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Local News

  • House revisits crackdown on false water quality data

    By Andrew Oxford
    The New Mexican

    It was not necessarily a crime under New Mexico law for a utility in the Four Corners area to tell regulators its water was fine even as turbid, odorous liquid flowed to customers' taps.
    But a measure to make lying to state regulators about water quality a fourth-degree felony is a step closer to becoming law. A committee in the state House of Representatives revived the issue under a new bill with a new sponsor and narrower scope, ending an impasse that had prompted finger pointing over the influence of special interest groups and had upended the usual tough-on-crime dynamics at the Capitol.
    On Saturday, the new House Bill 511 won bipartisan support in the House Judiciary Committee, which elected 10-2 to advance it to a vote by the full House.
    Republicans blocked a similar bill last month, even though it was sponsored by a GOP colleague and had the backing of the state Environment Department. GOP members of the Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Committee said the bill was far too broad.

  • Proposal to bring death penalty back to New Mexico stalls

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — A proposal to bring back the death penalty in New Mexico for those convicted of certain violent crimes has stalled.
    The Albuquerque Journal reports that the legislation by Republican Rep. Monica Youngblood of Albuquerque was tabled Sunday on a party-line 3-2 vote in the House Consumer and Public Affairs Committee.
    Lawmakers abolished the death penalty in 2009 and replaced with life in prison without the possibility of parole.
    Similar legislation to reinstate the death penalty was approved five months by the state House, but that proposal was never acted on by the Senate.
    There appeared to be little appetite for bringing back the death penalty after Democrats reclaimed a majority in the House in November's general election.
     

  • RTD to run on weekend schedule

    In recognition of Spring Break, the North Central Regional Transit District RTD 255 Mountain Trail bus to Ski Santa Fe will be operating on its weekend/holiday schedule each day throughout the Spring Break period from Monday through March 17.
    The weekend/holiday schedule provides seven roundtrips per day to Ski Santa Fe, rather than the normal weekday schedule that provides three roundtrips per day.
    The fare is $5 each way, exact change required.

  • Amazon to collect sales tax in New Mexico starting in April

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — Online retail giant Amazon will soon begin collecting taxes on purchases being sent to New Mexico addresses.
    Officials with the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department confirmed Monday that the new sales tax will begin in April.
    The tax will combine state and local rates to total about 7 percent.
    Department spokesman Ben Cloutier says the revenues generated by Amazon's collections will be significant, likely in the tens of millions of dollars.
    Some of the revenue will go into the state's general fund and the rest will be allocated to the cities where the item was purchased.
    As New Mexico looks to fill a budget gap, lawmakers are considering measures to force internet vendors without a physical presence in the state to collect gross receipts taxes.
     

  • GOP’s Senate leader expects deal on revenue, budget

    BY BRUCE KRASNOW
    The New Mexican

  • Senate confirms Carson, Perry for housing, energy

    WASHINGTON — Two of President Donald Trump’s former rivals for the GOP White House nomination won Senate confirmation Thursday to join his administration.
    Retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson was confirmed as secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development on a vote of 58-41. A few hours later, the Senate backed former Texas Gov. Rick Perry to be energy secretary, 62-37.
    Carson and Perry are the 17th and 18th of Trump’s 22 Cabinet and Cabinet-level nominations to win Senate approval.
    Carson has never held public office and has no housing policy experience. Republicans have praised the life story of a man who grew up in inner-city Detroit with a single mother who had a third-grade education.
    Perry, who once pledged to eliminate the department, has repeatedly promised to be an advocate for the agency and to protect the nation’s nuclear stockpile. Perry also pledged to rely on federal scientists, including those who work on climate change.
    Perry, who served 14 years as Texas governor, has said he will seek to develop American energy in all forms, from oil, gas and nuclear power to renewable sources such as wind and solar power.

  • Candyman expanding hours at LA Music Academy site

    BY WREN PROPP
    Special to the Monitor

  • Police Report 3-5-17

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department Records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. The Los Alamos Police Department uses the term “arrest” to define anyone who has been physically arrested, server a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Feb. 15
    7:45 a.m. — Police officers recovered a laptop computer at Morning Glory Bakery.

    3:20 p.m. — Los Alamos police reported a burglary  in Los Alamos. Police are actively investigating.

    Feb. 17
    11:50 a.m. — Police reported a laptop stolen at the Los Alamos Unitarian Church.

    8:49 p.m. — Police arrested a minor for being in possession of drugs on East Road.

    Feb. 18
    1:28 p.m. — Byron Keith Henderson,  49, of Los Alamos was arrested at the intersection of North Street and San Ildefonso Road on two counts of not having a license and drug possession.

    9:37 p.m. — Police investigated an act of vandalism at the Larry R. Walkup Aquatic Center where the windshield of a car was found shattered.

    Feb. 19

  • On the Docket 3-5-17

    Feb. 9
    Kathryn Sandoval  was found guilty by the Los Alamos Municipal Court of failing to display a current, valid registration plate. Defendant was fined $25 and must also pay $65 in court costs.

    Edward Dendy was found guilty in Los Alamos Municipal Court of failing to display a current, valid registration plate. Defendant was fined $30 and must also pay $65 in court costs.

    Fred Humphrey  pled no contest in Los Alamos Municipal Court to following too closely and causing an accident. Sentencing deferred until April 9 Defendant must also pay $65 in court costs.

    Feb. 10
    Benjamin Ebersole  was found guilty through Citepay of failing to yield or stop at a sign. Defendant was fined $50 and must also pay $65 in court costs.

    David Norris paid a $50 fine for failing to display a current, valid registration plate while parked.

    Feb. 13
    Ling Lin  was found guilty by the Los Alamos Municipal Court of careless driving that caused an accident. Sentencing deferred until May 13. Defendant also sentenced to defensive driving school. Defendant also charged with not having a proper driver’s license.
    Defendant was fined $50 and must also had to pay $130 in court costs.

  • 20th Street extension moves ahead

    Construction on an extension of 20th Street is set to begin in June, according to project engineers who spoke at Thursday’s Transportation Board meeting.
    The project will extend 20th Street across Trinity Drive to several plots of county land, and down past the Los Alamos Public School offices at 2075 Trinity Drive.
    The extension length will be about 600 feet where it will end in a cul de sac. Bids for the project go out April 9. It’s hoped that once the project is completed in September the extension will encourage more economic development in the county.
    “We’re looking to promote economic development in this area,” Senior County Engineer Bryan Aragon said. “This is prime land in the county, along the main thoroughfare in the community. We’re hoping it will spur some economic development.”
    Some business owners already in the area had concerns about how the extra traffic the extension may attract will affect them.
    Doris Roberts, owner of “All Individuals First,” an adult day-care facility at 2101 Trinity Drive, said it was hard enough to help her clients across the street to enjoy Ashley Pond Park. At the meeting, she told county officials that she’d been trying for three years to get the state to install a traffic light at that intersection.