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Today's News

  • N.M. gets funding for home visiting program

    SANTA FE (AP) — New Mexico has been awarded $3.5 million to continue providing home-visiting services to pregnant women and to parents with young children.

    The funding comes from the Health Resources and Services Administration.

    Gov. Susana Martinez says the funding will help provide valuable information, resources and skills to at-risk families to ensure their children grow up physically and mentally healthy and ready to learn.

    The program targets pregnant women as early as possible, providing health education. One focus is prenatal care within the first trimester. When mothers don’t have a prenatal care provider, officials say home visitors can make appropriate referrals to link mothers with health clinics, hospitals, doctors and other social service agencies.

  • Supreme Court declines to hear NM tree clearing dispute

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has left in place a lower court ruling that prevents New Mexico from greenlighting tree clearing on federal land in the state in the name of fire prevention.

    The Supreme Court declined Monday to hear a dispute between New Mexico and the federal government.

    The issue dates back to 2001 when New Mexico passed a law saying the U.S. Forest Service had failed to reduce the threat of forest fires by not clearing undergrowth and removing trees on Forest Service land. The law then gave counties in the state permission to do the work.

    When Otero County moved to cut trees on land in the Lincoln National Forest without federal approval in 2011, the United States government sued. Lower courts sided with the federal government.

  • Bandelier seeks concession proposals

    The National Park Service announced Tuesday the release of two prospectuses for the award of two new concession contracts in Bandelier National Monument.
    Solicitation number CC-BAND002-18 is for the award of a concession contract to provide food and beverage services from Historic Building 17, and solicitation number CC-BAND003-18 is for the award of a concession contract to provide retail and winter recreation equipment rental services from Historic Building 15.
    The NPS is looking to revitalize the Bandelier National Historical Landmark District in Frijoles Canyon by increasing visitor services through these two concessions.
    The current gift shop location, Building 17, will become a fast casual restaurant with counter service and dining indoors as well as in the adjacent outdoor courtyards. The Park Service said it also intends for a retail concession operation to open in Building 15, just to the southeast of the restaurant.
    This location offers much more space than the current location for the sale of souvenir and gift items, and enough space for recreational equipment rental.
    Historically, Building 15 served as a family-style restaurant until it was converted to administration offices in the 1960s.

  • Hoopla over new digital system at library

    The Los Alamos County Library System will roll out a new service Oct. 10 called hoopla, which provides a whole new set of delicious digital offerings to patrons.

    With the new system, the library will add about 30,000 new items to its digital library.

    Library cardholders will be able to stream music and videos, read books and browse comics in electronic formats. The hoopla library is in addition to Overdrive, not a replacement.

    “It’s more access to more titles,” Librarian Gwen Kalavaza said.

    Kalvaza said she talked to other libraries around the country and to the other electronic resources experts at the library before deciding to purchase hoopla for Los Alamos.

    The hoopla system will provide music and videos, and also comics, which hadn’t been available before electronically. Hoopla also offers audio books.

    Library patrons will be able to stream titles instantly through a desktop browser or by using the mobile app.

    If patrons use the library mobile app, they can also download titles to their device for offline playback later, where Wi-Fi may be unavailable. Titles are automatically returned and removed from the device at the end of the lending period.

  • Citizen group forms to address county code grievences

    The newly formed  Los Alamos County Citizens in Action Group held its first meeting Monday to figure out what they will do about nuisance code enforcement in Los Alamos County.

    Made up of ordinary citizens, the group was formed out of frustration with what many in the group say are unfair practices by county code enforcers.

    The group decided its first step was to put out a survey to the public about what it thought of code enforcement. From there, it will present its findings at a Nov. 7 County Council meeting, where it hopes further action will be taken.

    The group is formulating questions for the survey that will show that there is genuine concern over what many see as overzealous code enforcement. They also said they aren’t expecting results to be overwhelming one way or the other.

    “I don’t expect this to overwhelmingly be against the yard ordinance. I expect it to be fairly down the middle, because this is a pretty divisive issue,” group co-founder Heather Ortega said.

    Though Nov. 7 is a work session, group co-founder Helen Milenski wants to at least see a suspension of the ordinance while council considers modifying it.

  • LA residents donate blood to Las Vegas victims

    Even in a parking lot 700 miles away, the mass shooting in Las Vegas hit close for some Los Alamos residents.

    As people gathered at the United Blood Services Bloodmobile Tuesday morning in the Smith’s Marketplace, they talked of the horrific shooting or knowing someone who survived it.

    “Most of my friends are still there, my sister is there and they all know somebody who’s been injured,” Los Alamos resident Lani Seaman said, fighting back tears. “She has friends that work at the trauma center at UMC (University Medical Center) and we need blood badly. That’s why I’m here.”

    Originally from Las Vegas, Seaman knew the area of the shooting well, and knew people who were at the concert.

    She said a husband of one of her friends carried a girl out who had been shot. Moments before, she had been standing next to him enjoying the concert.

    Deborah Lee and Lisa Marie Rodriguez were at a Depeche Mode concert in Las Vegas Saturday night at the T-Mobile Arena.

  • Forecasters warn of heavy rain, flash flooding in New Mexico

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — Forecasters with the National Weather Service are warning that the northern two-thirds of New Mexico will likely see heavy rain and flash flooding over the next couple days.

    The forecast calls for anywhere between an inch and 3 inches of rain across eastern New Mexico through Friday along with a flash flood threat Wednesday east of the central mountains. Severe thunderstorms also will be possible east of the Continental Divide on Wednesday and Thursday.

    Many rivers are already running above normal due to recent storms, and forecasters say the heavy rainfall expected through Friday could result in rapid increases.

    According to the weather service, September ended up being wetter than normal for much of New Mexico. Several communities received more than 4 inches of rain over a 10-day period.
     

  • Vegas gunman set up cameras inside his room and outside

    By KEN RITTER and MIKE BALSAMO, Associated Press

    LAS VEGAS (AP) — The Las Vegas gunman planned his massacre so meticulously that he even set up cameras inside his high-rise hotel room and on a service cart outside his door, apparently to spot anyone coming for him, the sheriff said Tuesday.

    Meanwhile, Sheriff Joseph Lombardo named the gunman's girlfriend as a "person of interest" and said the FBI is bringing her back to the U.S. for questioning as investigators try to determine why Stephen Paddock killed 59 people in the deadliest mass shooting in modern U.S. history.

    Investigators have been speaking with Marilou Danley, who is traveling in the Philippines, and "we anticipate some information from her shortly," Lombardo said.

    Lombardo said he is "absolutely" confident authorities will find out what set off Paddock, a 64-year-old high-stakes gambler and retired accountant who killed himself before police stormed his 32nd-floor room.

    The cameras Paddock set up at the Mandalay Bay hotel casino were part of the extensive preparations that included stockpiling nearly two dozen guns before opening fire from his perch on the closing night of a three-day country music festival below.

  • New Mexico land commissioner cancels run for Congress

    SANTA FE (AP) — A spokeswoman for New Mexico State Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn says he has canceled his campaign for Congress.

    State Land Office Spokeswoman Kristin Haase said Monday that Dunn has changed his mind and will not seek the GOP nomination, without providing a reason.

    Dunn, a Republican, had been a prominent contender to succeed U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce, who is running for governor.

    Dunn was elected in 2014 to lead an agency that oversees state trust lands and leases that help fund schools, universities and hospitals.

    It was unclear whether Dunn would seek re-election as land commissioner next year.

    The governor's race has set off a game of musical chairs in New Mexico politics as Pearce and Democratic U.S. Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham of Albuquerque decline to seek re-election to Congress.
     

  • Pet Talk: Potty training pets is important

    Getting a new puppy, kitten, or older cat or dog is an exciting experience, but having pets comes with certain responsibilities, including potty training. It may be a time-consuming process to potty train your pet, but Dr. Mark Stickney, clinical associate professor at the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences, said it is necessary to develop a long-lasting, positive relationship with your pet.
    “Inappropriate eliminations are one of the biggest reasons pets are surrendered,” Stickney said. “Developing good bathroom habits early is key to having a pet you will enjoy for a long time.”
    Potty training should begin as soon as you bring your pet home. If you’re training an adult dog or a puppy, be sure to give them plenty of time to use the bathroom and stay with them until they go. Then, reward the animal with a treat or positive praise so they understand that eliminating outside is good behavior.
    If you’re training a kitten or cat, Stickney said finding a litter box that your pet is comfortable getting in and out of is key. Additionally, if your kitten was using a litter box before it came to live with you, it could be helpful to start potty training your pet with that specific litter.