Today's News

  • Miles, founder of Monitor, dies at 95

    Dan Miles was a pioneer in many ways.
    He came to Los Alamos with the idea of starting a newspaper for a town that didn’t have one.
    He was one of the three founders of the Los Alamos Monitor.
    Miles started the newspaper with John Barnett and Mark McMahon in 1963, in a small office above a jewelry store.
    They started with nothing more than two typewriters, a headline machine and four employees.
    Miles was also a geologist for the Los Alamos National Laboratory.
    He died Wednesday at his home in Los Alamos. He was 95.
    His daughter Beki Welsch recalled some of the memories of her father’s time at the newspaper.
    As the Monitor’s advertising executive, Miles once secured an ad for the liquor store… and it ended up being placed on the same page as the police blotter and the DWIs.
    “The liquor store immediately cancelled their ad,” Welsch said with a laugh. As the paper’s main financial backer and money man, that’s just one of the many ups and downs Miles experienced in the Monitor’s early years.
    There was a bust in the oil business at the time, and they thought it would be a good idea to start a paper in Los Alamos.

  • UNM president says he won’t seek a 2nd term

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — With declining enrollment and a smaller allotment from the cash-strapped state, the University of New Mexico is bracing to have $22.5 million less to spend in fiscal year 2017.
    The school also will be looking to hire a new president.
    Robert Frank announced Friday that he won’t seek to renew his contract after it ends on May 31, 2017. “I am pleased with what we have accomplished during my presidency, and it will be with great pride that I hand over the reins to the next president, who can build upon our successes,” Frank said in a statement.
    He was hired by UNM in January 2012.
    The Board of Regents now has eight months to choose the school’s 22nd president.
    Board President Rob Doughty said the search would begin no later than next spring, and an interim president would be appointed if a successor to Frank isn’t found in a timely manner.
    On Thursday, Frank announced the university will put a freeze on hiring, and all college officials will perform departmental audits of temporary and part-time staff positions. Those positions that aren’t deemed to be critical will likely be cut.
    He said the expected losses mean everything from programs to staff and administrative positions could face cuts, The Santa Fe New Mexican reported.

  • Range Road bus turn-a-round improvements

    Public Works crews are scheduled to start work Monday on a bus turn around on Range Road just north of the intersection of Aspen Drive. 
    The work will primarily be limited to the east shoulder of Range Road. Motorists and pedestrians should watch for increased heavy equipment in the area.
    The work is anticipated to last about one month, weather permitting.
    The project consists of a paved bus turn-a-round off Range Road, which will provide transit service to Ponderosa Estates.

  • Authority selects new CEO for Spaceport America

    UPHAM (AP) — An engineer who has held senior management and planning posts at White Sands Missile Range is Spaceport America's new CEO.

    The board of the authority that oversees the commercial spaceport in southern New Mexico announced Thursday the selection of Daniel Hicks to replace Christine Anderson.

    Hicks' 34 years as an Army civilian employee at White Sands has included working on strategic planning and numerous programs involving missiles, sensors and space.

    Hicks is expected to assume his new positon in November. He's a graduate of Las Cruces High School and New Mexico State University.

    Anderson resigned this summer after holding the position since 2011.

  • Investigation finds 7 more with deficient education licenses

    Las Vegas Optic

    EDS NOTE: The jump on page 1 of today's Los Alamos Monitor should read: See PED, page 3.

  • Homeowners share energy-efficiency tips

    Los Alamos residents had a show-and-tell experience on energy efficiency and water-wise gardening Saturday at the county’s first Energy Efficiency Home Tour.
    Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC) Education Programs Director Siobhan Niklasson proposed the idea to the Los Alamos Department of Public Utilities (DPU). PEEC is contracted to do energy and water conservation education for the department. Five homeowners opened their homes to the 81 people who attended the event.
    The tour included examples of how to retrofit a home for energy efficiency or build an energy-wise home from the ground up. All had some common features, such as energy efficient appliances and lighting, energy efficient windows, but other features varied widely.
    The most visually impressive home on the tour was the contemporary, glass-walled home of Sally and Joe Fitzgibbon, which they built after the Cerro Grande fire.
    Both this home and the home of Tom and Rebecca Shankland incorporate passive solar orientation into the design. The homes are oriented 10 degrees and seven degrees east of south, respectively, to allow for optimal heating in the morning and shade in the evening. Both homes incorporate overhangs to shade the windows in the summer and mechanisms for increasing airflow through the house.

  • ’Toppers volleyball edges Chargers in comeback, 5-set win

    In a tight District 2-5A race, the Los Alamos volleyball team has made the most out of its pressure situations.
    The Hilltoppers won their fourth match in the last five - all in five sets - after downing Albuquerque Academy 25-27, 25-13, 29-31, 25-16, 15-7 on Wednesday’s “Dig Pink” match at Griffith Gym.
    “The good part about going five (sets) all the time is that it’s going to keep us in condition and keep us going,” Los Alamos coach Diana Stokes said. “We had some good moments there. Each time they (Los Alamos) play well, they have to believe in themselves.”
    With the exception of last Saturday’s loss to Del Norte, Los Alamos (9-9 overall, 4-2 District 2-5A)  has been stellar in decisive sets, and that was the case on Wednesday against Academy (7-11 overall, 0-6 District 2-5A). The Hilltoppers jumped out to an 8-1 lead in the fifth set and sealed the win with a strong defensive performance.
    “Seniors came through tonight,” Stokes said. “Kaitlin (Bennett) came through big again tonight. Jessica (Moore) her first game was a little rough but that last dig that she got in the back row just fired up everybody. They just to learn that they have to keep fired up.”

  • LAHS cross country to host home meet Friday

    A strong performance at home can help the Los Alamos cross country teams build momentum for the ladder stages of the season.
    The Hilltoppers will host their annual home invitational with events starting at 3 p.m. Friday at the Los Alamos Municipal Golf Course.
    The meet comes at a timely matter for Los Alamos, as it’ll host the District 2-5A meet next Friday, and the Class 5A state meet is scheduled for Nov. 5.
    Los Alamos has experienced a bit of everything in its opening four meets, including two eighth-graders leading both the boy’s and girl’s teams.
    Lidia Appell has been the top runner in every meet this season for the Hilltopper girls. The eighth-grader ran a season-best 19:49 at the Albuquerque Academy Invitational on Sept. 23.
    Paulina Burnside and Sydney Schake have also provided the Los Alamos girls with strong performances this season. The Hilltoppers have also benefited from the return on junior Zoe Hemez, who made her first appearance of the season two weeks ago at the Titan Thunder Invitational in Colorado Springs, Colorado.
    On the boy’s side, Los Alamos is lead by eighth-grader Rafael Sanchez, who’s finished in under 17 minutes in all meets except for one this season.
    Senior Kai Coblentz and junior Josh Strevell have contributed with top 20 and 30 finishes.

  • Chiles in New York, new chile book in New Mexico

    The two chile plants were big enough that the restaurant staffer carried one in each hand. He hung the plants upside down, each on a hook on the restaurant wall. Dirt clung to the roots. The chiles, each about six inches long and a pure red, were slightly shriveled. A very New Mexican image, except that the restaurant, Rafele, is in Greenwich Village in New York City. An owner of the restaurant grew the chiles on a farm upstate, I was told.
    Roasting and processing chile is another fall image, but one not seen so much outside the state.
    Since 1997 University of New Mexico alumni chapter members have gathered for group chile processing by the ton.
    I can’t imagine a ton of green chile. My images stop at a bag or two or the bushel we’ve done the past few years. My daughter’s 2016 chile image was the ten pounds that arrived in New Hampshire as a birthday present the night before she, husband and baby were set to fly to Albuquerque. But there were the chiles and process they did.
    UNM’s Washington, D.C., alumni group processed two tons of chile last year, says the alumni office. Maybe they were the bureaucrats who have fled Santa Fe for Washington the past 15 or 20 years as state government competence has eroded.
    Six other chapters gathered processing crews. Total production was six tons.

  • LAHS cross country to host Elementary Mile

    The 10th annual Elementary Mile will be held in conjunction with the Los Alamos High School Cross Country Invitational Friday.
    The race is open for any elementary-age runner who can run a mile. The Los Alamos Family YMCA and Los Alamos Public Schools elementary physical education teachers have entry forms. Check in ends at 4 p.m. Friday at the Los Alamos Golf Course clubhouse patio. The race will at 4:45 p.m.