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Los Alamos County

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Public information meeting draws large crowd

By Arin McKenna

A public information meeting concerning the Las Conchas wildfire was held Tuesday night at Pojoaque Valley High School. Governor Susana Martinez, B Michael Lopez (legislative assistant for Senator Tom Udall), Congressman Ben Ray Lujan, Speaker Ben Lujan and several Los Alamos County Council members were among those present. Los Alamos County fire chief Doug Tucker was not present, nor were there any representatives from Los Alamos National Laboratories (LANL).

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The meeting started at 6 p.m. and Tucker had a 7 p.m. news conference at Ashley Pond.

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County/LANL update

 

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Council set to finalize strategic plan

The focus of Tuesday night’s council meeting will be an attempt to reach consensus and formally adopt the county’s updated Strategic Leadership Plan.


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LA County has 2.5 percent of workforce without a job

Unemployment falls locally, statewide

By The Staff

The unemployment rate in New Mexico took a big tumble in May, although job growth wasn’t a factor in the fall.
The state’s seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate was 6.9 percent in May, according to the state’s Department of Workforce Solutions. That number was significantly down from 7.6 percent in April and 8.3 percent in May 2010.
However, job growth hasn’t been part of the drop in unemployment. Between May 2010 and May 2011, nonfarm payroll employment has dropped by 6,300 jobs, or 0.8 percent, the worst clip in the nation.
Despite the losses, statewide employment was still considerably stronger than the nation as a whole. The U.S. currently has a 9.1 percent unemployment rate.


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LAFD cautions residents against campfires, fireworks; Santa Fe National Forest goes into Stage III restrictions

Extreme fire danger prompts closures

By Carol A. Clark

Los Alamos County and the majority of New Mexico are experiencing a severe drought, which is driving the highest escalation in fire restriction stages in years.


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LA county to receive $82K in PILT funding

By The Staff

New Mexico counties will share nearly $33 million in payment in lieu of taxes (PILT), but Los Alamos County will not be receiving much of the pie.


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DPU Needs Sewer Rate Hike To Get Flush

By Arin McKenna

Escalating maintenance and debt service costs are propelling the push for a 10 percent sewer service rate hike by the Los Alamos Department of Public Utilities.


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Agreement with Trinity Site developer nears

By Arin McKenna

Negotiations between Los Alamos County and the North American Development Group (NADG) for the Trinity Site Revitalization Project is nearing completion. Randy Autio, Acting County Administrator, expects to have a tentative agreement hammered out by the end of June.

The council approved the selection of NADG in November 2010, and directed staff to enter into negotiations for a ground sublease and development agreement.

The original deadline was May 1. Negotiations were not complete, but the county and NADG had reached agreement on a number of key points and staff apprised council they were confident an agreement could ultimately be reached. Council voted to extend the deadline 60 days on April 19.


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Road to Community Broadband a long one

By Arin McKenna

Some Los Alamos County residents are so eager for a community broadband network they are asking, “How much does it cost and how can I get it?”

It’s still a long way off.

It will be at least two years before community broadband becomes a reality – provided the county decides to move forward with the project.

But that type of enthusiasm is being noted by John Jones, IT project manager for Los Alamos County. The project team is conducting market research into how area residents and businesses feel about the project and what features and benefits are most important them.


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Broadband concept has appeal

By Arin McKenna

Whether Los Alamos gets community broadband is largely dependant on public input, and every effort is being made to garner as much as possible.


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Council tackles infrastructure issues

By Arin McKenna

County council approved measures that would improve the county’s electrical delivery system and flood plain management and create additional school funding during its Tuesday meeting.


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CRC addresses substantative changes

By Arin McKenna

The Charter Review Committee (CRC) has shifted its focus from cleaning up charter language to addressing more substantive issues. At Monday night’s meeting, Chair John Hopkins directed committee members to work toward reaching consensus.


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Governor appoints Los Alamos council vice chair to complete Jeannette Wallace’s legislative term

Martinez taps local to fill Wallace post

By Carol A. Clark

Gov. Susana Martinez has selected Los Alamos County Council vice-chair James Hall of White Rock to replace longtime Dist. 43 Rep. Jeannette Wallace, who died in April.


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Overlook Park emergency access meeting

The county will hold a public meeting at 5:30 p.m., Monday at the White Rock Town Hall to continue discussion on an emergency access to Overlook Park during the Fourth of July Fireworks extravaganza.
The county is exploring the idea of using an existing walking path wide enough to accommodate emergency ATVs in the event of a catastrophic incident.
This idea is being contemplated as a temporary measure this year, with talks planned for a permanent solution for next year.

 


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T-Board turns up the heat on contractor

By Arin McKenna

The Transportation Board is turning up the heat on the county contractor who is advocating a series of roundabouts along Trinity Drive. With a number of key questions still swirling around the proposal, some board members demanded more substantive answers during the meeting Thursday evening.


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