11-14 Local briefs

Narcotics checkpoint scheduled
The Roosevelt County Sheriff’s Office will be hosting a multi- agency narcotics checkpoint from noon to 8 p.m. today in Roosevelt County, according to a RCSO news release. Agencies participating in the checkpoint will include Roosevelt and Curry Counties, Portales and Clovis Police Departments, and the Motor Transportation Division. The focus of the checkpoint will be stopping the illegal transportation of narcotics on the highways of New Mexico.

Purcell to speak today
The Criminal Justice Association at Eastern New Mexico University will present Noreen Purcell, the Supervising Forensic Scientist from the New Mexico Department of Public Safety’s Northern Forensic Laboratory, at noon today in the Zia Room behind the Ballroom in the CUB.
The public is invited free of charge. Feel free to bring your lunch.
Information: Melissa Blevins 575-562-2232.

Handbell festival planned
The 15th annual Eastern New Mexico Fall Handbell Festival will be held Saturday at the First United Methodist Church in Portales. Twelve handbell choirs from around the region, under the guest direction of Anna Laura Page of Sherman, Texas, will be featured.
The public is invited to the closing concert at 3 p.m. Saturday in the church sanctuary. The concert is free and an offering will be taken to defray expenses.
Information: 359-0701

Retired educators to meet
The Roosevelt County Association of Educational Retirees will meet at 11:30 a.m. Friday in the Golden Acres Community Room. Lunch will be catered with a fee charged. Members may attend just the business meeting if they choose.
Speakers on the issues of health care insurance and proposed legislation will be Joe Montano, a member of the New Mexico Retiree Health Care Board; Chris DeGregorio, president of NMAER; and Delman Shirley, incoming chairman of the NMAER Legislative Committee.

Ethanol plant permit approved
DALLAS — The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality has granted an air permit for Panda Ethanol’s planned 115 million gallon-per-year ethanol refinery in Muleshoe, according to a company press release.
The facility is designed to refine an estimated 38 million bushels of feedstock-grade corn a year into biofuel. The fuel produced at the Muleshoe plant could displace approximately 2.6 million barrels of foreign oil a year, the release said.
The Muleshoe facility will be engineered to gasify up to 1 billion pounds of cattle manure per year to generate the steam used in the ethanol manufacturing process, the release said.
It is located eight miles northwest of Muleshoe.
Construction is dependent upon financing, additional regulatory approvals and other conditions.