Gallup Sun

Thursday, Jan 20th

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Three-Star quality rating amounts to spin

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Last Friday’s top headline from another local paper declared “CEO: Rehoboth McKinley Improves to 3-star quality rating,” and went on to describe a surprising improvement in the CMS hospital star rating.

The fact is: RMCH still has a one-star CMS hospital rating, and that has not changed.  These ratings are...

Interior Department has the right idea

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New Mexico Voices for Children is calling on Congress to act on the Interior Department’s New “Report on the Federal Oil and Gas Leasing Program” which it says will help to protect public lands and state revenues.

The report recommends reforms to federal leasing and permitting practices for oil and natural gas extraction on public lands.

James Jimenez, the executive director of N.M. Voices for Children issued this statement in support of the reforms.

“For too long, the antiqued federal oil and gas leasing program has allowed oil and gas companies to litter our public lands with orphaned wells while working New Mexicans are forced to foot the bill to clean them up. The reforms...

Now, more than ever, our future depends on construction workers

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The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act of 2021 is now law and will provide an estimated $3.725 billion to New Mexico for highway improvements, bridge replacement and repairs, expanding connections to high-speed internet, improvements in water and wastewater systems, building energy infrastructure, and more.

As of right now we don’t have enough skilled construction workers to build these projects.

New Mexico’s construction employment has decreased steadily over the last decade and is now about 11 percent below its peak in 2006. From February 2020 to October 2021, our state ranked 38th in the nation in terms of construction employment growth.

Construction firms are struggling to...

Response from RMCHCS Interim CEO Don Smithburg

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We value feedback from our community, and we appreciate the opportunity to provide some context in response to Dr. Mezoff’s letter.

I think we all agree Dr. Mezoff is a passionate, well-respected part of the RMCHCS and Gallup history. Though having not been directly involved with the hospital for some time, she may be unaware of the efforts undertaken this year to strengthen our operations and the progress we’ve achieved.

· Transparency: In response to community requests, beginning in October, RMCHCS opened our board meetings to the public. We solicited community feedback and are reviewing hospital financial reports with in-person and virtual attendees. This was not the first...

Between a rock and a hard place

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County commissioners respond to Mezoff letter

McKinley County Commissioners Billy Moore, Dist. 1, Genevieve Jackson, Dist 2, and Robert Baca, Dist. 3, all received copies of Dr. Kathleen Mezoff’s  letter about the hospital and chose Moore to speak to the Sun on their behalf.

Moore said Rehoboth McKinley Christian Health Care Services is the biggest issue commissioners face.

“We have no control over operations of the hospital itself,” he explained.

“We own the building —We have a lease with RMCHCS —They have a lease with Community Hospital Corporation as a management company,” he continued.

“We keep going back and forth.”

Moore said the commissioners’...

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