Local News

  • Update 04-04-13


    At 3 p.m. Friday at the Betty Ehart Senior Center, the family of former Manhattan Project leader General Leslie Groves will present his official military portrait to the Los Alamos Historical Society.

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    County Council

    The Los Alamos County Council will hold budget hearings beginning at 7 p.m. April 15 in council chambers.

    County web page

    As part of the upcoming move to the new Municipal Building, the County’s Information Management staff will be bringing down the server that hosts the County’s losalamosnm.us webpage. The server will be down at 5 p.m. on Friday and the webpage will be temporarily unavailable for a few hours while the server is physically moved to its new location in the new building.

  • Next DOE chief faces dilemmas

    YAKIMA, Wash. (AP) — Underground tanks that hold a stew of toxic, radioactive waste at the nation’s most contaminated nuclear site pose a possible risk of explosion, a nuclear safety board said in advance of confirmation hearings for the next leader of the Energy Department.
    State and federal officials have long known that hydrogen gas could build up inside the tanks at the Hanford Nuclear Reservation, leading to an explosion that would release radioactive material. The Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board recommended additional monitoring and ventilation of the tanks last fall, and federal officials were working to develop a plan to implement the recommendation.
    The board expressed those concerns again Monday to U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., who is chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee and had sought the board’s perspective about cleanup at Hanford.
    The federal government created Hanford in the 1940s as part of the secret Manhattan Project to build the atomic bomb. It spends billions of dollars to clean up the 586-square-mile site neighboring the Columbia River, the southern border between Washington and Oregon and the Pacific Northwest’s largest waterway.

  • New nurse aims for healthy community

    Los Alamos County’s new community health nurse has been looking for this job for several years.

    “I think public health has always been in my heart since learning about it in college,” Felicia Branch said. “I have a little bit of education in community health, and I just love the fact that we get to work so much with the community and the public health nurse gets to play a really important role in the community. So it drew me in immediately. I always knew that this was something I wanted to do.”

    Branch took 12 hours of community health classes while pursuing her B.S. in nursing from the University of New Mexico. After graduating, Branch took a job in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit at Presbyterian Hospital in Santa Fe.

    A little over three years ago she accepted a position in the Intensive Care Unit at the Los Alamos Medical Center, later transferring to LAMC’s Endoscopy Center.

    But Branch kept her radar out for a community health-related position.

    “I’ve always had my eye out for this,” Branch said. “And I really got lucky, because it’s a small office. The opportunity opened up and I jumped, I really did.”

    Branch started on Dec. 31. Much of her first three months was devoted to training.

  • Valles Caldera unveils report

    The Valles Caldera Trust 2012 State of the Preserve Report details the journey of an overused, exhausted landscape to its improved condition and provides a peek at the road ahead.
    The report, released Thursday, is required by the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) procedures unique to the trust, and provides baseline data, which aids the strategic management of the preserve. However, the report also points out that some of the resources Congress believed would contribute to financial self-sufficiency were either overestimated or emerged as liabilities for the “Experiment in Public Land Management”.
    “The land was over grazed, heavily logged and the streams were severely compromised when we took over in 2002,” notes Valles Caldera Trust Executive Director, Dennis Trujillo. “The preserve was incapable of supporting the livestock numbers and timber production it did under private ownership. We had to adapt, and adapt quickly.”
    The 2012 report recounts how the trust employed science-based adaptive management from 2002-2012 to restore the landscape, establish land use policies and expand opportunities for public access and revenue generation. Adaptive management allows the trust to institute a new program, monitor the implemented changes, and adjust the program, based on the assessment data.

  • Raw: Fire Engulfs 40-story Building in Chechnya

    Firemen have succeeded in putting out a blaze that engulfed an unoccupied 40-story apartment building under construction in the Chechen capital Grozny. Emergency officials say 30 people were evacuated but that no one was injured.

  • Air service open house set for Friday

     Air service open house set for Friday

    Transportation > Commuter flights to take off Monday


    The Los Alamos County Airport is hosting an open house from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday and featuring tours of the Cessna Caravan, a nine-seat turboprop aircraft —one of New Mexico Airlines’ fleet that will be providing commercial air service between Los Alamos and Albuquerque beginning Monday.  

    “Once people see the plane and gain an understanding of how reliable it is, they will not be able to resist choosing a $49, 20-minute flight to the Sunport over a two-hour drive and parking fees,” says Airport Manager Peter Soderquist. 

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