Local News

  • Caldera releases final EIS

     The Valles Caldera Trust has released the Final Environmental Impact Statement for the proposed Landscape Restoration and Stewardship Plan (Stewardship Plan).
    The Stewardship Plan proposes a 10-year strategy for the restoration and stewardship of the forest, grassland, shrubland and riparian ecosystems of the Valles Caldera National Preserve.
    Proposed activities include, forest thinning, wildland fire management, road closure, decommissioning, maintenance and repair; riparian restoration, erosion control, burned area rehabilitation, and noxious weed eradication and control.
    The DRAFT EIS was released in August 2013 for a 45-day public review and comment period.
    Based on the comments received, minor changes were made to the draft document.
    Those changes and a complete record of the comments received and our responses are provided in appendices.
    The appendices and the FEIS for the Stewardship Plan can be viewed or downloaded in their entirety or in individual chapters (smaller files).
    Hard copies have been distributed to the following public libraries: Albuquerque-Bernalillo County, Española, Jemez Pueblo, Jemez Springs, Los Alamos, Loma Colorado (Rio Rancho), New Mexico State Library (Santa Fe), Santa Fe and White Rock.

  • LANL Foundation offering grants

    First Born Los Alamos has been awarded a $517,500 grant from the New Mexico Children Youth and Families Department to resume providing support for families having their first child.
    CYFD will award $172,500 a year over five years to serve 58 families each year. First Born Los Alamos, which opened in 2008, had been closed for two years due to lack of funding. A project of the Los Alamos National Laboratory Foundation, home visitors provide free support for first-time parents from pregnancy until a child is 3 years old. Participants in 13 other state programs range from professional women in their 40s to teen mothers to first-time fathers.
    Susan Herrera, CEO of the LANL Foundation called the grant a perfect example of state government enabling Foundations to help the communities they serve. The LANL Foundation supports similar programs in Rio Arriba, San Juan, McKinley, San Miguel, Guadalupe and Mora counties.
    Anna Marie Garcia, First Born program director, said reopening the Los Alamos office sends a strong message that the program is for everyone and that it can fit the needs of any family in New Mexico. “Everyone wants to be a good parent,” Garcia said, “First Born just shows them how.”
    Services in Los Alamos began in 2008 and have been suspended for the last two years due to lack of funding.

  • New environmental services manager brings sustainability background

    The Los Alamos County Environmental Services Division has a new person at the helm. Environmental Services Manger Angelica Gurule came onboard the end of June.
    Gurule has a Bachelors of Science and Environmental Science degree from the University of New Mexico, as well as dual masters in information, science and technology from James Madison University and sustainable environmental resource management from the University of Malta, a study abroad program offered through James Madison.
    “(The Malta program) focused on wastewater, energy, agriculture, beach management–since there are lots of beaches on Malta. So I was able to see from a global perspective how different regions manage their resources, including waste and recyclable material,” Gurule said.
    As a student in Malta, Gurule helped with cleanup events sponsored by the U.S. Embassy (she was shocked to see the lack of consciousness about throwing trash such as cigarette butts on beaches) and on raising awareness about issues like recycling.
    Gurule was employed by Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Environmental-Risk Reduction Office from 2003 through 2012.
    “It’s really at the lab that I gained all my experience and love for sustainability and waste reduction, pollution prevention and environmental stewardship,” Gurule said.

  • Today in history July 11
  • Flooding at Bandelier

    Tuesday’s rains caused damage at Bandelier National Monument as Frijoles Creek rose enough to take out all the little plank bridges on the way to Alcove House and the two on the way to the falls. The park is open but there was a warning on its Facebook page. “Visitors are welcome to take the trails, but just be cautious if there is rain so that you don’t get stranded on the wrong side of a flooding creek. If you do, just hang around until the water subsides to safe levels again.”

  • Flashing Lights

    It seems some people in Los Alamos do not know what a flashing red light means. The new traffic signal between Mari Mac shopping center and the Smith’s Marketplace began flashing red Wednesday evening, yet many cars are not stopping. The signal went online to prepare motorists for next Monday or Tuesday, when the light will begin cycling red/yellow/green. 

  • News Briefs 07-10-14

    MOWW meeting set for Tuesday

    Major General Doug Anson, AUS Retired will be guest speaker at the Major General Franklin E. Miles Chapter 229 of The Military Order of the World Wars Tuesday for the annual picnic at the Los Alamos Sheriff’s Posse Lodge.
    The topic of General Anson’s talk is “Voice of the Martyrs.” The meeting will begin with a social 6 p.m. followed by a brief business meeting and dinner at 6:25 p.m. Anson’s talk will begin at about 7:15 p.m.
    The Military Order of the World Wars dinner meetings are open to interested citizens for the dinner and program with RSVP, or the program only at no cost. Caterer for the picnic will be Smokin’ Bear BBQ. Cost of the dinner is $25 per person. Note that a dinner reservation made is a commitment to the chapter to pay for the reserved dinner(s).
    RSVP for the dinner is needed by Sunday. Call Lt. Col. Norman G. Wilson, USAF Retired, Chapter Senior Vice Commander and Past Chapter Commander, 662-9544 (email NrmWil5@cs.com), or Adjutant Eleanor Pinyan, 672-3750 (email depinyan@cybermesa.com).

    County looking for those to fill out survey

  • Fire restrictions lifted in SF National Forest

    Recent rainfall on the Santa Fe National Forest and Valles Caldera National Preserve has helped reduce the fire danger. Therefore, fire restrictions (Order Number 10-412) will be terminated, effective today.
    “We thank our visiting public for their cooperation in abiding with the fire restrictions on the Jemez Ranger District, portions of the Cuba Ranger District (south of N.M. Highway 126) and the Valles Caldera NP,” said Maria T. Garcia Forest Supervisor. She also reminds people to continue to be careful with their campfires by extinguishing them until they are cold to the touch.
    Fire personnel continue to respond to smoke reports from lightning strikes across the forest. Although there has been measureable rain, the storms moving through are accompanied by lightning strikes that could smolder for days until weather conditions change.

  • Update 07-10-14


    Climate change discussion with Chick Keller. 7 p.m. Thursday at PEEC. No advance registration required. Free. For more information, visit PajaritoEEC.org, call 662-0460, or email Programs@PajaritoEEC.org.

    Horse show

    Los Alamos County Horse Show. 10 a.m. Saturday at Brewer Arena, North Mesa Rodeo Grounds. For cost and more information call 662-8170.

    Work session

    The county announced that the council work session scheduled for July 22 has been canceled. The wrong date was reported in Wednesday’s edition because of a source error.


    The Paintings of Ryszard Wasilewski. Opening Reception from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Friday. Upstairs in the Mesa Public Library Gallery. Daily through Aug. 5.

    Caldera Trustees

    The Valles Caldera Board of Trustees will meet at 6 p.m. Friday at the Holiday Inn Express in Los Alamos. The public is invited. 

  • Walkup Center to be closed for 2 months

    The Larry Walkup Aquatic Center will close to the public at 7 p.m. Aug. 15 until mid-November for a project to replace the HVAC system and boilers. The project will begin on Aug. 18 immediately after the 40th annual Los Alamos Triathlon, when the aquatic Center normally closes two weeks for maintenance. All of the affected groups have been informed of this closure as early as the fall of 2013.
    The purpose of the project is to replace the pool boilers and HVAC system which are at the end of their expected life and install more energy efficient systems.
    The aquatic center first opened in April 1988 and most of the mechanical equipment is 26 years old and at the end of its service life. An integrated maintenance plan and an energy audit identified this project as a priority in the ongoing building maintenance plan.
    The timing of this project has become more urgent as the condition of the boiler serving the Olympic-sized pool has deteriorated in the past year and is questionable on how long it will last. There are no replacement parts for some of the boiler’s components. The project budget is $2.2 million and is funded through the ongoing Major Facility Maintenance Program.