Alibi V.25 No.11 • March 17-23, 2016 

Newscity

News City
Robert Maestas

Hoffman Part of Solution

The March 14 issue of Refinery 29, an online magazine focused on “Smart, creative and stylish women everywhere” features a long-form profile of Albuquerque Police Department Sergeant Trish Hoffman. The detailed narrative focuses on Hoffman's life as an APD officer as well as her intention to help reestablish the local police department as a positive influence in the city of Albuquerque. Hoffman's profile details the accoutrements of her personal life—including references to the jewelry she wears, the tattoo she sports and the professional football team she favors. Her love of dogs and her attachment to a particular quote from the New Testament are also mentioned before the author, Vanessa Golembewski, delves into Hoffman's life and experience with our local police force. Golembewski's article plainly reveals the problems and controversies affecting APD, but posits Hoffman as part of a possible solution leading to more effective policing with a human face at the recently beleaguered, Department of Justice-monitored department. Hoffman's new anti-crime initiative—Women Against Crime—is part of that solution. Hoffman says she and her self-defense and awareness programs are “good for the community … making a huge difference.”

Heinrich Establishes Priorities

At recent congressional hearings held on energy and natural resources, New Mexico Senator Martin Heinrich (D) continued to make substantive efforts to ensure federal policiesparticularly those having to do with nuclear safety mattersreflect the best interests of citizens of this state. While US Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz provided the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources with proposed details of the DOE's 2017 budget request, Heinrich brought up several points important to how federal money should be used to keep DOE activities in New Mexico safe and transparent as well as productive and efficient. Heinrich touched on the importance of safety protocols for workers at the re-opening Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, plans to provide federal money to guide clean up processes at Los Alamos National Labs, as well as discussing the importance of technology transfers to businesses in states that collaborate with national nuclear efforts. Besides talking atomics and their experimental, storage and economic fallouts, Heinrich also advocated for continued collaboration with Sandia National Labs towards a more “secure and robust” energy infrastructure that includes modernizing the national electric grid.

Saying “No” to Another Recession

Over at NM Political Report, Matthew Reichbach reports on our state's continued economic fragility and efforts to define success in a fiscal environment that has seen a recent downturn in the state's gross domestic product in the face of plummeting oil and gas revenueseven as the economy in Albuquerque begins to pick up speed. Reichback spoke with Jeff Mitchell, who heads the state's Bureau of Business and Economic Research. Mitchell and Reichbach remind reporters and readers they shouldn't “jump the gun” in their portrayal or understanding of New Mexico as a state afflicted by recession. Although energy-based money has been ebbing in our state due to a worldwide decline in prices, employment is up in the Albuquerque area, with noticeable increases in professional business serviceswhich tend to pay workers a living wage. In order to solidify and sustain economic momentum in the state and continue to prevent another recession from taking hold, NMPR staff Economist Gerry Bradley recommends diversifying the state economy, something that Mitchell says may be prevented by long-time obstacles like systemic poverty. In any event, experts agree: It will take leadership and vision to make New Mexico’s economy strong and sustainable.