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Local News

  • Money flows fast to GOP candidate for New Mexico governor

    SANTA FE (AP) — Republican U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce's campaign for governor has quickly raised $1 million as he battles in court for access to a separate chest of money he raised while serving in Congress.

    Pearce said in a news release Thursday that his campaign has received money from at least 930 contributors in less than three months. The campaign has at least $900,000 in cash on hand ahead of the 2018 primary and general elections.

    At the same time, the seven-term congressman and his approach to public land issues have come under pointed criticism in an advertising blitz from an alliance of five nonprofit advocacy groups. Pearce campaign spokesman Greg Blair dismissed the criticism as the work of liberal-leaning special interest organizations with a radical agenda.

    Two-term Republican Gov. Susana Martinez cannot run for re-election in 2018, and Pearce so far is the only contender for the GOP nomination. Candidates for the Democratic nomination include U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham, state Sen. Joseph Cervantes and former media industry executive Jeff Apodoca.

  • Einstein proof: Nobel winners find ripples in the universe

    By  SETH BORENSTEIN and JIM HEINTZ, Associated Press

    WASHINGTON (AP) — For decades astronomers tried to prove Albert Einstein right by doing what Einstein thought was impossible: detecting the faint ripples in the universe called gravitational waves. They failed repeatedly until two years ago when they finally spotted one. Then another. And another. And another.

    Three American scientists — including one who initially flunked out of MIT — won the Nobel Prize in physics Tuesday that launched a whole new way to observe the cosmos. Sweden's Royal Academy of Sciences cited the combination of highly advanced theory and ingenious equipment design in awarding Rainer Weiss of the Massachusetts Institute of

    Technology and Barry Barish and Kip Thorne of the California Institute of Technology.

    "It's a win for the human race as a whole. These gravitational waves will be powerful ways for the human race to explore the universe," Thorne told The Associated Press in a phone interview.

  • Fun, food and gifts at PEEC-nic

    The Pajarito Environmental Education Center invites the public to take part in its fall party at the Los Alamos Nature Center from 1-3 p.m. Oct. 15. PEEC’s annual membership meeting, called PEEC-nic, is open to the public and it’s free!

    To celebrate PEEC has special activities planned, including hands-on activities for kids and adults, a chance to meet PEEC’s live animals, delicious desserts, and sun viewing through PEEC’s solar telescope, with the help of a local astronomer.

    The 2 p.m. planetarium show will be free for PEEC. The first 100 member families will receive a special, one-of-a-kind collectors gift.

    If you’ve been interested in PEEC membership or volunteering at the nature center, this is a great time to find out more.For more information about this and other PEEC events, visit peecnature.org, email programs@peecnature.org or call 662-0460.

  • Biological clock finds by 3 Americans earn Nobel prize

    NEW YORK (AP) — Three Americans won a Nobel Prize on Monday for discovering key genetic “gears” of the body’s 24-hour biological clock, the mechanism best known for causing jet lag when it falls out of sync.

    Problems with our body clock have also been linked to such disorders as sleep problems, depression, heart disease, diabetes and obesity. Researchers are now trying to find ways to tinker with the clock to improve human health, the Nobel committee said in Stockholm.

    It awarded the $1.1 million (9 million kronor) Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine to Jeffrey C. Hall and Michael Rosbash, who worked together at Brandeis University in Massachusetts, and Michael W. Young of Rockefeller University in New York.

    They “were able to peek inside our biological clock” and discover details of its inner workings, the Nobel citation said.

    The work, done in fruit flies and dating back to 1984, identified genes and proteins that work together in people and other animals to synchronize internal activities throughout the day and night. Various clocks in the brain and elsewhere in the body, working together, regulate things like sleep patterns, eating habits and the release of hormones and blood pressure.  Such 24-hour patterns are called circadian rhythms.

  • N.M. gets funding for home visiting program

    SANTA FE (AP) — New Mexico has been awarded $3.5 million to continue providing home-visiting services to pregnant women and to parents with young children.

    The funding comes from the Health Resources and Services Administration.

    Gov. Susana Martinez says the funding will help provide valuable information, resources and skills to at-risk families to ensure their children grow up physically and mentally healthy and ready to learn.

    The program targets pregnant women as early as possible, providing health education. One focus is prenatal care within the first trimester. When mothers don’t have a prenatal care provider, officials say home visitors can make appropriate referrals to link mothers with health clinics, hospitals, doctors and other social service agencies.

  • Supreme Court declines to hear NM tree clearing dispute

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has left in place a lower court ruling that prevents New Mexico from greenlighting tree clearing on federal land in the state in the name of fire prevention.

    The Supreme Court declined Monday to hear a dispute between New Mexico and the federal government.

    The issue dates back to 2001 when New Mexico passed a law saying the U.S. Forest Service had failed to reduce the threat of forest fires by not clearing undergrowth and removing trees on Forest Service land. The law then gave counties in the state permission to do the work.

    When Otero County moved to cut trees on land in the Lincoln National Forest without federal approval in 2011, the United States government sued. Lower courts sided with the federal government.

  • Bandelier seeks concession proposals

    The National Park Service announced Tuesday the release of two prospectuses for the award of two new concession contracts in Bandelier National Monument.
    Solicitation number CC-BAND002-18 is for the award of a concession contract to provide food and beverage services from Historic Building 17, and solicitation number CC-BAND003-18 is for the award of a concession contract to provide retail and winter recreation equipment rental services from Historic Building 15.
    The NPS is looking to revitalize the Bandelier National Historical Landmark District in Frijoles Canyon by increasing visitor services through these two concessions.
    The current gift shop location, Building 17, will become a fast casual restaurant with counter service and dining indoors as well as in the adjacent outdoor courtyards. The Park Service said it also intends for a retail concession operation to open in Building 15, just to the southeast of the restaurant.
    This location offers much more space than the current location for the sale of souvenir and gift items, and enough space for recreational equipment rental.
    Historically, Building 15 served as a family-style restaurant until it was converted to administration offices in the 1960s.

  • Hoopla over new digital system at library

    The Los Alamos County Library System will roll out a new service Oct. 10 called hoopla, which provides a whole new set of delicious digital offerings to patrons.

    With the new system, the library will add about 30,000 new items to its digital library.

    Library cardholders will be able to stream music and videos, read books and browse comics in electronic formats. The hoopla library is in addition to Overdrive, not a replacement.

    “It’s more access to more titles,” Librarian Gwen Kalavaza said.

    Kalvaza said she talked to other libraries around the country and to the other electronic resources experts at the library before deciding to purchase hoopla for Los Alamos.

    The hoopla system will provide music and videos, and also comics, which hadn’t been available before electronically. Hoopla also offers audio books.

    Library patrons will be able to stream titles instantly through a desktop browser or by using the mobile app.

    If patrons use the library mobile app, they can also download titles to their device for offline playback later, where Wi-Fi may be unavailable. Titles are automatically returned and removed from the device at the end of the lending period.

  • Citizen group forms to address county code grievences

    The newly formed  Los Alamos County Citizens in Action Group held its first meeting Monday to figure out what they will do about nuisance code enforcement in Los Alamos County.

    Made up of ordinary citizens, the group was formed out of frustration with what many in the group say are unfair practices by county code enforcers.

    The group decided its first step was to put out a survey to the public about what it thought of code enforcement. From there, it will present its findings at a Nov. 7 County Council meeting, where it hopes further action will be taken.

    The group is formulating questions for the survey that will show that there is genuine concern over what many see as overzealous code enforcement. They also said they aren’t expecting results to be overwhelming one way or the other.

    “I don’t expect this to overwhelmingly be against the yard ordinance. I expect it to be fairly down the middle, because this is a pretty divisive issue,” group co-founder Heather Ortega said.

    Though Nov. 7 is a work session, group co-founder Helen Milenski wants to at least see a suspension of the ordinance while council considers modifying it.

  • LA residents donate blood to Las Vegas victims

    Even in a parking lot 700 miles away, the mass shooting in Las Vegas hit close for some Los Alamos residents.

    As people gathered at the United Blood Services Bloodmobile Tuesday morning in the Smith’s Marketplace, they talked of the horrific shooting or knowing someone who survived it.

    “Most of my friends are still there, my sister is there and they all know somebody who’s been injured,” Los Alamos resident Lani Seaman said, fighting back tears. “She has friends that work at the trauma center at UMC (University Medical Center) and we need blood badly. That’s why I’m here.”

    Originally from Las Vegas, Seaman knew the area of the shooting well, and knew people who were at the concert.

    She said a husband of one of her friends carried a girl out who had been shot. Moments before, she had been standing next to him enjoying the concert.

    Deborah Lee and Lisa Marie Rodriguez were at a Depeche Mode concert in Las Vegas Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena.