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Today's News

  • Small business matchmaking

    POJOAQUE – It was informally called a “speed-dating” event for companies interested in working on environmental projects at Los Alamos National Laboratory.

    Scores of presenters, ranging from labor unions to graphic design firms and more than a hundred people signed up to participate in a small business networking opportunity Thursday morning at the Cities of Gold Conference Center.

    A crowd favorite, judging by the applause, was Therese Trujillo of Truchas, who said her grandfather worked as s janitor at a LANL testing site for 41 years.

  • When budget cuts won't reach and taxes won't go

    SANTA FE — This is a highly unusual special session. It might be over by the time you read this. But if it is, it will be because lawmakers gave up on solving the total problem.

    The state is faced with its biggest deficit ever. Gov. Bill Richardson has complicated matters greatly by putting tax increases and public school classroom cuts off limits.

    What’s left are cuts of over 10 percent to the rest of the budget. Since people are by far the largest part of governmental budgets, it is almost impossible to make 10 percent cuts without cutting people.

  • Creating an intelligent tomorrow

    OHKAY OWINGEH ­— Underemployed even in good times, Rio Arriba County has made educating students a higher priority in recent years. School officials were looking for more help from the lab.

    “How do we develop the intelligence (our students) possess?” Española Schools Superintendent Janette Archuletta asked Tuesday. “The question is not can our students learn.”

    As a one of the keynote speakers at a Los Alamos National Laboratory leadership breakfast at Ohkay-Owingeh Resort and Casino, she called for more collaborators and mentors.

  • Deficit going up? Where does the money go?

    SANTA FE ­— We’re not out of the woods yet. Have you noticed that our state budget deficit grows about $100 million a month beyond projections?

    Last March, the 2009 Legislature plugged a $500 million hole. The budget reduction was projected to get us through until July 2010. But by August 2009 we were already over $400 million further in the hole.

    In September, that deficit rose to $550 million and in October, it was $660 million. At this rate, by January, when the 2010 Legislature convenes, we’ll be another $300 million deeper in the hole.

  • Bill that funds labs signed into law

    WASHINGTON — U.S. Senators Jeff Bingaman and Tom Udall today reported that President Obama has signed into law a key spending bill that supports New Mexico’s two national laboratories, the Waste Isolation Pilot Project and a variety of key water-related projects.  

  • The corrupt are in jail, more regulation needed?

    “Money is good,” my daughter says.

    In politics, money means communication – that is, speech. Lobbyists have a job. It is communication.

    A new report from Think New Mexico, a non-partisan but liberal think tank in Santa Fe, treads the well-trodden path that money in politics is evil, especially money from people contributing to candidates.

    The title is, “Restoring Trust.” The subtitle is, “Banning Political Contributions from Contractors and Lobbyists.” Find it at www.thinknewmexico.org.

  • Budget battle rolls toward January

    SANTA FE – The closing gavel of this year’s special legislative session also served as the opening gavel for next January’s 2010 Legislature.

    The first round has been completed. And as in any heavyweight fight, the budget cutters and tax increasers spent their time feeling each other out.

    Now that the combatants know each other’s tendencies, both can proceed to defend their territory and attempt to maximize their advantages.

  • Governor and legislators exchange fire

    SANTA FE — As predicted here, it’s as though the special legislative session never ended. Verbal assaults are still flying between Gov. Bill Richardson and legislative leaders.

    Progressive Democrats are still upset the governor and their leaders prevented any consideration of tax increases. Moderate Democrats and Republicans continue to insist that deep cuts in all budgets are the only answer.

  • Senate approves jobless benefits bill

    WASHINGTON ­— U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman on Wednesday said he is pleased the Senate has approved legislation to extend unemployment benefits to thousands of New Mexicans who have been unable to find a job in this difficult economic climate.

      The bill would extend unemployment insurance by up to 14 additional weeks for jobless workers in all states and up to 20 weeks in hard-hit states with unemployment levels at or above 8.5 percent.

    New Mexico’s unemployment rate as of September was 7.7 percent, up from 4.3 percent a year ago.  

  • Lamenting the loss of the old Los Alamos

    Consider the last 9 years – the fire and how many of the original houses of Los Alamos were lost.  The theater and the sense that the community center will never be the social agora it once was. The demolition of the Municipal Building.  The planned demolition of the LA Apartments and the buildings on Trinity site.  The three houses, again from the original stock, for the sake of street widening. Proposed demolition of Aspen Elementary and the bulk of the high school classrooms.