Today's News

  • Tourism pros love N.M. true campaign

    Thank God for Texans and their money.
    Texans help explain the 3.3 percent growth of leisure and hospitality wage jobs over the past year, say hospitality executives.
    The situation offers a big, “nnaahhh, so there!” to those who whined about the state Tourism Department choosing an ad agency based in (gasp!) Austin. As in Texas.
    Around Taos, Texans are making life economically better, but things have not returned to the peak of 2007.
    Silver City gets fewer Californians than in the past, though Alaskans come. Activity is generally fairly good. Bus tours and RV owners are coming back. Along the Turquoise Trail drive north from I-40 to Santa Fe, business is pretty good. New York is one source of visitors.
    These impressions come from conversations at the Governor’s Conference on Tourism, held in Albuquerque in early May.
    Conference sponsors ranged from the corporately huge to the sort of very small business that seldom generates a headline. ConocoPhillips was the big guy.
    A couple of years ago the company decided it should talk to the people around it. Given that tourism people talk to many others, and given that ConocoPhillips is the state’s leading oil and gas producer, talking to tourism people seemed obvious.

  • Man killed dribbling soccer ball to Brazil


    A Seattle man trying to dribble a soccer ball 10,000 miles to Brazil in time for the 2014 World Cup died Tuesday after being hit by a pickup truck on the Oregon Coast.

  • On The Docket: Local Courts 05-15-13

    The information on these cases was derived from the dockets of the Los Alamos Municipal and Magistrate Courts.

    May 8

    John Bishop Abraham was found guilty in Los Alamos Municipal Court of speeding 11 to 15 miles an hour over the speed limit. He was fined $75 and ordered to pay $6 in court costs.
    May 9

    Tina M. Forsman entered a no contest plea for failing to appear in Los Alamos Municipal Court and having an expired registration.
    She was fined $50 and ordered to pay $92 in court costs.

    Adelaida C. Valdez entered a no contest plea in Los Alamos Municipal court for having an expired registration. She was fined $25 and ordered to pay $46 in court fees.

    Mark L. Garcia was found guilty in Los Alamos Municipal Court for having an expired registration for his vehicle. He was fined $50 and ordered to pay $46 in court costs.

    Elizabeth C. Bennett was found guilty in Los Alamos Municipal Court of having an expired registration. She was fined $25 and ordered to pay $46 in court costs.

    Margaret E. Hempstead was found guilty in Los Alamos Municipal Court of having an expired registration. She was ordered to pay $46 in court costs.

  • Report: State facing medical access difficulties

    SANTA FE (AP) — New Mexicans could have longer waits for a doctor or specialist as demand grows for medical services because of an aging population and expanded insurance coverage under a federal health care law, legislative auditors said Wednesday.
    A report released by the Legislative Finance Committee said state residents could encounter growing problems of access to medical care due to the potential need of 2,000 physicians, 3,000 registered nurses and as many as 800 dentists.
    Up to 172,000 uninsured New Mexicans are expected to receive medical coverage next year either through an expansion of Medicaid or a state-run health insurance exchange. “The number of health care professionals and their maldistribution throughout the state cannot adequately meet current demand, let alone the additional pressures brought about by the newly insured in 2014,” the report said.

  • Update 05-15-13


    The Environmental Sustainability Board will meet at 5:30 p.m. Thursday in the community building training room.

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    County Council

    Los Alamos County Council will meet in a regular session at 7 p.m. Tuesday May 21 in council chambers.

    BPU meeting

    The Board of Public Utilities will meet at 5:30 p.m. today at the DPU Conference Room, 170 Central Park Square.

    Farmers Market

    The Los Alamos Farmers Market is at 7 a.m. Thursday and runs until noon in the parking lot of the Mesa Library.

  • District fetes retirees

    Colleagues and family saw a number of their peers off to retirement last Thursday, as the Los Alamos Public School District hosted a retirement party for 17 employees at Fuller Lodge.

    They included David Buckland, high school teacher; Paula Dean, assistant superintendent, Mary Jo Fischer, middle school teacher; Ernestina Garcia, instructional assistant at Aspen Elementary; Mary Kathleen Kelly, teacher at Chamisa Elementary; Elizabeth Kulka, teacher at Barranca Elementary; Loree Lynch, secretary; Marie D. Martinez, teacher at the middle school; Maxine Marrufo, custodian; Ruth McNiff, teacher at Barranca Elementary; Debbie O’Dean, a counselor at Aspen Elementary; Mary Plotner, teacher at Mountain Elementary, Ann Revelle, records specialist with student services; Carol Schoenberg, teacher at the high school; Margaret Sheridan, teacher at Aspen Elementary, Linda Valenti, social worker with student services and Barbara Wrobleski-Mullis, teacher at the middle school.

    “If I could add up the number of years and then quadruple it, that would probably be the number of students this group has impacted through the years,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Gene Schmidt said at the retirement ceremony.

    In one of her last speeches as assistant superintendent, Dean gave a big thank you to the audience.

  • Standards could tighten

    Los Alamos County Council took a hard look at property maintenance standards during Tuesday’s work session in White Rock and gave Community and Economic Development Department staff the go-ahead to develop a new ordinance.

    CEDD Director Anne Laurent introduced the proposal and explained why it was necessary.

    “Certain people have ideas of what the county should be able to do when there is a problem,” Laurent said.
    “And with certain complaints that come in we say, ‘unless it gets worse, we’re not going to step in.’ And that’s frustrating.”

    Those complaints have to do with exterior property maintenance. CEDD staff is unable to address those problems because the county has no ordinance regarding upkeep.

    Current code has guidelines regarding weeds, rubbish, parking inoperable vehicles and structural failure.

    Exterior issues that fall short of structural failure, such as loose siding or roofing materials, holes in exterior walls, broken or missing windows and fences in disrepair are not addressed in the county code.

    Laurent stressed that aside from affecting property values in a neighborhood, the issue affects the community as a whole.

  • Federal Reserve: Smartphone Fraud Rising
  • Wendelberger set to finish career with a bang at state

    In 2013, the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls track and field team has a chance to cement its place as one of the elite programs of all time.

    Leading up to this season, that move was led by one of the most charismatic athletes the program had ever seen, Chase Ealey. But now, the responsibility of leading the charge toward state-level immortality falls on a much more low-key team captain.

    The Hilltoppers’ efforts heading into the final two weeks of the season are being guided by senior Laura Wendelberger. Wendelberger has carved her own niche in Hilltopper history, but unlike her predecessor, has done so with considerably less flair and with good ol’ fashioned sweat.

    But even though Wendelberger is set to make her fourth appearance at the state meet for Los Alamos, the pre-championship jitters have already begun to set in.

    “It’s kind of nerve-wracking,” she said. “But all I can do is run my best. I won’t let people’s expectations change my mindset.”

    With Ealey, the two-time high-point athlete at the state meet now having a standout freshman year for Oklahoma State University, those looking to see if Los Alamos can pull off the 5-peat will have their eyes set squarely on Wendelberger.

    History has shown, however, that she should be up to the challenge.

  • 'Toppers face No. 1 seed in playoffs

    In the opening round of the Class 4A baseball tournament last weekend, the Los Alamos Hilltoppers seemed to have a tough draw when they faced off against the Aztec Tigers.
    Thursday, the Hilltoppers seem to have a tough draw as well, but the Hilltoppers are hoping they rise to that challenge the same way they rose to the challenge against the Tigers.
    Los Alamos, the No. 8 seed in the 4A playoffs, advances to play the No. 1 seed, the Piedra Vista Panthers, in Thursday’s quarterfinal round. The Los Alamos-Piedra Vista contest is scheduled for noon at La Cueva High School in Albuquerque.
    That Los Alamos (19-9) is squaring off against Piedra Vista should come as no surprise. The Panthers (19-9) have been the top 4A team in the state all season and are the three-time defending state champions.
    Los Alamos got to see Piedra Vista first hand in the first two games of the 2013 regular season. At Ricketts Park, one of the top venues in the state for baseball, the Panthers thumped the Hilltoppers in a doubleheader, 12-0 and 9-1. The Hilltoppers managed just one hit in the first game and four more in the nightcap.
    The season-opening losses were part of a rough stretch for the Hilltoppers to start.