Thumbs: Our high country lowdown on the news

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CROSSING THE LINE. A disturbing episode occurred last week at the East school district’s public meeting about its inordinately high property tax, which homeowners will be facing soon enough. Las Vegas gadfly Frank Casey apparently got so belligerent toward school board member Ramon “Swoops” Montaño that Montaño felt it necessary to call the police. Fortunately, the episode subsided rather than escalated when Casey reportedly changed his tune, amending his “I’m going to take you out” to the less threatening political intent to take Montaño out by unseating him in the next election. He then left before the police arrived.

If Casey thinks that turning it into a political affront instead of a personal threat makes it OK, he’s mistaken. He crossed the line and owes Montaño an apology.

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TECHNOLOGY OUT OF CONTROL? After last week’s thumb down for the longstanding misspelling of “Vegas” (as Vevas) on the electronic billboard outside the West Las Vegas Middle School, principal Steve Sandoval called to explain. It seems that the sign-making company that installed the billboard for the school, Sarasota, Fla.-based Robson Corporation, put up the typo and moved on, and West hadn’t been able to correct it — some sort of unresolved I.T. problem, according to Sandoval. Until this week, that is, since now it appears as “Vegas” (only, with a tail-less “g”).

So, West can’t control its own marquee? Fortunately, there is one alternative that can override waiting on Robson to fix it — West could have just unplugged the sign. And surely they would have if something more offensive had been posted. Apparently, a simple misspelling wasn’t enough to warrant such a drastic move.
That said, we’ve glad to see the correction.

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MOVING TRICK-OR-TREAT. We’ve heard of other communities moving Halloween up one night when Oct. 31 falls on a Sunday, and we had heard that the mayor might do something of that sort here, so we decided to inquire. We found out that Las Vegas Mayor Alfonso Ortiz did intend to move trick-or-treating in the Bridge Street and Plaza area to Friday, to accommodate area businesses that requested such a move — and he liked the idea of moving all trick-or-treating to Saturday night.

Sunday night’s never a good time to send the kids out collecting candy, with school immediately following their sugar highs from the night before. We too think it’s a good move to trick-or-treat the night before.

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BACK TO THE DRAWING BOARD. An idea that seemed to have merit was nixed this week by San Miguel County commissioners. Creating special zones to limit the construction of wind turbines near the Pecos and Gallinas rivers, an idea advanced by County Manager Les Montoya, was rejected by a commission majority. So now the central issue returns to far the wind turbines should be from people’s homes.

It’s been more than a year since the commission took up this matter, and no action has yet to be taken. But neither has any application been filed for the wind farm to be considered. We appreciate careful deliberation on such an important matter, but we suspect the affected residents are getting somewhat tired of the delays.

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“(We’re) peeling back layers of an onion ... We cannot rely on specialists in any capacity. We need to be engaged in these decisions.”
— East schools Superintendent Richard Romero, on his administration’s efforts to determine how a 30-percent property tax increase could have slipped by officials earlier this year.


From the Optic Editorial Board