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Pet of the Week: Houdini

on October 14, 2012 - 5:58am

Houdini. Courtesy photo


Houdini is Pet of the Week. Houdini is not a magician, but an adorable black and white spaniel/BC mix.

He recently got a bath and is ready to show off his black and white coat. He is affectionate and sweet with both dogs and people, and would love to accompany his new person everywhere.

The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, (505) 662-8179, has a great selection of on-site adoptable pets. Others are currently off-campus in foster homes. 

Visitor Guides: Friday afternoons 4-6 p.m., volunteers will be at the shelter to give potential


New Deadline and Expanded Criteria for Creative District Advisory Committee Applicants

on October 13, 2012 - 3:50pm


Los Alamos County announced Friday that the deadline to receive letters of interest from applicants interested in being appointed to the new advisory committee being formed to assist the County and Council in the implementation of the Los Alamos Creative District will have until 5 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 16 (to match the day with date previously announced.)

In addition, the criterion requiring prospective members to “live in either Los Alamos or White Rock” has been expanded to include those who “live or work in Los Alamos County.”


Letter to the Editor: Charter Amendments Clarify and Unify the Process

on October 13, 2012 - 2:15pm
By Kyle Wheeler
Los Alamos

The charter amendments on the ballot group the various processes for initiative, referendum, recall, and future charter amendments into more sensible groupings within the charter, so if you want to start a petition to recall an elected official or start some other petition, and these amendments pass, the process for how you do it will be spelled out more clearly within the charter.

The amendments clarify and unify the process. Even Rob Pelak agreed at a recent League of Women Voters Forum that the way the Charter Review Committee grouped the items makes sense.

Hellacious Hailstorm Hits Los Alamos Pummeling Private Planes

on October 12, 2012 - 9:22pm

Hail damage to one of many planes tied down at Los Alamos County Airport, which received the worst of a torrential hailstorm that struck Los Alamos about 2:30 p.m. today. Photo by Julie Habiger

Close up view of hail damage to one of many planes at Los Alamos County Airport this afternoon. Photo by Julie Habiger

By Carol A. Clark

Marble sized hail pounded the community today around 2:30 p.m., falling especially hard at Los Alamos County Airport causing damage to a number of private planes.

"I have never seen hail like that in my life and I'm not afraid to say that it was frightening,"

County Hires Junior Attorney and New Planner

on October 12, 2012 - 11:13am

County news:

Kathryn Thwaits has been selected to fill the newly created position of Junior Assistant County Attorney in the County Attorney's Office, 475 20th St, Suite D. Her starting salary is $72,665.

Thwaits worked during the last four years as general counsel for the New Mexico Personnel Office.

Prior to that position, she worked as an attorney for the District Attorney's Office in Espanola. During that time, she spent a day or two each week working at the courthouse in Los Alamos.

Thwaits lives in Los Alamos and has for several years.

Daniel Osborn of Denver has been hired to


Letter to the Editor: Proposed Charter Amendments Appropriately Packaged

on October 12, 2012 - 9:17am
Councilor David Izraelevitz
By David Izraelevitz and Mike Wismer
Los Alamos County Councilors

Among the many important decisions facing us as a community this November, is the issue of several proposed amendments to our County Charter.

Much has been written about the process by which these amendments were composed, aside of whether each is a good idea or not.

In a subsequent column we will discuss the merits of each proposed change, but here, let's talk about the process itself, and specifically logrolling, because we want to correct some erroneous comments in this area.


Get Ready for the Big Picture: New Patron Internet Computers at Mesa Public Library Coming Soon!

on October 11, 2012 - 11:20pm
One of the most used services at Mesa Public Library for locals and visitors alike is the free access to online computers in the Reference and Youth areas.
Coming in mid October, this service will be upgraded to provide an even better experience.
Why are the computers being upgraded?

Vehicles Again Travel Main Hill Road

on October 11, 2012 - 9:36pm

Vehicles were allowed to drive on the Main Hill Road this afternoon as all that appears left to be done on the renovation project is to paint the center stripe. Photo by Leland S. Lehman/

Authors Speak Features 'O'Keefe Stories' Oct. 25

on October 11, 2012 - 6:43am

Author Margaret Wood. Courtesy Photo


Authors Speak Series presents "A New Mexico Centennial" Event with Margaret Wood - O'Keeffe Stories, 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 25 Mesa Public Library Upstairs Rotunda.

Georgia O’Keeffe is one of the world’s most well-known and beloved artists.

In 1977, Margaret Wood began a five-year stay as companion and caretaker to then 89-year-old Georgia O’Keeffe.

There were no sign posts in the village in those years, and few markers for a young woman managing the complex role as companion to a woman of O’Keeffe’s stature who nonetheless

Smith's Fuel Center Opens Sans Sign

on October 10, 2012 - 10:20am

Katy Korkos of the Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce leads Smith's representatives in this morning's official ribbon cutting of the new Smith's Fuel Center on Trinity Drive at Knecht Street. Photo Greg Kendall/

A Smith's cashier trainer readies the fuel center for its first customers. Photo by Greg Kendall/

This Oct. 5 photo shows the new Smith's Fuel Center sign installed. It was removed yesterday because of a sign code and traffic safety snafu in the sign permitting process.

First Day of Absentee Voting Draws Crowd

on October 9, 2012 - 8:22pm

A group of local voters marched from the Democratic Party Headquarters in Central Park Square to the Los Alamos County Clerk's Office this morning to cast their absentee vote. Photo by Greg Kendall/

Voters can park close to the Los Alamos County Clerk's Office 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday while casting their absentee vote. Photo by Greg Kendall/

Voting booths stand ready in the Los Alamos Clerk's Office to accept absentee votes. Photo by Greg Kendall/

Staff Report

Absentee voting (In Person or by mail) began today at the Los Alamos

Voter Registration Closes Today and Absentee Voting Begins

on October 9, 2012 - 9:58am

ELECTION 2012 News:

Voter Registration closes at 5 p.m. today in the Los Alamos County Clerk's Office.

Residents who would like to make changes to their voter registration or register to vote, may do so in the Office of the County Clerk at 2451 Central Ave., Suite D.

Voter registration forms are also available at the State of New Mexico Motor Vehicle Field Office and at the Los Alamos and White Rock Libraries.

Absentee Voting begins today by mail or early in person in the Office of the County Clerk.

Hours: Monday thru Friday; 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (open during the noon hour)

Address: 2451

County Seeks Citizen Volunteers for New Creative District Advisory Committee

on October 9, 2012 - 7:37am


Citizens, business owners and representatives interested in Los Alamos County’s recently adopted arts and culture district (a.k.a., Creative District) are invited to apply to join the Creative District Advisory Committee forming this month. Letters of interest are due to the County by 5, Monday, Oct. 16.

The County Administrator is seeking citizen volunteers to join representatives of cultural and business assets operating within the adopted boundary of the Creative District to provide guidance and advice to Council and staff regarding the County’s role in the implementation of


County's Student Shooter Drill Draws Praise

on October 8, 2012 - 11:36am

During this morning's emergency response exercise at Los Alamos High School, police captured the crazed student shooter and placed her in the back of a patrol car for transport to jail. She explained her reason for killing six students and injuring 29 others during her shooting spree was that she had a "really lousy time" at the recent homecoming dance. Photo by Carol A. Clark/

Los Alamos Police Officers arrive at the scene of this morning's simulated mass shooting at Los Alamos High School and prepare to enter the building where a female student is on a rampage shooting

IT'S ONLY A DRILL: 'Operation Hilltopper' Underway at Los Alamos High School

on October 8, 2012 - 7:12am


"Operation Hilltopper" is underway this morning at Los Alamos High School. Emergency first response organizations in Los Alamos County have, for the past year, been training their personnel, polishing their plans and tweaking their equipment in a comprehensive effort aimed at preparing to deal with a scenario that nobody hopes will ever arise – an active shooter loose at a school.   

"Operation Hilltopper" is a full-scale exercise designed to test police, fire, emergency medical support, Los Alamos Medical Center and Los Alamos High School personnel and their abilities to

County Line Highlights Special Council Meeting on Charter

on October 7, 2012 - 7:37pm


Monday, Oct. 8 is the observance of the Columbus Day holiday. Los Alamos National Laboratory and Los Alamos Public Schools are closed; however, Los Alamos County offices are open for business and all services are in operation.

No Council Meeting Next Week

They'll take a week off and be back for their monthly Work Session at
7 p.m., Oct. 16 at White Rock Fire Station #3. Watch next week's newsletter for more details about what's coming up on their agenda.

Special Council Meeting in Two Weeks About Charter Items

The Council announced they'll meet
at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct.


Reservations Open for Oct. 27 Halloween Carnival

on October 7, 2012 - 11:35am

Courtesy Photo


Join the Los Alamos County Recreation Division Oct. 27 for the pirate themed Pumpkin Splash and Halloween Carnival at the Larry Walkup Aquatic Center.

This family event runs 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and includes pirate themed carnival games, jumping into the pool and finding a pumpkin to decorate, and watching pirate movies.

The cost for the event is $ 7 per person. Sign up today at the Aquatic Center as the event is limited to 150 participants.
For further information, contact the Recreation Division at (505) 662-8173, visit the website

CONE ZONE: Week of Oct. 7

on October 5, 2012 - 7:47pm
NMDOT Mill & Overlay on NM502 Continues
NM502 (Main Hill) to Los Alamos will be closed from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 8, and weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. while the NMDOT completes milling and paving operations.
If necessary, work will continue on Saturday, Oct. 13 between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Work is occurring from east of East Gate Drive to the Bayo Canyon access road. Access to De Colores and the East Gate Industrial Park will be maintained from the townsite.

Animal Shelter's Pet of the Week: Aria

on October 5, 2012 - 7:36pm


Courtesy Photo

Aria is a friendly long-haired spayed female. Beautiful white and tabby markings. Craves human attention but also loves playtime! She would love to have a playmate in her new home.

The Los Alamos Animal Shelter, 226 East Road, (505) 662-8179, has a great selection of on-site adoptable pets just waiting for their forever home! Others are currently off-campus in loving foster homes.

Be sure to visit the Friends of the Shelter website:, where you can get more information about volunteering, adopting, and donating.

San Juan-Chama Water Supply Project - The Wow Factor

on October 5, 2012 - 10:17am

Staff Report

At the Tuesday, Oct. 3 County Council meeting, Deputy Utilities Manager - Engineering, James Alarid of the Los Alamos County-Department of Public Utilities (LAC-DPU), led a presentation providing the details of a preliminary engineering report regarding access to Los Alamos County’s contracted 1,200 Acre-Feet-Per-Year (AFY) of water from the San Juan-Chama Water Project. 

Council took no action on the information presented.

The LAC-DPU has chosen a preferred alternative for developing the County’s share of San Juan-Chama project water. (Five alternatives were evaluated.


Construction Begins Monday on Multi-Purpose Covered Arena

on October 4, 2012 - 4:02pm


Los Alamos Couny's Community and Economic Development Department - Capital Projects & Facilities Division announced this afternoon that construction of the new Multi-Purpose Covered Arena will get underway Monday, Oct. 8. 

A community groundbreaking event is set for 3:30 p.m. Oct. 12 at the project site at the North Mesa stables.

Paul Parker Construction will install utilities to the site begining Oct. 8, which includes the installation of an 8” water main and electricity. 

The installation of the water main will involve closing the BMX track near Brewer Arena from Oct.


New State Settlement Proposal for San Juan Generating Station Could Lay Foundation for "Third Alternative" Agreement

on October 4, 2012 - 7:24am

San Juan Generating Station. Courtesy Photo

PNM News:

PNM Resources' New Mexico utility, PNM, acknowledges that a state settlement proposal released today to address regional haze at San Juan Generating Station appears to be an important step toward an alternative to the current federal plan.

The proposed settlement agreement announced by the state would require several additional actions before moving forward. The first of those actions would be an agreement in principle by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and PNM to support the proposal.

The proposal then would require

Los Alamos County Issues RFQ for Hotel-Convention Center Developer

on October 4, 2012 - 6:46am

Los Alamos County has issued a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) to select a developer to design and construct a full-service convention center facility in the downtown district of the Los Alamos townsite.

Los Alamos County is soliciting a developer to design and construct a business conference facility (8,000-20,000 square feet), to include flexible meeting and event space combined with first-class dining and lodging facilities that will compete favorably with other “Class A” conference and lodging facilities in Northern New Mexico, and provide a local venue for special events—amenities for


Column: Checks and Balances

on October 3, 2012 - 6:42am

By George Chandler

“Checks and balances” is the phrase that describes the interactions among the branches of a government that provides for limiting governmental excess by the separation of powers into legislative, executive and judicial sectors. 

For example in the first instance, the federal government, the legislature passes laws but those laws can only be enforced by the executive and interpreted by the judicial, the legislature can remove judges or presidents and controls their budgets but is itself greatly constrained by being bifurcated. 

And so on.

Sunset Hayrides on Oct. 13

on October 3, 2012 - 6:40am
Courtesy photo
Join the Los Alamos County Recreation Division Oct. 13 for an old-fashioned hayride into the sunset on North Mesa.
Members of the Posse Lodge, Pony Club and the Recreation Division worked together to create a fun hayride for all ages.
The event is held 4-6 p.m. at the Posse Lodge and the evening includes apple cider, cocoa, coffee and light refreshments. Dress warmly and bring your own blankets for the hayride.
The cost for the event is $5 for adults 18 and over, $2 for youth 4-7, and $1 for children under 4. Sign up today at