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Today's News

  • High Tea on the Hill

    The United Way Youth Team will host High Tea on the Hill from 1-3 p.m. Oct. 14 in the lobby of Los Alamos High School. A variety of teas will be served, along with cucumber and dill sandwiches, egg salad sandwiches, cranberry and oranges scones, Ghirardelli’s brownies and pumpkin cupcakes with cinnamon-cheese frosting.  A student violinist will provide background music for guests. The cost is $15. Event organizers are United Way Youth Team members Lindsay Roach, Sarah Tripplehorn and Kaylie Burk. The event will benefit the United Way of Northern New Mexico’s Community Action Fund. Its major sponsors are Hot Rocks Java Café and the Hilltop House Hotel.  To reserve a spot, contact the United Way of Northern New Mexico at 662-0800 or email marie.unitedwayNNM@vla.com.

  • Pumps open at Smith's Fuel Station

    Smiths Fuel Station on Trinity Drive was open for business this morning and store officials and employees were out for the ribbon cutting ceremony. Store hours are 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. and pumps are open for 24 hours if paid by credit card.

  • Update 10-10-12

    Night in Italy

    Tickets are available for “A Night in Italy” fundraiser for Assets in Action. The event takes place Oct. 20 at the Hilltop House Hotel. Tickets are $40 each and proceeds benefit youth development programs. Additional information is available by calling 661-4846 or by email at AssetsInAction.info.

    Parks and Rec

    The Parks and Recreation Board will meet at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at the Larry R. Walkup Aquatic Center. The board meets monthly. More information can be obtained by calling 662-8173.

    CRC Committee

    Members of Charter Review Committee will be available at the Farmer’s Market to answer questions.  Join them between 9:30-11:30 a.m. Committee members plan to meet with voters at the Farmer’s Market every Thursday between now and the day of the election.

    County Council

    The Los Alamos County Council will meet at 7 p.m. Oct. 16 for a work session at the White Rock Fire Station No. 3.

    BPU meeting

    The Board of Public Utilities will hold its regular monthly meeting at 5:30 p.m. Oct. 17 at the DPU Conference Room at 170 Central Park Square.

  • AG looks into voter suppression allegations

    SANTA FE (AP) — New Mexico Attorney General Gary King says he has launched an investigation into allegations of voter suppression.
    King said Tuesday that his office has received a number of complaints about efforts to discourage some state residents from voting.
    Last week, a Democratic-leaning political group on Thursday criticized poll challenger training by an Albuquerque-area Republican official, saying there was misinformation about voter identification requirements and provisional ballots that could be used to suppress turnout in the general election.
    ProgressNow New Mexico released secretly recorded video of the training done last week by Sandoval County GOP vice chairwoman Patricia Morlen, a tea party activist.
    “This is a how-to-guide to voter suppression and many of their instructions are in blatant contradiction to state law,” said Pat Davis, executive director of the political group. “People trained by the GOP to ‘protect’ our elections will wreak havoc on our elections and so frustrate voters that many will simply give up and go home.”

  • Neutron research shapes drug design 

    Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory have used neutron crystallography for the first time to determine the structure of a clinical drug in complex with its human target enzyme.

    Seeing the detailed structure of the bonded components provides insights into developing more effective drugs with fewer side effects for patients.

    The atomic details of drug binding have been largely unknown due to the lack of key information on specific hydrogen atom positions and hydrogen bonding between the drug and its target enzyme. In this research, scientists used the drug acetazolamide (AZM) — a sulfonamide drug that has been used for decades to treat a variety of diseases such as glaucoma, altitude sickness and epilepsy. But when the drug binds with the wrong form (called an isoform) of the target enzyme for the disease, it can produce unpleasant side effects in patients (so called “off-target” drug binding).

    Enter neutron crystallography — the use of neutron scattering to paint a picture of these bonds.

    By providing precise information on hydrogen bonding between target enzymes and the treatment drugs (carbon anhydrase II targeted by AZM in this study), the research enables improvements in targeted binding with fewer side effects.

  • Convention Center concept advances

    Building a convention center has been high on Los Alamos County’s economic development priority list for well over a decade. The road toward realizing that goal is littered with the debris of failed proposals, ideas that never materialized and voters’ rejection of a county-owned civic/conference center.

    Now staff is optimistic that a recently issued Request for Qualifications will generate a workable option for building a convention center. The goal is for a high quality facility that can stop “leakage” to surrounding casino resorts and venues in Santa Fe and Albuquerque.

    A market feasibility study conducted earlier this year by the Strategic Advisory Group concluded  that Los Alamos is losing anywhere from $2 million to $4 million in annual conference and lodging business to nearby casino resorts and to Class A lodging and conference facilities in Santa Fe and Albuquerque. The estimate was based on data obtained from Los Alamos National Laboratory and other federal agencies and businesses.

    The study was prompted by a proposal from Trident Development New Mexico L.L.C., which had initiated negotiations for a public/private partnership with the county in 2010.

  • LAHS football player reinstated

    The Speech Theatre at Los Alamos High was the backdrop to a different kind of drama Tuesday night as friends, family and well-wishers showed up at the scheduled school board meeting to show their support for high school senior Grant Washburn.

    Among the crowd of supporters was Washburn’s dad, Gerry, a former school principal who now heads the school district’s human resources department.

    Part of the board’s agenda concerned the fate of the younger Washburn’s football career. Washburn was suspended from all extracurricular activities, including football, after a voluntary search of his vehicle Aug. 30 produced an empty baggie that subsequently tested for a substance consistent with marijuana.

    During the hearing, Washburn told the board that indeed, he left campus without permission to drop a friend off in another part of town. It was implied that it was this friend who left the rolling papers, two cigarette lighters and the empty baggie behind.

    The board patiently heard two hours of testimony over whether to reinstate the star football player and then took another hour to make its decision.

  • Character, credibility, cash

    Linda Alvarado brought a basic, overall message to the Domenici Public Conference in Las Cruces last month: “Entrepreneurial ideas are what has made America great.”  
    Myrtle Potter echoed the message, though not in quite the exact words.
    Starting from deep New Mexico roots, their paths have differed. While Potter now owns consulting and media companies, she rose in the corporate world of health care to be president and chief operating officer of Genentech, a biotechnology firm. Alvarado’s company remains as it began—Alvarado Construction Company—with some sidelines gathered along the way, including franchise restaurants in four states and a piece of the Colorado Rockies baseball club.
    In the overall public policy conversation about entrepreneurialism, the sense commonly is that the discussion is about people starting their own companies. The policy gurus focus much more narrowly on “high growth and disruptive new businesses... creating new markets and revving the engines of our nation’s economy.” This is a quote from an Innovation magazine article about Startup America, an Obama administration-blessed, foundation-funded program to help “young, high growth companies.”
    New Mexico is considering joining the Startup America program, the article said.

  • Bounty suspensions upheld by Goodell

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) — NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell upheld the suspensions of Jonathan Vilma and Will Smith on Tuesday for their role in the New Orleans Saints bounty scandal and reduced penalties for Scott Fujita and Anthony Hargrove.

    Though an appeal panel created by the NFL's labor agreement vacated the original suspensions on technical grounds, Goodell ruled he was sticking with his decision to suspend Vilma for the season and Smith for four games.

    Hargrove, a free agent defensive lineman, will face a two-game suspension once he signs with a team. He originally was hit with eight games, but that was reduced to seven with five games already served. Fujita, who plays for Cleveland, will now miss only one game instead of three.

    The responses of Vilma, Smith and the NFL Players Association left little doubt that the seven-month-old bounty saga is far from over.

    Vilma said on Twitter that the new ruling "this is not news to me pride won't let him admit he's wrong." Smith issued a statement saying he will continue to explore his appeal options.

  • LA taking on No. 1 team in the nation

    Just in case the Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team was asking itself exactly where it stacks up among the best in the country, it will get that question answered as thoroughly as is possible.
    The Hilltoppers will host the No. 1 team in the United States Thursday night when it takes on the Strongsville, Ohio, Mustangs. The Mustangs, the defending Ohio state champions, will visit Sullivan Field at 6 p.m. Thursday.
    Strongsville is an affluent suburb, about 10 miles southwest of Cleveland, and Strongsville High School is the most decorated public school girls soccer program in the history of Ohio, having won four state championships including the 2011 crown.
    So far this season, Strongsville is a spotless 12-0 and has allowed just four goals, two of those coming in its most recent outing, a 3-2 win over Brecksville-Broadview Heights, Ohio, on Friday.
    Los Alamos head coach Jiri Kubicek said the Mustangs called him over the offseason saying they were taking a swing through northern New Mexico and were looking for teams to play. The Hilltoppers and the Taos Tigers agreed to face off against the Mustangs – Taos plays Strongsville Saturday at Taos Eco Park.