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More than 50 elected officials from around the nation attended the Rural Action Caucus (RAC) Steering Committee meeting Oct. 10-12 in Santa Fe.
The Rural Action Caucus is an affiliate of the National Association of Counties and focuses on rural infrastructure and economic development. The New Mexico Association of Counties (NMAC) hosted the informational meetings which included presentations on regional state water compacts, cultural assets, New Market Tax Credits, collateral support programs, and a strategy session. NMAC and Los Alamos County collaborated on a special tour for participants on Saturday. RAC members visited the Los Alamos Smart Grid and Smart House where Los Alamos County Utilities Manager John Arrowsmith and Public Information Officer Julie Williams provided an overview of the collaborative research project. As elected officials, many of the participants were particularly interested in energy efficient developments that could be replicated in rural communities. Following the Smart House visit, the members took part in a historic walking tour highlighting the early development of Los Alamos. Los Alamos Historical Society Executive Director Heather McClenahan and Buffalo Tours guide Georgia Strickfaden shared the history of the community from ancient civilization to the Manhattan Project. The event came to a close with a farewell luncheon at Rancho de Chimayo and a visit to the Santuario de Chimayo Mission Church.