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Today's News

  • Negotiations resume on spending bill

    WASHINGTON— Renewed House-Senate budget negotiations aimed at averting a government shutdown center on possibly cutting $33 billion from current spending levels, a senior congressional aide said Wednesday. Democrats pressed to ease GOP cuts to domestic agency budgets by slowing Pentagon growth and trimming so-called mandatory programs whose budgets run on autopilot.
    The $33 billion figure is well below the $60 billion-plus in cuts passed by the House last month but also represents significant movement by Senate Democrats originally backing a freeze at current rates. Tea party-backed GOP stalwarts want more, and it’s unclear whether they could live with the midway arrangement between top Democrats and Speaker John Boehner.

  • Update 03-30-11

    Summit Garden Club
    Summit Garden Club will meet and Dorothy Crawford will speak on “Designing with flowering branches.”
    For more information, call Betsy Comly, 672-1574.

     Web conference
    The National Private Duty Association will offer a web conference to help families in New Mexico facing hiring a caregiver for a family member, at 7 p.m. March 30. Sign up at www.privatedutyhomecare.org.

    County Council
    The County Council will meet at 7 p.m. April 5 at the Chambers in the Community Building.

     Dark Night
    The Pajarito Astronomers will host its first county sponsored Dark Night of 2011 at 7:30 p.m. April 2 at Spirio Soccer Field, Overlook Park.

  • Martinez signs school grading system legislation

    Los Alamos School Superintendent Eugene Schmidt finds Gov. Susana Martinez’s latest education legislation to be “intriguing.”
    On Tuesday, Martinez signed Senate Bill 427 into law, creating an A-F school grading system for New Mexico’s schools.
    The measure, sponsored by Sen. Vernon Asbill (R-Carlsbad) and Rep. Dennis Roch (R-Texico) received bipartisan support throughout the legislative process.
    “I had the opportunity to speak with Senator Asbill during the legislative session. In addition, several school board members and members of my administrative team met with Secretary of Education Skandera to discuss this bill while session was ongoing,” Schmidt said.

  • Rotarians recognize top business--video extra

    Dan Sena has given away more than 600,000 free scoops of ice cream over the lifetime of his business endeavors in Los Alamos. He’s also giving to a local group the $250 check that he received Tuesday as part of his recognition as the Rotary Club of Los Alamos’ 2011 Sonny Brown Small Business Award winner.

    “Every time I do this – give something like this away – believe me it comes back seven fold,” Sena told the crowd gathered for the lunchtime event at Central Avenue Grill.

    Sena’s employees are primarily high school students. He works with them to ensure that their grade point averages stay strong and schedules them appropriately.

  • District scrambles to cut costs

    Editor’s note: This is the second of a two-part series on the proposed bell schedule changes for Los Alamos Public Schools.

    Eyeing the prospect of a $600,000 reduction in state funding, the Los Alamos Board of Education is contemplating whether to change the current bell schedule for both primary and secondary grades in an effort to save money.

    The change in schedules could allow the district to gain some efficiency in bus routes with the potential to save up to $80,000 during the school year, although the final dollar figure in savings has yet to be confirmed by district officials.

    No conclusion has been reached on changes to the bell schedule; however, three proposals have been presented to the board for consideration.

  • Council rezones A-19-A tract in White Rock

    Los Alamos County has owned A-19-A, a 60-acre plot of land in White Rock, since 2002 and tried twice unsuccessfully to sell the parcel to developers.

    On Tuesday, the County Council took a different tact and agreed to rezone the tract from F-L (Federal Land) to P-L (Public Land). The vote was unanimous. The Council also agreed to rezone (A-19-B) a 5.4 acre tract at 115 State Road 4 from F-L to P-L. That vote was 5-1 with Vince Chiravalle the lone dissenter.

    “We want to get it out of the F-L designation and move it from F-L to P-L,” acting Community Development Department director Steve Brugger told the councilors. “We will be coming in for different zoning once the master plan has been established.”

  • Dollar saved can be yours

    Those of us who have been around the block a few times will remember the last time gasoline hit $4 per gallon a new industry sprang up.
    Drivers could buy magnets to attach to fuel lines to allegedly boost a car’s gas mileage by 20 or even 30 percent.
    The devices didn’t work, but the brisk market for them reflected the pain we were feeling at the pump.
    The Rock Doc confidently predicts the current spike in gas prices will lead to yet another round of activity by the charlatans we saw last time.

  • 10 items or less and other public education failures

    You’re standing in the grocery store “10 items or less” line and the person in front of you clearly has more than 10 items in his or her basket. Do you:
    •Mumble under your breath about the injustice of it all?
    • Love them unconditionally?
    •Think, “What the *@##! They’ve got 21 items in their basket. Can’t they count?” and recognize that our public school systems are responsible for dumbing down our math skills?
    •Feel guilty about placing the blame on math teachers and realize the problem is the failure of reading teachers?
    •Set your basket down and leave?

  • Women's basketball: Texas A&M tops Griner, Baylor

    DALLAS (AP) — When the NCAA brackets came out, Texas A&M coach Gary Blair knew his team would have to get past top-seeded Baylor to get to the Final Four for the first time.
    Well, when it mattered most, the Aggies finally beat Baylor and 6-foot-8 All-American Brittney Griner.
    After eight consecutive losses to its Big 12 rivals, including the previous three this season, Sydney Carter got Texas A&M off to a fast start and went on to score 22 points in a 58-46 victory over the top-seeded Bears in the Dallas Regional final.

  • Track and field: LA girls take 2nd at Robertson Invite

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper girls track and field team finished second behind Class 5A La Cueva at Saturday’s Buddy Robertson Invitational.
    Los Alamos finished with 138 points at the meet, held in Albuquerque, the only one of the eight competing teams that finished with even half of La Cueva’s winning total of 151 points.
    At that meet, the Hilltopper boys finished third, earning 72 points. La Cueva also won the boys’ end of the meet, with 142 points, while Class 5A Volcano Vista was second with 108.