• A fast-tracked search

    There’s an old Spanish saying that, loosely translated, means trying to do things on the cheap can prove costly in the long run.

    We were reminded of that saying last week as members of Luna Community College’s Board of Trustees discussed their search for a new president.

    As we’ve previously reported, President Pete Campos’ contract expires at the end of this month, and he has informed the board that he is planning to retire. He has offered to extend his presidency until the board finds his replacement.

  • Thumbs Our high country lowdown on the news - June 12, 2015

    Fake $20 bills have been circulating in Las Vegas in recent weeks. Las Vegas police are urging businesses and members of the public to be vigilant so they don’t fall victim to this crime.


  • Reaching a compromise

    There has been great consternation in recent months over the inability of state Democrats and Republicans to reach a deal on a capital projects package that would inject hundreds of millions of dollars into the state’s economy. Businesses leaders, local government officials and the media, including this newspaper, blasted lawmakers and the governor for their inability to compromise on this critically important piece of legislation to finance desperately needed infrastructure projects and get more New Mexicans working.

  • TSA dropped the ball

    Editor’s note: The following editorial is from the Minneapolis Star Tribune.

    Tests by undercover TSA agents reveal unacceptable gaps in security screening.

    Look at your fellow travelers the next time you’re in an airport security line. There’s a unique expression shared by most waiting to have their carry-on bags and persons scrutinized by Transportation Security Administration officers (TSA).

  • Thumbs Our high country lowdown on the news - June 5, 2015

    Mora County native Vanessa Cummings, her husband, Brandon Joshua Cummings, and their 10-month-old son, Dawson Chase Cummings, were killed Sunday night when the driver of a semi suffered a medical episode and plowed into the family’s SUV on Interstate 40 in Texas. It’s impossible to make sense of tragedies like these. All we can do is pray for this young family and for the devastated loved ones they left behind.


  • Read this summer

    Teachers and students throughout the country are breathing a sigh of relief with the arrival of summer vacations.
    Both groups have certainly earned a break given the litany of tests, and everything else they’ve endured throughout the school year.

    But there’s a downside to the nearly three-month summer break that students are beginning.

    It’s called the summer slide, a well-documented phenomenon where students lose reading proficiency during the summer months.

  • Embracing transparency

    We congratulate the New Mexico State Investment Council for finally seeing the error of its ways and agreeing to be more transparent when it comes to settlement agreements.

    The investment council voted last week to adopt a new policy requiring that all settlement agreements be voted on publicly by the full council. Negotiations can still take place behind closed doors.

    This is a significant — and welcome — change from its previous practice.

  • Thumbs Our high country lowdown on the news - May 29, 2015


  • Don’t drink and drive

    If you picked up a copy of Friday’s Optic, chances are you saw the ad purchased by Ray Collins.

    The ad shows the crumpled white minivan where five members of his family died after their vehicle was struck by a wrong-way driver whose blood alcohol content was four times the legal limit. At the bottom of the ad is a family photograph of Renée Collins-Gonzales, 39, Paul Gonzales, 35, Selena Gonzales, 10, Jacqueline Gonzales, 11 and Alisha Garcia, 17, who died in the crash, and of Arissa Garcia, the sole survivor of the crash.

  • No special session

    It appears that the window for a special legislative session has come and gone, and that’s truly unfortunate, given what was at stake.

    Lawmakers adjourned the regular legislative session in March without approving a capital outlay package that would have provided more than $260 million in funding for capital improvement projects around the state. Entities in Las Vegas and San Miguel County were in line to receive more than $21 million in funding under one version of the capital outlay bill, while entities in Mora County were slated to get $255,000.