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Today's Opinions

  • LAFD addresses risk issue

    Although we share the concerns of our community for the safety of Los Alamos, our graduated approach was arrived at by evaluating the risk of these activities taking into consideration the locations at which they will occur.
    Public fireworks display, given the dry conditions we are confident that with the location (limited continuity of combustible material) and types of fireworks used at this display much of the hazard is limited.
    Over the years that this display has been held at Overlook Park the display has never threatened our community including the dry years following 2000.
    This display has given our community a venue during this holidays that may limit the private use of fireworks, which are far more dangerous to the public and property.

  • Fire risk questioned

    I commend the Los Alamos County Council for imposing a partial fireworks, campfire and smoking ban in some portions of the county in this extreme drought.  
    According to Asst. Fire Chief Thompson, “...the ignition potential for the forest has been determined to be 100 percent, meaning that every ember reaching combustible material has the potential to start a fire” (Los Alamos Monitor, June 22).
    But Idongedit.
    If the danger is this high (and I don’t doubt that it is), why not impose a complete ban?  
    Why are ANY fireworks and ANY campfires or grill fires allowed?  Why take the risk?
    Can’t we all forgo those pleasures until after the monsoons arrive, in the interest of safety?

  • Sheriffs Office may be eliminated

    In recent weeks, it has come to light that some members of the Los Alamos County Council would like to pursue modifications to the city-county charter to do away with the position of Los Alamos County Sheriff.   
    The motives behind such a move are unclear.  
    The County Sheriffs Office has received written notification of this action.  Thus far, we have not seen a publicized announcement of the council’s intentions in this matter.  
    The county sheriff is an elected position. If the council decides to move forward, one would hope that it is done through a referendum and voted upon by the general public.  
    This editorial is to alert voters and help educate the public.

  • Just a Wag 06-24-11

    Business leaders get toughened up

    A group of eight local business owners, managers and members of the Los alamos Chamber of Commerce spent all week at a “Business Bootcamp” in Denver.
    The bootcamp is designed to provide participants with  intensive workshops led by successful entrepreneurs and experts.

    Send us your wags

    “Just a wag” features initial snippets of news heard around town.  
    The wags may grow to larger stories or simply remain snippets, either way this is meant to spark interest and provide food for thought.
    E-mail wags to lanews@lamonitor.com.

  • State employee roles decreasing

    Last fall, both gubernatorial candidates promised state employees “no furloughs and no layoffs.”
    We could be pretty sure there would be no furloughs. The furloughs in 2010 were wildly unpopular and, more importantly, they were a budget-cutting tool of Gov. Bill Richardson. Both candidates were running away from him.
    At the conclusion of the 2011 legislature, Gov. Susana Martinez and legislative leaders proclaimed the budget that was adopted would require no furloughs and no layoffs.
    But layoffs already have begun. They sometimes are called reductions in force, or RIFs, but the results are the same.
    On June 10, 44 state employees were told to clean out their desks. They will be paid through the end of the month.

  • Economic Development 101

    It’s another beautiful day in the Land of Enchantment.
    This is the way Bob Hoffman, the Dean of Economic Development in New Mexico, opened all his meetings.
    If your skies aren’t blue, and your view of the horizon is hazy with wild-fire smoke, you might not agree, but Bob would convince you that beneath the smaze (yes, that’s a word), it’s still beautiful.
    Bob Hoffman, who created jobs across the state at times when it seemed impossible, has passed on, but his words are still gold.
    Bob had a passion for New Mexico almost from the moment he arrived at Holloman Air Force Base in 1950. His early career in radio broadcast and marketing gave him sales skills; that and his enthusiasm made him a force of nature.

  • Helping a billion bovines

    You and I have our challenges and some real worries, too. There are bills to pay and doctors to visit, to say nothing of mulling over those strange sounds coming from the rear of the car.
    But I confess, I thought the life of a cow was rather placid. Eating and sleeping, I would have guessed, pretty much summed up the existence of the more than one billion bovines that share the planet with us.
    But as I’ve recently learned, both beef cattle and dairy cows often have trouble just catching their breath.

  • Government contracting: A new path to revenue?

    In times of economic upheaval when private sector output slows, government contracts may mean the difference between running a company at profit rather than loss.
    The Procurement Technical Assistance Program, set up by the New Mexico Small Business Development Network in 2009, is a non-profit organization that helps small businesses obtain government contracts.
    PTAP counselors provide seminars and help clients identify government contract opportunities. Most PTAP services are provided free of charge. The federal- and state-funded organization has helped more than 600 New Mexico clients obtain over $70 million in government contracts.