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Today's News

  • Fed to spend $40B a month on bond purchases

    WASHINGON (AP) — The Federal Reserve unleashed a series of aggressive actions Thursday intended to stimulate the still-weak economy by making it cheaper for consumers and businesses to borrow and spend.

    The Fed said will spend $40 billion a month to buy mortgage-backed securities for as long as it deems necessary. It plans to keep short-term interest at record lows through mid-2015 — six months longer than it previously had planned. And it's ready to take other unconventional steps if job growth doesn't pick up.

    A statement from the Fed's policy committee said it thinks "a highly accommodative stance of monetary policy will remain appropriate for a considerable time after the economic recovery strengthens."

    The committee announced the series of bold steps after a two-day meeting. Its actions pointed to how sluggish the economy remains more than three years after the Great Recession ended.

    Stock prices rose on the news. But some economists said they thought the benefit to the economy would be slight.

  • US Sending Warships to Libya
  • Protesters storm US Embassy in Yemen--Video Extra

    SANAA, Yemen (AP) — Chanting "death to America," hundreds of protesters angered by an anti-Islam film stormed the U.S. Embassy compound in Yemen's capital and burned the American flag on Thursday, the latest in a series of attacks on American diplomatic missions in the Middle East.

    The protesters breached the usually tight security around the embassy and reached the compound grounds but did not enter the main building housing the offices. Once inside the compound, they brought down the U.S. flag, burned it and replaced it with a black banner bearing Islam's declaration of faith — "There is no God but Allah."

    Before storming the grounds, demonstrators removed the embassy's sign on the outer wall, set tires ablaze and pelted the compound with rocks.

    It was similar to an attack on the U.S. Embassy in the Egyptian capital of Cairo on Tuesday night. A mob of Libyans also attacked the U.S. consulate in the eastern city of Benghazi on Tuesday, killing American Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans.

  • Today in History for September 13th
  • US poverty rate unchanged; record numbers persist

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The nation's poverty rate remained stuck at a record level last year, while household income dropped and the number of people who don't have health insurance declined.

    A Census Bureau report released Wednesday provided a mixed picture of the economic well-being of U.S. households for 2011 as the nation enters the final phase of a presidential election campaign in which the economy is the No. 1 issue.

    The overall poverty rate stood at 15 percent, statistically unchanged from the 15.1 percent rate in the previous year. Experts had expected a rise in the poverty rate for the fourth straight year, but unemployment benefits and modest job gains helped stave that off, the bureau reported. For last year, the official poverty line was an annual income of $23,021 for a family of four.

    While unemployment eased slightly from 2010 to 2011, the gap between rich and poor increased. The median, or midpoint, household income was $50,054, 1.5 percent lower than 2010 and a second straight annual decline.

  • Summit offers little to rural areas

    One of the last times I attended an economic development summit, almost all I got was a lousy facsimile New Mexico license plate saying, “New Ideas New Technologies.” A bunch of papers also came home and sat on a shelf for much of the Richardson administration. 

    The license plate pérdida de tiempo was under the stewardship of John Garcia, Secretary of Economic Development and Tourism under Gary Johnson. Now Garcia’s Republican successor, Jon Barela, plans a “New Century Economic Summit” Oct. 2 in Albuquerque. (Where else?) 

    Most of the background material is on the website of New Mexico First, the policy discussion organization that will facilitate the meeting. See nmfirst.org/events.

  • What NASA Is Looking for on Mars
  • Letters to the editor 09-12-12

    I remember Bob Nunz mostly as a person who used tennis as a social gathering that provided some physical exercise in the whacking of a ball. Usually when I arrived at the courts, Bob was already there as he got up early to serve wife Mary coffee-in-bed (wives should be so lucky)! He would greet me with “How are you, young feller?” Of course, Bob at 73 was just 8 months older than me! He liked to remind me that several other players were in their eighties, so I was indeed just a young “feller.”

    Bob and I had similar opinions about some of the things that were happening at the upper levels of county government and a common interest in tennis provided a venue for some banter about what either he or I had written or were going to write in a letter-to-the-editor of the Los Alamos Monitor. I‚ll miss him for his expressed interest in what should be done for the best interest of the majority in our community and not what could be forged through be a few.

  • Hilltopper soccer team tops St. Michael's on penalty kicks

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper boys soccer team didn’t get much going Tuesday afternoon against a solid opponent in the St. Michael’s Horsemen, but still came away with a victory.

    The Hilltoppers and Horsemen played to a scoreless tie through 100 minutes before the Hilltoppers hit five straight penalty kicks to take a 1-0 victory at Brother Abdon Field.

    Chris Parker, who relieved starting goalkeeper Tyler Mullen late in the second overtime period, specifically for a potential shootout, blocked three St. Mike’s penalty kick attempts to preserve the victory, while he, Dallin Parker, Cooper Christensen, Nick Thoma and Ben Stewart converted five consecutive attempts to pick up the victory.

  • Ashley Pond meeting scheduled for Sept. 20

    Members of the public interested in upcoming improvements planned for Ashley Pond Park are invited to attend a public meeting at 5:30 p.m. Sept. 20 in council chambers, 475 20th St., to review the 30 percent design plans with Parks Manager Dick McIntyre and the consultant, Sites Southwest LLC. Public comment will be accepted during this meeting.

    The improvements to Ashley Pond Park are slated for construction beginning in February 2013. Design work will wrap up this winter, with a second public meeting at 90 percent design set for mid-November. 

    This project has been funded by the county council as part of the County’s Capital Improvement Program with a project budget of $2.2 million.