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Today's News

  • Hernandez tosses perfect game in Seattle's 1-0 win

    SEATTLE (AP) — King Felix now has a crowning achievement.

    Felix Hernandez pitched the Seattle Mariners' first perfect game and the 23rd in baseball history, overpowering the Tampa Bay Rays in a brilliant 1-0 victory Wednesday.

    The Mariners' ace and 2010 AL Cy Young Award winner has long talked of his desire to achieve pitching perfection. He finally accomplished it against the Rays, striking out the side twice and finishing with 12 strikeouts.

    It was the third perfect game in baseball this season — a first — joining gems by Chicago's Philip Humber against the Mariners in April and San Francisco's Matt Cain against Houston in June.

    This also was the sixth no-hitter in the majors this season, three of them at Safeco Field. Humber threw his gem in Seattle, then six Mariners pitchers combined to hold the Los Angeles Dodgers hitless at the park on June 8.

  • Building Kindness

    Building Kindness, a Habitat for Humanity affiliate, wants volunteers to help in the restoration of family homes. No skills necessary. Volunteers will be taught the safe use of power tools and equipment, while improving the living conditions of others less fortunate.  Skilled volunteers needed, too. This ongoing program meets at 8 a.m. every Saturday. Call David Canfield at 505-747-7698 or email buildingkindness@habitatevla.org for more information.

  • Be There 08-15-12

    Today
    This month’s Juvenile Justice Advisory Board meeting will be at 6 p.m. in Building #1, Camino Entrada, Pajarito Cliffs Site. Committees will meet at 6 p.m., the meeting will begin at 6:15 p.m. For more information, call 661-4097.

    Thursday
    The Los Alamos Farmers Market will run from 7 a.m.-12:30 p.m. in the Mesa Public Library parking lot.

    Family Game Night at Mesa Public Library. Join the geeks and gamers from 5:30-8:30 p.m. in the upstairs rotunda for game boards galore. All ages welcome, please bring a parent or another adult if you’re 12 or younger.

    The monthly Los Alamos County Democratic meeting will be at 7 p.m. at Mesa Public Library. The topics of the meeting will be the upcoming events with congressmen, candidate updates and other developing news. All registered Democrats are invited to attend.

    Saturday
    There will be a Masonic Waffle Breakfast 7:30-10 a.m. at the Los Alamos Masonic Lodge, 15th and Canyon. Proceeds benefit Habitat for Humanity’s 2012 Jimmy and Rosalyn Carter Work Project in Haiti. Price of the breakfast is $7 and $3 for children age six and younger.

  • Students get Tools for School

    Self-Help Inc. has been the sponsor of Tools for School for 15 years and once again has completed another program. With money from United Way, other grants and donations from the community, $27,000 worth of paper, pencils, scissors and other supplies have been purchased, unloaded at the Masonic Temple in Los Alamos and then sorted and distributed to children in need throughout the Los Alamos, Española and Pojoaque school districts.
    Joyce Nickols has been the Tools for School coordinator for the last three years. Helping with Tools for School has been an annual project for the middle school and high school youth groups at the Unitarian Church of Los Alamos.  
    Nickols, youth director De Anna Hoyle and the youth group had a pizza picnic and then worked several hours recently unloading a truck, donated by Remax of Los Alamos, that was filled to capacity with boxes of supplies.

  • 'Women for Heather' has LA county chair

    Heather Wilson, Republican candidate for the U.S. Senate, announced today that Los Alamos resident Francine J. Mendoza will lead Women for Heather in Los Alamos County.
    She joins the statewide grassroots team and will lead the county’s efforts to elect the first female senator from New Mexico.
    “This year we have a special opportunity to elect Heather Wilson as New Mexico’s first woman U.S. Senator,” Mendoza said.
    “Heather is the only pro-life candidate running for the U.S. Senate, and I know she will reflect my values when she is elected.
    She will also fight to create jobs here in New Mexico. And that is why I’m supporting Heather Wilson to be our next U.S. senator.”
    “I’m happy that Francine has joined our campaign to elect the first woman senator from New Mexico,” Wilson said.
    “The extreme policies coming out of Washington have made things harder and more expensive for New Mexico women. Too many of us are getting by, but not getting on. It’s time to change direction.”
    Mendoza has a degree in secondary education and social studies. She served as a teacher in Tallahassee, Fla., while raising her three children.

  • Update 08-15-12

    No CIP Thursday

    The CIP Evaluation and Oversight Committee will not meet Thursday. They plan to meet with County Administrator Harry Burgess in a special committee meeting at 5:15 p.m. Aug. 23 in Council Chambers. This will be the only agenda item for the meeting. The public is welcome to attend.

    Triathlon time

    The Los Alamos County Triathlon will take place at 7 a.m. Saturday, beginning at the Aquatic Center.

    Groundbreaking

    The public is invited to join the county council for the groundbreaking event for the new Golf Course Community Building at 11:30 a.m. Aug. 24, at the building site. Refreshments will be served.

    Regional coalition

    The Regional Coalition Business meeting will be at 9 a.m. Friday at the Rio Arriba County Courthouse.

    Board meeting

    The Environmental Sustainability Board will meet at 5:30 p.m. Thursday in the Community Building Training Room.

  • Sign code change inches closer

    Attempts to update and simplify the county’s sign code began in 2005. After years of contention and delays, Community and Economic Development Department (CEDD) Principal Planner Gary Leikness is optimistic about the possibility of having a new code by the end of the year.

    Leikness presented his draft revision to a group of business and retail owners Monday night and to the Los Alamos County Council at Tuesday’s work session. The county attorney’s office is also reviewing the draft. Although specific elements of the code were debated, reaction overall was positive.

    Two core changes to the code garnered support.

    “The heart of it is a matrix that explains what’s allowed and what’s not. In the current code it’s broken out into three or four different tables, and it gets confusing,” Leikness said.  “What we’re shooting for there is to dramatically simplify the permitting process. I think this draft will help staff understand the code better when they apply it and, hopefully, it will be easier for the general public and the property owner when they apply for a sign permit.”

  • Last-minute moves cause concerns

    For many parents that have kids attending the middle school this year, it was worry enough knowing their kids were going to be getting an education in a virtual construction zone as the middle school undergoes a multi-million dollar, year-long renovation.

    As the summer wore on and the first day of school loomed closer and closer, worry turned to frustration as the portable classrooms meant for the middle school students just sat in a lot outside Los Alamos High School, with no plans to move them in sight.

    Add to that the decision to move the portable classrooms was delayed by two more weeks due to a complaint from one of the project’s losing bidders. The uncertainty and delays brought many parents to their breaking point.

    Even School Board President Kevin Honnell was frustrated.

    “There was a lot of concern about this. I had to watch, like the rest of the residents driving back and forth on Diamond Drive, the calendar days peel by with nothing being done,” Honnell said.

    But at Tuesday’s  Los Alamos Public Schools Board of Education meeting, he and others finally got their answers from McCarthy spokesman David Wharram.

  • First day of school

    Wednesday marked the first day of school for Los Alamos Public School students.

  • Secret thoughts from the jury

    Forty people shuffle into the courtroom. They take assigned seats, which correspond to their names on a diagram. They look serious and a little intimidated.
    Voir dire begins – the question-and-answer process by which the biases and beliefs of these potential jurors will be disclosed, and a jury of 12 members and two alternates will be selected to decide the fate of another human being.
    The judge introduces himself, the attorneys, and the defendant. This is a criminal trial, he says. The defendant is accused of possession of heroin.
    The defendant is a small, middle-aged man whose blank facial expression does not change. He looks slightly shabby in nondescript slacks and a flannel shirt.  
    The judge asks questions first.  Do any of you know the defendant, he says, or me, or any of the attorneys, or the District Attorney for whom the prosecuting attorneys work?
     I’m the first to raise a hand. I know someone with the District Attorney, not well. Well enough to influence my decision?
    No, Your Honor. The judge asks about the jurors’ schedules and potential time conflicts.
    The prosecutor asks questions. How do you feel about the drug laws? Are they too strict or not strict enough? Marijuana should be legalized, someone says. Another says the drug laws should be stricter.