Local News

  • Parking lot will be closed near pond

    Los Alamos County announced Wednesday the parking lot adjacent to Ashley Pond at the corner of Trinity Drive and 20th Street will be closed starting March 2.
    According to the county, Teen Center Remodel contractor R&M Construction will be using this parking lot as a staging area while the community building is remodeled.
    Toward the end of the remodel, the parking lot is scheduled to be reconfigured and reconstructed.
    During the time of the parking lot closure, the United States Post Office mailboxes and the UPS drop box, currently situated in the parking lot, will be relocated. They will be moved to the north side of Deacon Street near El Parasol restaurant.
    The parking lot is scheduled to reopen in September. During the closure, overflow Ashley Pond parking will be at Mesa Public Library and at the Justice Center.
    For more information about the closure, call the county’s Community & Economic Development Department at 662-8120.

  • Rental car thief gets probation

    A Cordova woman was sentenced in court Tuesday for her part in trying to steal a 2914 Hyundai Elantra from a Los Alamos rental car agency.
    Martha F. Romero, 39, was sentenced for embezzlement (over $250, less than $500). The original charge was embezzlement (over $2,500, less than $20,000). In court, Romero agreed to plead no contest to the charge, meaning she takes responsibility for the crime, but she doesn’t admit guilt.
    She was sentenced to 364 days in the Los Alamos County Detention Center with 364 days suspended, as well as given 364 days of supervised probation. She was also ordered to pay $73 in court costs and $25 per month in probation fees.
    If, however, Romero complies with all her probation conditions, she could be released from it after six months.
    In court, Assistant District Attorney Kent Wahlquist noted that the car had been returned, so restitution would not be an issue.
    According to court records, Romero got into a car accident in July of last year.
    Her insurance company rented a car for her through the Enterprise Rental Car at the Los Alamos Airport. When Romero did not return the car on the agreed on date of Sept. 12, a warrant was issued for her arrest in November of last year through the Los Alamos Police Department.

  • Assisted living area, dog day care approved

    Two new businesses received the blessing of the Planning and Zoning commission Wednesday night.
    Ruth Scott, owner/operator of LA Dog House, received approval for a special use permit to open a dog day care and training business at 127 East Gate Drive. The business will offer day care Monday through Friday and training classes on weekends.
    “Our business will be a huge plus to this community. We’ve got a lot of people waiting for us to open,” Scott said.
    The site previously served as temporary quarters for a veterinary clinic. However, the M-2 zoning for the area did not allow for pet-related services other than veterinary practices. Scott worked with county staff to change the code to include this use.
    The process took 10 months. Scott expressed gratitude for staff’s assistance in making the revision.
    The commission voted 7-0 to approve the application. Catherine Mockler was not present at the meeting.
    Scott plans to secure her business license as soon as the two-week waiting period — which allows for appeals of the commission’s decision — has ended. She hopes to be open for business March 16.

  • Police Beat 2-27-15

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department Records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. The Los Alamos Police Department uses the term “arrest” to define anyone who has been physically arrested, server a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Feb. 19

    10:05 a.m. — Elijah Meason, 25, of Los Alamos was arrested for driving while operating a vehicle while under the influence of an intoxicating liquor on Trinity Drive.

    12:15 p.m. — Deanna Doss, 28, of Santa Cruz was arrested for trafficking controlled substances at the Los Alamos police station.

    12:24 p.m. — Celso Ramos, 35, of Santa Cruz was arrested for trafficking controlled substances on Sherwood Boulevard.

    1:41 p.m. — A 16-year-old Hernandez teen was arrested through a district court warrant at the Los Alamos Justice Center. The original charge was battery, stemming from an incident that took place on Central Avenue Oct. 16, 2013.

  • Today in history Feb. 26
  • NWS issues video forecast on return of winter storm

    The National Weather Service has posted a web video on the forecast for the next few days, with the possibility of winter storms returning to New Mexico. The video can be viewed at http://www.srh.noaa.gov/abq/?n=specialwebbriefing

  • White House says NCLB veto to come

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The White House threatened Wednesday to veto a Republican bill to overhaul the widely criticized No Child Left Behind law, calling the effort “a significant step backwards.” The veto threat came as lawmakers were set to debate the measure in the House.
    Republicans say the bill would restore local control in schools and stop top-down education mandates. Democrats say it would allow billions in federal dollars to flow out without ensuring they will improve student learning.
    The White House said the bill “abdicates the historic federal role in elementary and secondary education of ensuring the educational progress of all of America’s students, including students from low-income families, students with disabilities, English learners, and students of color.”
    The White House statement was the latest in a series of veto threats issued by President Barack Obama since both chambers of Congress went under Republican control last month.
    A vote is expected on Friday, and it’s possible that members will vote strictly along party lines. That’s what happened with a similar bill in 2013.
    House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, called the education measure “a good conservative bill that empowers America and does not empower the bureaucracy here in Washington.”

  • Update 2-25-15

    Authors Speak

    Don Usner, author of “Chasing Dichos,” will take part in the Mesa Public Library Authors Speak Series. The talk is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday at the library.

    SAN meeting

    A Senior Appreciation Night meeting is scheduled for 10 a.m. in the Larry R. Walkup Aquatic Center training room.

    Fire and Ice

    Santa Fe National Forest will host its Fire and Ice Festival Saturday from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at Father Fitzgerald Park in Jemez Springs. The event will feature live music, arts and crafts and a cross-cut saw contest.

    APP board

    Los Alamos County’s Arts in Public Places Board will meet at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the Municipal Building.

    School board

    The Los Alamos School Board wil hold a work
    session Thursday at Barranca Mesa Elementary School. A report on the 20-Year Facilities Plan will be discussed. Meeting time is 5:30 p.m.

    County Council

    The next Los Alamos County Council meeting is 7 p.m. March 3 in council chambers.

  • Fate of Christians kidnapped by ISIS unknown

    BEIRUT (AP) — Islamic State group militants have moved a large group of Christian hostages to a city they control in northeastern Syria, while they continue to battle Kurdish and Christian militiamen for control of a chain of villages along the Khabur River, activists and state-run media said Wednesday.
    Hassakeh province which borders Turkey and Iraq has become the latest battleground for the fight against the Islamic State group in Syria. It is predominantly Kurdish but also has populations of Arabs and predominantly Christian Assyrians and Armenians.
    In pre-dawn attacks, the group on Monday attacked communities nestled along the river, seizing at least 70 people, many of them women and children. Thousands of others fled to safer areas.
    The fate of those kidnapped, almost all of them Assyrian Christians, remained unclear Wednesday, two days after they were seized.
    However, the state-run SANA news agency and the Assyrian Network for Human Rights in Syria said the hostages have been moved to the Islamic State-controlled city of Shaddadeh, south of the city of Hassakeh. The United States and a coalition of regional partners are conducting a campaign of airstrikes against the group, and have on occasion struck Shaddadeh, a predominantly Arab town.

  • State House OKs $6.2B budget bill

    SANTA FE (AP) — The New Mexico House of Representatives has approved a $6.2 billion spending proposal for the next fiscal year that includes pay raises for new teachers and state police officers.
    The House voted 42-25 Tuesday after three hours of debate. Five Democrats sided with 37 Republicans in the majority. The bill now moves to the Senate.
    While most department budgets remain largely flat, the bill boosts spending for education, the state’s child welfare agency and tourism.
    The amount of spending in the bill is nearly the same as that outlined by Gov. Susana Martinez and the Legislative Finance Committee earlier this year.
    Both laid out plans in January — based on revenue projections available then — to spend an additional $70 million or so on education. But with less new money available due to falling oil prices, the bill calls for a $37 million bump for learning initiatives.
    The figure represents about 44 percent of the more than $80 million in new money available to spend.
    As anticipated, local schools’ and districts’ control over the money versus disbursement by the Public Education Department became a contested issue during the House debate.