Local News

  • Top state official travels to Las Vegas in chopper

    State Department of Public Safety Secretary John Denko came to Las Vegas last week in a state police helicopter.

    It costs $600 an hour to run the chopper.

    But Denko said the trip to the Meadow City wasn’t for him. He said the two pilots needed some training time —  one of whom hadn’t flown in the Las Vegas area before.

    He said he came along because he has much experience piloting helicopters.

  • Victim's family offering reward

    The family of Mariah Arguello, the Las Vegas native killed by a drunken driver, wants to know more about the driver’s activities the night of the accident.

    Mariah Arguello, 18, was headed east on Interstate 25 near San Juan when Cecilio Jaramillo, 28, of Santa Fe crossed over and hit Arguello’s car head on late the night of April 23. Both died in the crash.

    A bottle of beer was found in Jaramillo’s car.

  • West won't reconsider

    In a divided vote last month, the West Las Vegas school board voted down a new contract for Superintendent Jim Abreu, meaning his time with the district ends June 30.

    But his allies on the board last week wanted to bring up the subject again, hoping for the board to reconsider.

    The issue was on the agenda for the board’s regular meeting. However, Abreu supporters’ hopes were shattered right from the start when board member David Romero made a motion to remove the item from the agenda.

  • Family Justice Center moves

    The Family Justice Center moved into new digs last month.

    The nonprofit group, funded by the state government, is now in the building next to the motor vehicle office on Ridge Runner Road in north Las Vegas. It moved from a building in the industrial park.

    The group entered into a lease agreement with San Miguel County, which recently built the structure. The center is paying for its lease with the county with in-kind services — providing help to domestic violence victims in the county.

  • Group says it won't fence Storrie soon

    Visitors to Storrie Lake State Park shouldn’t expect to see any fences being erected there for at least the next couple of weeks.

    As recently as Monday, the Storrie Project Water Users Association placed newspaper advertisements warning that it would close the park because the state refuses to renew its lease for the association’s land. The association’s leader said last week that the group may begin arranging for a fence as early as this week.

  • Bingaman touts health care

    U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman, D-N.M., told a an audience at Luna Community College on Friday that the health care bill President Barack Obama signed into law two weeks ago is a major step forward for the country.

    Bingaman highlighted a number of parts of the new health insurance law that he said will benefit New Mexicans. As far as paying for the the bill, he said other states will be paying more.    

  • City housing units vacant for long time

    Las Vegas’ housing authority is meeting and exceeding standards, except for one category, the agency’s director said last week.

    It takes, on average, hundreds of days for turnaround on housing authority units, Director Robert Pacheco said. The standard for turnaround should be 25 days, he said.

    “The housing authority put units on modernization status years ago. They thought the clock would stop until you could fix them,” Pacheco told the City Council at its regular meeting.

  • City to start Mills, 7th, 8th project

    The Las Vegas City Council last week approved the low bidder for a project to improve Mills Avenue and Seventh and Eighth streets.

    But some council members expressed frustration with the contractor’s past work.

    As usual, Sangre de Cristo Gravel Products won the contract for the project. The company, which bought Sierra Transit a couple of years ago, outbids other firms nearly every time, likely because it has a local plant and workforce.

  • Council: We're not being informed

    It seems as if history really does repeat itself.

    Shortly after the municipal election two years ago, then-City Council members Morris Madrid and Cruz Roybal complained that the city administration hadn’t invited them to a ceremony at a local park.

    They found out about it when they saw a picture in the newspaper that included all of the other members of the governing body. The city management at the time promised to do better.

    Fast forward two years, with a new city administration and council majority.

  • Driver faces DWI charge after crash

    The woman who crashed a Cadillac Escalade into a parked car last week drank at a nearby bar beforehand, police said.

    Tracy Crespin, 23, 736 Williams Drive, was charged with DWI, careless driving and and failing to stop after hitting an unattended vehicle. It was her second DWI, according to online court records.

    According to a Las Vegas police report, Crespin struck the Escalade in the 500 block of South Pacific Street late the night of April 1.