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Today's News

  • NNSA completes initial steps

    The National Nuclear Security Administration has announced that it recently completed two milestones toward production of early plutonium oxide feedstock for its Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility.

    In its second year of production, NNSA exceeded the FY 2012 goal of 200 kilograms of plutonium oxide production by disassembling nuclear weapons pits and converting them into plutonium oxide at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

    NNSA also initiated operations at H-Canyon and HB-Line at the Savannah River Site to begin plutonium oxide production. The oxide production at both LANL and SRS provides the initial feedstock for the MOX facility and demonstrates the first steps towards permanent plutonium disposition.

    “The progress achieved at LANL and SRS in support of plutonium disposition demonstrates the benefits of utilizing existing facilities in support of NNSA’s efforts to eliminate surplus weapons plutonium,” said NNSA Administrator Thomas D’Agostino. “Feedstock for the MOX facility represents a critical component of the U.S. plutonium disposition strategy and will enable the U.S. to meet international nonproliferation commitments while advancing President Obama’s goal of permanently reducing the number of nuclear weapons across the globe.”

  • Board approves funds to finish memorial garden

    If all goes according to plan, Los Alamos High School will soon have its Memorial Garden back.

    It’s been a pretty hard road to hoe for the garden.

    The garden was removed during a recent renovation to the high school, but was in danger of disappearing altogether until the Los Alamos Rotary Club decided to take it on as a community project.

    Then, Rotary Club officials revealed they may not have enough money to complete the project, after underestimating the cost to install the garden by $7,000.

    Recently, Skip King, the Rotary Club’s service director wrote a letter to Los Alamos Board of Education President Kevin Honnell, requesting the board help them finish the project with additional funding.

    “… I approached Superintendent Gene Schmidt asking for community service ideas. As soon as he mentioned the idea of the Memorial Garden, I knew it was the perfect project for our club. However, I knew it would be a financial challenge for us,” King said in the letter.

    He went on to note that the school’s $90,000 landscaping proposal came in under budget and asked the board if they could take funds from that and give it to the club to help finish the garden. He also mentioned that Rotary Club will be in charge of maintaining the finished garden at no cost to the school district.

  • Planner says Los Alamos has 'good bones'

    Whether it is through his work or in his spare time, Dan Osborn believes in giving back to the community. He is looking forward to doing that as associate planner for the Los Alamos Community and Economic Development Department.  

    “It’s always exciting to come into a community and be able to hear what the community wants,” Osborn said. “One of the best parts of being an urban planner is getting to hear and understand how the community sees itself and then working to provide the tools to the community through the planning process to create that community.

    “It’s one of the things that make urban planning so special. It’s why I went into this position. It’s a way to serve and give back and to work with the community to provide what it wants from an urban design standpoint.”

    Osborn started with the county Oct. 15. He brings nine years of experience in the public sector, working his way up from planning tech to planner II for the City of Westminster, Colo., during his eight years there and spending an additional year as planner II for Jefferson County, Colo.

    During his time in Westminster, Osborn helped develop both commercial and residential design guidelines and standards and worked with redevelopment of older parts of the city.

  • Smith set to leave LASO

    Kevin Smith will leave his post as Los Alamos Site Office manager and will become the manager of the Office of River Protection in January, the Department of Energy announced in a release Tuesday.

    The ORP position came open when DOE also announced that Scott Samuelson, manager of the Office of River Protection, will leave EM in January, to return to NNSA, where he previously worked from the date it was formed in 2000.

    “Scott and Kevin are key senior executives in the Department of Energy,” said Undersecretary for Nuclear Security and NNSA Administrator Thomas D’Agostino. “I have asked Scott and Kevin to take on these new roles in order to align the talent we have with some of our toughest challenges. EM and NNSA have a lot to learn from each other, and Scott and Kevin are well-prepared to help us tackle these issues in the years to come.”

    The moves will become effective Dec. 30.

    Juan Griego, currently deputy manager of LASO, will serve as the acting LASO manager upon Smith’s departure.

  • Be There 11-20-12

    Thursday
    The Family YMCA will hold a Thanksgiving Day Zumba class from 9-10 a.m. in the Y gymnasium. The Y is closed for all other activities. Ages 13 and older. Free to the public.
    Nov. 27
    Ward L. Hawkins, LANL program manager for Nuclear Testing Limitations, will speak on “CTBT On-Site Inspection: The Final Verification Measure.” The presentation will provide general background information on the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty and a detailed description of the On-Site Inspection verification regime. The talk will be given at an open meeting of the Los Alamos Committee on Arms Control and International Security at 7 p.m. in Room 311 in the Education Building at the United Church, 2525 Canyon Road.
    Nov. 28
    The Los Alamos Community of Atheists will host a discussion 6:30-8 p.m. in Meeting Room 1 of the Mesa Public Library. This month’s discussion will focus on the New Age movement and its role in society. For more information, contact them at losalamoscommunityofatheists@gmail.com. All are welcome.
    Nov. 29

  • Assets In Action: Practice service to others

    Service to others is a perfect asset for the week. This week, try and think of a young person that you know that does great things in the community.
    During this week of Thanksgiving, drop them a short note and thank them for the work that they do.
    Do you need a better idea? You can nominate youth or adults for the Community Assets Award. The nomination process kicks off this week and goes until Dec. 17.
    There are so many youth that do great things and are never acknowledged for their efforts.
    I only dabble in the cyber world of Facebook, but I notice a lot of people taking the 30 days of November to announce their gratitude for something each day, this month.
    They say that you have to do something for 30 days in a row to make it a habit, so they are giving it a try.
    When you focus on the good things, you pay attention to them more often.
    How many of us rush around and never take the time to see the little things that make each day worth rolling out of bed in the morning?
    I hope you will take a minute to send me an email, Facebook post (AssetsInAction) or Tweet (#AssetsInAction) about what you are thankful for today, this month — or even this year.

  • Paint truck removal underway at Bandelier

    The National Park Service and a construction company began removing the wreckage materials from a vehicle accident resulting in spilled paint within Bandelier’s boundary. 

    Crews began work last Friday and are expected to continue into this week. At this time, staff does not anticipate a road closure during removal operations.

    On the morning of Sept. 18, a tractor trailer rig traveling eastbound on N.M. 4 missed a sharp curve and went off the road, plunging about 200 feet down a steep slope into the monument.

    The truck was carrying about 2,200 gallons of highway striping paint. Spilled paint spread over nearly an acre and is visible from roads and hiking trails in and around Bandelier.

    Crews are now working with a cable and pulley system to remove the vehicle across the slope down to the road at the junction of N.M. 501 and N.M. 4. Bandelier National Monument law enforcement staff and an archeologist are closely monitoring the removal to mitigate any potential impacts to resources. 

    Paint cleanup will be a separate process that will begin in the near future.

  • Correction 11-20-12

    In “Board green lights sewer rate hike” in Sunday’s Los Alamos Monitor, Deputy Utilities Manager Robert Westervelt’s name was incorrectly spelled “Westerville.”

  • Police Beat 11-20-12

    Police Beat items are compiled from public information contained in Los Alamos Police Department Records. Charges or citations listed in Police Beat do not imply innocence or guilt. The Los Alamos Police Department uses the term “arrest” to define anyone who has been physically arrested, server a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Nov. 8

    11:47 a.m. — Kevin Herring, 34, of Los Alamos, was arrested and charged with possession of  drug paraphernalia and possession of a controlled substance on the 4000 block of Sycamore Street,

    11:49 a.m. — Joshua Krepps, 20, of Los Alamos, was arrested and charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and possession of marijuana (less than one ounce) in the 4000 block of Sycamore Street.
    Nov. 9

    1:08 a.m. — A Los Alamos resident reported to police they were the victim of vandalism to their property at Hawk Drive and San Ildefonso Road.

    9:54 a.m. –– Ashley Hagermann, 24, of Los Alamos was arrested on a charge of drug paraphernalia in the 3300 block of Canyon Road.
    6:20 p.m. –– A 57-year-old Los Alamos man reported to police he was the victim of larceny over $20,000 in the 500 block of Camino Cereza.
    Nov. 11

  • Lobos top UConn, 66-60

    ST. THOMAS, U.S. Virgin Islands (AP) — New Mexico kept No. 21 Connecticut from winning the lone tournament it could have won this season.

    Tournament MVP Kendall Williams scored 15 points and the Lobos staved off a late UConn rally en route to a 66-60 victory in the championship game of the Paradise Jam.

    New Mexico (4-0) led by 10 points early in the second half, and by nine with as little as 7:11 left. But UConn (4-1) went on a 10-0 run and took over the lead after three Ryan Boatright free throws with 2:23 to play.

    However, the Lobos countered with a 9-0 run, paced by five points from Hugh Greenwood, then made all four foul shots in the final 39 seconds to seal the victory.

    "Both teams really fought for three games in four days," said New Mexico coach Steve Alford. "We've started the season doing a really good job at the foul line. We're getting there often, and we're making them."

    Indeed, the Lobos hit all 21 free throws on Monday. UConn went to the line just nine times, hitting seven.

    "Anytime you can beat your opponent 21-7 at the line, you're probably going to win a lot of games," Alford noted.