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Today's News

  • NMAA lifts ban on prep sports; new state schedule out

    In response to the reopening of 16 schools in southern half of the state, the New Mexico Activities Association has lifted its suspension of high school sports effective on Wednesday.

    As a result, the usual round of spring sports championship events will indeed be staged, albeit with a revised "Plan C" schedule, also released on Wednesday. The revised schedule contains several differences from the tentative one issued on Monday. (See the weekend print edition of the Optic for a full explanation and the schedule.)

  • Upset in state baseball tourney

    Robertson's 14th seed Cardinal baseball team edged No. 3 Sandia Prep 6-5 in Albuquerque on Friday evening to open the Class 3A state tournament. The Cards will need to win once more in a Saturday doubleheader to complete the upset and advance to the quarterfinals.

    Meanwhile, West Las Vegas, the 15th seed, lost 18-4 at No. 2 Bloomfield. The Dons need to sweep the host Bobcats on Saturday to move on in the tourney.

    The quarterfinals of the Class 3A bracket will be held Thursday in Albuquerque at a couple of local high schools. The finals are Saturday at Isotopes Park.

  • LETTER: Now protect the roadless areas

    Last month, when President Obama signed into law the furthest-reaching land protection in 15 years, he did it in the name of Theodore Roosevelt. In 1908, President Roosevelt established 150 national forests as America’s legacy for future generations.

    Here in New Mexico, Roosevelt’s vision created the Carson, Cibola, Lincoln, Santa Fe and Gila national forests. A century later, those forests and others like them still stand, because Americans enthusiastically embraced our heritage lands and pushed back when special interests threatened them.

  • EDITORIAL: Board right to raise issue

    A firm auditing a governmental entity’s finances should be unquestionably independent. That’s in the interests of public credibility.

    Recently, the West Las Vegas school board debated whether it should choose J.J. Griego Professional Services as the district’s auditor for the next three years, as it has been for the previous three.

  • COLUMN: Why denigrate Mexicans?

    As usual, we’re seeing that local argument between those who say film productions have greatly benefitted the community’s economy and those who say they haven’t.

    Both sides have their good points, but I sure would like to bat down one criticism of movie projects in the Meadow City.

  • EDITORIAL: Arresting their own

    The Las Vegas Police Department recently arrested one of its former officers for distributing prescription drugs.

    The department, which heads the Region 4 Narcotics Task Force, investigated Robert Ortega, who was on the force until last month. for trafficking drugs. And he ended up facing three counts of drug distribution, while his wife, Judith Ortega, is charged with two counts.

    Both are presumed innocent until proven otherwise. However, the arrest of the former officer shows that the department isn’t exempting its own.

  • West district throws off taggers

    Taggers doing mischief at the renovations at Don Cecilio Martinez Elementary School found their graffiti washed away.

    That was due to the foresight of district architect Antonio Ortega. After completing work on a wall, Ortega ordered a special anti-graffiti spray, which construction workers applied.

  • City looks at erasing history

    No one is disputing what happened at the City Council’s Feb. 4 meeting: A split governing body fired then-Utilities Director George DuFour.

    It all happened during an open session, attended by dozens of residents.

    But the city administration apparently prefers not to officially remember the heated discussion before DuFour’s dismissal.

  • Luna worker not following court order

    More and more convicted drunken drivers are being required to get ignition interlocks as a way to make sure they drive sober.

    Drivers must blow into the alcohol-detecting devices, and if they are under the influence, their cars won’t start.

    But it’s not always easy to make sure people are using interlocks, as required by judges.

  • East auditor approved despite dispute

    The Las Vegas City Schools board approved a new auditor, but not without a controversy.

    One member criticized the administration for its handling of the matter.

    Because of an illness of the previous auditor, De’Aun Willoughby, the district fell two years behind in its audits.

    An-other problem in the bidding process came after the fact, when Griego Professional Services submitted a bid reflecting the now-defunct Bridge Academy Charter School in the price of services.