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Thompson Ridge Fire 90 Percent Contained as 41 Miles of Hose Reeled In

on June 18, 2013 - 10:36am

Valles Caldera National Preserve. Courtesy photo

Thompson Ridge Fire

Acres: 23,903; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed power line; Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 90 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 2 crews, 5 engines, 6 water tenders, 2 dozers; Total personnel: 339 and Available air support: 3 helicopters.

Summary: Today at 6 a.m., the Arizona Central West Zone Incident Management Team completed a seamless transition of the fire to the Albuquerque Zone Type III Incident Management Team.

Central West Team

Preparing for Rain Storms

on June 18, 2013 - 9:47am

Rain clouds loom as sun beams shower down on the Jemez Mountains Saturday as seen heading west toward Los Alamos from the Pojoaque Valley. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

BAER News:

Preparing for Rain Storms

JEMEZ SPRINGS - The recent Thompson Ridge Fire that burned on the Valles Caldera National Preserve, Forest Service, and private lands, changed the watersheds within the burned area.

The wildfire increased the potential for flash flooding and mudflows that could impact several communities, homes, roads, and other infrastructures adjacent to and downstream from the burned area.

USDA Celebrates National Small Business Week

on June 18, 2013 - 8:16am

USDA Celebrates National Small Business Week

  • Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announces $4.7 million in additional investment for rural small businesses

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today kicked off National Small Business Week by highlighting USDA’s actions to help rural small businesses create jobs, get access to capital and spur economic growth.

He also announced the selection of recipients for USDA’s Rural Business Enterprise Grants. USDA remains focused on carrying out its mission, despite a time of significant budget uncertainty.

“Small businesses are the

Udall on Syria: Intervening in Another Middle Eastern Civil War Not in U.S. Interests

on June 18, 2013 - 7:08am
Sen. Tom Udall
 
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a speech on the Senate floor, U.S. Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M., a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Monday urged those pushing for military intervention to answer three basic questions before rushing into a Middle Eastern civil war in Syria.
 
To watch video of Udall’s speech, click here.
 
Below are Udall’s remarks as prepared for delivery:
 
Like many others, I am deeply disturbed by the current situation in Syria. The appalling atrocities. The tragic loss of human life. The reported use of chemical weapons.

Public Invited to Comment on STIP

on June 18, 2013 - 5:54am

NMDOT News:

SANTA FE - The public is invited to comment on the New Mexico Department of Transportation’s implementation of the 2014-2017 State Transportation Improvement Program (STIP.)

The program will serve as the new four year plan for the state’s federal aid highway program.

The STIP contains proposed road and bridge projects and is required by federal regulation. Projects on the list are on federal and state highways (roads with I, U.S. or NM designations.)

The NMDOT has posted the 2014-2017 STIP on the internet asking for public comment until July 18, 2013. In addition, the NMDOT

Thompson Ridge Fire: Minimal Activity Expected Today as Crews Continue Rehab, Mop Up, Perimeter Patrol

on June 17, 2013 - 9:48am

Photo by Kristen Honig/Valles Caldera Trust

Thompson Ridge Fire

Acres: 23,903; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed powerline: Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 80 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 7 crews, 12 engines, 12 water tenders, 2 dozers; Total personnel: 526 and Available air support: 3 helicopters.

Summary: For the third consecutive day, fire activity was restricted to unburned fuels within the interior where a total of four acres have burned since Friday.

NM Delegation Introduces Bill to Improve Tribal Education

on June 17, 2013 - 8:46am

CONGRESSIONAL News:

WASHINGTON– Friday, June 14, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, along with Reps. Ben Ray Luján, Michelle Lujan Grisham, and Steve Pearce announced they have introduced legislation to improve tribal education and preserve Native American language in schools.

Graduation rates for American Indians and Alaska Natives are less than 50 percent – lower than the graduation rates for all other ethnic groups in the United States.

NMDOT: Delivery of 910,000 Lb. Transformer to Cause Roadblock Tuesday

on June 16, 2013 - 10:30am

NMDOT News:

SANTA FE - The New Mexico Department of Transportation, State Police and Motor Transportation Police will be working together to coordinate the transport of a 910,000 lb. transformer for Jemez Mountains Electric Cooperative, Inc. 

The transformer will be driven on a 20’ x 290’ trailer from Santo Domingo Pueblo to Chili (north of Espanola) beginning Tuesday, June 18 and arriving at its final destination the next day. The transport trailer will take up two lanes along the route and will travel at speeds varying from 5 to 30 mph.

The transport will begin Tuesday at 9 p.m.

BAER Team Assembled To Assess Fire Damage

on June 16, 2013 - 10:10am

SFNF News:

Rehabilitation of fire damage will be addressed by the Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) team.

Specialists of different disciplines will work with the various agencies and pueblos affected by the Thompson Ridge Fire to assess damage and recommend actions to protect the burned area and mitigate hazards.

A BAER team is established for all fires greater than 300 acres. The BAER team leader is typically selected by the Forest Supervisor in late spring, at the start of the fire season. This leader initiates action when the fire is about 60 percent contained.

Isolated Thunderstorms Shower Thompson Ridge Fire Overnight - Now 80 Percent Contained - Allowing Some Crews To Return Home

on June 16, 2013 - 9:42am

Smoldering from the Thompson Ridge Fire remains visible on the Valles Caldera National Preserve. Photo by Kristen Honig/Valles Caldera Trust

Thompson Ridge Fire

Acres: 23,903; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed powerline; Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 80 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 8 crews, 22 engines, 17 water tenders, 2 dozers; Total personnel: 602 and Available air support: 3 helicopters.

Summary: Last night interior fuel continued to burn but no new growth or interior runs were observed.

No New Growth On Thompson Ridge Fire Overnight

on June 15, 2013 - 12:57pm

The sun sets Friday looking west from the Summer Concert at Ashley Pond toward the direction of the Thompson Ridge Fire. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Thompson Ridge Fire

Acres: 24,032; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed powerline; Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 75 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 13 crews, 29 engines, 29 water tenders, 3 dozers; Total personnel: 763 and Available air support: 5 helicopters.

Summary: Last night fire activity was minimal, and there was no new growth on the fire.

Udall Named Chair of Senate Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee

on June 15, 2013 - 11:32am

U.S. Sen. Tom Udall, D-N.M.

U.S. Senate News:

WASHINGTON, D.C.– U.S. Sen. Tom Udall has been named Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee.

Udall was named the new to lead the subcommittee by Sen. Barbara Mikulski, D-Md., Chair of the full Appropriations Committee. He succeeds Sen. Frank Lautenberg, D-N.J., who passed away June 3, 2013.

“As Chairman I look forward to the responsibility of ensuring taxpayers dollars are spent wisely and the interests of hardworking families in New Mexico are protected,” Udall said.

Thompson Ridge, Jaroso, Tres Lagunas Fire Updates

on June 14, 2013 - 11:57am

Storm clouds fill the sky looking west from N.M. 4 toward the Thompson Ridge Fire late Thursday afternoon. The fire is now 75 percent contained. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Thompson Ridge Fire

Acres: 24,032; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed powerline; Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 75 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 15 crews, 35 engines, 29 water tenders, 5 dozers; Total personnel: 833 and Available air support: 3 air tankers, 4 helicopters.

Summary: Fire activity last night was minimal,

Learn to Backpack at Bandelier

on June 14, 2013 - 7:36am

Bandelier Backcountry. Photo by Sally King/BNM

BANDELIER News:

Join Bandelier staff and the Los Alamos Mountaineers for the second annual Introduction to Backpacking course.

This three part course will be offered Tuesday June 18, Thursday June 27, and Saturday and Sunday July 20 and 21. We encourage anyone who wants to experience Bandelier’s backcountry beyond day hikes to attend. Both beginner backpackers and those with experience are welcome to participate in this exciting event.

Tuesday, June 18: The Los Alamos Mountaineers and Bandelier staff will offer a presentation uncovering the basics

Thompson Ridge Fire 75 Percent Contained

on June 13, 2013 - 9:28pm

Valles Caldera. Photo by Kristen Honig/Valles Caldera Trust

Thompson Ridge Fire

The Thompson Ridge Fire is now 75 percent contained. The fire started May 31, 2013.

It is burning on the Valles Caldera National Preserve about two miles northeast of La Cueva.

The fire is in steep rugged terrain and is burning mixed conifer and ponderosa pine. The Arizona Central West Zone Incident Management Team, led by Incident Commander Bea Day, assumed management responsibility for the fire Sunday June 2, 2013.

Information

Incident TypeWildfire
CauseHuman
Date of OriginFriday May 31, 2013 approx. 2 p.m.

Los Alamos County to Receive $83K in PILT Payments for Police, Fire and Schools

on June 13, 2013 - 1:57pm
U.S. SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich today announced counties in New Mexico will receive approximately $34 million through the 2013 Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program.
 
A full list of the funding by county is included below.
 
PILT is administered through the Department of the Interior and provides funding for mostly rural counties that have a limited ability to levy taxes due to the amount of federal property in their jurisdiction, including Bureau of Land Management land, national parks and forests and military bases.

NM Transportation Commission Meets In Portales

on June 13, 2013 - 10:14am

NMDOT News:

SANTA FE - The policy making body of the New Mexico Department of Transportation will meet Thursday, June 20 in Portales.

The meeting will be 1:30-4:30 p.m. in the City Council Chambers at the Portales Memorial Building, 200 East 7th St.

Items on the agenda include:

  • Presentation and request for approval of projects to be funded in Fiscal Year 2014 by the Local Government Road Fund Program
  • Vote on Amendment 8 of the Fiscal Year 2012-2015 Statewide Transportation Improvement Plan (STIP)
  • Donation of NMDOT Rest Area Right-Of-Way to the BLM

Time will be allotted for public comment.

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Thompson Ridge Fire Behavior Expected To Be Moderate Today

on June 13, 2013 - 10:02am

The Thompson Ridge Fire at the Valles Caldera. Photo by Kristen Honig/Valles Caldera Trust

Thompson Ridge Fire

Acres: 23,946; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed powerline; Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 60 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 16 crews, 42 engines, 33 water tenders, 5 dozers; Total personnel: 885 and Available air support: 3 air tankers, 6 helicopters.

Firefighters took advantage of favorable conditions to conduct burnout operations along the containment line on the southwest flank of the fire

Udall Calls for Independent Probe Into NSA Data Collection

on June 13, 2013 - 7:58am

U.S. SENATE:
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Tom Udall (D-N.M.) today led a bipartisan call for an independent investigation into the National Security Agency’s (NSA) phone records and data collection programs by a key privacy and civil liberties panel originally recommended by the 9/11 Commission and strengthened through Udall’s efforts in the House of Representatives.
 
Udall sent a bipartisan letter to the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, asking it to “make it an urgent priority to investigate the programs mentioned above and determine whether they (1) are conducted within the

NM Delegation Introduces Bill to Strengthen STEM Fields

on June 13, 2013 - 7:56am
Sen. Tom Udall
 
CONGRESSIONAL News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich, along with Reps. Ben Ray Luján, Michelle Lujan Grisham and Steve Pearce announced Wednesday that they have introduced a bill to strengthen the nation's Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education and training programs in New Mexico and the U.S.
 
The STEM Support for Teachers in Education and Mentoring (STEM²) Act includes a package of initiatives designed to improve student interest and performance in STEM skills.

Thompson Ridge Fire: Today's Aerial Operations Success Allows Firefighters To Go Direct Tonight With Hand Ignition

on June 12, 2013 - 9:20pm

Thompson Ridge Fire. Photo by Kristen Honig/Valles Caldera Trust

Thompson Ridge Fire Evening Update

Acres: 22,900; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed powerline; Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 60 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 16 crews, 42 engines, 33 water tenders, 5 dozers; Total personnel: 885 and Available air support: 3 air tankers, 6 helicopters.

Weather so often dictates what we do and how we do it.

New Mexico State EOC Situation Report

on June 12, 2013 - 7:35pm

NMEOC News::

The New Mexico State Emergency Operations Center continues to monitor incidents across the state including multiple wildfires.

Below is a summary of each incident:

Power Outage - City of Albuquerque
Incident: Multiple power outages around the city since approximately 9:30 p.m. June 10. Affected Population: Initially 1,900. Power was restored to all areas by 5 a.m./June 12
. Affected Area: Selected areas of the population base of the City of Albuquerque. Situation Overview: CABQ EOC partially activated at approximately 9:05 a.m.

Thompson Ridge Fire Map Shows 981 Acres Burned Tuesday

on June 12, 2013 - 11:29am

Thompson Ridge Fire progression map showing the 981 acres that burned Tuesday at the Valles Caldera National Preserve.

Jaroso Fire Seen From Santa Fe

on June 12, 2013 - 10:23am

The massive plume from the Jaroso Fire seen Tuesday evening in Santa Fe near 599 and Camino La Tierra. Photo by Danny Gallant

Thompson Ridge; Jaroso Fire Updates - Morning of June 12

on June 12, 2013 - 9:46am

Thompson Ridge Fire

Smoke from the Thompson Ridge Fire late Tuesday afternoon looking west over the ball fields at Overlook Park in White Rock. Photo by Carol A. Clark/ladailypost.com

Thompson Ridge Fire Update

Acres: 22,852; Start date: May 31, 2013; Cause: Downed powerline; Location: Valles Caldera National Preserve; Containment: 50 percent; Fuels: Mixed conifer and Ponderosa pine; Terrain: Steep, rugged; Resources: 20 crews, 48 engines, 34 water tenders, 6 dozers; Total personnel: 991 and Available air support: 3 air tankers, 6 helicopters.

Last night crews experienced minimal fire

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