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Today's News

  • House proposes responsible budget for New Mexico

    BY REP. LARRY LARRANAGA
    Chair, House Appropriations and Finance Committee, Dist. 27

  • Economic policy: a long-ignored issue

    BY JOE D'ANNA
    Los Alamos

  • Debates stay mum on smart tools

    BP’s lengthy oil spill in the Gulf and the Keystone Pipeline are issues long familiar to people of all walks. In sharp contrast, who ever heard of Structural Health Monitoring?  
    I first heard the term just two months ago. I was quickly amazed to see the extent of new techniques available to guard against leaky oil pipes of all kinds. Why does anything so relevant stay hidden from public news?  
    Structural Health Monitoring (SHM) is well explained in Wikipedia. SHM refers to methods of gauging damage in materials and other safety aspects of engineered structures. Devices tied into structures detect changes as materials age. From the changes, computing parts assess safety. Call them “smart tools.”
    The tools can check and report frequently on the well-being of structures such as bridges, airplanes and pipelines. The results, in turn, point to in-situ methods of timely repair. “In-situ” repair means repairing in place without tearing things open.
    SHM is no mere glint on the horizon. It thrives now and keeps improving. The discipline of SHM has an international society of its own with its own technical journal. The 10th International Workshop on SHM was held last fall at Stanford University. Princeton offers a graduate course in SHM. The topic clearly has history and substance.

  • Vote for Ona!

    Ona Gartz, an eighth-grader at Los Alamos Middle School, was just like any other middle-school student at a special assembly put on by Google Friday. She was surprised when Google representatives Nicholas Maurette and Tobias Rauscher called her name, telling her that she was the only winner in the state of New Mexico of the company’s “Doodle4Google” logo contest with her entry, “Colors Of My Island (above).” Ona now moves on to the “national finalist” category, where people can vote for her logo to help make her, and Los Alamos Middle School, the national winner. Go to doodle4google.com and follow the links. Look for the story in next week’s Los Alamos Monitor.

  • Oregon protestors lost in court of public opinion

    At the first news of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge occupation, some of us wondered if it could happen here. The way it played out, that’s not likely.

    It began with Oregon ranchers Dwight Hammond Jr. and his son Steven being convicted by a jury of arson, but the sentences jumped from months to five years because of a federal anti-terrorism law passed in response to the Oklahoma City bombing. The sentences sparked a protest by ranchers and militiamen in Burns, Oregon, and a few armed protesters led by Ammon Bundy took over the nearby refuge. 

    We’ve learned more about the players. In interviews, current and former employees of the wildlife refuge describe decades of hostility and death threats from the Hammonds. 

    “They said they were going to wrap my son in barbed wire and throw him down a well. They said they knew exactly which rooms my kids slept in,” said a former director. 

  • 'Longmire': Film industry supports local communities

    Saturday’s “Longmire” casting call in Española was co-sponsored by the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Local 480, and doubled as a “thank you” to Sen. Richard Martinez (D-District 5), whom the union called a “champion of workers.”

    Martinez was held up on Senate business and was unable to attend, but Jon Henry, business agent for the local IATSE, spoke with the Los Alamos Monitor about the film industry’s role in boosting local economies. 

    “Basically, what we’re doing is coming into the communities where ‘Longmire’ shoots and making sure there’s economic activity in these communities,” Henry said. “The picture business can’t just be about Santa Fe and Albuquerque, it’s got to be about everywhere.”

    The casting call had a dual purpose, not only giving local people a chance to work as background actors on Longmire but reaching out to potential vendors in the local business community. 

    “That’s really our goal, is to get as many local people making money from these movies as we can,” Henry said. 

  • Sanchez-Gagne files for DA

    Santa Fe native and long-time prosecutor, Maria Sanchez-Gagne, announced Thursday that she will seek the position of district attorney for the First Judicial District, representing Santa Fe, Rio Arriba and Los Alamos counties. Sanchez-Gagne is collecting petition signatures and will formally file her declaration of candidacy with the Secretary of State on candidate filing day on March 8.

     “I am pleased to announce my candidacy for this position. I have served our community for 20 years as a criminal prosecutor seeking justice for victims,” said Sanchez-Gagne.  “As your next District Attorney, I will not shy away from prosecuting difficult cases in order to ensure community safety.  I will serve you with honesty, integrity and experience.”

    Sanchez-Gagne has 20 years of experience. She was director of the Border Violence Vision of the State’s Office of the Attorney General from 2005-2015. Prior to that she was an assistant Attorney General. Sanchez-Gagne began her career as an assistant District Attorney in the First Judicial District DA’s Office where she prosecuted felony child abuse cases and domestic violence cases from 1996-2000. 

  • Arizona regulators approve SunZia project

    PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona utility regulators have authorized construction of a controversial planned $2 billion transmission line between Arizona and New Mexico.

    The Arizona Corporation Commission voted 3-2 Wednesday to approve the 515-mile-long SunZia Southwest Transmission Project. The certificate is one of the last major permits the project needs.

    The SunZia project aims to tap into wind resources in New Mexico as well as solar and geothermal potential in New Mexico and Arizona. The line will export electricity to markets in the West.

     

    Commissioners Andy Tobin, Bob Stump and Bob Burns voted for approval, while Commissioners Tom Forese and Doug Little voted no.

  • Church listings 2-5-16

    Baha’i Faith

    For information, email losalamosla@gmail.com. For general information, call the Baha’i Faith phone at 1-800-228-6483.

    Bethlehem Lutheran

    Bethlehem Evangelical Lutheran Church, a member of the ELCA, is located at 2390 North Road, 662-5151; see a map at bethluth.com. The Eucharist is celebrated each Sunday at 9:30 a.m. followed by fellowship time with refreshments starting at 10:45 a.m. Preceding worship is our Christian Education hour which begins 8:30 a.m. The preaching is biblical by our Pastors Bruce Kuenzel and Nicolé Ferry, the music is lively, children are welcome and abundant, and a well-staffed nursery is provided. All are welcome! Come Join the Family!

    Bryce Ave. Presbyterian

    The church is located at 3333 Bryce Ave. The Rev. Henry Fernandez preaches, bapca.org, info@bapca.org. For information, call 672-3364.

    Calvary Chapel

    Sunday school classes for all ages at 9:15 a.m. and worship at 10:30.  Our current series is “Kingdom Reign” as we study the book of 2 Samuel.

    The Christian Church

  • Israeli Cabinet OKs non-orthodox prayer at holy site

    JERUSALEM — Israel’s Cabinet voted Sunday to allow non-Orthodox Jewish prayer at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, a move advocates said marked a historic show of government support for liberal streams of Judaism.

    The issue is of particular importance to the Jewish community in the United States, where the more liberal Reform and Conservative streams of Judaism are dominant. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu pushed the plan in an attempt to please American Jews, a key source of support for Israel, despite stiff opposition by ultra-Orthodox and religious nationalist elements in Israel who are key members of his own government.

    “I know this is a sensitive topic, but I think it is an appropriate solution, a creative solution,” Netanyahu said at the start of Sunday’s Cabinet meeting, where members voted on the plan.

    According to the government plan, a copy of which was obtained by The Associated Press, Israel will build a new plaza for mixed gender prayer at the Western Wall, adjacent to the Orthodox prayer plaza but separate from it.