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Today's News

  • Nonprofits seek funds from N3B

    Nonprofits came from miles around to Fuller Lodge Wednesday to find out how they might get a slice of the $400,000 available in charitable funds being offered by a lab waste contractor.

    N3B, a Department of Energy contractor in charge of cleaning up legacy waste at the Los Alamos National Laboratory, announced Monday that it wanted to share $400,000, or 5% of its annual earned fee, with nonprofits in Los Alamos County and the greater northern New Mexico region.

    N3B’s aim is to spend 50% of those funds on education, 20% on arts and culture, 20% on health and human services and 10% on civic and economic development.

    Frazer Lockhart, regulatory and stakeholder interface manager at N3B said they tailored the distribution to where the company saw the most need.

    “It was somewhat of a subjective evaluation,” Lockhart said. “We knew we wanted education to be our theme… we wanted to have a kind of focus.”

    Having a focus was important Lockhart said because they are much smaller than the other major source of nonprofit funds in the community, the Los Alamos National Laboratory, of which they are not a part.

  • Pride Week ends with Pride Festival today

    Pride Week is almost over, but some in the community hope the celebration leaves a lasting legacy.

    The week will culminate with the Pride Festival, which is from 4-7 p.m. today at the Central Park Square Park quad at 145 Central Park Square.

    Sponsored by Los Alamos Pride, the main features of the event will include a karaoke booth, food and a Coming Out Ball, where people can share their experiences.

    The theme of the festival is “Be Your Own Hero.”

    Festival organizers have set up a special booth at the event where people will have a chance to create there own superhero costumes and perhaps do a little acting, and get to wear a rainbow or two.

    The week began with a concert Tuesday at Ashley Pond Park by New Mexico drag band Hella Bella, and the Los Alamos Jazz Project.

    There was also a potluck dinner and a performance by Quinn Fontaine at the Los Alamos Unitarian Church.

    At Tuesday’s concert, Boomerang store owner Anna Dillane did her best to give out as many rainbows as possible. Dillane, who helped plan the concert, was proud of her community as she painted rainbows on people from 2-years-old to 80.

    “It was so beautiful, so unifying and so generous of them to let me make giant rainbows on their cheeks,” Dillane said.

  • Pension obligations weigh on school finances in N.M.

    BY MORGAN LEE
    The Associated Press

    SANTA FE — Pension burdens are weighing on the financial health of local governments and school districts across New Mexico as contributions to the state’s two major public retirement funds lag behind pension obligations, analysts for a major credit ratings agency told a panel of legislators on Thursday.

    Moody’s analysts previously warned that pension reforms this year did not increase contributions sufficiently to reduce the problem of unfunded pension liabilities. On Thursday, they explained to legislators that pension problems are affecting financial burdens and risks for local governments and school districts.

    “No one is left untouched in this conversation,” Moody’s Analyst Heather Correia said. “Local government credit ratings have gone down because of this pension burden, the state’s rating has gone down. ... Cities, counties, school districts — it doesn’t matter.”

    New Mexico lawmakers this year increased taxpayer contributions to two major pension plans by 0.25% of annual salaries and delayed the accrual of pension benefits for new school workers overseen by the Educational Retirement Board.

  • Fuller Lodge Art Center to open ‘MapMaker’ exhibit today

    Fuller Lodge Art Center will open its fifth exhibit of the year, “MapMaker,” from 5-7 p.m. today.
    Maps reveal a trace of their creators and the art center will feature a live cartographer in this month’s exhibit.

    Andi Kron has made maps in the Los Alamos area since 1979. Originally an art major at Syracuse University, she became interested in geology after a trip out west and changed majors her junior year of college. After graduation, she worked in Albuquerque developing geologic illustrations and eventually made her way to Los Alamos assisting geothermal exploration with the Hot Dry Rock program.

    After four years at Los Alamos National Laboratory, Kron went to graduate school, dropped out and went to live on a kibbutz in Israel for nine months.

    Coming back to Los Alamos the ‘80s, she eventually started her own company, “cARTograpy by Andrea Kron.” Her first project was the FieryCanyon, an art poster depicting the Grand Canyon that took 30 days to print in Chicago.

  • Friends of Folklore: Route 66 alive with ghostly tales

    BY MATT WARD

    Columnist

    Last time, we talked about the ghosts of America’s main street.

    Everything from haunted hotels to eerie stretches of road, it seems spirits still travel across the states. But much more has happened on route 66. Stories of ghostly hitchhikers to UFOs to unexplainable phenomenon, route 66 might just be the most unnatural road in the world. One story comes to mind of a trucker driving from St. Louis to Texas.

    Well on the road in the middle of the day, the sky, which was sunny and cloudless, suddenly became dark and cloudy and green lightning erupted around him. In front of his car, a strange white light appeared and would not leave, causing particles of light to fly past him as though he was flying at lightspeed in a Star Wars movie. A

    nd then, at the speed of which it began, it vanished. What he thought was 15 minutes of this event turned out to be three hours. This brings us to the bizarre phenomenon of the stretching out or slowing down of time. Reports have come in of drivers experiencing timeslips, seemingly covering large distances within minutes. Whether it be trances, supernatural phenomenon, or even UFOs, hundreds of drivers have brought stories of timeslips, whether the slowing down of time or the speeding up of time, into the spotlight.

  • Kim Richey to perform at Fuller Lodge

    Grammy nominated, singer and songwriter Kim Richey will make a stop at Fuller Lodge June 27 in support of her critically acclaimed release Edgeland. (2018).  

    The Nashville-based, progressive country artist has recorded eight albums of her own and written for many of the industry’s biggest names.  

    Her songs have been recorded by Trisha Yearwood (“Believe Me Baby (I Lied)”), Radney Foster (“Nobody Wins”), and Brooks & Dunn (“Every River”).  

    Richey has also contributed vocals on albums with Jason Isbell, Ryan Adams, Reba McEntire and Mary Chapin Carpenter.

  • Assets in Action: Parents should let their kids be the adults they raised

    Last week, we had the opportunity to take part in wonderful event, the welcome orientation for New Mexico State University.

    Our youngest son graduated and is headed to NMSU. As a former Prevention Specialist, I had a slight issue with the school fight song. It includes the following line, “And when we win this game, we’ll buy a keg of booze, And we’ll drink it to the Aggies ‘til we wobble in our shoes!” 

    It was written by students and rumor has it that the school has attempted to change it several times to much uprising.

    What I can tell you is, I believe our child is in great hands there. It was a stellar event by students and staff, to reach parents and students on many levels. It was about the relationships created, the goal to reach the students and in turn teach them to reach out too. They even told the parents that their job was to stay engaged, encourage their students, and let them grow.

  • The ‘summer slide’ can be reversed for reading and math

    By LORETTA HALL

    Playground slides are designed for sliding down, but children inevitably try to climb up them. Students’ reading and math skills typically slide during the summer months, but there are ways to reverse that too.

    Research on the “summer slide” is a mixed bag, with different studies yielding different results. But there is strong evidence that learning at least slows during the summer and perhaps some of the learning gained in the previous school year is actually lost. Interestingly, the pattern seems to be the same for all students, regardless of their families’ economic status.

    This year, the state Public Education Department is offering an expanded opportunity to combat the summer slide. The K-5 Plus program provides funding for eligible elementary schools to offer 25 days of summertime instruction for students who choose to participate. This is an extension of the previous K-3 Plus program. 

  • Next year should be the year of higher education

    Rob Schwartz said he spent 40 years whining about how the University of New Mexico was run. As a new regent, the retired law professor has an opportunity to do something about it.

    The most important problem right now, he said, is a disheartened faculty beaten up by repeated rounds of budget cuts. 

    “They cut to the bone and they cut some more,” Schwartz told members of New Mexico Press Women recently. He referred to lawmakers and their desperate work to match spending to dwindling revenues in recent years.

    Faculty members couldn’t go to conferences or buy books or do many of the things that are a normal part of teaching. 

    “For a long time they thought they could tough it out, but now people don’t believe anything will get better,” he said. “This year after a 3 percent increase to faculty salaries, the university cut every single department by 1.5 percent. 

    “They can’t run their programs. The university is really standing on a precipice,” he said. He hopes oil and gas revenues will provide some relief.

  • Next year should be the year of higher education

    Rob Schwartz said he spent 40 years whining about how the University of New Mexico was run. As a new regent, the retired law professor has an opportunity to do something about it.

    The most important problem right now, he said, is a disheartened faculty beaten up by repeated rounds of budget cuts. 

    “They cut to the bone and they cut some more,” Schwartz told members of New Mexico Press Women recently. He referred to lawmakers and their desperate work to match spending to dwindling revenues in recent years.

    Faculty members couldn’t go to conferences or buy books or do many of the things that are a normal part of teaching. 

    “For a long time they thought they could tough it out, but now people don’t believe anything will get better,” he said. “This year after a 3 percent increase to faculty salaries, the university cut every single department by 1.5 percent. 

    “They can’t run their programs. The university is really standing on a precipice,” he said. He hopes oil and gas revenues will provide some relief.