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Local News

  • Native American pageant held

    The Winter Buffalo Dance may have been the key to Kaylina Abeyta’s victory.

    Kaylina Abeyta, a member of the Ohkay Owingeh tribe, was crowned Miss Highlands University Native American Queen during the third annual Native American Pageant at Sala de Madrid last week. She replaces outgoing Queen Courtney Hudson.

    Abeyta wowed the audience with the Winter Buffalo Dance and said she’s been dancing since she was a little girl.

  • Hospital adds administrative post

    The state hospital says it has created a new management position to make the facility more efficient.

    Morris Madrid, the hospital’s finance director for the last couple of years, has been appointed to the newly created position of director of operational efficiencies.

    “In light of the current budget and economic conditions, he has graciously agreed to accept this role without additional compensation,” hospital administrator Troy Jones said in a memo to employees last week.

  • Man who fed millions of birds over his career retiring

    Jean Jaureguiberry, a 32-year employee of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, is leaving the Las Vegas National Wildlife Refuge and the many, many birds he has fed over his long career.

    This month, Jaureguiberry will hang up his tractor keys and lay down his gloves to retire and begin a new chapter of his life.

  • Storrie Project also left out of loop

    Members of the Las Vegas City Council apparently weren’t the only key players left out of the loop when the city administration quietly tried to change the intent of more than $1 million for a water project.

    Robert Quintana, president of the Storrie Project Water Users Association, said Monday that no one informed his group about the change either — and the association was very much involved in the issue.

  • HU students go to Mexico

    Social work students at Highlands University went to Mexico recently to improve their bilingual skills.

    Thirteen students from Highlands University’s one-of-a-kind Social Work Bilingual-Bicultural Master’s Program completed a successful exchange with the University of Chihuahua School of Social Work in Mexico this fall.

  • No more trips for students

    Eighth-graders at Memorial Middle School shouldn’t be expecting any more field trips this school year.

    School officials said that became the case after they caught a number of students drinking on a field trip last week to Albuquerque, where they visited a museum and saw the movie, “Twilight.”

    Rick Romero, superintendent of the Las Vegas City Schools, said eight students were seen by teachers pouring hard liquor into containers with Coca-Cola on the bus ride home.

  • Charges against Romero tossed out

    Prosecutors have dropped charges against former City Councilman Eugene Romero in connection with an argument he had with a woman at his house.

    Romero, 40, 300 Cumbres Patio, had been charged with false imprisonment, a fourth-degree felony, and criminal damage to property, a misdemeanor.

    In October, Las Vegas police were called to Romero’s house. According to court documents, the woman told officers that the former councilman didn’t want her to leave the house. Romero himself admitted to standing in the doorway, preventing her from leaving, police said.

  • Many like Union school as it is

    Union Elementary is a small neighborhood school. The students’ test scores are high. And the parents would like to keep things as they are.

    And so would Jim Abreu, superintendent of the West Las Vegas schools.

    A few years ago, the district developed a long-term plan in which the four classrooms at Union would move to Tony Serna Elementary and Family Partnership would then occupy Union.

    A couple of years ago, Union parents objected vehemently to the plan. But the district officially stuck to it.

  • District rejects low bid for bleachers

    An out-of-state company was the low bidder for a contract for new bleachers at West Las Vegas High School’s gym, and the district had already awarded the contract.

    Last week, however, the school board rescinded the low bid from the New York company because the firm came in with a change order right away to replace motors that open and close the bleachers at an added cost of $27,000, official said.

  • City names new housing director

    Five months ago, the city let go six of its directors. Now one of those positions is filled.

    Last week, the City Council approved the hiring of Robert Pacheco as housing director. He previously served as the director of the Tucumcari housing authority for 14 years.

    Pacheco, who is coming out of retirement, told the council that the Tucumcari authority increased its annual budget from $200,000 to $1.2 million on his watch.