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Today's News

  • Denish says she would push consolidation

    Democratic gubernatorial candidate Diane Denish said this week that she would pressure the two local school districts to come to the table to talk about consolidating their administrations.

    In an interview with the Optic’s editorial board, Denish said the state should provide incentives for the Las Vegas City Schools and West Las Vegas to combine. For instance, any savings should stay within the districts, going into the classroom rather than administration.

  • Editorial Thumbs

    Thumbs DOWN for ... UNCHANGED POLICY. Richard Grogan, Alta Vista Regional Hospital’s CEO, is leaving Las Vegas for another position in the Philadelphia area. We wish him well in his new endeavor.

  • Cowboy runners No. 7 in region

    New Mexico Highlands’ men’s cross country team is ranked seventh in this week’s national poll, moving up a spot from a week earlier.

    The latest U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association rankings, released Wednesday, have the Highlands men as one of seven Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference teams in the top 10 of the NCAA Division II Central Region.

  • East adviser takes some blame

    Regardless of who is to blame, east-side residents will see their property taxes increase by a whopping 30 percent come Nov. 1. 

    At a school board meeting this week, the district’s finance adviser, Al Clemmons, took some of the responsibility for the unexpected hike in taxes.

    San Miguel County Treasurer Alfonso Ortiz told members of the Las Vegas City Schools board at its regular meeting this week that his office is being bombarded with people saying they are not going to pay the higher rate.

  • City-Luna dispute may go to court

    A dispute between the city and Luna Community College over old natural gas bills probably will go to court, the mayor said last week.

    The city says it must collect the bills, while Luna contends they aren’t a valid debt.

    In 2008, then-Utilities Director George DuFour forgave $81,000 in charges after Luna paid half its bill. The city had been undercharging Luna for its gas from January 2001 to September 2006 because of an incorrect meter register number that was entered when the gas meter was installed, which resulted in the debt.

  • Editorial: Fiesta Council turns petty

    The Fiesta Council acts as if it has no problems. Yet it botched this year’s event schedule, turned in a late permit to the city, forgot to ask for an appropriation from the city and hasn’t produced a financial report in months.

    Instead of dealing with these shortcomings, the council has unfairly aimed its fire at 2009 Fiesta queen Carmela Montoya. This barrage has been an embarrassment — not for Montoya but for every one of the Fiesta Council members (and to an extent, our community).

  • Council members raises constituents complaints

    Councilwoman Tonita Gurule-Giron brought up a list of specific complaints from constituents at last week’s City Council meeting, which didn’t please some of her colleagues.

    Among the problems was a drainage issue and a weed complaint.

    Councilwoman Diane Moore said such matters should go through city employee Teresa Duran, whose job is to log and track such complaints.

    “She’ll take care of a majority of those issues,” City Manager Timothy Dodge said.

  • West XC shines at Manzano

    Good pack times helped West Las Vegas take a pair of top 10 finishes in this past weekend’s Manzano Invitational cross country meet in Albuquerque.

    West’s girls placed sixth and the boys 10th in a field loaded with Duke City schools and several other notable teams.

    “We ran pretty good; the competition was good,” said WLV coach Leroy “Caro” Armijo.

  • East ponders tax hike

    The superintendent of the Las Vegas City Schools agrees with the county treasurer that property taxes for east-side residents will increase dramatically.

    That’s to pay for a school district bond issue that funds building improvements.

    Last week, San Miguel County Treasurer Alfonso Ortiz announced to the County Commission that residents in the Las Vegas City Schools district would see their tax rates increase by 30 percent. For example, a household that paid $900 in taxes last year would have to fork out nearly $1,200 this year.

  • HU women's soccer ties Metro

    Tying an opponent is supposed to be akin to kissing your sister. You don’t get much out of it.

    That’s not the case, though, for the New Mexico Highlands women’s soccer team, which forged a 1-1 tie with Metro State College of Denver — the No. 3 ranked team in NCAA Division II — on Sunday at Perkins Stadium.

    Going the distance with the third-ranked team in the country? A tie feels pretty good to the Cowgirls.