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Today's News

  • Man arrested after Main Hill accident

    A three-vehicle accident at Anderson Lookout created traffic problems on the Main Hill and one of the drivers was arrested because of an outstanding warrant Tuesday afternoon.

    The driver of the pickup truck, Alejandro Ramos, 20, of Santa Fe, was arrested and placed in handcuffs by the Santa Fe Sheriff’s Department. He was arrested on a warrant for failure to appear in a compliance hearing after being found guilty of DUI. Ramos also  may be charged with careless driving. Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Deputy Tai Chan said Ramos was driving at a high rate of speed and likely hydroplaned into the oncoming vehicles.

    Los Alamos Police Capt. Randy Foster said there were no injuries. LAPD was originally on the scene and then assisted with traffic control when the Santa Fe County Sheriff’s Department arrived.

    By 4 p.m., the accident was cleared and traffic returned to a normal flow just in time for afternoon commuters to trek down the Hill.

    One of the vehicles in the accident was driven by Ken Johnson, a former Los Alamos Board of Education member and a former Democratic candidate for county council.

    Johnson said in a phone interview that he was driving his Subaru Outback and was following a Volvo.

  • Senators rebuff endorsement talk

    In politics, sometimes an endorsement just isn’t an endorsement.

    Apparently, that’s especially true of the two Democratic state senators, who voiced support for Rep. Jim Hall (R-Los Alamos, Santa Fe, Sandoval and Rio Arriba) in the House District 43 race against Stephanie Garcia Richard.

    Hall’s campaign sent out a press release that said the following:

    “Northern New Mexico’s State Senators Carlos Cisneros (District 6 — Los Alamos, Rio Arriba, Santa Fe and Taos) and Richard Martinez (District 5 — Los Alamos, Rio Arriba. and Santa Fe) support incumbent State Representative Jim Hall in his campaign for the State House of Representatives.

    “During Hall’s first term in the state legislature Rep. Hall worked with both Senators Cisneros and Martinez, passing legislation to benefit New Mexico and the northern New Mexico region.

    “Senator Richard Martinez said, ‘I worked with Jim Hall when he was a county councilor and now as a legislator.  If elected, he will do an outstanding job of representing Los Alamos and Northern New Mexico.’

  • Confidentiality rule passes

    Councilor Vincent Chiravalle caused consternation among his fellow council members when he used an interview on a local radio station to spell out particulars of an agreement between North American Development Group (NADG) and Smith’s/Kroger which had been discussed in a closed session.

    Council Chair Sharon Stover had announced a special council session to discuss the Trinity Site during a council meeting the previous evening. But details about NADG’s desire to assign its lease to Smith’s/Kroger were not to be released until the Los Alamos Public School (LAPS) board and administration had been informed. LAPS will be the main beneficiary of the Trinity Site lease revenue.

    In a statement, Chiravalle claimed he had not breached confidentiality and defended his actions.

    “The council chair announced publicly on Sept. 11 that there would be a special public meeting on Sept. 24 for the council to take action on the Trinity site, and only then did I speak about the agenda of this special public meeting. If the council was not ready for a public discussion then it should not have scheduled a special public meeting. Why was the agenda of this special public meeting a secret?”

    Stover issued a statement responding to Chiravalle’s claims. It reads,

  • Gov's popularity continues to soar

    SANTA FE — Gov. Susana Martinez’s popularity among New Mexico voters recently shot up from 60 percent to 69 percent in a recent Albuquerque Journal poll. That puts her in third place nationally according to the latest figures I find.
    Such high popularity is quite unusual for a governor in a state dominated by the opposite party. It also is unusual for a member of the freshman class of new Republican governors around the nation elected in 2010.
    Most of those governors have had a terrible time overcoming their initial efforts to change the direction of state government. Gov. Martinez, instead picked her battles and didn’t try to take big chunks from schools or Medicaid, which are more popular with voters.
    Martinez’s sudden nine-point jump in popularity likely was caused by the timing of the poll which came just after Martinezís Republican National Convention speech. The speech didn’t have much of an effect on the nationwide television audience but it did in New Mexico.
    Since the three network channels cut away for commercials and analysis of Condoleezza Rice’s speech, many missed out on Martinez. But New Mexicans apparently did some channel switching to find Martinez on PBS, C-Span or a 24-hour news channels.

  • The call from a pollster

    The phone call is from a pollster – another one.
    This year I decided that if they sound even halfway legitimate, I’m going to take the time and answer their questions. I want my opinion to count. In past years I have been more wary, suspecting that no matter how they masquerade, their mission is more nefarious than what they say.
    (I don’t respond to calls that promise that in return for answering a few questions I will qualify for a free two-day cruise.)
    The season’s first polling call took about 15 minutes, and the questions were fascinating. Minutes later, I remembered I’m a newspaper columnist and kicked myself for not taking notes. This time, I was sitting at my computer when the pollster called.
    The pollster asks what I think are the most important issues facing New Mexico.  I say, economic development and education. Later I wished I had said something more original, like general ineptitude, New Mexico’s 49th rank in almost everything, or perhaps the issue that logically should stop growth in its tracks, water. But realistically, politicians can’t make it rain.
    Today’s poll is about my district’s candidates for state Senate. I didn’t tell the pollster I am acquainted with both candidates, but she didn’t ask.

  • Breaking News: Marquez named new NMAA director

    Wednesday morning, the New Mexico Activities Association announced that Sally Marquez has been named its new executive director.
    Marquez had been an assistant director under Gary Tripp and has been with the NMAA since 2004.
    The NMAA is the governing body of most interscholastic high school and middle school sports in the state.
    See Thursday's Los Alamos Monitor for more information.

  • Ahmadinejad Calls for a New World Order
  • ENMU expects penalty

    PORTALES (AP) — Eastern New Mexico University's president says he expects the school to receive some form of punishment from the NCAA because of eligibility issues it discovered with many student-athletes.

    Steven Gamble tells the Portales News-Tribune that he expects the college's eligibility issues to be cleared up by mid-November.

    The issues were not the fault of students and the university reported them to the NCAA after problems were discovered.

    The problems range from lack of signatures on required forms to a lack of degree plans or needed credit-hours to play sports.

    The university has 11 affected sports. Only non-NCAA sanctioned rodeo teams are not affected.

    ENMU is reviewing all of its 408 current student-athlete files and notifying the NCAA of those where it discovers problems.

  • Gustafson wins 10K race at Trail Fest

    Local runner Nathaniel Gustafson was one of the big winners at last weekend’s Pajarito Trail Fest.
    The Pajarito Trail Fest was held in conjunction with Pajarito Mountain’s yearly Ullrfest. Saturday’s competition included a 10K and a 15-mile run.
    Gustafson earned a comfortable win in the men’s 10K, topping Los Alamos’ Hans Hanson by more than two minutes. Each of the top five finishers in the men’s 10K were from Los Alamos, including third-place finisher Chip Cooper, the winner of this year’s Los Alamos Triathlon.
    Albuquerque’s Elizabeth Turner won the women’s 10K. Runner-up in that race was Los Alamos’ Sarah Milligan. Michael Ehrmentraut of Santa Fe and Saray Demay of Jemez Springs were the top finishers in the 15-mile race.
    More than 100 runners took part in the two races.

    Here are the results from the Pajarito Trail Fest. Athletes are from Los Alamos unless otherwise noted:

    10K race

    Men

    1. Nathaniel Gustafson, 50:25; 2. Hans Hanson, 52:33; 3. Chip Cooper, 56:41; 4. George Perkins, 58:32; 5. David Coblentz, 1:01:08; 6. Craig Blankenship, Silver City, 1:04:49; 7. Nathaniel Ortega, 1:06:03; 8. Christopher Buntain, 1:09:11; 9. Tarik Sahleh, 1:10:58; 10. Jonas Fransson, 1:11:00;

  • Hilltoppers win big in 2-4A openers

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper boys and girls soccer teams cruised to victory in their District 2-4A season opening doubleheader Tuesday.
    Los Alamos’ teams both won by double-digit margins Tuesday, with the Hilltopper boys topping the Bernalillo Spartans 13-3 in the opener and the Hilltopper girls taking an 11-0 nightcap victory in a game that was over by halftime.
    The Spartans, who have won just one game between the two teams this season, were overmatched from the outset, although the boys team did earn two goals in the first half. The Hilltopper boys, however, scored seven goals in the first 40 minutes.
    In the boys game, five Hilltoppers scored multiple goals, including Cooper Christensen, who tallied a hat trick and had an assist on top of that. Rohun Iyer, named by the Hilltopper coaching staff as the Player of the Game Tuesday, had a pair of goals — including one ripped from 24 yards away — and an assist.
    Also scoring multiple goals were Collin Stone, Ryan Maestas and Henry Steinkamp. Steinkamp had a pair of assists, while Dallin Parker had three assists to go along with one goal.
    Michael Maestas had a goal, Ryan Maestas finished with three assists, and Nick Thoma and Cameron Guy both had one assist.
    Los Alamos’ 13 goals were more than it had scored in the previous eight games put together.