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Grants Mayor Martin ‘Modey’ Hicks speaks to a news outlet on the phone Monday, April 27, outside Loffler’s Guns Etc. The store was one of at least four in the town that opened that day in defiance of the governor’s public health orders but with the mayor’s support.

The New Mexico Supreme Court issued an order Thursday for Grants Mayor Martin “Modey” Hicks to comply with the state’s public health restrictions in response to the COVID-19 pandemic after he took actions in defiance of mandated business shutdowns.

In April, Hicks told business owners in the small Western New Mexico city of 9,000 people that they could open if they chose to. He also told Grants city employees who had been working from home to come back to work.

The instructions contracted public health orders issued by Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham.

Attorney General Hector Balderas had asked the Supreme Court to inform Hicks he is prohibited from opening city facilities in violation of the governor’s orders or “from issuing directives and orders that contradict” the state’s restrictions.

The high court issued a stay in April temporarily stopping the mayor from allowing city facilities and businesses to open before the final order was issued Thursday.

The owner of the Grants Papa’s Pawn & Gun shop, one of the businesses that continued operating in violation of the state order, was fined $60,000 earlier this month and told to appear in court.

“I am grateful to the Supreme Court for their affirmation that the Constitution and the laws of our State protect all New Mexicans during a pandemic emergency,” Balderas said in a statement.

(21) comments

Douglas Coombs

So, the mayor of Grants has to obey the governor's orders, but the governor can violate them to purchase jewelry. At least one of them is open and honest about a desire to conduct forbidden business transactions. The other is a hypocrite who thinks she doesn't have to obey rules like the rest of us. One wonders where the governor has been getting her hair cut during this time? Clearly, she isn't as shaggy as folks like me who have been unable to get to a barber.

Jim Klukkert

Douglas Coombs- One of these government folks actively mortally threatens my heath, my loved one's health, everybody's health.

The other one made a dumb mistake.

Which one do I consider more of a threat? The mayor of Grants.

Which one will face all of NM voters in a couple years. Only MLG. So far she has my vote, and the confidence of most of my fellow citizens.

So complain away if that is what works for you. Not sure that many care much as to your pain.

Robert Bartlett

Grisham's moment of power is past. Her acolytes will continue to fawn for a while but her legacy will be chaos and poverty.

Jim Klukkert

Robert Bartlett- Wrong again, and doubling down.

MLG took the right steps at flattening the curve, undoubtedly saving many, many lives and avoiding untold suffering.

It is up to the Federal Government to make the nation whole after this national crisis.

Unfortunately, we will have to wait until January when President Biden and his team are in please to channel the ghost of FDR.

MLG of course has a term, and likely a second, before her 'moment' is past.

Mike Johnson

It is obvious the NM Supreme Court is biased and partisan here. The only options for regaining our civil rights are to take it to SCOTUS, or for the NM Legislature to change the ridiculous, egregious laws they passed to allow such one person, dictatorial rule with no oversight or Constitutional checks and balances. One person arbitrary and capricious edicts, and rule by personal whim is not democracy.

David Ford

HA. Thank you for the perfect description of the president.....

Mike Johnson

I find very little difference3 between the Guv and Trump, you see egomaniac, narcissist dictators are all alike under the skin.....

Samuel Navarro

Sorry Dr. Johnson, other than your own bias opinion, you are offering us an absolute zero in terms of facts to support your opinion. The fact is that Mayor Martin is getting a well deserved slap down for thinking he was above the law and he’ll get more if he continues. The fact is that there are over 100,000 dead Americans who are proof that we are facing a real pandemic. The fact is that our Governor has acted prudently and with scientific and medical advice to protect all New Mexicans, even you (assuming of course you really are a New Mexican). And finally, we have our Supreme Court, who has applied the our law to give Mayor Martin a reality check. I hope he gets it. BTW: do you really think you’re the XX guy? Why don’t you give us a real picture of who you are so we don’t think you’re a fictional character like him?

Jim Klukkert

Dr. Johnson, time for new prescription lens. I have never seen MLG call my fellow citizens TH*GS, nor her say that N*o-N*zis demonstrating, ultimately violently attacking and killing one good lady, 'good people.'

Frump is a sociopathic bully, who must not only be resisted, but ATTACKED without mercy at every quarter.

No difference, really Mike, get it together. Please.

Mike Johnson

Mr. Navarro, so a person without a profile picture of any kind wants to lecture me? You are a hypocrite, and obviously not smart enough to see what is happening to NM under the dictatorial reign of this despot. Enjoy the abject poverty of being 50th, all due to her.

Brian Weiss

So, the NM Supreme Court is "biased" but the US Supreme Court is not? Explain to me how that works, doc. EVERY entity, from city to federal, vests certain powers in certain individuals or boards or groups, You, doctor, are subject to credentialing by a hospital (assuming you are an MD doctor) and oversight by a state medical board. If you disagree with them, that apparently makes them "biased"? Or, perhaps like the president, you're simply incapable of believing you could be wrong?

Mark Ortiz

Mr. Navarro , Mr. Weiss, and to all regular/occasional posters on this site, in case you haven't noticed by now, AND this it for the SFNM sensors, Dr. Johnson's posts are almost exclusively hyperbole, speculative, and I get the strange feeling are aimed at triggering folks. Now, SFNM and Mr. Johnson, in order not to violate protocol, I'm not attacking you Mr. Johnson personally. I don't know you. I'm calling out your quite triggered and/or triggering posts. In either case, congratulations. You seem to be a hit. The same goes for Kyle Renfro's posts. Why the SFNM has allowed Mr. Renfro's posts to continue is beyond me. It’s not so much that he’s attacking and trying to trigger folks, it’s just that well, I'd bet a $20 that that's not his real name, it's solely a take on Kylo Ren from Star Wars.

“Hate, it has caused a lot of problems in this world, but it has not solved one yet.” Maya Angelou

Michael Olivas

She has had to make unpopular opinions, but in a public health crisis, esp one where contagion is so deadly, NM can't have little islands with little town mayors putting us all at risk. She has been very public, involves many people, and uses data for her decisions. All this is in stark contrast to the clueless federal "leadership,) responsible for so many unnecessary deaths. He'd have us all gargling bleach

Matthew Manning

POOH! The small businesses in Grant's CAN'T open at all? But the governor can buy her jewelry off a non essential business if she chooses to huh?! This woman should be removed! She is a disgrace to New Mexico. Thanks for putting us on the news as the most hypocritical state in the US. Should be ashamed of yourself MLG. You will carry your disgraces for the rest of your life.

kyle renfro

duhhh, the state supreme court is in her pocket, anyone can see that, federal court is the way to go. MLG only represents the big business and transplant in the state (california, etc). She doesn't even follow her own order and goes jewelry shopping in a crisis time when thousands of other have lost their jobs and may lose their houses. How classless is that, and she could care less what anyone thinks.

Stefanie Beninato

Why do you display your ignorance and hatred on a daily basis here? Buying online was being done by galleries and other stores.

What you ignore is the selfcentered idiotic behavior of the mayor of Grants who apparently was running out of ammo so he ordered all stores to open (including the pawn store that sold ammo and guns). He and Couy Griffin are the perfect poster boys for the GOP--the party of death.

Samuel Navarro

Mr. Renfro, didn’t you say last week that you were so sick of New Mexico that you were headed for greener pastures? Aren’t you gone yet? Didn’t you say our Governor was destroying New Mexico? I don’t see anything destroyed; what I see is that New Mexico is doing great at handling the pandemic; what I see is that we are reopening our economy in a wise and prudent way; what I see Is that you are riddled with hateful thoughts and anger. How ‘bout trying a little Love and Gratitude, Mr. Renfro? Maybe you’ll feel better about life?

Mark Ortiz

Mr. Navarro , Mr. Weiss, and to all regular/occasional posters on this site, in case you haven't noticed by now, AND this it for the SFNM sensors, Dr. Johnson's posts are almost exclusively hyperbole, speculative, and I get the strange feeling are aimed at triggering folks. Now, SFNM and Mr. Johnson, in order not to violate protocol, I'm not attacking you Mr. Johnson personally. I don't know you. I'm calling out your quite triggered and/or triggering posts. In either case, congratulations. You seem to be a hit. The same goes for Kyle Renfro's posts. Why the SFNM has allowed Mr. Renfro's posts to continue is beyond me. It’s not so much that he’s attacking and trying to trigger folks, it’s just that well, I'd bet a $20 that that's not his real name, it's solely a take on Kylo Ren from Star Wars.

“Hate, it has caused a lot of problems in this world, but it has not solved one yet.” Maya Angelou

Barry Rabkin

Of course our Governor is right. She has the support of the US Constitution (10th Amendment) and all the associated settled Case Law based on the 10th Amendment.

She is not being a dictator or an autocrat. I am thankful that she is our Governor.

Jim Klukkert

[thumbup] Well said, to the point and right on Barry!

David Ford

Thanks Barry. Once again, level headed facts "trump" emotion based hatred.....

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