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Today's News

  • Early childhood ed. funding clears N.M. House

    SANTA FE — House lawmakers on Tuesday approved a plan to increase funding for early childhood education in New Mexico by distributing more money from a multibillion dollar state sovereign wealth fund.

    The House voted 36-33 on Tuesday in favor of the constitutional amendment to increase annual distributions from the Land Grant Permanent Fund by 1 percent.

    The measure now moves the Senate, where a similar measure stalled last year.

    Supporters say a substantial increase in state spending is needed to improve and expand preschool education.

    Critics say the plan risks drawing too much money each year from a fund seen as a trust for future generations. The fund receives royalties from oil and natural gas production on state trust land, while current distributions benefit public schools and hospitals.

    Approval by the Legislature would set up a statewide vote in November. Republican Gov. Susana Martinez’s administration is seeking more general fund spending for early childhood education but opposes greater investment withdrawals. Constitutional amendments do not require the governor’s signature.

  • Morgan earns Gen. Billy Mitchell Award

    Silas Morgan stepped into elite company Monday night when he was given the General Billy Mitchell Award in a ceremony held at Los Alamos County Airport.

    Morgan, 15, a member of the Civil Air Patrol Cadet Program, became one of only approximately 15 percent of CAP Cadets to achieve the award.

    “It feels pretty good knowing it’s hard to get this award,” he said. “I had a lot of help from a lot of people in the squadron and I’m really thankful for that.”

    The award, created in 1964, honors the late General Billy Mitchell, who was a pioneer in the field of aviation as well as an advocate of an independent air force for America.

    The CAP is an auxiliary branch of the United States Air Force with three primary missions: Aerospace Education of the American people, Emergency Services and the Cadet Program.

    The Cadet Program is for young people from 12 to 20 years of age. Those cadets, with support from the CAP Senior Members and the Air Force, take part in such programs as aerospace education, leadership, special activities, physical fitness and moral and ethical values through group and individual activities.

  • 2018 State Legislature: SB17 passes Senate

    A bill that would collect gross receipts tax from certain non profits met little resistance in the New Mexico Senate Saturday, sailing through with just a brief debate.

    The New Mexico Senate voted 31 to 4 Saturday to pass the bill, known as Senate Bill 17, onto the New Mexico House of Representatives.

    Sens. Brandt (R-40), (William Payne R-20, Minority Whip), Cliff Pirtle (R-32) and Sander Rue (R-23) voted against the bill.

    The bill, sponsored by Cisneros, is designed to preserve the millions of dollars the county and the state receives each year from the gross receipts tax the for-profit contractor that manages Los Alamos National Laboratory pays every year.

    New Mexico’s tax code currently exempts non-profit organizations from paying a gross receipts tax. While a for-profit contractor presently runs the Los Alamos National Laboratory, the management contract is in transition, with the possibility that the new contractor could be a non-profit.

    Cisneros, along with cosponsors State Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard (D-43) and Sen. Richard Martinez (D-5) want to make sure the millions of dollars the state and the county receives from the GRT tax continues.

    Cisneros said the bill first came up last year when Sandia National Laboratory’s contract was up for bid.

  • LANL employee shot during NM 502 road rage incident

    Area law enforcement agencies continued to search Tuesday for the driver of a Jeep who reportedly shot at a Los Alamos National Laboratory employee in an apparent case of road rage about 6 p.m. Thursday, while he was driving home to Santa Fe on NM 502 near Pojoaque.

    The man was found by Santa Fe Sheriff’s deputies in Pojoaque, bleeding from his head from a gunshot wound.

    The alleged shooter was driving a white Jeep Wrangler with a blue Marine Corps license plate. The Jeep had an after-market metal bumper, according to reports.

    The victim, a 40-year male, was able to call 911 from the Phillips 66 gas station at 67 Ogo Wii Road.
    When Santa Fe County Sheriff Deputy John Maylone arrived at the scene, he reportedly found the victim conscious and standing by his gray Dodge Avenger.

    Maylone said the victim had blood on his hands and blood on the back of his head.

    A CT scan later taken at St. Vincent’s hospital showed a bullet lodged between the scalp and the skull. A neurosurgeon at the hospital reported that the bullet did fracture the victim’s skull. The victim had surgery later that night.

    The victim told Maylone he first saw his attacker when he pulled onto NM 502. The Jeep Wrangler was reportedly in front of his vehicle and he was two to three car lengths behind.

  • Lobos come up short against Utah State

    Despite dressing just seven players, The University of New Mexico men’s basketball team closed a 15-point deficit to just three with one minute left before falling 89-80 on the road at Utah State. Four players saw 34 minutes or more on the floor to tie or set personal-highs for most minutes in a game.

    Junior Anthony Mathis paced the Lobos in the near-comeback with a career-high 25 points in his career-high 36 minutes, followed by junior Chris McNeal with 21 points in 36 minutes. McNeal’s 21 points marked his third time this season scoring 20+ points and his most points in a game since he scored 29 in the fourth game of the season against Tennessee Tech.

    Senior Joe Furstinger played nearly the entire 40 minutes, tallying six points, nine rebounds, six assists, three blocks and one steal.

    Freshman Makuach Maluach was the third Lobo to register double figures, collecting 15 points, while finishing second on the team in rebounds with six.

    “Unfortunately we just couldn’t get any stops tonight...I’m disappointed we lost, I felt like we had a chance to win the game. We were not very good mentally tonight,” head coach Paul Weir said. “I don’t know if that was the distractions of guys not being here, I don’t believe it’s fatigue, but maybe it could have been.”

  • Atomic City Update: District play has not been kind to Hilltopper basketball

    For any high school team, winning against rival schools is one of the most satisfying feelings. Most of the time, the kids on rival teams are the ones you have known for years, and probably competed with at some point. They know what you do well, and you know what they do well. That sense of familiarity creates some of the best competition, and makes the desire to win even greater.

    This is one of the reasons why having both basketball teams at Los Alamos High School go 0-4 through the first rotation of district games is so frustrating, for those in the community who watch, and especially those who are coaching and playing.

    For the boys’ team, this is an unexpected development. Heading into this season, the team appeared primed for immediate success. With eight seniors on the roster, the team was expected to be one of the top teams in Class 5A, and was selected by the Santa Fe New Mexican as the team to beat in District 2-5A.

    However, things haven’t gone as expected. LAHS has lost all four of its district games, with the closest game coming in a 6-point loss against Capital High School.

    In the other games, an 11-point loss to Albuquerque Academy, a 13-point loss to Del Norte and a 24-point loss to Española Valley, the outcome was decided long before the final whistle blew.

  • Prominent baseball agent suggests spring training boycott

    A prominent baseball agent says players are angered over the slow free-agent market and suggests they consider boycotting spring training.

    Brodie Van Wagenen, co-head of CAA Baseball, floated the idea in a statement released Friday, less than two weeks before spring training workouts are to start in Florida and Arizona.

    “The players are upset. No, they are outraged. Players in the midst of long-term contracts are as frustrated as those still seeking employment,” he said. “I would suggest that testing the will of 1,200 alpha males at the pinnacle of their profession is not a good strategy for 30 men who are bound by a much smaller fraternity.”
    J.D. Martinez, Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Jake Arrieta, Alex Cobb, Greg Holland and Lance Lynn remain among the dozens of unsigned free agents.

    “There is a rising tide among players for radical change. A fight is brewing,” he said. “A boycott of spring training may be a starting point, if behavior doesn’t change. Players don’t receive their paychecks until the second week of April. Fine them? OK, for how much? Sue them? OK, they’ll see you in court two years from now.”

  • Atomic Tumblers bring home 17 gold medals at Winter Fiesta

    Competing against 15 teams from around the region, the Los Alamos Atomic Tumblers brought home 17 gold medals at the annual Winter Fiesta competition in Albuquerque.

    The Atomic Tumblers competed In the Xcel competition. Los Alamos was the only team in New Mexico who fielded enough gymnasts in the (top) Diamond Division for team competition, meaning no team competition was held.

    Individually, Brianna Fryer brought home a gold medal with a score of 8.90 on the bars, and earned fourth place in the all-around competition. Hannah Gram took home the silver medal in the all-around.

    In the Platinum competition, Atomic Tumblers took second place as a team. There were two age divisions, junior and senior, but all Los Alamos gymnasts competed in the junior division. Megan Brown earned the silver medal in the all-around, while Colette Bibeault earned the bronze. Individually, Bibeault earned a gold on the beam with a score of 9.20, Sara Gardner earned a gold on the floor with a score of 9.20 and Danielle Trellue earned a gold on the vault with a score of 9.20.

  • US marshal for New Mexico resigns

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — U.S. Marshal for New Mexico Conrad Candelaria resigned after nearly eight years in the position.
    A spokesman for the service confirmed Monday that Candelaria resigned over the weekend.

    Candelaria was confirmed by the Senate in 2010 after then-President Barack Obama nominated the New Mexico native and former Albuquerque police officer for the role.

    U.S. Marshals Service spokesman Drew Wade says Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal Brent Broshow took over Sunday as the interim senior manager of the New Mexico office.

    The Marshals Service says Broshow will relocate to New Mexico from Missouri..

  • Protests hit Ten Commandments marker, MLK Day in New Mexico

    HOBBS (AP) — Activists advocating for religious freedom are targeting a Ten Commandments monument in a southeastern New Mexico public building and a city's sponsorship of a Martin Luther King, Jr. event.

    The Hobbs News-Sun reports members of the Freedom From Religion Foundation says the Ten Commandments monument and the King event violate the separation of church and state.

    Hobbs resident and foundation member Jeremy Wood asked the Hobbs City Commission at a recent meeting to remove the Ten Commandments monument at Hobbs City Hall.

    Foundation lawyer Christopher Line also sent a complaint to the City of Hobbs regarding its sponsorship of a Martin Luther King, Jr. event because it involved a performance by a gospel group.

    Hobbs City attorney Mike Stone says the city will evaluate the complaints.