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Today's News

  • County budget crunch could curtail services

    One of the legs in the county’s efforts to balance the budget despite decreasing revenues is reducing operating expenses. The Los Alamos County Council examined several proposals floated by staff during its Tuesday meeting.

    Councilors generally supported staff recommendations, with a few exceptions. Concerns centered around potential impacts on citizens and staff, as well as county infrastructure.

    “The fundamental first priority is providing those operational services. The community expects certain services, and I think this will be painful as it is,” Councilor David Izraelevitz said. “Reducing that even further would be unacceptable to our customers. Take any additional operational costs off the table.”

    Deputy County Administrator/Chief Financial Officer Steven Lynne highlighted cuts that could bring up to a $4.8 million in reduction in budget, which is about 10 percent lower than FY2013.

    One change that could affect customer service is reducing staffing levels through attrition and reorganization. Council agreed with County Administrator Harry Burgess and his recommendation that more drastic measures such as countywide layoffs or furloughs should be avoided if possible, so impacts on customer service are minimal.

  • The ethics of ridicule

     My mother was a short woman, under five feet tall, and weighted only 95 pounds when she got married.  In her late years, she had ballooned into what doctors call morbidly obese.  Her doctor said it wasn’t a medical problem.  She simply ate too much.
     Now, I loved my mother and so I decided to “help” her lose that weight.  I commissioned the construction of a 15’x30’ billboard across the street facing her house and had her pictures put on the billboard so that everyone driving by could see how fat she was.
     The billboard said, “Beep your horn to say hello to my mother, the big fat pig living in the house to your left!”
     She would walk outside and see the billboard and hear the people laughing at her.  She felt “shamed” and realized that she needed to lose all that weight.
     My strategy worked!  Mom shed all that embarrassing fat, trimmed down, got healthy, and lived out her remainder years as a slender “decent” person whom I was “willing” to be seen with.
     Go ahead.  Admit it.  I’m a great son, aren’t I?  I mean, is that love or what?

  • A moral tale for Groundhog Day

    Feb. 2, demarcates the point in the calendar halfway between the winter solstice and spring equinox.
    In simpler times, (prior to anthropogenic green-house gases causing climate change with the resulting unpredictability of atmospheric conditions) on this day — Groundhog Day — it would be up to the groundhog to partner with his shadow to determine the weather for the next six weeks.
    Here in New Mexico, as many of you already know, we do not have groundhogs. Rather we have gophers. Los Alamos’ own rodent celebrity, the glow-in-the-dark gopher, Gus, will see his shadow.
    Actually, he always sees his shadow, so just because he turns around and goes back into his hole, doesn’t mean winter will come. After all, since he glows in the dark, his shadow is always with him— and not just a shadow, but a complete X-ray.

  • On a Beach, Dog Sniffs Out Valuable Whale Vomit
  • Church Listings 02-01-13

    Baha’i Faith
    For information, e-mail losalamosla@gmail.com. For general information, call the Baha’i Faith phone at 1-800-228-6483.

    Bethlehem Lutheran
    Bethlehem Evangelical Lutheran Church, a member of the ELCA is at 2390 North Road. 662-5151, bethluth.com. Worship services are at 8:15 and 10:45 a.m., with coffee and doughnuts served between services during our Education Hour of classes for all ages. The preaching is biblical by our Pastors Bruce Kuenzel and Nicolé Ferry, the music is lively, children are welcome and abundant and a well-staffed nursery is provided. All are welcome. Come Join the Family.

    Bryce Ave. Presbyterian
    The church is located at 3333 Bryce Ave. The Rev. Henry Fernandez preaches, bapca.org, info@bapca.org. For information, call 672-3364.

    Buddhist
    Kannon Zendo, 35 Barranca Road. kannonzendo.org. Henry Chigen Finney, 661-6874. Meditation in the Zen tradition will be offered Wednesday evenings at the Kannon Zendo in Los Alamos.

    Calvary Chapel
    Sunday school classes for all ages at 9:15 a.m. Join us at 10:30 a.m. for worship and a study of the Biblical Jesus as He relates to people in our look at the Gospel of Exodus.

  • Ask Fr. John: Understanding guns and violence

    How do you understand guns and violence? — G.P.

  • Chu to step down as Energy Secretary

    Energy Secretary Steven Chu is stepping down.

    The Energy Department, which runs the Los Alamos National Laboratory, said Friday, that Chu has offered his resignation to President Barack Obama. Chu won a Nobel Prize in physics but came under questioning for his handling of a solar energy loan.

    Chu is a former director of the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab. He drew fire from Republicans who criticized his handling of a $528 million federal loan to solar panel maker Solyndra, which later went bankrupt, laying off its 1,100 workers.

    The White House said Chu retained Obama’s confidence, but Chu was widely expected to leave following Obama’s re-election last fall.

     Chu intends to resign once a successor is confirmed, according to a memo sent to Energy Department staff and obtained by website POLITICO. He was the last of President Barack Obama’s long-serving Cabinet members to announce plans to leave or stay for the second term.

  • Sports Briefs 02-01-13

    Large Gila trout to be stocked in Lake Roberts

  • Thursday's prep basketball scores 02-01-13

    Boys basketball

    Albuquerque High 50, West Mesa 40
    Atrisco Heritage 74, Highland 58
    Carlsbad 69, Goddard 54
    Elida 43, Lake Arthur 14
    Fort Sumner 49, Logan 31
    Hondo 79, Gateway Christian 47
    La Cueva 81, Del Norte 67
    Mescalero Apache 47, Carrizozo 43
    Mesilla Valley Christian 52, Chaparral 40
    Santa Fe Prep 57, Mora 45
    St. Pius 45, Cibola 42
    Volcano Vista 52, Eldorado 48
    Walatowa Charter 58, NMSD 43

    Girls basketball

    Albuquerque Academy 56, Artesia 51
    Clovis Christian 56, Clovis - C Team 47
    Fort Sumner 60, Logan 41
    Grants 44, Valencia 40
    Hondo 55, Gateway Christian 18
    Hope Christian 61, Pojoaque 47
    La Cueva 48, Rio Rancho 25
    Laguna-Acoma 68, Wingate 42
    Los Lunas 78, Gallup 68
    Mora 53, Santa Fe Prep 41
    Taos 58, West Las Vegas 41
    Volcano Vista 66, Sandia 42

  • Hilltoppers look to avenge loss to Taos

    The Los Alamos Hilltopper hockey team will renew its annual home-and-home grudge match against the Taos Ice Tigers tonight.
    The Hilltoppers will host the Ice Tigers at the Los Alamos County Ice Rink. Game time is 8:15 p.m.
    Tonight’s game is one of three games this weekend for the Hilltoppers. They will also take on the Albuquerque OutKast at Outpost Arena Saturday morning and the Cibola Cougars Saturday afternoon at Blades Arena in Rio Rancho.
    Los Alamos and Taos, longtime rivals, met for the first time this season during week 12 play, with the Ice Tigers prevailing 5-3 in Taos. Los Alamos would bounce back from that loss, however, to shut out the La Cueva Bears 4-0.
    Currently, the Hilltoppers are 9-5-1, sitting in fourth place in the New Mexico Interscholastic Ice Hockey League standings. The Hilltoppers have 19 points on the season, just ahead of the Ice Tigers’ 17 points — Taos is 8-7-1.
    El Paso Coronado is still the top team in the NMIIHL with its mark of 17-1. The T-Birds are tied in the loss column with Cibola (14-1-2), which is currently sitting in second place.