Category Archives: Episode

Historic Neighborhoods Alliance Albuquerque, Upcoming Legislative Session


This week on New Mexico in Focus: the struggle to shape and reshape Albuquerque’s neighborhoods. Just over a year ago, the city moved to a new way of planning and zoning, designed to cut down on the regulatory burden for developers, while also establishing quality standards and protections for communities. Correspondent Gwyneth Doland sits down with representatives from the Historic Neighborhoods Alliance, who worry the approach actually creates a one-size-fits-all model that ignores local input and actually creates racial disparities.

Gene Grant and The Line opinion panel discuss the request Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham sent earlier this month asking legislators for their input on agenda items to be included in the upcoming legislative session. The session is a short one – only thirty days – and devising a budget is lawmakers’ number one priority. There is room, however, for other bill proposals; the Line speculates on which will make the cut. The panelists also look at what made 2018 such a banner year for tourism in the Land of Enchantment, as a newly released report from the New Mexico Tourism Department shows visitors spent more money in the state than ever before. Last on the Line’s agenda of topics is the governor’s challenge to find balance between moving away from the fossil fuel industry, while also relying on the those revenues to fund her top priorities, including a free college tuition proposal. (In a special web extra, the Line panelists will also react to the news that Maggie Toulouse Oliver has dropped out of the race to replace Tom Udall in the U.S. Senate. Toulouse Oliver also announced she in endorsing her opponent, Congressman Ben Ray Lujan, in the race).

Host: Gene Grant

Correspondent: Gwyneth Doland

Diana Dorn-Jones, Historic Neighborhoods Alliance
Bianca Encinias, Historic Neighborhoods Alliance
Loretta Naranjo Lopez, Historic Neighborhoods Alliance
Robert Nelson, Historic Neighborhoods Alliance

Line Panelists:
Michael Bird, Public Health Consultant
Tom Garrity, The Garrity Group PR
Julie Ann Grimm, editor, Santa Fe Reporter
Laura Sanchez-Rivét, attorney, Affirm, Inc.

“Democracy Dollars,” SAT Test to Replace the PARCC, UNM Unionization

1317 Line Bye PARCC Hello SAT

This week on New Mexico in Focus, a closer look at Albuquerque’s plan for a public campaign finance voucher system, termed “Democracy Dollars.” Advocates say it’s a way to counteract the influence of money from a few wealthy donors who finance candidates for city elections. Detractors say it’s a misguided effort that would be applied too broadly and unfairly favor organizing committees who would snap up vouchers and give them to candidates.

Gene Grant and The Line opinion panel debate New Mexico Public Education Department’s choice of the SAT test to replace the PARCC test as the standardized test benchmark for juniors in the state’s public high schools. The Line also examines the recent decision by faculty of the University of New Mexico to unionize and a resurgence of organized labor in the news. Last on the Line’s agenda of topics is a look at New Mexico’s House and Senate primary races. 

NMiF also previews its upcoming interview with MALDEF President Thomas Saenz. Acting as general counsel for the group, Saenz has been deeply involved in the Yazzie/Martinez v. State of New Mexico lawsuit. In an excerpt of his interview with correspondent Russell Contreras, Saenz examines President Trump’s effort to woo Hispanic voters during his recent visit to New Mexico and in the 2020 election.

Gene Grant

Russell Contreras
Matt Grubs 

Eric Griego, NM Working Families Party
Pat Rogers, attorney
Thomas Saenz, MALDEF national president

Line Panelists:
Martha Burk, political psychologist and women’s issues expert
Sophie Martin, attorney
Cathryn McGill, NM Black Leadership Council
H. Diane Snyder, former state senator