Friday, February 13, 2009

Love is in the Air on Valentine's Day at Albuquerque's Bio Park and Zoo.

Are you still looking for a hot date for Valentine's Day? We decided to take a romantic stroll through the Rio Grande Zoo,
We might even drop by to look at the fishes at the Albuquerque Aquarium, or the garden Rio Grande Botanic Garden . Each are promising great fun, and lot of activities, on Valentine's Day from 10a to 2p.

We got all this info from the folks from the City of Albuquerque's Bio Parks and thought we'd share it with you.

“Animal attraction” is the topic of Discovery Stations around the Zoo. Educators will teach guests about the sometimes scintillating details of courtship and reproduction in the animal world. Guests will also learn how the Zoo acts as a “matchmaker” for endangered species, such as elephants, orangutans and snow leopards, as part of the Species Survival Program. Children can create a Valentine for the animal they love, and all guests will be able to make enrichment items to be given to the Zoo animals. Pink and red paintings created by the Zoo’s own elephants will be on display. Zookeepers will deliver special Valentine’s popsicles (blood-sicles, that is) to the polar bears at 12:30pm, and other animals will be enjoying Valentine’s treats throughout the day. Call (505) 764-6214 for more information about Zoo activities.

At the Aquarium, visit Discovery Stations to find out how male seahorses get pregnant, look for “kissing” in the coral reef exhibit and learn why some fish undergo a sex change. Call (505) 848-7180 for more information about Aquarium activities. Visit the Garden’s conservatories for a romance-themed display of pink and red cyclamens and impatiens. Delicious Valentine’s Day goodies will be available for purchase at Zoo and Aquarium cafes. All Valentine's Day education activities are included with general admission.

The Albuquerque Biological Park is an accessible facility and a division of the City of Albuquerque’s Cultural Services Department. For assistance in visiting, please call 311 (Relay NM or 711), preferably with three days advance notice. Hours are 9:00am to 5:00pm daily. Zoo admission is $7.00 for adults and $3.00 for seniors 65 and older and children 3-12. Same day combo admission to all BioPark facilities is $12 for adults; $5 for seniors and children.

New Mexico BioPark Society membership offers free general admission to all BioPark facilities and discounts to many special events. Find out more about becoming a BioPark Society member.

The Albuquerque Biological Park is accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). Look for the AZA logo whenever you visit a zoo or aquarium as your assurance that you are supporting a facility dedicated to providing excellent care for animals, a great experience for you and a better future for all living things. With its more than 200 accredited members, AZA is a leader in global wildlife conservation and your link to helping animals in their native habitats.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Journalists to Attempt Webcasting Ethics Reform Hearing in Santa Fe

Online journalist extraordinaire Heath Haussamen just gave us some good news.

Haussamen is reporting on his blog that the New Mexico Independent, an online news portal, will attempt to webcast (video & audio) from the Senate Rules Committee's hearing on ethics reform on Friday.

The hearing is scheduled in Santa Fe at 8am.

This is a must watch hearing because critical reforms in campaign finance laws, for one, are needed in the state.

Just look at all the pay-to-play investigations and grand jury investigations underway in the state and federal systems involving leaders who may be taking advantage of big money donations and giving access and contracts to friends, family and companies that support their campaigns.

Haussemen has been reporting on ethics reform for years. This morning, he wrote a summary on many of the pending reform measures here.

The omnibus bill he outlines is downright scary. Read why leaders may be able to kill most ethics bill in one clean sweep. Haussamen makes it easy to find and read the actual bills with multiple links in this morning's story.

Everyone has been hopeful during this year's 60-day session lawmakers would adopt drastic changes and pass new ethics laws.

Tomorrow's your chance to monitor the webcast to see if Senators kill the bills to protect their own interests.

For more information on tomorrow's planned webcast read the New Mexico Independent online here, and plan to tune to the webcast here on Friday morning at 8am.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Hispanos Unidos will run two cable television ads on Comcast statewide beginning tomorrow.

Here is one of ads the group say highlights voter fraud legislation in New Mexico.

The ads endorse Voter ID, HB 591 (Dianne Hamilton, Grant, Sierra, Hidalgo) and explain the voter fraud associated with Same Day Registration, HB 52, (Jim Trujillo, Santa Fe) HB 395 (Joseph Cervantes, Dona Ana).

Victor Contreras, Chairman of Hispanos Unidos encourages New Mexicans to contact their legislators about these bills, taking a stand against increasing voter fraud in New Mexico. “We have volunteers who have uncovered profound voter fraud and voter disenfranchisement in Dona Ana County.” Contreras said, “We need to stand up with one voice to demand that our elections include all New Mexicans, and only New Mexicans.”


Santa Fe-based political journalist Steve Terrell published an article reviewing the ad and profiling the group behind it here.

Terrell talked Rep. Joe Cervantesto who said allegations of fraud by the GOP are merit less.

Rep. Joe Cervantes, D-Las Cruces, who is sponsoring one of two same-day registration bills in the House, said, "the allegations of voter fraud in Doña Ana County have been made for years and are baseless." He said the charges, made by Republicans in his area, "never brought up evidence of a single fraudulent vote or voter."

Stimulus Shocker

Andy Borowitz sent us this hilarious breaking news.

A-Rod Backs Stimulus, saying the economy needs a "shot in the arm."

[Editors note: We justwonder if the economy will deny it for five years]

Meanwhile, back to this developing story.

President Barack Obama picked up support for his stimulus package from an unexpected source today as Yankee slugger Alex Rodriguez said that he was "totally in favor of stimulus."

"Sometimes when you have to get the job done, you need a shot in the arm," said Mr. Rodriguez at a press conference in the parking lot of Yankee Stadium. "

This stimulus sounds like it could be that injection."

The slugger, known to his fans and detractors alike as A-Rod, said that the U.S. economy may not seem very muscular at the moment, but that "juicing the economy" could change that overnight."

Mark my words," he said. "If the economy gets the right injection, its muscles will bulge to monstrous proportions."

Mr. Rodriguez's words were in stark contrast with remarks made last week by another athlete, swimmer Michael Phelps, who said that the economy "just needs to chill.""As far as the economy goes, I'm comfortably numb about it," Mr. Phelps said. "Dude, did I just say that out loud?"At his press conference today, Mr. Rodriguez bristled when asked questions about steroid use, at one point throwing a car at a reporter.

New Mexico House Delegation Urges Restoration of Education Funding in Recovery Plan!

Updated 7:50am

New Mexico is set to received $953 million dollars from the American Reocvery and Reinvestment Act. That's less money than originally planned, and it cuts funding for school construction. Senators Jeff Bingaman and Tom Udall believe spending the money will create jobs and get people back to work in the state.

Bingaman's proposal to offer companies a 30 percent tax credit for investing in renewable energy facilities is still intact, and Sen. Udall says he's proud he added a measure to give employeers tax incentives for hiring returning veterans or taking vets off the unemployement roles.

Meanwhile, all three of the state's congressional representatives have signed their name on a letter urging congressional leaders to restore funding for school construction.

This is their news release:

Washington, DC – Today, Congressmen Ben Ray Luján, Martin Heinrich and Harry Teague sent a letter to Congressional leadership in advance of the conference on the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. The letter urges House and Senate leadership to include the House-passed education figures in the final conference report. The House version of the bill included significant support to local school districts for school construction, Title 1-A and IDEA – programs that will benefit students and help get our economy back on track. The Senate passed their version of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act today by a vote of 61 to 37.

"The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act should create jobs immediately and prepare our children for jobs of the future," said Luján. "Education measures in the House version achieved both of these goals through an investment in school modernization, repair and renovation projects, and funding to protect key education programs. School construction puts people back to work and funding to states to prevent education cuts keeps teachers in the classroom where they are able to prepare young people for the jobs of the future.

As the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan moves to conference, I am proud to join with my colleagues to urge leadership to maintain support for education and school construction." “With New Mexico facing a $454 million budget shortfall, the need for a comprehensive recovery package that addresses our education needs is critical. Our local schools and governments should not have to make the choice between service cuts or higher taxes,” said Congressman Harry Teague. “A comprehensive recovery package that includes immediate investments in education will not only help New Mexico save and create critical jobs but strategic investments in education will help New Mexico become stronger, more productive and competitive.”

“In order to turn this economy around as quickly as possible, we need to ensure that we are making a substantial and immediate investment in our education system,” said Rep. Heinrich. “The education funding I voted for in the House-passed version of the recovery package will save existing jobs and create new jobs by hiring new teachers, and investing in school construction and renovation.”

The House passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act last week. The House version of the legislation included $329 million to New Mexico for K-12 education and over $39 million to New Mexico for higher education modernization, renovation, and repair. It also included $419 million to New Mexico for the state fiscal stabilization fund, which could prevent cuts in the state education budget. The Senate compromise removed $16 billion school construction, $40 billion for the state fiscal stabilization fund, and all of the funding for higher education modernization, renovation, and repair.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Americans Share Their Economic Crisis Stories at House Parties

Americans have organized Economic Recovery House Meetings in all 50 states -- including 382 in California, 255 in Florida, 115 in Ohio, 199 in New York, 105 in Washington, and 149 in Texas.

That's more than 3,587 meetings in 1,579 cities and 429 congressional districts.

This past weekend, meeting hosts and guests watched a video of Governor Tim Kaine answering your questions about the president's recovery plan. Then they shared their own stories about how the crisis has affected them.

Governor Tim Kaine answers questions sent in by Organizing For America members ahead of February 7th house parties in this video.


RNC Chairman Michael Steele questions if power is going to Democrat's heads in his weekly address. Yet, we wonder if he or the GOP has any new fresh ideas on the table?