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Today's News

  • Petition for workers OK'd

    A federal advisory panel has approved a petition that would pave the way for hundreds of sick Los Alamos workers to get compensation and health care.

    U.S. Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) said the Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health approved the petition Tuesday granting what is called “Special Exposure Cohort” status to all LANL workers who developed radiation-related cancers as a result of working at the lab between January 1976 and December 1995.

    SEC status eliminates the need for claimants to undergo the often arduous dose reconstruction process in which the National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) determines if a cancer is work-related.  This week’s decision has the potential to benefit hundreds of LANL claimants.

    A previous petition covering workers from March 1943 to December 1975 was approved in May of 2007.

    If approved by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Congress, workers who qualify will receive a lump sum payment of $150,000 and health care coverage to treat their illnesses.

    In welcoming the advisory decision Udall credited LANL Security Guard Andrew Evaskovich for submitting the petition and advocating for former and current LANL workers.

  • New Mexico trails most in work

    New Mexicans don’t work. More precisely, fewer New Mexicans participate in the labor force, on a percentage basis, than in most states.
    I don’t know why. I haven’t heard anyone ask, other than one or two labor economics nerds. The problem has to be cultural, deeply embedded in New Mexico society.
    Start the consideration with Nebraska, the state closest in population to New Mexico. Nebraska’s population was 1.83 million in 2010. Ours was 2.06 million. Culturally the two states are vastly different, which is the point of the comparison. Similarities are a larger city, Omaha, and a state capitol 60 miles away, Lincoln. Omaha beat Albuquerque in the Pacific Coast League division playoffs.
    During 2010, Nebraska averaged 71 percent of its population in the labor force. New Mexico scored 60 percent. With its smaller population, Nebraska offered employers 55,000 more people working or looking for work than did New Mexico.
    As Buffalo Springfield observed years ago, “There’s something happening here. What it is ain’t exactly clear.”
    In the jargon, then, New Mexico’s labor force participation rate was 60 percent. By July 2012, our rate was down to 57.9 percent. Nebraska was the nation’s leader at 71.7 percent, just ahead of oil-booming North Dakota at 70.7 percent.

  • Help from non-traditional sources

    Doris Sandoval works in an industry hard hit by the recession and lagging recovery, yet by following a strategic plan of borrowing through lines of credit, the owner of SSC Construction has kept her business going strong.
    SSC Construction is based in San Felipe Pueblo in northern New Mexico near Algodones.  The woman — and Native-owned company builds houses on tribal lands all over New Mexico and employs seven members of Sandoval’s family and numerous subcontractors.
    While most contractors struggled to find work and financing as home construction slowed and home prices dropped, SSC Construction received five lines of credit from The Loan Fund to underwrite various building projects in Native communities.
    The Loan Fund helps companies that can’t find funding through traditional sources such as banks. It looks for businesses that promote social change and build communities, and what the Loan Fund saw in SSC Construction is what it looks for in other businesses that approach it for funding.
    SSC’s history of contract completion and top-notch workmanship weighed heavily in its favor, according to Norma Valdez, one of the fund’s community development officers. T

  • NNMSMGA’s recent results

    Here are recent results from the Northern New Mexico Senior Men’s Golf Association tournaments:

    Rio Grande Club,
    Aug. 21

    Championship flight
    1st low gross: Fred Anschutz, South Fork, Colo., 74
    2nd low gross: Jim Crowden, Corrales, 76
    1st low net: Ronne Mercer, Albuquerque, 70

    First flight
    1st low gross: Wally Bryniarski, Durango, Colo., 78
    2nd low gross: Steve Martinez, Santa Fe, 82
    1st low net: Robert Frank, Santa Fe, 65

    Second flight
    1st low gross: Don Holifield, Santa Fe, 85
    2nd low gross: Ralph Hey, Westcliffe, Colo., 89
    1st low net: Dennis Melia, Santa Fe, 71

    Third flight
    1st low gross: Jay Boettner, Los Alamos, 93
    2nd low gross, Gary Joseph, Westcliffe, Colo., 93
    1st low net: Vidal Varela, Las Vegas, 67

    Fourth flight
    1st low gross: Henry Vigil, Farmington, 89
    2nd low gross: Rey Arellano, Farmington, 98
    1st low net: Charles Barbee, Santa Fe, 65

    Rio Grande Club, Aug. 22

    Championship flight
    1st low gross: Fred Anschutz, South Fork, Colo., 77
    2nd low gross: Bob Sherman, Santa Fe, 78
    1st low net: Jim Quick, Placitas, 70

    First flight

  • UNM’s Nare named MW Player of Week

    COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Liz Nare has had a season of firsts so far, including her first career goal and first career assist.  
    Monday, Nare picked up her first Mountain West Defensive Player of the Week award as well. She was named for her play in UNM’s 1-0 win over New Mexico State University.
    Nare is the second Lobo in three weeks to earn a conference honor, as Jordan Craig was named MW Offensive Player of the Week after scoring three goals in wins over SMU and Texas.
    Originally from Lake Forest, Calif., Nare anchored the UNM defense in the 1-0 double-overtime victory over in-state rival NMSU. The Lobo defense allowed just three shots and none from inside 25 yards of the goal.  
    Nare drew an assist on the winning goal, as her long pass found Jordan Craig at the edge of the box, who settled the ball and passed to Elba Holguin for the winning shot.
    That game was Nare’s 50th consecutive start — she hasn’t missed a game in her career.
    Despite playing in the back, Nare is tied for third on the team in scoring with a goal and two assists. She held down the fort with teammate Lauren Irwin in front of Kelli Cornell as UNM saw a change in the defensive back line on Sunday due to an injury.

  • LA scores 2 goals in 2nd half to win

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls soccer team is on a hot streak and the Albuquerque Academy Chargers found out the hard way Tuesday.
    Los Alamos got off to a slow start in its big Class 4A contest with the Chargers Tuesday in Albuquerque, but got things cranked up by the end of the first half. That momentum carried into the second half as Los Alamos scored two unanswered goals to win 2-0.
    Hilltopper superstar forward Amy Neal tallied both goals, one off a corner kick and the other on a penalty kick conversion as her team picked up a big win over the defending Class 4A champs.
    “The first half we played sluggish,” said Los Alamos head coach Jiri Kubicek. “We came out of the first half pretty good, but we talked to the girls at halftime and told them we needed to be more physical. We dominated the second half.”
    Los Alamos, off its win last weekend in the Albuquerque Academy Invitational, where it topped three high-quality opponents including the No. 1-ranked team in the state, Las Cruces, was battling through fatigue early in the contest — the Hilltoppers were playing their fourth game in five days — but kept the potent Charger offense off the scoreboard throughout.

  • Toppers fall to Chargers at home

    Despite starting the season in a somewhat up-and-down fashion, the Albuquerque Academy Chargers were far more up than down Tuesday against Los Alamos.
    The Chargers, one of the top teams in Class 4A, dominated the bulk of the first half against the homestanding Hilltoppers. The Hilltoppers got back into the game with a late first half-goal, but the Chargers would score midway through the second half to put the game away.
    Los Alamos struggled to contain Academy’s main scoring threat, Andrew Stone, who had several breakaway chances throughout and garnered a lot of Los Alamos’ back third attention as Academy picked up a 3-1 victory at Sullivan Field.
    Even though Los Alamos struggled throughout much of the first half and gave up an early goal to Stone, it tied the game and seemed to grab some momentum just before the break.
    William Steinkamp picked up a rebound off a scorching, close-range shot from Cooper Christensen to knock it past Charger goalkeeper Joseph Pauza, knotting the score at 1-1.
    But with only about a minute remaining in the first half, Academy was awarded a direct kick just outside the penalty box to the right of the goal.

  • Panel approves petition for sick Los Alamos workers

    LOS ALAMOS, N.M. (AP) — A federal advisory panel has approved a petition that would pave the way for hundreds of sick Los Alamos workers to get compensation and health care.

    U.S. Sen. Tom Udall says the Advisory Board on Radiation and Worker Health approved the petition Tuesday granting what is called "Special Exposure Cohort" status to all LANL workers who developed radiation-related cancers while working at the lab between January 1976 and December 1995.

    A previous petition covering workers from March 1943 to December 1975 was approved in May of 2007.

    If approved by Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Congress, workers who qualify will receive a lump sum payment of $150,000 and health care coverage to treat their illnesses.

  • NM revising equipment required for rafts, kayaks

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A state agency proposes to change the boating equipment required for canoes, kayaks, rafts and paddleboards in New Mexico.

    The State Parks Division proposes regulation changes to drop a requirement that those boaters have a bailing bucket, bilge pump and a length of rope.

    Regulations will continue to require people using canoes, kayaks and rafts to wear life jackets but the boats won't need to carry a Coast Guard approved flotation device that could be thrown to someone in the water.

    Life jackets will be required for someone on a paddleboard, which are becoming increasingly popular. They're similar to a surf board but powered by people with paddles.

    Another change will require a whistle or other sound producing device on canoes, kayaks and other paddle craft.

  • Today in History for September 19th