Local News

  • Candidate questionnaires

    District 68 state rep

    Thomas A. Garcia


    Age: 36

    How long in the district: Life

    Occupation: Education-ranching

    Experience: Deputy district director for U.S. Rep. Tom Udall 2000-07. District 68 State Representative 2006-present.

    Education: Graduated from Wagon Mound High School as valedictorian. Graduated from New Mexico Highlands University with a bachelor of arts in political science, combined science (chemistry and math), secondary education; master of arts in history/Southwest studies.

  • County enacts naming policy

    Just weeks before the Democratic primary election in June, a County Commission candidate’s supporters asked the commission to rename a fire station in his honor.

    The commission declined, saying the volunteer firefighters hadn’t even been consulted.

    Last week, the commission passed a resolution establishing the process for renaming of fire stations.

    In early May, the commission was presented with a petition containing the signatures of 150 residents in the Pecos Canyon who wanted to rename their fire station after Eloy Gonzales, a commissioner candidate.

  • Would-be commissioners talk roads

    County commission candidates focused on roads, solid waste, alternative energy and commissioner’s wages at Thursday’s forum at Memorial Middle School.

    Fred Romeo and Nicolas Leger are running for the District 5 seat, while Mary Bridget Maloney is running against Marcellino Ortiz in District 2. Ortiz was not present.

    Leger said the biggest complaint people in the county have are the conditions of the roads. He said primary problem the county faces is the lack of funding for road projects.

  • Partnership Act, Obama touted

    Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) people, as well as some who are “straight, but not narrow,” gathered at the Old Town Plaza on Thursday evening to rally support for the Family Domestic Partnership Act — and Barack Obama.

  • Issues examined at house forum

    Candidates for state representative in District 68 and District 70 answered audience questions during a forum at Memorial Middle School on Thursday. Republican candidate in District 68 Sylvia Olsen did not attend, but her opponent, incumbent Thomas Garcia, joined the two District 70 candidates, Democratic incumbent Richard Vigil and Republican Mel Root, on the panel.

    Root said his top three issues for the upcoming legislative session would be jobs, education and drug education.

  • Council tables ordinance

    After some discussion, the Las Vegas City Council tabled on Wednesday a new amendment to the city’s sex offender ordinance sponsored by Mayor Tony Marquez.

    Marquez said the city attorney needs to conduct a legal review regarding enforcement of the measure.

  • Two men accused in local burglary

    Two Las Vegas men are accused of breaking into 19 storage units. Police say they’re returning stolen property back to the owners.

    Charged with multiple counts of burglary were Angel Juarez, 18, 504 Colonias, and Steven Martinez, 19, a resident in the Lakeside trailer park.

  • Highlands homecoming nears

    New Mexico Highlands University celebrates homecoming 2008 with a full week of events under the theme “Let’s Ride.”

    Student Senate President Nicole Parra-Perez said some of the highlights during this year’s homecoming week include Tuesday’s HU Idol event at the ballroom — a takeoff on American Idol, with lots of talented people competing for the title as Highlands Idol.

  • County planning to get state funds

    San Miguel County is taking the first steps to seek funding from the state Legislature, which convenes in January.

    This week, the County Commission generally agreed with County Manager Les Montoya’s recommendations for requests for legislative funding.

    Montoya’s top requests include:

    • Hydrological assessment to see how much water there is in high-growth rural areas. This request would be in conjunction with the city of Las Vegas.

  • Forums being held tonight

    The Las Vegas Optic will hold a candidates forum tonight at Memorial Middle School’s auditorium.

    The Optic will take audience questions for the candidates.

    From 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., the County Commission candidates will take center stage. The District 2 candidates are Democrat Marcellino Ortiz and Republican Mary Bridget Maloney. From District 5 are Democrat Nicolas Leger and Republican Fred Romero.