Local News

  • Health law windfall for Massachusetts hospitals

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Hospitals in Massachusetts will reap an annual windfall of $275 million through a loophole enshrined in the new health care law. Hospitals in most other states will get less money as a result.

    The disclosure was buried in a regulation that Medicare issued late last week. Hospital association executives in other states are up in arms over the news, which comes at a time when they are girding for more cuts under the newly signed federal debt deal.

    "If I could think of a better word than outrageous, I would come up with it," said Steve Brenton, president of the Wisconsin Hospital Association.

  • More to FAA shutdown than air service subsidies

    WASHINGTON (AP) — On the surface, the partial shutdown of the Federal Aviation Administration is about whether to cut $16 million in air service subsidies, a pretty small amount in this town. Underneath are layers upon layers of political gamesmanship that, at its heart, is about whether Democrats or Republicans get to call the shots in Congress.

    The immediate price is high. Already, 4,000 FAA employees have been furloughed, more than 200 construction projects have been halted and an estimated 70,000 other private-sector workers affected. Air traffic controllers and safety inspectors have remained on the job because the agency still has money from another pool of funds to pay them.

  • Bandelier Opens to Visitation

    Jason Lott, Superintendent of Bandelier National Monument announced today, "Bandelier National Monument is open for business and visitors are rediscovering mesa-top areas of the park. The Monument has relaxed most fire restrictions and visitors may also enjoy campfires at Juniper Campground."

    The sight of visitors at the Tsankawi District and driving through the main entrance station is a promising sign to park staff and local businesses. In addition to the Tsankawi District, visitors may hike along the Tyuonyi Overlook Trail to view the Frijoles Canyon cultural sites, and along Burnt Mesa Trail to see the rapid greening-up of an area affected by the Las Conchas Fire.

  • NM 4 at 501 intersection reopens in both directions after rock, mud slides

    NM 4, which was closed for a couple of hours Thursday because rock and mudslides in the area, reopened around 5:30 p.m., said Phil Taylor of the Office of Emergency Management.

    The road was closed by the 501 intersection, which was the back gate to the Los Alamos National Laboratory. The road was closed in both directions heading to and out of the Jemez Mountains.

    Earlier in the day, NM 501 was closed when a  thunderstorm rolling through the area caused some flooding with debris on the roadway on West Jemez (NM 501) at Water Canyon at mile marker 2.

    The road was closed west bound but by 3:30 p.m. crews were letting cars through that were traveling east bound on 501 and a few minutes later, the road was reopened in both directions.

  • Update 08-03-11

    Movie in the park

    Los Alamos County’s Recreation Department will host “Tangled” (rated PG) tonight at Urban Park. The movie is free and starts at approximately 7:45 p.m., weather permitting.

    Bandelier walk

    Bandelier National Monument is offering a free Tsankawi evening walk at 6:30 p.m. Thursday Reservations are required. Call 672-3861, ext. 517.

    Bulk item pickup

    Items will be picked up July 25-Aug. 5 in White Rock. Items must be curbside by 8 a.m. each day.

    T-board meeting

  • NCRTD search committee recommends Mortillaro as executive director

    Former Los Alamos County Administrator Tony Mortillaro moved one step closer this week to having the interim tag removed from his title as North Central Regional Transit executive director.

    The NCRTD’s search committee, headed by Santa Fe City Councilor Rosemary Romero, conducted a conference call Monday and made a recommendation to the board that Mortillaro become the agency’s permanent executive director.

    Mortillaro, a former county administrator, worked as a consultant for the NCRTD until Josette Lucero retired as the executive director. Mortillaro then was named the interim director.

  • Error frees repeat drunken-driving offender

    SANTA FE (AP) — A Santa Fe man arrested at least 11 times on drunken-driving charges has been freed on his most recent case because prosecutors failed to show up in court or present evidence against him.
    District Attorney Angela Pacheco told the Santa Fe New Mexican “there is no excuse” for her office not prosecuting the case against John Paul Chavez, 51.
    The New Mexican reports that for more than five weeks, Pacheco’s office failed to have a prosecutor attend a hearing in the case or turn over evidence.
    A state district judge was forced to dismiss the felony DWI case against Chavez on July 18.

  • 2011 Relay for Life slated to begin Friday

    It’s that time of year again; autumn and the beginning of another school year are just around the corner and so is the 2011 Relay for Life.

    This year’s event will kick off with a survivor dinner at 5 p.m. Friday at the Betty Ehart Senior Center, during which Dr. Kathryn Zerbach from Los Alamos Medical Center will speak. A survivor’s lap will follow at Ashley Pond at 6 p.m. The relay will be all night Friday and continue until 10 a.m. Saturday at Ashley Pond, with various events scheduled for Friday evening and Saturday morning.

  • Council tables capital projects election ordinance

    Councilor Vincent Chiravalle’s proposed Ordinance 587 dominated the Los Alamos County Council meeting Tuesday evening. Chiravalle’s ordinance would have required an annual election for voter approval of all capital projects with a price tag of $5 million or more.

    The only exceptions would be for projects funded entirely by general obligation bonds, Department of Public Utilities projects and projects with the sole purpose of complying with “environmental standards” set by state or federal regulatory agencies.

  • 72 charged in probe of child sexual abuse network

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal law enforcement officials say 72 people have been charged with participating in an online international network engaged in sexual abuse of children.

    Attorney General Eric Holder and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano say a law enforcement effort called Operation Delego (del-EGG-o) investigated more than 500 people around the world since the probe was launched in December 2009.

    Holder and Napolitano say those charged were involved in Dreamboard — a private, members-only, online bulletin board created to promote pedophilia.

    According to documents released in the probe, members traded tens of thousands of graphic images and videos of adults molesting children 12 years old and under.