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Today's News

  • Board to mull trash cart fines

    The Environmental Sustainability Board will consider an ordinance Thursday that would impose a $50 to $200 fine on residents who put their trash, brush and recycling carts out too early on the day of pickup. 

    According to Public Works Director Philo Shelton, the ordinance, which was created by the sustainability board, is designed to discourage people from putting their carts out early. By regulating the garbage set-out times, the board is hoping to discourage bears from coming into neighborhoods and foraging for trash. 

    Under the proposed ordinance, residents would also not be allowed to store carts outside. 

    “Right now, it’s 5 p.m. prior to the day of collection,” Shelton said. “So what happens is, you leave roll carts out and you leave a whole smorgasbord of trash for bears to get into overnight,” he said. 

    Under the new ordinance, residents would put out their carts out between 4:30 a.m. and the time of pickup on trash day. 

  • Bear sighting forces lockdown at LAHS

    A report of a bear wandering in the canyon near Los Alamos High School on Monday led to a lockdown during the noon hour, school officials said.

    Someone at the nearby Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church called the school to warn them, said the high school’s assistant principal, Renee Dunwoody.

    No one was injured.

    Los Alamos police officers were on the scene, with the department’s helicopter keeping an eye on the wandering bruin, according to the incident report. 

    The bear was spotted near a fence at the school. It was seen heading toward Orange and then turned back to the canyon.

    The bear’s appearance was the first time a Los Alamos school has had to be locked down this year because of a bear sighting, Dunwoody said.

     

     Bears have been spotted in neighborhoods near other schools in the past several weeks, said Superintendent Kurt Steinhaus.

  • L.A. Health Fair set for this weekend

    This weekend is a good time to stay in town for special events and ideas about how to stay healthy.
    The 32nd Los Alamos Health Fair will be from 8 a.m.-noon Saturday at the Griffith Gymnasium.
    The Los Alamos Heart Council and the Los Alamos Medical Center partner to bring one of the county’s largest informative and entertaining events. There are free flu shots, low cost blood tests, the NM Bank & Trust Kids’ Free Bike Helmet Giveaway, many giveaways and plenty of information for kids and adults alike.
    Everyone in town is invited to start their day at this year’s health fair.
    But this year there is so much more going on in town, so after starting at the health fair, the Heart Council suggests everyone should stay in town and enjoy all the other great events this weekend.
    For the kids, the Lucky Ducky Day Carnival is from 10 a.m.-to 2 p.m. at Family Strengths Network at 3540 Orange St., right below the Los Alamos High School. The event will feature little rubber ducky races all day for kids, with raffles, face painting, bake sale, balloon animals and more. For complete details see the Family Strength Network’s website at lafsn.org.
    Los Alamos’ retail institution, Metzger’s Hardware, is celebrating the 70th anniversary of opening in Los Alamos.

  • Loy hired as Bandelier’s new Dorothy Hoard Wilderness Ranger

    The latest wilderness ranger at Bandelier National Monument to serve in the name of the late Dorothy Hoard is taking her legacy of “get out there” as his mission.

    Army Colonel (Ret) Bob Loy, 53, is ready to encourage and instruct visitors to get beyond the monument’s visitor center. Loy, a native of St. Louis, Missouri, and life-long visitor to New Mexico, was hired as the Dorothy Hoard Wilderness Ranger in August. Loy was an Army Ranger.

    Volunteers have worked to clear more of the tumbled trees and other flood damage following the 2011 Las Conchas Fire. Many of the trails within the 33,000-acre monument are ready for hikers, he said.

    “We need people to hike on the trails and to enjoy the areas of natural beauty,” he said.

    What points make him stop and look?

    Some of his recommendations for fall include the path up Frijoles Canyon, hiking to Yapashi Pueblo ruins, or a longer hike from Ponderosa Campground along the rim and towards the monument’s visitors center.

    “You may have to get in a vehicle to get to the trail head,” he said of the last recommendation.

  • Hotline service aims to help abused Native American women

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — A new hotline has launched in New Mexico meant to provide assistance to female Native American tribe members who have experienced domestic violence or sexual abuse.
    KRQE-TV reports 56 percent of Native American women are physically abused by an intimate partner.
    Native Americans make up 10 percent of New Mexico’s population.
    Deleana Otherbull, executive director of the Coalition to Stop Violence Against Native American Women, says advocates from the new StrongHeart Native Helpline are familiar with native culture and tribal sovereignty.
    The advocates will guide women through steps to get away safely from their situation.
    The StrongHearts hotline’s phone number is 1-844-762-8483. It is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. People who call after hours will be transferred to the National Domestic Violence Hotline.

  • Moms Demand Action to speak about gun control in LA Monday

    Voices for Los Alamos has invited members of gun control advocacy group Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America to give a presentation Monday on the status of a gun bill sponsored by State Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard (D-NM). 

    The bill died in the state Legislature last year. Moms Demand Action is a group associated with Everytown For Gun Safety, a national group that grew out of former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns. 

    Moms Demand Action member Stephanie Hainsfurther said they will also speak about the National Rifle Association’s alleged upcoming push for open carry on college campuses in New Mexico.

    “Before they start that push in New Mexico, which we know is coming, we want some chapters on college campuses,” Hainsfurther said. 

    The group already has talked to students, faculty and others at the University of New Mexico’s main campus in Albuquerque and has signed people up. 

  • Giant antennas in N.M.’s search for cosmic discoveries

    ALBUQUERQUE — Employing an array of giant telescopes positioned in the New Mexico desert, astronomers have started a massive surveying project aimed at producing the most detailed view ever made of such a large portion of space using radio waves emitted from throughout the Milky Way and beyond.

    The National Radio Astronomy Observatory announced the project this week, saying the Very Large Array will make three scans of the sky that’s visible from the scrubland of the San Augustin Plains.  It is one of the best spots on the planet to scan space, with 80 percent of the Earth’s sky visible from the location.

  • ABQ TV reporter killed in crash

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — A longtime reporter-videographer at an Albuquerque TV station has died after the news helicopter he was piloting crashed and burned in a field near a New Mexico ghost town, authorities said Sunday.

    Bob Martin, 64, was pronounced dead at the crash scene Saturday night, according to New Mexico State Police. The Bell B206 helicopter was destroyed, said Federal Aviation Administration spokeswoman Lynn Lunsford.

    KRQE-TV said Martin worked for the station for more than 20 years, frequently shooting, writing and editing stories. It was not clear whether Martin was assigned to cover a story when the crash happened.

    “He was behind, or above, some of the biggest news stories on KRQE for the last three decades,” station manager Bill Anderson said in a statement. “Yet he was rarely around for the high fives because he was already on to the next news story.”

    KRQE said the helicopter crashed about 4:30 p.m. Saturday. Lunsford said the crash site was near the central New Mexico ghost town of Ancho, a former railroad and ranching community.

    State Police said officials were notified of a downed aircraft shortly after 5 p.m. and found the remnants of the helicopter and its sole occupant.

  • Mortandad Canyon chromium plume may be wider than expected

    Chromium levels five times the acceptable state limit was detected in an injection well located in Mortandad Canyon at a chromium spill on Los Alamos National Laboratory property.

    The spill, located in the western part of the Pajarito Plateau in the eastern section of LANL property, has been monitored since its discovery in 2004. The injection well was supposed to mark the spill’s outermost boundary.

    Last year, David Rhodes, director for the office of quality and regulatory compliance at the Environmental Management Office in Los Alamos, described the plume as being circular, and about a half-mile in diameter, according to a 2016 Los Alamos Monitor article.

    Members of Nuclear Watch New Mexico discovered the chromium level numbers in a search of a public database maintained by LANL.

  • Ex-electrical engineer at Los Alamos gets prison in tax case

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — A former electrical engineer who worked at New Mexico's Los Alamos National Laboratory for almost 30 years has been sentenced to 33 months in federal prison for filing false tax returns.

    Prosecutors say 62-year-old Darryl Gutierrez of Santa Fe also was ordered Tuesday to pay more than $174,000 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service.

    Gutierrez was indicted in November 2015 on one count of obstructing and impeding the due administration of the internal revenue laws and 10 counts of making and subscribing false tax returns.

    A jury convicted him on all 11 counts in March 2017.

    Prosecutors say that between November 2010 and January 2011, Gutierrez filed 10 false federal income tax returns for tax years 2000 to 2009 seeking a refund when he owed the IRS about $125,000.