Today's News

  • Today in history Nov. 11
  • UNM-LA bachelor, graduate program seeks public input

    In an effort to identify community needs for higher-level degree options at the University of New Mexico-Los Alamos, the University of New Mexico Anderson School of Management is working with UNM-LA and staff from the Provost office at UNM-Albuquerque to conduct an online survey which is asking for public input.
    As a branch campus in New Mexico, UNM-LA offers associate degree and certificate-level programs. Students who want to pursue upper-division or graduate-level classes typically transfer to UNM, transfer to another institution or stay on the UNM-LA campus and work with the bachelor and graduate program center.
    The survey being conducted by UNM students is designed to assess the needs for various degree programs.
    UNM students have been working with residents in Los Alamos and Albuquerque as they developed the survey.
    Ongoing discussions have suggested a strong interest in a variety of upper division and masters programs in the Los Alamos area. These programs could serve UNM-LA graduates who want to go beyond their associate degree or certificate program, individuals who live in the community and want to pursue more education or new career opportunities, as well as those who relocate here with family members or friends for jobs with LANL or other local businesses.

  • ‘Sea Monsters’ begins this weekend at Nature Center

    Pajarito Environmental Education Center will give a special presentation this weekend of “Sea Monsters”  and will then begin showing the film through the end of December.
    The film brings 82 million-year-old animals to life in the Los Alamos Nature Center Planetarium. Local paleontologist Ralph Chapman will give a special presentation to set the stage for the film “Sea Monsters, A Prehistoric Adventure.” The film allows viewers to take a journey back in time to see some of the most bizarre, ferocious and fascinating creatures ever to inhabit the sea.
    Unexpected discoveries gave paleontologists vital information for creating this film about a time when the middle of North America was an inland sea, home to strange, yet oddly familiar, creatures. “Sea Monsters” follows the life cycle of a female Dolichorhynchops and introduces a variety of aquatic reptiles including the “T-rex of the Ocean,” the 40-foot super-predator Tylosaurus.
    The Bilingual Montessori School generously provided funding to bring “Sea Monsters” to Los Alamos. Sea Monsters opens Friday and also will be shown at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Afterward, Sea Monsters will have regular weekend showings through the end of December.

  • Community Calendar 11-11-15

    The Los Alamos Genealogical Association will meet at 7 p.m. at the Mesa Public Library in Los Alamos. Speaker Ron Smith will present: “Sometimes one source makes all the difference: Two case studies.” The public is invited. The traditional no-host social dinner at 5:30 p.m. at China Moon.
    Fruitcake sale from 9 a.m.-5:30 p.m. the Order of Eastern Star will sell Collin Street Bakery holiday fruitcakes at Los Alamos National Bank lobby. The chapter continues a 50-year tradition of selling fruitcakes as well as apricot pecan and pineapple pecan cakes. The sale will continue on Nov. 20, Dec. 4, Dec. 11, and 18 (or until sold out). We will not sell fruitcakes the Friday after Thanksgiving.

    Gentle Walks with PEEC at 9 a.m. Free. A gentle trail walk with an emphasis on discovery, not mileage gained. Adults. Meet at the Nature Center and carpool to the trailhead. More information at peecnature.org.
     “Sea Monsters” Planetarium film premier and presentation at 7 p.m. at the Nature Center — Meet local paleontologist Ralph Chapman who will set the stage and introduce the different types of animals that are featured in this new full-dome film. Suitable for ages 6 and up. $6 for adults, $4 for children.

  • Adults should act as role models

    This week, I’d like to focus on adults as role models and what our kids might see daily, as it relates to our people in the service industries.
    The other day, I took our youngest son to the Motor Vehicles Division for his learner’s permit. In the hour I sat there, I witnessed two people be extremely rude to the ladies and a trainee that were working.
    Ironically, I could overhear the conversation, and what the employees were doing was what their job entails. They were doing things that would make things safer, especially identity-wise for everyone.
    The only thing I could do was wait our turn and then tell them I “apologize” for when people act so rude. Then, I asked how often it happened and they said every day.
    So when you go into the MVD and your experience is good, push the little button that says you had a decent experience and thank them for their time.
    Young children not only watch how we as adults act, but when we see something that isn’t right, have a conversation in the car about that it was wrong to treat people wrong when they are doing the right thing. If an employee is doing something inappropriate, then tell a superior.

  • Majority of state’s jobs are still in low-paying sectors

    New Mexico First just issued an ambitious Progress Report for the state, focused on the state’s big four issues: education, health, economy and water. The nonpartisan public policy group provides a frank, unemotional appraisal of where we’re at with the hope that legislators and organizations can use the information to find common ground.
    The report’s advisory committee, drawing from an array of sources, chose 35 indicators. Some we’ve heard before, but others give us new insight into our strengths and weaknesses.
    First, the good news: The state is making progress in pre-kindergarten enrollment, science and math college graduates, heart disease deaths, health insurance coverage, child immunization, adult smoking reduction, household income, unemployment, export-related employment, fiscal and regulatory policy, energy production, total water use, water use by public water systems, and water rights adjudications.
    And the bad: The state is getting worse in child hunger, mental healthcare access, healthcare provider access, substance abuse deaths, poverty, waterway impairment, and dams with safety deficiencies.
    Let’s look at the economy because it supports everything else.

  • NM’s ‘unbanked’ population booming

    Using a bank is one element of being money savvy. Overall, we are not especially money savvy, says gobankingrates.com, a personal finance website.
    In gobanking’s judgment of relative state money savviness (or not), New Mexico is in the group ranking from 31st to 40th. Criteria include using banks, saving and investing and a state’s financial education policies, such as requiring courses in high school.
    The 2013 National Survey of Unbanked and Underbanked Households by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation was an important source for gobanking.
    New Mexico’s 857,000 households are 10.9 percent what the jargon calls “unbanked,” without any bank account. That’s 42 percent more than the 7.7 percent of unbanked households nationally.
    Another 22.5 percent were underbanked, that is, they had a bank account but used “alternative financial services” such as money orders, check cashing, remittances, payday loans, refund anticipation loans, rent-to-own services, pawn shop loans, or auto title loans. During the 30 days before being surveyed, 15.1 percent had used alternative financial services. Another 14.9 percent used such services during the past year.

  • Property tax bills en route

    Los Alamos County property tax bills for 2015 were mailed to property owners last week.
    The first half installment becomes delinquent after Dec. 10.  Payment must either be made in person at the 311 Customer Care Center by 5 p.m. Dec. 10 or postmarked by midnight that same day to avoid late payment penalty and interest charges.
    The 311 Customer Care Center is in the Municipal Building lobby at 1000 Central Ave. They are open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    Payments should be mailed to P.O. Box 99, Los Alamos, NM  87544. Payments also are accepted through a property tax lockbox at Los Alamos National Bank.
    According to losalamosnm.us, county net taxable residential values increased $9,690,740 from 2014-15 – from $571,278,070 to $580,968,810.
    Nonresidential net taxable values increased $4,567,109 from $94,247,196 to $98,814,305.
    Tax rates for the Los Alamos School District are down from 12.534 to 12.128, a drop of 3.24 percent for residential property taxes, compared to a fall of 3.2 percent from 12.694 to 12.288 for nonresidential.
    An additional $1.278 million in revenue is projected from a 99 percent collection rate for residential properties and $295,375 from nonresidential property taxes.

  • NCRTD Veterans Day holiday closure

    The North Central Regional Transit District has announced that the RTD “Blue Buses,” RTD Chile Line and RTD Mountain Trail Route will not be in service Wednesday in observance of the Veterans Day holiday.

    Regularly scheduled bus service throughout north central New Mexico, including Los Alamos, Rio Arriba, Santa Fe and Taos Counties, will resume Thursday.

  • Today in history Nov. 10