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Local News

  • Mortgage rates hit all-time low as foreclosure numbers spike

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Mortgage rates sank to the lowest level in decades this week, pushed down by the weak economy and the Federal Reserve's move to help lift the recovery by purchasing government debt.

    Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate for 30-year fixed loans this week was 4.44 percent, down from 4.49 percent last week. That's the lowest since Freddie Mac began tracking rates in 1971.

    The average rate on the 15-year fixed loan dropped to 3.92 percent, down from 3.95 percent last week and the lowest on record.

  • New Mexicans invited to voice opinions on higher education

    State Master Plan for Higher Education Town Hall meetings are being held across the state and the public is invited to attend.

  • Suspected serial killer nabbed trying to board plane for Israel

    WASHINGTON (AP) -- A man suspected in a series of stabbings in Virginia and Michigan was arrested at the Atlanta airport as he tried to board a plane bound for Israel.

    A spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection says the agency's officers arrested the man about 10 p.m. Wednesday night at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport, as he attempted to board a Delta flight for Tel Aviv. The suspect was handed over to the FBI and Atlanta police.

  • Fire destroys some UNM health records

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center says about 90 percent of its patient medical records prior to 2005 were destroyed in a fire in an Albuquerque storage warehouse.

    UNM's executive vice president for health sciences, Dr. Paul Roth, says the center is working with its faculty and staff to evaluate the extent of the loss.

    UNM says the warehouse was leased by a private company under contract with the Health Sciences Center and University of New Mexico Hospital to store their records.

  • Report details union’s proposed contract

    Sticking points to a contract between local firefighters and the county include pay, benefits and remaining competitive with other fire departments, according to a fact-finders report provided to the Monitor.

    Failed attempts to agree on the terms of a new contract are propelling the Los Alamos Firefighters’ Association Local 3279 closer to filing suit against Los Alamos County.

    According to the report, the parties bargained to reach a contract to succeed the collective bargaining agreement that expired March 31, 2009.

  • Denish pledges to support lab, small business

    Lt. Gov. Diane Denish has interacted with the local community and Los Alamos National Laboratory during the last eight years she has been in office at the Roundhouse. At a fundraiser in her honor at Central Avenue Grill Wednesday evening, the Democrat explained that her familiarity with the town and laboratory gives her an advantage over her Republican opponent Susana Martinez of Las Cruces.

  • Mysteries of time topic of speech by Nobel prize winner

    Nobel laureate Ahmed Zewail will deliver the 40th Oppenheimer Memorial Lecture at 7:30 p.m. Aug. 16 in the Duane Smith Auditorium.

    The lecture, “The Mysteries and Miracles of Time,” is free and open to the public.

    Zewail, who holds the Linus Pauling Chair (endowed) as a professor of physics and chemistry at the California Institute of Technology, earned the Nobel Prize in 1999 for his pioneering work in femtoscience: studying phenomena that occur on the scale of a femtosecond, or a millionth of a billionth of a second.

  • Rate increase to boost reliability

    Everyone in Los Alamos can attest to the mixed behavior of the county’s electricity.

    Perhaps no one knows this situation more than the residents on North Mesa and Barranca Mesa — where outages are routine.

    “Those particular overhead lines are over 40 years old and the conductor is undersized (and) prone to outages during wind storms,” Department of Public Utilities Manager John Arrowsmith said.

    Correcting the situation comes with a price.

  • Department store eyed for Trinity

    Kroger is again interested in putting an expanded grocery store that would include retail items such as clothing, electronics, toys and jewelry at the new Trinity site.

    “The concept has been approved,” said Allen Branch, one of the principals of Branch Realty of Santa Fe. “They want to anchor the center.”

  • Obama signs $26 billion emergency spending bill to bail out states

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Summoned back from summer break, the House on Tuesday pushed through an emergency $26 billion jobs bill that Democrats said would save 300,000 teachers, police and others from election-year layoffs. President Barack Obama immediately signed it into law.

    Lawmakers streamed back to Washington for a one-day session as Democrats declared a need to act before children return to classrooms minus teachers laid off because of budgetary crises in states that have been hard-hit by the recession.