Today's News

  • LA passed over for Super School project

    The Los Alamos “Odyssey Super School Project” discovered Wednesday it was not awarded the $10 million grant from the XQ Institute, but members are keeping their dream alive.
    The Los Alamos group entered the institute’s contest about a year ago in hopes of winning the $10 million to start another high school in Los Alamos.
    Once their plans were approved with the New Mexico Public Education Department, the school would have used the money to purchase a building in Los Alamos, hire teachers, enroll students and create a curriculum based on meeting the challenges of a modern day workforce.
    Members of the Odyssey Super School Project said that just because they didn’t win the grant, they haven’t given up. The support they’ve received surrounding their proposal has encouraged them to move forward.
    “We’ve talked to too many people in the community, which is probably well over a thousand people at this point, to know how important this is,” said Michele Altherr, a member of the Odyssey group and a teacher in the Los Alamos Public Schools.
    The proposal the group submitted included a curriculum that focused on challenge-based learning and a student’s mental health and well-being.

  • Gun safe plan to be reconsidered

    The Los Alamos School District is going back to the drawing board with the police department’s plan to install gun safes in the middle and high schools following public outcry over the issue.
    Officials from the Los Alamos school district, school board and the Los Alamos Police Department said that when they do take up the proposal again, they will carefully consider the public’s input on the issue.
    A public hearing was held Tuesday night during the Los Alamos School Board meeting. The school board invited the public to weigh in on the issue after news reports about the idea garnered concern from the community.
    Los Alamos Police Chief Dino Sgambellone spoke to a full audience Tuesday about the proposal. He said he felt it was time the schools to consider allowing the police to install gun safes at the campuses, given the recent number of school shootings in recent years.
    Installing gun vaults, equipped with safety equipment, first aid kids and with more powerful weapons than officers normally carry, such as AR-15s and shotguns, would help officer respond to these situations.
    Sgambellone said the proposal was far from complete.
    “I know that there was a lot of concern in the community that this was a done deal, it’s ready to go, but we are not there. This is part of that process,” he said.

  • Mixed results for latest New Mexico teacher evaluations

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — More than 70 percent of public school teachers in New Mexico are effective or better when it comes to their success in the classroom, but there are just as many teachers who are struggling to make the grade as there are those who have improved over the last two years.

    The Public Education Department on Friday released the results of the latest round of teacher evaluations under a much-debated system that's the focus of an ongoing court battle between the state and teacher unions.

    More than 21,000 teachers received scores, most of them taking into account student achievement measures. The evaluations are also weighted by observations in the classroom and attendance.

    Education Secretary Hanna Skandera said she's pleased the data reflected an increase of about one-third in the number of highly effective and exemplary teachers since 2014.

  • Community Calendar 9-14-16

    Chamber Breakfast at 7:30 a.m. in room 230, building 2, at UNM-LA, 4000 University Drive. Topic will be an Economic Development Panel with Will Gleason, Patrick Sullivan and Therese Varela. Catered by Daniel’s Café. Chamber Members can register using their username and password on the events page of the chamber website at losalamoschamber.chambermaster.com.
    Nature Yoga at 5:15 p.m. at the Nature Center. Practice yoga with Christa Tyson at the nature center, where you have a great view of nature. Cost is $15 for non-members, $12 for members.
    Gentle Walks at 8: 30 a.m. at the Nature Center. A gentle walk for which the emphasis is on discovery, not mileage gained. Free.

    “Not Quite Right” performance at 7:30 p.m. at the Los Alamos Little Theatre, 1670 Nectar St. Tickets are $14 for adults and $12 for students and seniors and can be purchased at the door or in advance at CB Fox or from Brown Paper Tickets. Visit lalt.org for more information.

    Astronomy Show at 7 p.m. at the Nature Center. Explore our universe from the comfort of the planetarium. Cost is $6 for adults, $4 for children.

  • Smith Auditorium lobby redesign public meeting set for Sept. 20

    LAPS invites the community to a public meeting to share comments and questions about the Smith Auditorium lobby redesign.
    The Smith Lobby Redesign Public Meeting will be from 5:30-6:30 p.m. Sept. 20.
    Lobby construction is tentatively planned to begin in the late spring of 2017. The lobby redesign is anticipated to be completed by November 2017.
    LAPS has contracted with FBT Architects for the redesign work. FBT has met several times with interested community users of Smith Auditorium to work out the initial requirements for the lobby.
    Smith Lobby Redesign Committee members include, LAPS COO Ahlers, Facilities Herb McLean, LAPS Smith Theater Manager Ross Mason, LAPS Rentals Coordinator Kristy Vigil, LA County’s Anthony Strain and Wayne Kohlrust, with Ann McLaughlin representing the LA Concert Assn. and Daren Savage representing Atomic City Children’s Theater.
    Lobby redesign highlights include moving the restroom doors from the theater side of the foyer to the lobby, as well as increasing the sizes of the restrooms and adding a family restroom. FBT’s redesign also adds a will-call window, formal concessions area and moving the theater manager office to the lobby area.
    Anyone who cannot attend can send comments to j.ahlers@laschools.net.

  • Hike Caja del Rio with Evan Rose

    Looking for an outdoorsy way to spend a Saturday? Join Evan Rose as he leads a beautiful hike on the Caja del Rio trail Saturday.
    The eight- to 10-mile trek through Santa Fe National Forest offers spectacular views of the Rio Grande, a vast array of wildflowers, and some much-needed fresh air. This outing, organized by the Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC).
    This hike is intended as an introduction to the Caja del Rio region. Participants will descend from Frijoles Overlook to the Rio Grande, providing a unique opportunity to access New Mexico’s greatest river from the east.
    Because the terrain will be steep and rocky, it is important to come prepared. Hikers are asked to wear sturdy hiking boots and bring a backpack containing three liters of water, food for the day, rain gear, a fleece layer, sunscreen and a hat.
    The group will meet at the Los Alamos Nature Center at 8 a.m. before carpooling to the trailhead. Expect to spend the whole day on this trip. The outing is limited to 12 participants, so register now to save a spot. Admission costs $8 for members and $10 for non-members.
    Rose worked on laser and radiography projects at Los Alamos National Laboratory after receiving his Ph.D. in physics. Upon retiring, he began to focus on outdoor activities such as backpacking, canyoneering, climbing and skiing.

  • Assets in Action: Homecoming week is here!

    This is the time of year when we can have a week of fun and reflection, it, my friends, is homecoming week.
    By the time you read this, a revival of the volleyball and powder puff games will have taken place and we will be ready to feel the burn.
    The burn of course is the heat from the Los Alamos High School bonfire, which with the technical assist from the Los Alamos Fire Department will ignite a storm of spirit in the Sullivan Filed Parking lot from 8-9:30 p.m. Stop on by and thank those fine young men and women of the LAFD for their service if you didn’t get a chance to this weekend.
    The community should come on by for a little bit of fun to launch a whole lot of school spirit.
    The big parade is on Friday and community organizations are ready for a fun fest before the football game, and yeah! No politics. No offense to those running for office, but it is nice to have a political-free zone, even if only for 30 minutes or so.
    I’d like to highlight something that was brought to our attention last year just after the parade.
    Last year, we lost a stellar community guy by the name of Bill Hudson. Someone reflected that something that would have made Hudson happy was to assist in cleaning up the route after the parade, before we all head off to our own corners of the world.

  • Budget crisis requires responsible cuts, reliable revenue sources

    New Mexico State Senate, Majority Whip

  • Growth in New Mexico to remain depressed

    In the summer saga of state finances, this week brings a general look at the economy and its prospects. Our principal source is the more than 100 pages of background material provided for the Aug. 24 meeting of the Legislative Finance Committee.
    Wage jobs provide the starting point. In July, 825,300 people claimed jobs, among the lowest proportions of population in the nation. Metro Albuquerque was home to 384,500 jobs, or 47 percent of the total. Another 184,300 jobs were scattered among Santa Fe, Las Cruces and Farmington. For all the state’s distance and emptiness, 69 percent of our jobs are in the seven metro counties.
    “Employment has continued to grow at a depressed pace,” observed the LFC. For the July 2015 to July 2016 year, jobs in the state grew 1.2 percent, tied for 35th among the states. For depressing perspective, Utah’s growth was second nationally. Colorado and Arizona tied for sixth. New Mexico’s income growth is also depressed.

  • Police Beat 9-14-16

    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, served a court summons, or issued a citation.

    Sept. 1
    5:29 p.m. — Brenda Pena, 38, of Santa Fe was arrested on a charge of larceny (over $500, less than $2500) at the police station.

    Sept. 2
    8:53 a.m. — Stuart Schaller, 70, of Los Alamos was arrested on a charge of operating a vehicle under the influence of an intoxicant aggravate at the intersection of Loma Linda Drive and North Mesa Road.
    4:45 p.m. — Brianna Garcia, 23, of Los Alamos was arrested on a magistrate court bench warrant at the Los Alamos police department. The original charge was driving while under the influence on San Ildefonso Road Feb. 11.

    Sept. 3
    10:26 a.m. — Police reported that a 66-year-old woman was the victim of menacing behavior at 41st Street.

    1:13 p.m. — Police reported that a 48-year-old Colorado Springs man was the victim of breaking and entering at 39th Street.