Local News

  • NASA launches spacecraft on 5-year trip to Jupiter--video extra

    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — A sun-powered robotic explorer named Juno rocketed away Friday on a five-year journey to Jupiter, the solar system's most massive and ancient planet.

    Hundreds of scientists and their families and friends watched from just a few miles away, cheering and yelling, "Go Juno!" as the NASA spacecraft soared into a clear midday sky atop an unmanned rocket.

    "It's fantastic!" said Fran Bagenal, a planetary scientist at the University of Colorado at Boulder, who is part of the project. "Just great to see the thing lift off."

  • NCRTD still looking for executive director

    The North Central Regional Transit District still does not have a permanent executive director.

    The NCRTD met this morning at the Santa Fe County Commission chambers to vote on the recommendation that Tony Mortillaro, the former Los Alamos County adminstrator, become the next executive director.

    It didn't happen.

  • NM chile crops weather tough growing conditions

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — The familiar roasters are popping up, spinning their Hatch green chile and luring in customers with the unrivaled smell of charred skins.

    At Los Chile Bros., in business for 25 years, owner Johnny Duran is happy to be out selling chile at his usual Big Lots rental spot on Cerrillos Road after a spring and summer of unfavorable crop conditions.

    Although New Mexico is known for all things chile, this year's drought and extreme heat have withered almost a quarter of Duran's crop.

  • Powerful typhoon bears down on China's east coast

    BEIJING (AP) — China warned residents and alerted emergency relief centers Friday to prepare for a powerful typhoon forecast to hit the country's heavily populated eastern coast.

    Typhoon Muifa is forecast to hit late Saturday or early Sunday close to Shanghai, a commercial hub with a population of 23 million. Residents were warned to take precautions to prevent injuries and losses, the website of the Shanghai Daily newspaper reported.

    More than 9,000 fishing vessels were called back to ports in Zhejiang and Fujian provinces while officials in charge of disaster relief centers in the region were told to get ready to disperse their materials, said the official Xinhua News Agency.

  • Decision Time

    Board of Public Utilities members pore over revisions to the Los Alamos County Charter proposed by the Charter Review Committee. The board opposes new provisions that would weaken the autonomy of the BPU and allow the council to fire the utility manager. In a special session Tuesday evening, members reached a consensus about these and other revisions affecting their work. Their recommendations will be forwarded to the CRC before Aug. 15, when the committee is scheduled to vote on the proposed changes.

  • Bandelier open to visitors

    Bandelier National Monument is open for business.
    That was the pronouncement from Bandelier Superintendent Jason Lott Wednesday.
    “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,” Lott said.
    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.

  • Update 08-04-11


    Bicycle Commuting Workshop geared to riders ages 16 and up, 8:30 a.m.-noon Saturday in the Justice Center parking lot. Visit www.pajaritoeec.org/programs/calendar.php#bike

    Bandelier walk

    Bandelier National Monument is offering a free Tsankawi evening walk at 6:30 p.m. today 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

    The Transportation Board meets at 5:30 p.m. today. Agenda items include reviews of the MIG modeling for the Trinity Drive project and a discussion about Atomic City Transit Electrification.

  • Rock slide temporarily closes West Jemez Rd.

    A thunderstorm rolling through the area caused a brief flash flood  Wednesday afternoon on West Jemez (N.M. 501) at Water Canyon.
    The fast moving water carried debris including mud and rocks onto the roadway road, causing authorities to close it for a couple of hours in both directions near the 501 intersection and create a detour.
    The roadway is the back gate to the Los Alamos National Laboratory and also heads to and from the Jemez Mountains.
    “It was a minor mud and rock slide,” Los Alamos Police Chief Wayne Torpy said. “We set up a detour while the lab cleared away the debris.”

  • Council approves sewage rate increase

    The second major item on Tuesday night’s council agenda was a request from the Department of Public Utilities (DPU) for a 10 percent increase in the sewage service rate schedule.

    Utility Manager John Arrowsmith explained that rate increases were necessary to repay the loan on the new sewage treatment plant and for maintenance on the 50- to 60-year-old infrastructure.

    Arrowsmith anticipated objections to the above average rates Los Alamos residents pay, explaining that the terrain requires high-cost infrastructure, including 27 pump stations. He cited a request to extend the system to DP Road as an example.

  • Daring Helicopter Rescue During Wildfire

    Dangling from a rope attached to a hovering helicopter, an emergency medical technician was lowered to the ground in jagged terrain to rescue a Hot Shot firefighter injured while battling the Las Conchas Fire last month.

    Bree Myers, 24, with the National Park Service, is assigned to a helitack crew normally stationed on the South Rim of the Grand Canyon.

    She and her helitack crew came to Los Alamos last month to help battle the largest wildfire in New Mexico history. They were managing a dip site when the accident occurred.

    The firefighter Myers rescued was injured while working with other firefighters to prepare lines for a burnout.