Today's News

  • Lujan emails: What about New Mexico and Gold King?

    “I’m so humbled,” Ben Ray said in the first of two emails June 24.  

    Oh, puhleeze, Ben Ray. Or should I say, Congressman Lujan. Or Rep. Lujan. Keep it respectful.

    Borrowing from Winston Churchill, Ben Ray has much to be humble about.

    He’s running for the U. S. Senate. He seeks to replace Sen. Tom Udall, who is retiring. There is an opponent – a real one – Secretary of State Maggie Toulouse Oliver.

    I get emails from candidates, masses of them. Some I save. A compulsion, I suspect. Sometimes it’s worth taking a deep breath and looking at the saved group, just to see what is said. That’s today’s agenda. Full disclosure: I’m no Ben Ray fan.

    Campaign emails, besides being a pain for recipients, provide insight into the candidate and the campaign, which tells about the candidate. I saved 14 emails sent between June 4 and 14. One day had two emails. June 24 generated three.

    The first two emails, sent June 4 and 5, were preposterous at best and probably, it seems to me, not true. These two emails were duplicates, which seems sloppy. The absurd part was the claim, “My race was just named the most competitive Senate race in the entire country.”

  • Loope to appear in court July 31

    Marion Loope, a Los Alamos resident suspected of violating her probation on a simple battery charge that occurred in April 2018, is scheduled to appear in court July 31.

    If convicted, Loope could serve the remaining one year, three month sentence.

    Loope was scheduled to have the hearing last month but it was delayed so her mental health needs could be assessed. She also made the same request last year, but was denied.

    “This is simply an evaluation to see what mental health needs are present and then get an assessment as to whether her needs can be met in the current facility,” First Judicial Court Judge Jason Lidyard said at her last hearing June 14.

    Loope is still in custody for the probation violation. The original charge was simple battery against a woman. In that case, she received a year’s probation, in lieu of a sentence of one year, three months and 14 days.

    She violated that when, on May 9, she allegedly hit a woman again.

    According to court records, a pychiatric-diagnostic evaluation was performed on Loope and entered into the record June 13.

    At her June 14 hearing, Lidyard said the evaluation will determine what sentence he hands down.

  • Gov creates group to legalize pot

    Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced Wednesday the members who will make up the working group she created who will study proposals to legalize the sale and consumption of recreational marijuana in the state.

    The governor said she planned to propose legislation to legalize the drug during the 30-day state Legislature session in January.

    “I want New Mexico’s introduction and management of recreational cannabis to be the envy of the country,” Lujan Grisham said in a release Wednesday.

    The Legislature failed to pass legalized marijuana legislation this year. A bipartisan proposal to legalize recreational cannabis through state-run stores won House approval but stalled in the Senate. It was the first time such a bill had passed a chamber of the Legislature in New Mexico.

    Lujan Grisham announced last week she would create the working group to study legalizing cannabis.

    The governor said the group would ensure that she and other pro-legal marijuana advocates would start the next session with credible, equitable and cohesive legislation proposal that would incorporate all public safety concerns, workplace regulations, labeling requirements that protect underage children and other issues.

  • Legacy waste progress report remains murky

    When residents and officials from nuclear watchdog groups came to a meeting hosted by Department of Energy contractor N3B June 26,, they thought they would to hear about the status of the cleanup of a decades-old chromium spill that’s threatening the regional aquifer.

    Or, maybe how the cleanup operation of a toxic high explosives compound on Los Alamos National Laboratory property was progressing.

    Some residents were disappointed.

    “I think it was presented well, they’re on the right track, but I thought there would be more opportunity for public input right from the start,” Los Alamos resident Margie Stockton said. “I think probably a lot of people are leaving here a little bit frustrated that we just spent two hours without the opportunity for input. There’s going to be a lot of work if you want to be involved.”

    During N3B’s two-hour presentation, officials from the Environmental Management Field Office and N3B presented graphs, brochures, charts and slides on how they were going to accomplish the cleanup of these areas, and more. They also gave residents web addresses they could visit where they can get a hold of the same documents they had to track how N3B’s cleanup mission progress.

  • BYU helping NASA prep for human mission to Mars

    PROVO, Utah (AP) — Researchers at Brigham Young University are helping with a NASA-sponsored project measuring the electrical charge and size of dust particles on Mars.

    The BYU group is nearing completion of the three-year project that hopes to understand the climate of the Red Planet and the impact the dust has on materials sent to its surface, the Deseret News reports .

    The project began two years ago after NASA asked universities across the country for a Mars dust analyzer proposal, according to Shiuh-hua Wood Chiang, one of the BYU professors and researchers heading the project.

    "Mars rovers, when they land on Mars, rely on solar power and solar panels to generate electricity. Dust tends to stick on these solar panels and reduce the power generation capabilities," he said, explaining that the dust's electrical charge causes it to stick to the panels.

    Researchers need to understand how the dust particles may affect future instruments and life support systems on Mars, he said.

    He noted that "in the future, we will be sending humans to Mars and the manned missions will require life support systems that interact with the Martian atmosphere, we need to understand how the dust particles may affect these instruments and life support systems."

  • Fourth of July fun

    The Kiwanis Club’s Fourth of July festivities brought out the crowds to Overlook Park Thursday for a patriotic day filled with good eats and lively music. And of course, fireworks filled the night skies, delighting kids and adults alike. Check back for more photos and a full story in our Sunday edition.

  • White Rock Children’s Parade set for Fourth of July

    The annual White Rock Fourth of July celebration will be Thursday at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 366 Grand Canyon in White Rock.

    The Children’s Parade will begin after a brief flag ceremony and singing of the national anthem at 10 a.m., surrounding the flag pole in front of the church.

    Boy Scouts of White Rock will then lead the parade carrying the Colors.

    They will be followed by Cub Scouts.

    Children of all ages will follow.

    Children are encouraged to dress up, decorate their bicycles and tricycles, wagons and other transportation of choice to join the fun. The parade will be escorted by the Los Alamos Police and Fire Departments. The route is less than a half a mile, returning to the church parking lot.

    This patriotic parade is a community favorite as children take to the streets in their tricycles, bikes and wagons, along with their parents and other community members.

    A carnival will follow the parade on the shady back lawn of the church.

    Entertainment and fun will feature free games and prizes, refreshments and good, old-fashioned visiting with neighbors and friends. There will be balloons, snow cones, popcorn and ice water for everyone. The carnival will end shortly after noon.

  • New Ethics Commission
  • Snow back on Lobo staff

    Head coach Paul Weir has officially added former Lobo assistant coach Craig Snow back to the UNM staff, the program announced Tuesday. Snow comes from New Mexico Highlands University where he spent five years, most recently as the director of athletics and head coach, following three years with the Lobos. He will join Weir’s staff as the special assistant to the head coach effective in July.

    “Craig’s previous successes with the Lobo basketball program and his passion for the university and state provided an amazing opportunity for our program,” Weir said. “I am incredibly thankful to Craig for joining us and continuing the journey of taking this program back to some of the great heights that he himself has enjoyed here.”

    Prior to his time at NMHU, Snow spent three seasons on the UNM men’s basketball staff. In 2013-14 as an assistant coach, Snow helped guide the Lobos to a 27-7 record, a Mountain West Tournament Championship and a No. 7 seed in the NCAA Tournament. New Mexico was ranked as high as 17th nationally in the 2013-14 season.

  • UNM says goodbye to 4 sports programs

    ALBUQUERQUE (AP) — An era is ending at the University of New Mexico as the school officially stops four sports programs, including men’s soccer.

    Head soccer coach Jeremy Fishbein says unsuccessful efforts over the past year to save the program have left those associated with it physically and mentally exhausted.

    Men’s soccer has been one of the university’s most successful teams, winning its share of conference titles and making regular appearances in the national collegiate tournament.

    All four programs are set to end Monday after the UNM Board of Regents voted last year to cut soccer along with beach volleyball and the men’s and women’s ski teams to shore up a budget deficit within the athletic department.

    Officials also said they needed to address compliance issues with federal mandates regarding equal opportunity for female athletes.

    Fishbein said it has been an honor to coach at the university over the past 18 years.

    In a parting statement, he described soccer as a progressive and diverse sport that will be part of the state’s future.