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Today's News

  • New Mexico ad warns teens, parents about online predators

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — New Mexico officials are launching a new ad campaign to warn teens and their parents about online sexual predators.

    The Attorney General's Office says the ad called "Monsters" can be viewed on Facebook.

    Attorney General Hector Balderas says parents and teens must be on guard for online sexual predators who lurk behind the screens of computers, tablets and phones.

    Balderas' office says the Facebook ad was funded by a federal grant to the New Mexico Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force, which Balderas' office oversees.

    A similar ad is running on screens at theaters in Albuquerque and Santa Fe this holiday season.
     

  • Embezzlement case heads to court

    A White Rock woman accused of embezzling from a nonprofit children’s football and cheerleading league in September will have a hearing in First Judicial District Court.

    Tabatha Jones, 34, waived her right to a preliminary trial in Los Alamos Magistrate Court Friday. Jones was arrested Sept. 21 for allegedly embezzling $5,680. 89 from the Los Alamos Youth Football and Cheerleading League.

    Jones was president of the Los Alamos League at the time. According to court documents, Jones was the sole manager of the league’s finances from January 2016 through August 2017.

    According to Annmarie Villegas, executive director of league’s parent organization, the Northern New Mexico Children’s Football League, questions began when Villegas discovered the fees to join the Los Alamos league were a $100 more than the cost per participant in Santa Fe league.

    Upon discovery of the missing funds, the northern New Mexico league disbanded the Los Alamos league.

    However, the league was allowed to finish out the year.  At the time of Jones’s arrest, the Los Alamos League was in the fifth weekend of their 11-week season.

  • Assets in Action: Take time to care, welcome wholeness in 2018

    As I sat and listened to a holiday message on Sunday afternoon, the speaker mentioned the Hebrew word Shalom. He spoke of one of the meanings being, “wholeness.”

    I naturally looked up what the internet had to say and found therefinersfire.org for the definition. It is used in many ways, as a welcome, a goodbye and most commonly related to peace.

    I could remember as a child, my mother having the words put on a cake for a friend.

    As we approach 2018, I wish you all Shalom. So many are seeking wholeness in so many ways, like waves of the ocean all throughout our lives.

    I believe in the depths of my soul that it all begins and ends with the Assets. I am certain that constantly talking about Assets, might get annoying from time to time. The truth is like eating healthy, sleep, exercise and taking care of ourselves, it just needs to become a lifestyle, a permanent habit.

    As a nation, we are constantly seeking ways to build kindness, end bullying, put an end to crime or terrorism. If we try to build the skills and traits in our young people, within our communities and let that ripple throughout our region and state, everyone’s lives will be better.

  • Lawmakers file dozens of bills; most will see no action

    SANTA FE (AP) — Lawmakers have filed more than 100 bills for their session that starts in mid-January.
    Most of those will see no action.

    That’s because the state constitution limits action in monthlong sessions to bills on the budget and taxes. Republican Gov. Susana Martinez also can place items on the agenda, and legislators can revisit bills that she vetoed in the past.

    The Santa Fe New Mexican reports that Martinez has indicated public safety will be a priority.

    Democratic House Speaker Brian Egolf says legislators expect a flat budget, which means extra spending will be limited, and proposals for new programs or initiatives might go nowhere.

    Bills that would ban abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy and create a $15-an-hour minimum wage are among the items filed.

  • Dry winter could stress Arizona’s ponderosa pines

    FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. (AP) — Northern Arizona has missed out on a white Christmas, and if the lack of snowfall continues, scientists say there will likely be more far-reaching effects on the region’s pine trees.

    Without enough winter moisture, scientists tell the Arizona Daily Sun, the trees will be more susceptible to bark beetles and disease, all of which lead to tree mortality.

    “This is super dry for us, so if it continues there’s going to be a lot of concerns I’m sure,” said John Anhold, a forest entomologist with the U.S. Forest Service.

    The latest drought maps show drought and abnormally dry conditions have taken hold of significant portions of the Four Corners region of Arizona, New Mexico, Colorado and Utah. With the exception of Colorado, the other states are worse off now than they were at this same time last year.

    For Flagstaff, the below-normal precipitation expected for this winter will also affect the city’s water sources and supply balance going into next year, while the dry weather has already been a game-changer for prescribed fire operations this fall.

    On the Coconino National Forest alone, it has allowed crews to do low-intensity understory burns on about 50 percent more acreage than normal, said Victor Morfin, the forest’s fuels specialist.

  • Community Calendar 12-27-17

    TODAY
     Los Alamos Big Band “A Christmas Dance” performance at 7:30 p.m. at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church Parish Hall, 3700 Canyon Road. Cost is $15 per adult, $10 per student and $5 for children under 12. Event benefits Immaculate Heart of Mary youth.

    The public is invited to a book talk about “The Decadence of Delphi” by author and Los Alamos High School graduate Kristin Heineman at 7 p.m. in the Upstairs Rotunda at Mesa Public Library, 2400 Central Ave. The talk is part of the monthly Authors Speak series put on by the Los Alamos County Library System.
    SATURDAY
    Feature Film: Incoming!
at 2 p.m. at the Nature Center. Discover what impacts from above can teach us about the history of our planet, the Solar System, and the Universe! Cost is $6 for adults, $4 for children. More information at peecnature.org.
    SUNDAY
    Nature Yoga and Trail Run
at 11:45 a.m. at the Nature Center. Practice yoga with Christa Tyson at the nature center, where you have a great view of nature. Optional: Arrive at 10:30 a.m. to join Christa for a pre-yoga run. Admission: yoga or run for $7/$5 for members; yoga and run for $12/$8 for members. More information at peecnature.org.

  • Nobody gains by hiding the truth

    The Washington Post published this editorial on the Department of Health and Human services instructing some of its divisions to avoid certain words or phrases in official documents that are being drafted for next year’s budget:

    Words are power. Whether used to twist or reveal, language matters, especially that used by the people who govern a nation devoted to free speech. This is why it was such a shock to hear the Department of Health and Human Services instruct some of its divisions, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, to avoid using certain words or phrases in official documents being drafted for next year’s budget. It sounds like thought police at work.

    If that judgment seems harsh, consider what happens in China, where thought police really exist. China routinely censors articles containing politically sensitive words such as “Taiwan,” ‘’Tibet” and “cultural revolution” from publications because it does not want its people to think about them. Writing about democracy could lead to trouble in Belarus, Cuba or Vietnam, too. In Russia, words that refer to gays positively can trigger a penalty. In Saudi Arabia, a blogger, Raif Badawi, sits in jail for his online appeal for a more liberal and secular society.

  • WESST wraps banner year; new programs expected in 2018

    BY DAMON SCOTT
    Finance New Mexico

    WESST, the statewide nonprofit best known for consulting and training programs that support entrepreneurs and small businesses, hit a milestone in 2017: It made its largest loan ever.  WESST loaned $150,000 to Dinéland Protection Services Inc. of Fruitland to help the company launch the security services it provides to the Navajo coal mine on the Navajo Nation.

    While the bulk of WESST’s services focus on one-on-one consulting and deep-dive business workshops, WESST also wants to make sure its clients have the funds needed to grow their businesses. Kim Blueher, vice president of lending at WESST, said the loan program is about 10 percent of the overall services they offer, but it makes a significant impact.

    “A lot of people think money is going to fix their problems,” said Blueher. “They come in the door or call thinking they want and need a loan. But we look at their situation and do a more holistic analysis. Many times, they aren’t ready for a loan. We work to prepare them a little better,” she said.

  • NM missile range records nearly 5,500 missions in 2017

    WHITE SANDS MISSILE RANGE, N.M. (AP) — A southern New Mexico missile testing range has logged nearly 5,500 missions this year.

    Those missions include firing missiles and rockets, laser tests and training in F-16 fighter jets on 3,200 square miles of the White Sands Missile Range.

    Test center commander Col. Eric Rannow says the missions allow the U.S. military to be prepared at all times with cutting-edge technology.

    The U.S. Air Force sponsored almost 1,615 training missions this year, with 458 of those involving the fighter jets.

    One of the biggest jobs at the missile range is ensuring that weapons work in the conditions where the military needs them. That means testing in nuclear environments and in varying temperatures.

    The test center also has taken missions on the road, doing tests in Europe and the Pacific Ocean.
     

  • New Mexico considers new nominating system for regents

    By MORGAN LEE, Associated Press

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — New Mexico would change the selection process for regents who oversee the state's public universities and flagship medical center under a newly proposed constitutional amendment.

    Democratic Sen. Jeff Steinborn of Las Cruces and Republican Sen. Mark Moores of Albuquerque hope to ensure a broader initial search for qualified and energetic candidates to oversee the state's major public universities by creating bipartisan nomination committees. The committees would provide a list of candidates for the governor to choose from when nominating university regents.

    Steinborn said the current nominating system emphasizes loyalty to the governor and the governor's policies over prior experience in higher education and accountability to local communities.

    "We've got a lot of talented people serving on the boards of regents," Steinborn said on Tuesday. "We've also got people who don't necessarily bring a lot to the table other than support for the governor."

    New Mexico's public university system recently has been wrestling with declining overall enrollment, steep cuts in state funding and the erosion of in-state student scholarships linked lottery proceeds.