Today's News

  • Reaching new heights


    Samantha Baily gets a helping hand from instructor Emma Starrett climbing the Family YMCA’s Rock Wall Wednesday during family rock climbing hours. 

  • Supreme Court case has lessons for mortgage lenders


    Lenders that resell or buy mortgage loans might feel the impact of a February decision by the New Mexico State Supreme Court that affects their ability to foreclose if the borrower defaults.

    The case, Bank of New York v. Joseph A. Romero, involved a Chimayó man who refinanced a mortgage he had taken on a home he inherited from his father decades earlier. Romero secured the original loan to open a business in Española; the 2006 Equity One refinance was done to pay off that older mortgage and other debts.

    Romero claimed his business made approximately $5,600 per month, but Equity One didn’t confirm that information or require an appraisal. To satisfy provisions of the state Home Loan Protection Act, or HLPA, Equity One had Romero and his wife sign a document stating that their $30,000 cash payout from the transaction was “a reasonable tangible net benefit” to them. 

  • UNM-LA approves 4.9 percent tuition hike


    Students will pay higher tuition costs to attend the University of New Mexico’s Los Alamos campus this fall.

    That’s because UNM’s Board of Regents voted to increase the tuition 4.9 percent, the only campus in the system to receive an across-the-board tuition increase, which is for resident and non-resident students. 

    The board also approved a new $10 “print management fee,” which will allow students to use their ID cards to access printers throughout the campus. The cards will have a preloaded amount of credits on them. 

    The increase drives the cost per credit hour for resident students from $66 to $69.25, meaning a full-time student (12 to 18 credit hours) will pay $831 instead of $792 per semester.

  • Us ‘n’ them: Reflections on West Texas


    Texans fascinate me. It’s not an uncritical admiration, but I can’t help looking across the border and wondering why they zoom out of the recession while we in New Mexico spin our wheels.

    From a recent annual meeting of the West Texas Historical Society, held in Odessa, I returned with some ideas to share with you.

    “Texas exceptionalism.” 

    This phrase, tossed out during one talk, is a fancy way to capture the confidence, the bravado, that permeates the atmosphere the way the smell of money from bobbing pumpjacks fills the air for miles around Odessa. What other state could name a major Austin museum exhibit “It ain’t braggin’ if it’s true?”

  • Council 'reluctantly' agrees to DOE utilities agreement


    When Deputy Clerk Adrianna Ortiz announced that a motion to approve a new Electric Energy and Power Coordination Agreement (ECA) between Los Alamos County and the Department of Energy had passed 7−0, Council Chair Geoff Rodgers added “passed reluctantly.” 

    The five-year agreement was reached after five years of contentious negotiations. The Department of Public Utilities (DPU) tried to negotiate the inclusion of a modest profit or management fee. The National Nuclear Safety Administration (NNSA) procurement office ruled that could not be allowed in a reimbursement-type contract. 

    The compromise agreement allows the county to remove a county-owned asset from the pool with 18 months notice. If that should happen, the county must provide replacement power for Los Alamos National Lab, with the cost shared pro-rata (80 percent DOE/20 percent county).

  • 22 stabbed at suburban Pittsburgh high school


    MURRYSVILLE, Pa. (AP) — Flailing away with two kitchen knives, a 16-year-old boy with a "blank expression" stabbed and slashed 21 students and a security guard in the crowded halls of his suburban Pittsburgh high school Wednesday before an assistant principal tackled him.

    At least five students were critically wounded, including a boy whose liver was pierced by a knife thrust that narrowly missed his heart and aorta, doctors said.

    The rampage — which came after decades in which U.S. schools geared much of their emergency planning toward mass shootings, not stabbings — set off a screaming stampede, left blood on the floor and walls, and brought teachers rushing to help the victims.

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  • Klotz confirmed as NNSA administrator

    Lieutenant General Frank G. Klotz, United States Air Force (Ret), was confirmed by the Senate this week, as the Department of Energy’s Under Secretary for Nuclear Security and Administrator for the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA).
    “Lieutenant General Klotz’s confirmation comes at a critical point for the National Nuclear Security Administration,” said Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz. “His breadth of military and national security leadership experience makes him uniquely suited to lead the NNSA, fulfilling its commitments to the management and security of the nation’s nuclear weapons, nuclear nonproliferation, naval reactor programs, and nuclear and radiological emergency preparedness efforts. I thank the Senate for their attention to Lieutenant General Klotz’s nomination, and I look forward to working with him. I also thank Acting Administrator Bruce Held for his outstanding leadership of NNSA as Acting Administrator.”
    As Under Secretary for Nuclear Security, Lt. Gen. Klotz is responsible for the management and operation of the NNSA, as well as policy matters across the Department of Energy and NNSA enterprise in support of President Barack Obama’s nuclear security agenda. Acting Administrator Held will return to his position as Associate Deputy Secretary.