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Local News

  • Jemez Pueblo wants Valles Caldera land

    Leaders of an American Indian community in Northern New Mexico are seeking the return of all land within the boundaries of the 89,000-acre Valles Caldera National Preserve, citing the area as a “spiritual sanctuary” and part of their traditional homeland.

    Jemez Pueblo filed a lawsuit in federal court last summer to establish its aboriginal right to ownership of the property and the pueblo has gained the support of tribes throughout New Mexico.

    The preserve is home to vast grasslands, the remnants of one of North America’s few super volcanoes and one of New Mexico’s most famous elk herds. The federal government bought the property from land grant heirs in 2000, with the goal of operating it as a working ranch while developing recreational opportunities for the public.

    The government’s experiment in land management failed to become financially self-sufficient and members of New Mexico’s congressional delegation have been working on a proposal that would call for the National Park Service to take over management.

    However, Jemez Pueblo wants the federal government to return ownership and control of the property.

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  • Football group's leader removed after porn arrest

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — The president-elect of the New Mexico Young America Football League was removed from his position after he and his wife were arrested on a child pornography charge.

    The Albuquerque Journal reports that the league's incoming president, 42-year-old Frederick Gonzales, and his wife, 36-year-old Carey Gonzales, were arrested Friday. The league's board on Saturday removed Gonzales as president-elect of the group that oversees about 5,000 players statewide who range in age from 7 to 14.

    "There was really nothing to indicate that something like this was going to happen; we were all totally shocked," League president Jim Summer told the newspaper.

    Summer said Frederick Gonzales cleared criminal background checks in 2011 and 2012. He added that the group plans to hire an independent agency to review its procedures and that the league's board planned to cooperate with authorities.

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  • Legislators talk issues as session looms

    Three of Los Alamos County’s representatives to the Round House stopped by Fuller Lodge this week to talk with residents about their goals for the upcoming legislative session that gets underway Tuesday.

    Rep.-Elect Stephanie Garcia Richard D-Los Alamos, Santa Fe and Rio Arriba Counties
    Garcia Richard was elected to the New Mexico House of Representatives in November. She teaches third grade in the Pojoaque School District, so it was no surprise then, that Richard told the audience she’d be their champion for education reform. However, she also tempered her enthusiasm with a dose of reality, by telling those on hand that it may take some time to get things done.

    “... You may put your heart and soul into something, but it may take a few sessions to get there,” she said. “... I know that I’m starting out with a lot of idealism and enthusiasm, but hopefully, by the time we meet again I will still have some left.”

    Education
    One thing Garcia Richard wants to reform is the teacher evaluation system, taking the emphasis off of testing and having it rely more on student surveys and peer review.

  • Fledgling firm helps launch NM business

    As David Blivin and his wife Jamai were considering moving to New Mexico to be near Jamai’s family, Blivin met Los Alamos National Bank CEO Bill Enloe and Los Alamos Commerce and Development Corporation Executive Director Kevin Holsapple. When Enloe and Holsapple learned of Blivin’s previous career in venture capital, they suggested there might be a niche he could fill.

    “Capital is always an issue in New Mexico with technology businesses and Dave focuses on startups, which is always the most difficult stage to get funded because of the higher risk,” Enloe said. “With very few funds in the area, we felt this type of approach would be a success. There is not much competition and not a lot of companies getting funded.”

    Blivin did some research and agreed that a void existed for venture capital firms dedicated to tech commercialization within the Southwest region. Those with ideas ripe for product development generally move to other parts of the country to be near capital resources.

    LANB and the LACDC invested in Blivin’s own startup, the Cottonwood Technology Group, while he provided the sweat equity to build the company.