May 22, 2020

Recap of New Mexico COVID-19 news (5/22/20 edition)

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This daily recap of COVID-19 news from New Mexico is available in a free daily email. Sign up here.

See all of our COVID-19 coverage here.

Thursday, state health officials announced 163 new COVID-19 cases and 11 additional COVID-19-related deaths. Of the new cases, nearly a quarter—40—were in Doña Ana County. The state also crossed 150,000 processed tests. See all the details here.

  • Political campaigns have had to change the way they campaign. See our story on three campaigns and how they are coping during the pandemic.
  • The state of New Mexico found 57 cases of COVID-19 among employees of Stampede Meat, the Las Cruces Sun-News reported. Of these, 24 are residents of New Mexico and 33 are residents of Texas. Meatpacking plants have been the location of large COVID-19 outbreaks across the country.
  • The number of younger New Mexicans who are testing positive for COVID-19 is growing, state officials said. Currently, about 13 percent of all positive cases in the state are among residents below the age of 20.
  • New Mexico is, however, meeting key hospital benchmarks, which bodes well for avoiding an overwhelmed medical system, the Albuquerque Journal reported.
  • The Navajo Nation President told AFP that the federal response to COVID-19 under President Donald Trump has been lackluster.
  • New Mexico State University reported twelve confirmed cases of COVID-19. All 12 were asymptomatic and a university spokesman told the Las Cruces Sun-News that half of them had not been on campus since March.
  • Several businesses, backed by the Republican Party of New Mexico, sued the state of New Mexico over the fines associated with violating the state public health order. The Albuquerque Journal first reported on the suit.
  • School districts in the state are helping craft plans to reopen public schools later this year, KOB-TV reported.
  • Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham appeared on The Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC Wednesday night to speak about the state’s response, including aid to the Navajo Nation. Watch it here.
  • A Tijeras man is facing criminal charges after he said Lujan Grisham deserved to die because of her requirement to for face coverings during the COVID-19 pandemic. The man, Donald Sharp of Tijeras, said it was an act of treason, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported.
  • The City of Albuquerque will start to inspect roadside shops that are selling personal protective equipment.
  • About 8,000 more New Mexicans filed for unemployment benefits according to the latest numbers.
  • El Paso’s mayor will ask residents not to go to Elephant Butte this weekend at the request of Lujan Grisham, El Paso Matters journalist Bob Moore tweeted.
  • The Eddy County commission is looking to join a coalition of local governments and legislators to file a lawsuit to “address the equality and equitable application of the broad emergency orders in order to protect the civil liberties, including free trade, of the citizens and constituents within the coalition” the Roswell Daily Record reported.
  • A Silver City restaurant that reopened in defiance of the state’s public health order put up a controversial sign that is causing backlash in the community; the restaurant received a citation from state police for breaking the public health order.
  • State Sen. John Arthur Smith, a Democrat and the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, said he thinks schools won’t have big budget cuts because of reserve levels, New Mexico In Depth reported.
  • After federal approval, SNAP beneficiaries can use their credits to buy groceries online from Amazon and Walmart, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported.
  • New Mexico’s tourism secretary said it will take awhile for the state’s tourism industry to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, the Albuquerque Journal reported.
  • The One Albuquerque fund announced in a press release that it donated $5,000 to the Sewing Guild mask project. The project is run by refugee women who are making masks for essential workers and communities hit hard by COVID-19.
  • So far, the Navajo Nation hasn’t spent any of the money in a $3.6 million fund given to the nation through donations, the Navajo Times reported.
  • The state’s only drive-in theater did not open this weekend as it had planned because of state officials, the Las Vegas Optic reported.
  • New Mexico will get $77 million for COVID-19 testing and tracing from the federal Health and Human Services Department.
  • The New Mexico History Museum is collecting stories on New Mexicans’ experiences during the pandemic, the Santa Fe New Mexican reported.
  • The El Defensor Chieftan wrote about a thrift store in the city of Socorro reopening.
  • The Pregnancy Worker Accommodation Act became law on Wednesday and advocates say it will help pregnant people be able to stay employed during the economic uncertainty.
  • A man in San Juan County was hospitalized for West Nile Virus.