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Today's Opinions

  • Double check incentive

    In the Jan. 20 story in the Los Alamos Monitor, it was finally revealed that one  of the Trinity Site options included a Walmart.
    However, the idea was discarded because Walmart wanted a “big incentive” to come into the community.
    Did anyone calculate what that incentive would be? Did anyone calculate the rise in gross receipts tax revenues that would be garnered from a Walmart as opposed to another Smith’s?
    Might the difference cover the “big incentive?”
    The people of Los Alamos already spend 70 percent of their money off the hill. Isn’t the idea behind  the Trinity Site to recapture some of that money?

  • A grand compromise

    I am encouraged by progress in the golf course redesign process, but as an open space advocate, I feel the revised designs still leave much to be desired.
    Alternative 1, with its limited appeal to golfers, seems like a short-term solution that will quickly lead us back to this very same discussion.
    On the other hand, Alternative 2 standing alone is a clear lose for open space: it destroys a substantial amount of ponderosa forest with trees up to 350 years old.
    However, I do see the core of a grand compromise, one that would end the slow erosion of our remarkable and unique interior wild land while also offering golfers the quality course they deserve.

  • Win-lose venture

    After the county signs a contract with NADG, Smith’s will control two-thirds of the shopping on the north side of Trinity Drive and all of the shopping on the south side of Trinity Drive and east of Knecht Street.
    That’s a pretty good deal for them but not a good deal for the community.  
    Competition is supposed to help a community thrive.  How can the county council and school board seriously consider a contract that gives one private company control of so much public property when it already controls a good-sized chunk of commercial property?

    Patricia Max
    Los Alamos

  • Can gov and legislature play nice this session?

    Lawmakers take their usual Friday recess. It gives the staff time to catch up with the flurry of bills introduced during opening days of the session and into binders for committee work.
    It also gives some lawmakers from the far reaches of the state an opportunity to get back home for the last time before the session ends.
    The capitol won’t be completely vacant, however. Finance committees and others will already be meeting.
    Before high speed presses became more accessible, bills were flown by private contractors to places like Portales and Roy for duplication over the long weekend.

  • Tourism ad campaign: Gasp, horror

    For cattle growers, branding has a specific meaning.
    For the rest of us, not so much. For citizen-consumers, branding, like sustainability, is a word bandied about with little attention to meaning.
    As a topic, branding gets attention these days around New Mexico because the Department of Tourism has just selected Vendor Inc. of Austin, Texas, to execute a $2 million advertising campaign “based on the brand essence” the department sees for the state, says Monique Jacobson, Taos native and tourism secretary.
    A brand is made up of a set of characteristics that, together, produce warm feelings from consumers for the thing, person, firm, whatever.

  • Give home businesses a break

    All you people who work from home, listen up. Somebody thinks you’re important.
    The governor has suggested reducing or eliminating the gross receipts tax on small businesses with a gross receipts tax liability of less than $200 a month – about half of the 80,000 businesses in the state.
    One of those businesses is mine. Wow! I was as happy to hear about a tax break as I was  to learn there are 40,000 of us out here.
    Who are we? We’re writers, consultants, bookkeepers, caterers, travel agents, website designers – you name it – and we work from home to minimize overhead.
    Critics have pointed out that if the governor’s goal is to create jobs, this slice of the private sector is least likely to do it.

  • Perturbed about Trinity Site Project

    I was very perturbed several years ago when the county decided to go ahead with the Trinity Site Project; then I had high hopes that it would simply die quietly, and now that it came back to life, I am even more perturbed.
    Let me explain my reasons why I am totally opposed to a resumption of this endeavor.
    Years ago this county created a master plan for the development of downtown Los Alamos. This plan was modified on and off, but fundamentally remained intact. Each time the basic premise remained to center the development of downtown on the intersection between Central Avenue and 15th Street.

  • Expect fireworks during session

    Expect fireworks from the 2012 Legislature even though everyone promises to be nicer.
    The thaw in relations began when Republicans, Democrats and Gov. Susana Martinez reached some agreements late in the redistricting process.
    Short 30-day legislative sessions were created for the purpose of building the following fiscal year’s budget.
    The governor and Republican lawmakers would like to see tax breaks for businesses and Democrats want to reinstate some program cuts.
    Now that the word — compromise — seems to be less onerous, a few tax cuts and a few increases in previously cut programs may be on the horizon.