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Today's News

  • Herrell wins GOP nod for 2nd district

    State Rep. Yvette Herrell has won the Republican nomination for New Mexico’s 2nd Congressional District as the party looks to keep control of the seat along the U.S.-Mexico border.

    Herrell on Tuesday finished ahead of a field that included former state GOP chairman Monty Newman and former U.S. Bureau of Indian Affairs official Gavin Clarkson.

    She will face Democratic nominee Xochitl Torres Small, a Las Cruces attorney, in November’s general election.

    Throughout the campaign, the 54-year-old Alamogordo resident sought to position herself as a strong ally of President Donald Trump and a staunch supporter of the president’s push to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border.

    The congressional race is one of many expected to draw national attention because it may help determine which party controls the U.S. House.

  • New Aquatomics coach brings passion, excitement to LA

    Mark Scott, the new head coach of the Los Alamos club swim team known as the Aquatomics, has been in or around pools since he could walk. 

    Scott’s father was a swim coach, so he was at the pool quite often. Scott taught himself how to swim at 3 years old, was on his dad’s team at 4 years old, and swam competitively for 17 years. 

    After his many years of competitive swimming, Scott did not miss being in the water due to the amount of injuries he had been forced to deal with. However, Scott quickly realized “it felt really good to be on deck,” and he began coaching.

    Scott has been coaching since 1975, including stints at NCAA Division II school University of Puget Sound and NCAA Division I school University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

    Scott’s coaching path has not always been straightforward, though. Twice Scott has dealt with 5-year-stints of feeling burnt out due to stress and high levels of competition.

    Scott says that stress and pressure is “dependent on what the coach wants out of the team, and what the swimmers want out of the team.”

  • Atomic City Update: Lanse Carter is the perfect hire for LAHS girls basketball

    Longtime college basketball coach Bobby Knight once said, “To be as good as it can be, a team has to buy into what you as the coach are doing. They have to feel you’re a part of them and they’re a part of you.”

    I think this quote is particularly relevant right now to Los Alamos High School, and new girls’ head basketball coach Lanse Carter, who is looking to change the culture of the program and once again turn the Hilltoppers into state championship contenders. 

    Though he is new to the Los Alamos area, he is anything but a stranger to basketball in northern New Mexico. He has had stints at Capital, Pojoaque, Santa Fe Indian School and Santa Fe High School and has a history of turning programs around in a hurry. 

    In 2008 and 2009, he won state championships at Pojoaque, and also took Santa Fe High to the state tournament in his only year there in 2016, after taking the job just two days before the season began. 

    Sure, on paper his credentials are impressive enough. But after watching a little bit of his practice last week and watching him interact with the girls, I am even more convinced that he is the right man for this program. 

  • LANL road construction set to start Thursday

    The first of three phases of road improvements to and from Los Alamos National Laboratory is scheduled to start Thursday.

    The road improvements are part of a $34.5 million Supplemental Environmental Projects settlement agreement between the New Mexico Environment Department and the U.S. Department of Energy, following the February 2014 drum breach incident at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant in Carlsbad.

    Albuquerque Asphalt, Inc., will perform the road work under a $7 million contract awarded by the Army Corps of Engineers through an interagency agreement with the National Nuclear Security Administration.

    Construction activities will include sections of road extending from Omega Bridge in Los Alamos to the Totavi gas station east of Los Alamos. 

    These sections include portions of East Jemez Road, N.M. 4, and N.M. 502. Improvements will include milling and replacing the top layer of asphalt. 

  • Topper Soccer School kicks off at Urban Park next week

    Next week, kids ages 3-9 will have the opportunity to play soccer like the Hilltoppers, as Topper School 2018 gets underway at Urban Park in Los Alamos. 

    The mission of Topper Soccer School is to provide an extraordinary camp environment through innovative instruction and positive reinforcement, and to expose little kids to big soccer. Members of the boys’ high school soccer program provide instruction.

    The first session of the camp runs June 11-15. Though the registration date has passed, late registrations will be accepted. Ages 3-5 will play from 4-5 p.m., and ages 6-9 will play from 5-6 p.m. 

    The “Tiny Touches” session will be for the 3-5-year-olds, and is designed for young children who like to kick soccer balls.  Proper technique will be taught with an emphasis on basic skills including dribbling, shooting and passing in an encouraging and enthusiastic environment.  Skills will be demonstrated and lots of fun and games will be included in the sessions.  To make the overall environment more comfortable and conducive to learning for the young players, parents (mom, dad, older sibling, aunt, uncle, etc.) are welcome to participate in these training sessions as well. 

  • LAHS football releases 2018 schedule

    The Los Alamos High School varsity football team will play 10 games in the 2018 season, six of which are against teams that they faced in the 2017 season. Among these are Española Valley, Pojoaque, Gallup, Santa Fe, Capital and Del Norte. The new teams that the Hilltoppers will go against include Taos, Bloomfield, Hope Christian and Valencia.

    The Hilltoppers finished with a 6-4 record in the 2017 season. Twelve of the team’s 25 players were seniors who will not be returning, including running back Jack Stewart and quarterback Kayden Rivera. 

    The receiving corps and defensive secondary will need to be addressed with the losses of seniors such as Wyatt Saeger, Reyes Mendez and Leander Murphy.

    The offensive and defensive lines will retain most of its core of juniors, only losing seniors Devin Cantua and Arturo Rodriguez. 

    Fortunately for the Hilltoppers, in a year that may consist of a lot of regrouping and rebuilding, their schedule contains just two teams that had a winning record in the 2017 season: Taos, 8-4, and district rival Capital, 6-5.

  • Stephanie Garcia Richard wins public land commissioner seat in primary

    SANTA FE, N.M. (AP)

    State Rep. Stephanie Garcia Richard has won the Democratic nomination in the race for New Mexico public land commissioner.

    Garcia Richard beat state Sen. George Munoz of Gallup and activist Garrett VeneKlasen of Santa Fe in Tuesday's primary for land boss, a position that oversees oil and mineral development on state trust land.

    Garcia Richard of White Rock will face Republican Patrick Lyons of Cuervo in November's general election.

    Lyons is a member of the Public Regulation Commission who previously served two terms as land commissioner. Libertarian candidate and rancher Michael Lucero also will be on the ballot.

    Current Land Commissioner Aubrey Dunn is running for U.S. Senate as a Libertarian.

    The State Land Office is on track to collect record revenue from oil and gas lease sales this fiscal year as production in New Mexico rebounds.

    ___

  • Report: Chrobocinski violated 3 sections in code of conduct

    Former County Councilor James Chrobocinski was found to be in violation of three sections of the Code of Conduct based on a 74-page report prepared by Albuquerque attorney Debra J. Moulton for Los Alamos County.

    The report, dated May 24, was prompted by a complaint filed Feb. 15 against Chrobocinski by Los Alamos County Fire Marshal Jeff Wetteland and Chief Building Official Michael Arellano. It claims the areas of the Code of Conduct violated by Chrobocinski include the section addressing the standard of conduct for public officials; the section pertaining to disclosure of conflicts of interest, recusal and disqualification; and the section addressing misuse of a public official’s position.

    Among those interviewed by Moulton for her report were Wetteland, Arellano and Chrobocinski, as well as County Manager Harry Burgess and Fire Chief Troy Hughes. She also interviewed LAFD Senior Fire and Life Safety Coordinator Stephen Rinaldi and Community Development Department (CDD) Director Paul Andrus as well as CDD employees Adrienne Lovato and Lee Brammeier.

    There were about 70 documents reviewed by Moulton, including emails, social media posts, newspaper articles and voicemails.

  • DOE faults NNSA field office for lab’s safety issues

    A May report from the Department of Energy’s Office of Enterprise Assessments gave the Los Alamos National Laboratory high marks for increasing its safety staffing and implementing “adequate” safety training, qualifications and procedures. 

    However, the same report also noted that the National Nuclear Security Administration Los Alamos Field Office personnel and LANL officials aren’t consistently seeing eye to eye on the interpretation of safety requirements, even after LANL and the NNSA made moves to better communicate following some well-publicized safety breaches. 

    “Overall, although LANS has implemented many elements of its improvement plan, the persistent differences between LANS and NA-LA on their understanding of safety basis requirements continues to delay safety basis document development and maintenance,” a statement in the report said. 

    The office of Enterprise Assessments identified the source of the delays coming from the NNSA-Los Alamos Field Office.

  • LAHS grads urged to carve out their own corner of the world

    The graduates of Los Alamos High School were encouraged to carve out space in their own corner of the world while not forgetting the corner from which they came during Saturday’s commencement ceremony held at Griffith Gymnasium.

    “The choices and decisions you make will help you form your corner of the world,” Los Alamos teacher Brian Easton told the 245 graduates.

    Easton, who has taught economics, government and various social studies classes at LAHS for 20 years, told the graduates the best way to make good choices and decisions is by referring back to the economics cheer from their days in his classroom. 

    “And what does it start with?” he asked. “It starts with ‘Demand.’ In your corner of the world demand excellence; demand excellence of yourself and demand excellence of the people who are in your corner of the world. Demand truth, demand respect and never settle for less.”

    The second part of the cheer is “Supply.”