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Today's News

  • 'Toppers look to right the ship for homecoming

    There has been no shortage of bad news for the Los Alamos Hilltopper football team to start the 2014 season.
    There were some injuries in the preseason, compounded by injuries in the team’s first three games, it has struggled on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball and head coach Garett Williams has been missing for the last two games with few people talking about where he might be or when he might be back.
    But there is a bit of good news heading into the 2014 homecoming contest: the Hilltoppers will also be facing a struggling squad.
    Los Alamos will meet up with the Kirtland Central Broncos Friday night at Sullivan Field. The Hilltoppers and Broncos go way back — for many years under the tenure of former head coach Bob Scott the teams opened their seasons against one another.
    The Hilltoppers dropped all three of their games so far this season, having been outscored by a combined 94-19 in those three games.
    Despite the early season issues, the Hilltoppers have shown some signs of life. Quarterback Clay Singer had a solid game last week against the Moriarty Pintos, throwing for 115 yards and moving the ball into Moriarty territory consistently through much of the contest.

  • Board tweaks 'super' plan

    With an eye toward picking the best candidate possible, Los Alamos School Board members Kevin Honnell and Jim Hall presented a revamped superintendent search plan at Tuesday night’s special board meeting.
    The major change in the plan will be instead of starting with a regional search before expanding into a national search, the board has opted to “go national” from the start.
    “Last Tuesday night, at the regular meeting, the board voted to proceed directly with a national search and commissioned Jim and I to update our initial recommendations, which is the point of this meeting tonight,” said Honnell to the board. Honnell, who is also the board’s vice president, referred to their new plan as “Superintendent Search 2.0.”
    Key points in their timeline are:
    • Formulating a bid proposal by Sept. 26
    • Establishing advisory committees by Sept. 30
    • Establishing qualifications for the job by Oct. 23
    • Identification and/or selection of a search firm by Oct. 17
    • Job posted, applications accepted in the month of November
    • Having search firm narrow down the selection of candidates from roughly 12 to six by Dec. 17
    • Board to then narrow down that selection from roughly four to two by Jan. 16

  • Middle school unveils Wall of Awesomeness

    Los Alamos Middle School Student Council members, along with some WEB Crew Leaders recently assembled the Wall of Awesomeness. As part of their suicide prevention awareness activities, LAMS students answered the following questions; What make you awesome? What makes life awesome? Many responses included the importance of family, teachers, friends and chocolate. Today (World Prevention & Awareness Day) staff will add their responses to the same questions.

  • BPU considers rate hikes, restructuring

    The Board of Public Utilities will hold a public hearing on a proposed restructuring of the electric rate structure as well as two rate hikes at its Oct. 15 meeting.
    The Department of Public Utilities had already projected the need for a 6-percent revenue increase, which is included in the FY2014 budget. If approved, that would be implemented in January. DPU also anticipates the need for an additional five percent increase for FY2015, beginning in July.
    According to Deputy Utilities Manager for Finance and Administration Robert Westervelt, three factors are driving the need for rate increases: higher power costs, the need to renovate and replace aging infrastructure and the need to replenish cash reserves.
    In order to keep rates low, DPU has been using cash reserves to cover power costs that came in higher than budgeted and to fund infrastructure projects that required attention sooner than their scheduled replacement time.
    In order to protect the utility from under-recovery of costs and to more accurately classify and allocate the cost of service, DPU hired Leidos to conduct a Cost of Service and Rate Design Study. The study cost $65,000.
    On Wednesday, the board directed staff to return in October with an ordinance implementing Leidos’ recommendations for rate increases and restructuring.

  • Be There 09-18-14

    Today
    Alzheimer’s Talk: “Dementia Won’t Stop the Music.” 5:30 p.m. at Bradbury Lecture Hall. Presenters will be Mary Yamada, Community Outreach Coordinator for Los Alamos Retirement Community and Pauline Schneider, Hospice Music Therapist for Los Alamos Visiting Nurse Services.

    The Los Alamos League of Women Voters presents candidate forums. 7 p.m. at Fuller Lodge. Invited are candidates for county assessor, county sheriff, magistrate judge, municipal judge and New Mexico House District 43. 6:30 p.m. conversations and refreshments.

    White Rock Family-Friendly Films. “Muppets Most Wanted.” 6:30 p.m. at the White Rock Activity Center.

    “Science on Tap.” Rashi Iyer will talk about ATHENA—a miniaturized human model with working artificial organs used for testing pharmaceuticals and toxic materials. 5:30-7 p.m. at Manhattan Project. Hosted by the Bradbury Science Museum.

  • Donors can explore unusual locations at Take Wing events

    The Pajarito Environmental Education Center is offering two Take Wing events that are offered to those who donate $150 or more to its capital campaign.
    PEEC is raising roughly $1.2 million through the capital campaign to fund indoor and outdoor exhibits and a professional planetarium projector for the new Los Alamos County Nature Center.
    On Saturday, there will be a chance to visit the numerous geothermal hot springs at the unusual Sulphur Springs. Husband and wife team Fraser and Cathy Goff will lead the tour and interpret the geology of the area, which they have studied extensively. The Goffs will lead another tour on Monday, this time through the Valles Caldera, including areas not visited on the regular Valles tours. The Sulphur tour will be from 9 a.m.-noon. For directions to the meeting location, call PEEC.

  • Submit trail photos for upcoming nature center app

    While the walls are going up and the roof is raised, a lot of work is going on behind the scenes to bring together all the elements that will make the Los Alamos County Nature Center a new resource for the community.
    The Pajarito Environmental Education Center is working with professionals to design not only the exhibits, but also a new app that will be one of the highlights of the new center. The app will provide trail recommendations, and PEEC is calling on members of the community to submit photographs of local trails to be used for the app.
    The photographs should be of local trails and can be with or without people, though with people is preferred. Each photograph must be accompanied by the name of the trail and, if possible, when the photo was taken. By submitting the photograph, the photographer agrees to release it to PEEC and gives PEEC permission to use the likeness of the people included. Credit will be given to the photographer, so the photographer’s name should also be included.
    The new app, called Los Alamos Trails, will be available on every platform. It will allow people to enter criteria (such as “I want to go on a three mile hike that’s good for dogs and see wildflowers”) and get trail recommendations, guides, and views from user-submitted photos.  

  • Isotopes ink deal with the Rockies

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — Bye-bye Los Angeles Dodgers. Hello Colorado Rockies.
    Officials with the Albuquerque Isotopes and the Rockies signed a four-year player development agreement during a news conference Wednesday, marking the official move of the major league team’s Triple-A affiliation from Colorado Springs to Albuquerque.
    The Isotopes had been affiliated with the Los Angeles Dodgers since 2008 until the team cut its ties last month.
    “This is the start of a new era,” said John Traub, the Isotopes general manager.
    Officials with the Rockies and the Isotopes said their new relationship makes sense for geographical reasons and because Albuquerque feels like an extension of home for the major league team.
    “It’s a six-hour drive from here into Denver. It’s a one-hour flight,” said Jeff Bridich, the Rockies senior director of player development. “Did that play into it? Absolutely. And the fact that this is a large city and growing city and hopefully it’s growing full of Rockies fans.”
    Similar altitudes, a state-of-the-art ball field and the fan bases for both the Rockies and the Isotopes were also considerations for coming to Albuquerque, the officials said.

  • Hawk 8th graders win at ATC XC race

    The Los Alamos Middle School Hawk eighth grade boys finished with a near-perfect score at Saturday’s Academy for Technology and the Classics Invitational meet.
    Jevon Montoya was the big winner for the Hawks, followed immediately by three teammates as the Hawks finished with 20 team points, as well as taking five of the top 10 individual slots.
    Montoya finished in 8 minutes, 31 seconds, which was 10 seconds faster than teammate Shawn Williams in the runner-up spot. Duncan Fuehne and Elijah Vasquez took third and fourth in the race, both coming in within seven seconds of Williams.
    All four Hawk teams took part in the ATC meet. LAMS’ eighth grade girls were paced by Paulina Burnside, who was second overall in that race with her finish time of 9:35. Marin Kelly was fifth overall.
    The Hawk eighth graders finished third in team competition.
    In the seventh grade boys race, Dakota Duran finished in the top 10 for LAMS.

    Here are Los Alamos Middle School’s individual results from Saturday’s meet.

    Seventh-grade girls

  • 'Toppers knocked off by Santa Fe, 3-1

    SANTA FE — It wasn’t a win, but the Los Alamos Hilltopper volleyball team did manage to do something only one other team — a very good team — has been able to do in 2014.
    Los Alamos traveled to Santa Fe to take on its old district rivals, the Santa Fe Demonettes. The Demonettes, with a very solid corps returning after one of the best seasons in program history last year, are playing about as well as any team in the state.
    It appeared early in Wednesday’s contest the Demonettes might do to the Hilltoppers what they’ve done to most teams this year, but the Hilltoppers bounced back after being dominated in the first set to have just as dominating a performance in the second set.
    The two teams played even much of the way, but in the end Santa Fe prevailed 25-15, 13-25, 25-21, 25-21 at Toby Roybal Gymnasium.
    The set won by the Hilltoppers, however, was just the second the Demonettes have lost in six matches. The other set Santa Fe dropped was against small-school powerhouse Texico, which Santa Fe defeated 3-1 at the Moriarty Invitational.
    In the first set, Los Alamos swung big against the very solid Santa Fe block at the net. Against that block, Los Alamos’ potent offense was largely ineffective.