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Local News

  • State legislature wraps up session

    SANTA FE (AP) — The New Mexico Legislature wrapped up work Friday night on three key issues, sending to the governor bills to raise the state’s minimum wage, establish a state-run health insurance exchange and shore up the solvency of a pension plan for educators.
    The state’s minimum wage would increase to $8.50 an hour — the fourth-highest rate in the nation — under the measure approved largely along party lines as lawmakers rushed to beat a Saturday deadline for adjournment. The bill is opposed by Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.
    The state minimum wage has been $7.50 an hour since 2009, and supporters said the proposed increase would help workers cope with rising prices.
    “This is about the people,” said Rep. Carl Trujillo, a Santa Fe Democrat. “This is about an extra $40 in the pocket every single week.”
    “This is certainly the right thing to do,” said the bill’s co-sponsor Senator Richard Martinez (Los Alamos, Rio Arriba, Sandoval, Santa Fe). “If the Governor truly wants to help people, this is her chance to do it. There are many poor people out there who will really be helped by this.”
    Opponents warned that the wage increase could hurt businesses and cause them to cut jobs.

  • Update 03-17-13

    LAGS

    The next meeting of the Los Alamos Geological Society will begin at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the First Christian Church, 92 East Road. The featured speaker will be Shari Kelley,  a geophysicist and field geologist at the New Mexico Bureau of Geology and Mineral Resources in Socorro and an adjunct professor of geology at New Mexico Tech.

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    Sock Hop

    The Los Alamos Family Council will hold its Fabulous Fifties Family Sock Hop. The Hop is scheduled for 6-10 p.m. March 23 at the Immaculate Heart of Mary Parish Hall on Canyon Road. Tickets are $10 per person or $25 for a family. Call 662-4160 for information.

    CRC meeting

    The Deptartment of Public Utilities Charter Review Committee will hold its first meeting from 5:30-6:30 p.m. March 27, in the Community Building’s Training Room. This will primarily be an organizational meeting to appoint a chair and vice-chair and review the scope of work. The public is welcome to attend.

    GOP meeting

     The LA GOP Central Committee will hold its regular monthly meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday at UNM-LA, room 220. All Republicans are welcome. Central Committee members are encouraged to attend.  

  • Wildfire season info event set for March 30

    As wildfire season begins, residents are urged to attend an informational event called “Wildfire 2013” from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. March 30 in Fuller Lodge. The event is sponsored by the Los Alamos Fire Department, in partnership with several local agencies.
    Displays and information include:
    • Sand table demonstration of the 2011 Las Conchas Fire presented by LANL Emergency Management
    • An opportunity to register cell phone and email addresses with Los Alamos County Emergency Management for emergency notifications from the county
    • Information on Defensible Space, Fire Wise and Ready, Set, Go! Programs — learn how to make your home defendable in the event of a wildfire
    • Information from Bandelier, USFS and the Valles Calderas National Preserve on what is accessible and plans for the upcoming months for hiking, camping, and activities in their respective areas
    • Learn about fire weather from the National Weather Service
    • View photos of the Las Conchas Fire, courtesy of the Los Alamos Historical Society
    • Learn about the new participatory exhibit Living with Wildfire as presented by the Bradbury Science Museum. • Fire-fighting apparatus on public display with LAFD crews

  • Highlights of 51st New Mexico Legislature

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Highlights of the outcome of major proposals in the 51st New Mexico Legislature that adjourned Saturday.

    BILLS PASSED AND SENT TO GOVERNOR

    Budget and Finance

    —A $5.9 billion budget for education and general government programs in fiscal year starting July 1; nearly $274 million in capital improvements, including in the home areas of legislators, mostly paid for with bonds backed by severance taxes; increase tax incentives for certain television and film projects; require report to assess effectiveness of tax deductions and incentives.

    —A $274 million capital outlay bill to fund project that range from state-owned building upgrades and school equipment to improving local athletic fields.

    —Require the Senate to confirm the appointment of the state investment officer, who manages state permanent funds.

    Education

  • Rollover on N.M. 502
  • Today in History March 16th
  • Colo. Resident: Fire Is "Deja Vu" From Summer

    A wildfire is threatening homes near Fort Collins, Colorado and has prompted more than 50 people to leave the area. The fire began burning near the scene of a large wildfire last summer that burned 259 homes and killed one person.

  • Raw: Fiery Plane Crash in Fla. Parking Lot

    Video from WSVN-TV shows the smoke-filled scene of apparent plane crash in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Local reports say a plane went down near the Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport.

  • House reintroduces Manhattan Project legislation

     

    House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (R-Wash.), Congressman Chuck Fleischmann (R-Tenn.), and Congressman Ben ray Luján (D-N.M.) Friday introduced bipartisan legislation (H.R. 1208) in the House of Representatives to establish a Manhattan Project National Historical Park that will encompass facilities in Hanford, Wash.; Oak Ridge, Tenn.; and Los Alamos.

    The Manhattan Project was an unprecedented top-secret program to construct a nuclear weapon during World War II. This effort combined military and scientific resources and involved hundreds of thousands of workers.

    "The Manhattan Project is a significant chapter in America's history.  The establishment of this park will ensure that this history is preserved and that facilities, such as Hanford's B Reactor, will remain open and accessible for future generations to visit.  I'll continue to work with advocates in these local communities, as well as with my colleagues in both the House and the Senate, towards the goal of getting this bill enacted into law," Hastings said.

  • State House passes minimum wage increase; Martinez may veto

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — A proposal to increase the state minimum wage to $8.50 an hour is close to clearing the Legislature but faces trouble if it reaches Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

    The House approved the bill Friday on 37-32 vote, sending it back to the Senate. The state minimum wage went to $7.50 an hour in 2009. Supporters said the proposed increase would help workers and their families with rising costs of food and other essentials. Opponents warned that the wage increase would hurt businesses and could cause them to reduce jobs.

    Only three states — Washington, Oregon and Vermont — have minimum wages higher than $8.50 an hour. The federal minimum wage is $7.25 an hour. A Martinez spokesman says the governor opposes increasing the rate to $8.50 but would accept $7.80.

    Martinez, meanwhile, has vetoed a proposal by the Democratic-controlled Legislature to expand the state's tax incentives for television projects and films. Martinez rejected the measure on Friday and objected that lawmakers had approved only the subsidy for Hollywood rather than making it part of a package of economic development tax incentives she's seeking.