simmons and Paul Harden. Read more
Keep it local
Voice of the people
I really like the Deming Headlight. It brings me the news of Luna County of which I am very interested. I read about what is going on, what new business there is, who died and who got arrested.
What a wonderful place for local students and athletes of all ages to see their picture in the paper. Read more
Public Notice promotion
Thanks to Maria Lopez Garcia and the Rio Grande SUN we have new promotional ads letting the public know they now have several options to find notices: in print, the NMPA website, sunshineportlanm.com and now newmexico.gov. The state websites do not upload our content, they only provide a link to the existing website. Please run the ads as space permits. Not only does it let the public know where to find these notices, it will also be instrumental in the upcoming legislative session to make legislators aware of how the newspaper industry has made these notices accessible and a clear message to any outside interests that have thoughts of creating new public notice websites that newspapers already have that covered. No other medium can deliver public notices to the public in print and online like newspapers can. Find the ads online at NMPA Public Notice Ads.
There are a series of upcoming webinar training sessions offered through Inland Press. NMPA members are afforded special member prices through co-sponsorship of these convient training sessions. Please take a look at the upcoming topics on the left hand side of this newsletter. Clicking on the title will bring you to the registration page and provide additional information.