Local News

  • Hurricane Irma likely to be far worse than monster Andrew

    BY SETH BORENSTEIN, AP Science Writer

    WASHINGTON (AP) — For an entire generation in South Florida, Hurricane Andrew was the monster storm that reshaped a region. Irma is likely to blow that out of the water.

    Bigger and with a 90-degree different path of potential destruction, Irma is forecast to hit lots more people and buildings than 1992's Andrew, said experts, including veterans of Andrew. At the time Andrew was the costliest hurricane in U.S. history with damages of $26.5 billion in 1992 dollars (about $50 billion in current dollars), according to the National Weather Service.

    "The effect of Irma on the state of Florida is going to be much greater than Andrew's effect," said Weather Channel senior hurricane specialist Bryan Norcross, who was a local television meteorologist hailed as a hero during Andrew.  "We're dealing with an entirely different level of phenomenon. There is no storm to compare with this. Unless you go way back to 1926."

    Kate Hale, Miami-Dade's emergency management chief — who grabbed national attention during Andrew by beseeching "where the hell is the cavalry on this one?" — said by nearly every measure Irma looks far worse.

  • Watchdog agency: US nuclear dump running out of room

    By SUSAN MONTOYA BRYAN, Associated Press

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — A government watchdog agency says the only underground nuclear waste repository in the United States doesn't have enough space for radioactive debris left over from decades of bomb-making and research, much less tons of surplus weapons-grade plutonium.

    A Senate committee requested the review from the U.S. Government Accountability Office amid concerns about ballooning costs and significant delays related to a 20-year-old pledge the U.S. made with Russia to dispose of extra plutonium from its stockpiles.

    The agency found that officials with the U.S. Energy Department haven't analyzed or planned for expanding the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in New Mexico and that regulatory approval for doing so would take years.

    The findings and recommendations from the Government Accountability Office were released this week following a lengthy review of documents and interviews.

  • USS New Mexico arrives for maintenance, upgrades


  • N.M.’s voter roll drops by more than 85,000

    SANTA FE (AP) — New Mexico’s voter rolls have decreased by more than 85,000 people since last year’s general election after county clerks in all 33 counties conducted a “purge.”

    The Albuquerque Journal reported Friday that New Mexico conducts purges in odd-numbered years to remove voters no longer eligible to cast ballots – such as voters who have died and those who have moved.

    After the latest purge, New Mexico has slightly more than 1.2 million registered voters.

  • On the Docket 9-6-17

    July 26
    Judy Nekimken was found guilty of speeding 16 to 20 miles an hour over the speed limit. The defendant was fined $100 and must pay $65 in court costs.

    Aieta Paiva was fined $50 for speeding six to 10 miles an hour over the speed limit and must pay $65 in court costs.

    Glenda Flint was fined $25 for speeding one to five miles an hour over the speed limit and must pay $65 in court costs.

    Robert Farrell was fined $50 for speeding six to 10 miles an hour over the speed limit and must pay $65 in court costs.

    Stephanie Crosby was fined $50 for speeding six to 10 miles an hour over the speed limit.

    James Gustafson was fined $50 for having unhitched trailers.

    Hansjorg Jansen was found guilty of speeding 11 to 15 miles an hour over the speed limit. Defendant was fined $75 and must pay $65 in court costs.

    July 27
    Cynthia Lechuga was found guilty through Citepay of speeding six to 10 miles an hour over the speed limit. Defendant was fined $50 and must pay $65 in court costs.

    Carlos Garcia pleaded no contest to speeding six to 10 miles an hour over the speed limit and the sentence was deferred until Oct. 27.

  • Sept. 11 memorial hike set for Saturday

    The annual Sept. 11 hike to the top of Pajarito Mountain, organized each year by county’s firefighters and police officers, is set for Saturday and open to anyone in the public who wants to participate.

    “It’s to commemorate the loss of life from Sept. 11. The climb, from start to finish, is at an elevation those firefighters had done up to the top of the World Trade Center” Los Alamos Fire Department Deputy Chief Steve Dawald said.

    The department has always invited the public. This year, the hike will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday, starting in the Pajarito Ski Lodge parking lot.

    “We would like to invite all who are willing and able to make the climb; fire and police personnel, and the public,” LAFD Honor Guard member and firefighter David-Michael Apodaca said in written statement.

    Every year, many fire departments from around the country conduct similar events to honor the firefighters, police officers and others who were killed in the Sept. 11 2001 terrorist attacks on New York City, Washington, D.C. and Pennsylvania.

    One of the main requirements is that the ceremony must include walking or hiking a distance that’s at least 1,000 feet.

    The World Trade Center Towers, which were destroyed in the attack was 110 stories and 1,368 feet.

  • 2 LA firefighters support Colo. fire

    Los Alamos Fire Department firefighters Patrick Thoma and Van Leimer left Tuesday to help battle a fire in Hayden, Colorado, a town located in the northwest region of the state.

    Thoma and Leimer left fire station No. 6 around 2 p.m. to make the seven-hour drive and will report to the incident command post about six miles east of Hayden.

    The two will lend their aid in Hayden until Sept. 13, but possibly longer.

    LAFD received the call about the fire, which is named Deep Creek Fire, about 10 a.m. Tuesday and quickly mobilized the truck and team to head out that afternoon. At the time the firefighters were dispatched, Deep Creek Fire had engulfed over 400 acres.

    According to Division Chief of the Wildland Division Ramon Garcia, the fire has endangered five primary structures as well as oil and gas infrastructure there.

    When asked if Thoma would miss his family, he replied, “Oh yeah.” But otherwise, Thoma is looking forward to lending a few extra hands in the firefighting effort and said, “I think it’s great. We will be able to provide our expertise and knowledge.”

  • Garden club to celebrate 70th anniversary

    The community is invited to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Los Alamos Garden Club from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday in the Memorial Rose Garden next to Fuller Lodge.

    Club President Joyce Zaugg hopes local residents will come out to enjoy cake, cookies and refreshments with the beautiful backdrop of roses from the garden. 

    The Los Alamos Garden Club has a long-standing reputation in the community that began in 1947 after 11 local residents banned together with the goal to create a more beautiful natural environment following the end of World War II and the newly privatized town.

    While the first year was largely spent in cleanup operations, over time, the club took on many service projects; most noteworthy is the Memorial Rose Garden.

    The Los Alamos Memorial Rose Garden is the oldest public garden in Los Alamos and the oldest public rose garden in New Mexico.

    While Los Alamos was under federal control, there was no cemetery, and as a result, the garden originally represented the desire of the community to build a living memorial to loved ones who died, but could not be buried there. The Rose Garden quickly grew as residents began donating roses in memory of loved ones.

  • LANL Director McMillan announces plans to retire

    Los Alamos National Laboratory Director Charlie McMillan announced Tuesday his plans to retire at the end of year.
    McMillan informed LANL employees during an in-person, all-employee meeting, according to a release.

    “It has truly been an honor and a privilege to serve as your Director these past six years. Every day, I have been in awe of the people of this great Laboratory and what we have been able to contribute to this nation’s security,” McMillan told employees, according to the release.

    “Charlie McMillan has led Los Alamos National Laboratory with a rare combination of commitment, intelligence and hard work,” said Norm Pattiz, Chairman of Los Alamos National Security, LLC (LANS), the management and operations contractor for the lab. “Because of his passion for the Lab, its missions and its people, he agreed to stay on as Director at the Board’s request, past his originally planned retirement date. We appreciate Charlie’s commitment and believe he has put this iconic institution in a strong position to continue serving the country for many years to come.”

  • New Mexico students plan 'walk out' over DACA decision

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — Students in the most Hispanic state in the U.S. are planning a massive walk out in reaction to the Trump's Administration's decision to end Obama-era immigrant protections.
    Activists say students in high schools across Albuquerque, New Mexico, are planning to walk out of class Tuesday to protest the administration's announcement it would wind down a program protecting young immigrants from deportation.
    Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Tuesday called the program known as DACA as an "unconstitutional exercise of authority by the executive branch."
    He says the Trump administration is urging Congress to find an alternate way to protect young immigrants brought into the country illegally as children.
    The advocacy group, the New Mexico Dream Team, called the decision a "cowardly and erroneous move."