Local News

  • Highlands fundraising goal met

    By Margaret McKinney
    Highlands University

    The Highlands University Foundation met its goal to raise $250,000 in private money to increase high-impact practices that boost student success.

    The New Mexico Higher Education Department will now provide a 2:1 match, creating a permanent $750,000 endowment.

  • Ex-senator pleads not guilty to fraud

    By Morgan Lee
    The Associated Press

    SANTA FE — Former New Mexico state Sen. Phil Griego pleaded not guilty on Monday to fraud and bribery charges in a long-simmering political scandal over his role in the sale of a state-owned building.

  • AG clears last 2 mental health providers

    By Susan Montoya Bryan
    The Associated Press

    The last two mental health providers under investigation for possible Medicaid fraud have been cleared by New Mexico’s top prosecutor.

    Attorney General Hector Balderas sent a letter Tuesday to state lawmakers informing them of the outcome.

    “As with the previous 10 investigations, although the investigation identified some regulatory violations, we were unable to substantiate a deliberate or intentional pattern of fraud,” Balderas wrote.

  • In Brief - News - April 6, 2016

    The Associated Press

  • NMSU not hiking tuition

    The Associated Press

    LAS CRUCES — New Mexico State University’s Board of Regents has decided not to increase tuition for the 2016-17 academic year.

    Monday’s vote means the university will need to cut its budget by approximately $10.7 million for the next year.

    During a town hall meeting last month, university leaders outlined how NMSU was facing a challenging financial situation stemming from several factors.

  • Looking Back - April 6, 2016

    In 1966

    Monday, April 11, 1966 — The first forest fire of the year in New Mexico filled the upper reaches of Gallinas Canyon with smoke Sunday afternoon as it consumed about 200 acres of pine, piñon and spruce before being confined by the firefighters. The fire started at a public campground about a half mile from the Forest Service ranger station in the Santa Fe National Forest, about 14 miles west of Las Vegas. District Ranger Earl Blann said that the fire was definitely man made.

  • Weather - April 6, 2016


    HIGH 69° / LOW 37°
    Sunny, with a high near 69. South wind 5 to 15 mph.
    6:40 a.m. to 7:27 p.m.


    HIGH 72° / LOW 41°
    Mostly sunny, with a high near 72. North wind 5 to 15 mph in the afternoon.
    6:38 a.m. to 7:28 p.m.


    HIGH 61° / LOW 40°
    A 20 percent chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 61.
    6:37 a.m. to 7:29 p.m.

  • BREAKING; Kelt Cooper hired as LVCS superintendent

    Kelt Cooper has been named the next superintendent of Las Vegas City Schools. The board approved a two-year contract with Cooper by unanimous decision on Saturday afternoon.

    See Wednesday’s Optic for comprehensive coverage of Cooper’s hiring.

  • ‘My daughter would still be alive’

    “It’s a boy!” Those were among the last words those closest to 26-year-old Desiree Castillo heard her say. 

    Castillo and her husband, Carlos, were excited after learning that the baby they were expecting was a boy. They had been in Santa Fe for a pregnancy checkup. Desiree had been receiving prenatal care in Las Vegas until Alta Vista Regional Hospital closed its OB unit.

    What started off as a happy day turned tragic.

  • Shots fired outside Eagles bar

    Las Vegas Optic

    A 24-year-old Wagon Mound man ended up behind bars last week for allegedly firing multiple shots outside of the Eagles lodge after he was thrown out of the bar for quarreling with another patron.