Press Releases

June 14, 2013

Udall, Thune Applaud CMS Decision to Remove Barriers to Emergency Services in Rural Areas

WASHINGTON, D.C.- Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and John Thune (R-S.D.) issued statements today applauding a recent decision by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) that will provide rural hospitals with the staffing flexibility needed in order to satisfy a federal emergency room "on call" staffing requirement. Udall and Thune,, who have been raising concerns about this issue for some time, introduced legislation earlier this year to correct this workforce regulation, the Strengthe… Continue Reading


June 13, 2013

Udall Named Chairman of Financial Services Appropriations Subcommittee

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Tom Udall has been named the Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee, his office announced today. Udall was named the new Chairman by Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), Chairwoman of the full Appropriations Committee. He succeeds Senator Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), who passed away on June 3, 2013. "As Chairman I look forward to the responsibility of ensuring taxpayers dollars are spent wisely and the interests of hardwo… Continue Reading


June 13, 2013

NM Counties to Receive $34 Million in PILT Payments for Police, Fire and Schools

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich today announced counties in New Mexico will receive approximately $34 million through the 2013 Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program. A full list of the funding by county is included below. PILT is administered through the Department of the Interior and provides funding for mostly rural counties that have a limited ability to levy taxes due to the amount of federal property in their jurisdiction, including Bureau of Land Management land… Continue Reading


June 12, 2013

NM Delegation Members Introduce Bill to Strengthen STEM Fields

WASHINGTON - Today U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, along with Reps. Ben Ray Luján, Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Steve Pearce announced they have introduced a bill to strengthen the nation's Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education and training programs in New Mexico and the U.S. The STEM Support for Teachers in Education and Mentoring (STEM²) Act includes a package of initiatives designed to improve student interest and performance in STEM skills. It wou… Continue Reading


June 12, 2013

Udall Calls for Independent Investigation on NSA Data Collection, Director Says NSA Will Cooperate

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Tom Udall (D-N.M.) today led a bipartisan call for an independent investigation into the National Security Agency's (NSA) phone records and data collection programs by a key privacy and civil liberties panel originally recommended by the 9/11 Commission and strengthened through Udall's efforts in the House of Representatives. Udall sent a bipartisan letter to the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, asking it to "make it an urgent priority to investigate the pro… Continue Reading


June 11, 2013

Udall Encouraged by Vote to Begin Comprehensive Immigration Reform Debate

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Tom Udall (D-N.M.) issued the following statement today after voting to begin debate on the comprehensive immigration reform legislation, S. 744, the Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act: "I was very encouraged with the strong, bipartisan vote to restart the debate on comprehensive immigration reform in the U.S. Senate. "We still have a long way to go before immigration reform becomes law, and as it progresses in the Senate I will be… Continue Reading


June 10, 2013

Udall Hails Passage of Farm Bill in the Senate

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Tom Udall issued the following statement today after the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2013, also known as the farm bill, passed the Senate by a vote of 66-27: "Today I was proud to support passage of the Senate's new farm bill - a very important step for New Mexico, especially during our extreme drought. This bill contains the most significant reforms in decades - saving $24 billion in taxpayer dollars by eliminating wasteful programs like direct payments an… Continue Reading


June 07, 2013

Udall, Heinrich, Pearce Praise Final Rule Extending Border Commercial Zone

WASHINGTON - Today U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, along with U.S. Representative Steve Pearce, praised the Department of Homeland Security's final rulemaking decision to extend the current border commercial zone from 25 to 55 miles in Southern New Mexico. In an effort to promote border commerce, Mexican nationals who have undergone background, fingerprint and security checks may receive Border Crossing Cards (BCC) and are currently permitted to travel 25 miles into the United State… Continue Reading


June 06, 2013

Udall: Americans Deserve More Transparency on Phone Record Collection

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senator Tom Udall released the following statement today on news reports that government agencies have collected extensive information on Americans' phone records: "The news that the government issued a blanket order for Americans' phone records is deeply disturbing and exactly why I voted against the Patriot Act in 2001. It's also why I have opposed reauthorization of similar provisions without adding civil liberties protections - protections that require agencies to explain… Continue Reading


June 06, 2013

Udall and Heinrich: Prevent Fires from Downed Power Lines

WASHINGTON - Following news that recent fires in New Mexico were caused by downed power lines, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich are encouraging cooperation between utility companies and federal agencies to keep trees away from power lines and reduce the risk of wildfires. Downed power lines have caused several wildfires, including the Tres Lagunas and Thompson Ridge fires currently burning in northern New Mexico. In letters to the U.S. Departments of the Interior and Agriculture and t… Continue Reading


June 06, 2013

Udall, Heinrich, Luján Announce Fire Management Assistance Grant For Tres Lagunas Fire

WASHINGTON - Today, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Representative Ben Ray Luján announced the approval of a Fire Management Assistance Grant Program for the Tres Lagunas, currently burning in New Mexico. The grant is awarded by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. "I am pleased to see this federal support coming to New Mexico so quickly, especially because the Tres Lagunas Fire continues to burn," said… Continue Reading


June 05, 2013

Udall Office to Host Business Resource Fairs in Eddy, Lea Counties

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - U.S. Senator Tom Udall (D-NM) announced today that his office will host two "Business Resource Fairs" next week in Carlsbad and Hobbs. The Udall Business Resource Fairs, which are free and open to the public, will provide an opportunity for area businesses and local economic development leaders to learn more about resources available to support economic growth and infrastructure improvements in Southeast New Mexico. They will also build on discussions Udall had during his re… Continue Reading


June 05, 2013

Members of NM Delegation Introduce Bill to Protect Special-Ed Federal Funding

WASHINGTON - Members of the New Mexico Congressional Delegation have introduced a bill that would protect New Mexico's future special education funding. This week, the Department of Education ruled that New Mexico underfunded its share of the cost of educating students with special needs for the state fiscal year 2011. It determined New Mexico did not meet its financial obligations for special education spending by $34 million. Under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), state… Continue Reading


June 01, 2013

New Mexico Wildfires

As fires across our state continue to burn, I am doing everything I can to help our firefighting personnel and officials on the ground. One day after the first fire started, I attended a briefing on the Tres Lagunas fire by Incident Commander John Pierson, and I have been in contact with local leaders in both communities to monitor the efforts being made on both fires. I will continue to keep a close eye on the situation to make sure our officials and residents have the support they need, and he… Continue Reading


May 22, 2013

Udall, Rockefeller Introduce Bill to Help Protect Young Athletes from Sports-Related Traumatic Brain Injuries

WASHINGTON - To mark National Physical Fitness and Sports Month, U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and John D. "Jay" Rockefeller IV (D-W.Va.), Chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, today introduced legislation that seeks to protect youth athletes from the dangers of sports-related traumatic brain injuries by improving equipment safety standards and curbing false advertising claims. The Youth Sports Concussion Act will help ensure that safety standards for spor… Continue Reading


May 17, 2013

Failures at the IRS & Shining a Light on Campaign Spending

People in New Mexico and all across America feel a sense of outrage over what happened at the IRS - and they should. I'm outraged too. Partisan bias and abuse by the IRS cannot be tolerated. IRS employees failed to carryout their duties impartially and I believe calling for and accepting the resignation of the IRS's top official was the right thing to do. But another failure of the IRS is the failure to stop front groups from filing false statements and engaging in illegal amounts of political a… Continue Reading


May 16, 2013

Udall-Heinrich Bill To Establish Wilderness Areas In The Río Grande del Norte National Monument Clears Energy and Natural Resources Committee

WASHINGTON - Today, a bill sponsored by U.S. Senators Tom Udall (D-N.M.) and Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.) to designate two wilderness areas in the Río Grande del Norte National Monument, cleared the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. Watch a video clip from the markup here. "Communities around the Rio Grande Del Norte are very enthusiastic about the President's designation of the National Monument." said Sen. Udall. "Finalizing these study areas as wilderness will add to the po… Continue Reading


May 15, 2013

Udall, Heinrich, Luján Secure Funding for LANL Cleanup Efforts

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Representative Ben Ray Luján announced today that the necessary Senate and House committees have approved a reprogramming request for an additional $19 million needed to assist in maintaining the ongoing cleanup and environmental management efforts at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL). The news comes just days after the New Mexico lawmakers sent a letter to the committees urging their approval of the request made by the… Continue Reading


May 14, 2013

Bipartisan Enzi-Udall Bill Introduced to Protect State Mineral Revenue Payments

WASHINGTON - Every year, billions of dollars in revenue are generated from energy production on federal lands. Since states bear most of the costs associated with mineral development, they are guaranteed a share of the revenue under federal law. But the federal government isn't upholding its end of the bargain and is trying to keep state money. A bipartisan group of Senators today introduced a bill that would allow states the option to collect their own share of federal mineral revenue and prote… Continue Reading


May 14, 2013

Udall Initiative Would Increase Graduation Rate, Help Underperforming Schools

WASHINGTON - With graduation season underway, U.S. Senator Tom Udall (D-N.M.) introduced a bill today that would increase the graduation rate in New Mexico and across the nation. Nationwide, approximately one-fifth of high school students drop out of school each year. According to the New Mexico Public Education Department, the state's graduation rate was 70.3 percent in 2012, with a 67.7 percent rate for Hispanic students and 64.9 percent for Native Americans. In addition, New Mexico's state's … Continue Reading

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