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PARCC Exam Protests, Gila River Development, APD “military-style training”

This week NEW MEXICO IN FOCUS starts with one of the biggest news stories this week – student protests over the PARCC exam. Students in schools across the state walked out of class to protest the tests. A group of Albuquerque seniors who participated in the protests tell us why they are concerned about the test. Also, Gene Grant and The Line opinion panelists discuss the current state of student assessments in New Mexico.

Last fall, the Interstate Stream Commission voted to move forward with plans to develop a diversion project on the Gila River. There are still many questions about how much a potential project would cost and whether it could meet the water needs for southeastern New Mexico. NMIF speaks with Norman Gaume, the former director of the ISC, who opposes the diversion plan and filed a lawsuit against the ISC over violations of the state Open Meetings Act, as well as sitting down with Craig Roepke, deputy director of the ISC to hear his view on the process of considering a large project over many years.

Gene Grant and the panelists talk about funding for mental health services in Bernalillo County and calls for the federal government to stop letting APD officers engage in “military-style training” at Kirtland Air Force Base.

GUESTS:
Norman Gaume, former director of the Interstate Stream Commission
Craig Roepke, deputy director of the Interstate Stream Commission
Dan Yohalem, ACLU of New Mexico

Janelle Astorga, senior at Albuquerque High School
Astrid Carrete, senior at Albuquerque High School
Maya Quinones, senior at Albuquerque High School

LINE PANELISTS:
Sophie Martin, Editor, DukeCityFix.com & Attorney
Mark Boitano, Former New Mexico Senator
Rob Nikolewski, Watchdog.org
Laura Sanchez-Rivét, Sanchez Legal Solutions

CORRESPONDENTS:
Gwyneth Doland, @GwynethDoland
Sarah Gustavus, @sarahgustavus

Host: Gene Grant

The Producer of NEW MEXICO IN FOCUS is Sarah Gustavus. Associate Producer is Kathy Wimmer. Funding for this program was provided in part by the McCune Foundation Communications Fund, Santa Fe Community Foundation.

Episode 834 for air March 6, 2015

The Line: February 27, 2015

Is the legislature this year focused on a few divisive issues? That was the argument made in the Santa Fe New Mexican by reporters Steve Terrell and Milan Simonich: Controversial issues divide lawmakers along party lines

This week’s line opinion panelists weigh in on the attention that three bills are getting at the Roundhouse this session:

The Albuquerque Public Schools and the teachers’ union recently denied a request from the Albuquerque Journal for teacher lesson plans. The paper filed the request under the state Inspection of Public Records Act (IPRA).

APS argues the lesson plans are intellectual property and therefore exempt from IPRA requests as trade secrets.

Our line panelists react to this news story.

A proposal to cap interest rates on storefront loans, like title loans, is currently stalled this legislative session. The proposal had broad support from faith groups and service providers, but lenders testified that a 36 percent cap would put them out of business and cost New Mexico jobs.

Our line panelists debate the proposed cap.

What do you think about these issues? Do you have an opposing view or new idea to add to the conversation? Email us at nmif [at] nmpbs.org