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Local News

  • New Highlands director for new department indicates change for university

    As Patrick Wilson was being introduced to the Highlands University Board of Regents and faculty back in April, President Sam Minner said that “the weight and fate of the institution” was now on his shoulders.

    The 46-year-old with red hair and a red beard with spots of white, addressed the board, sharing information, with his southern accent from his native Memphis, on the benefits of investing more efforts in improving the university’s online and extended programs.

  • UWC board explores options for hot springs

    By Gwen Albers, Las Vegas Optic

    The UWC-USA Board of Trustees has agreed to explore a partnership with a non-profit to manage the school-owned hot springs.

    Friends of the Montezuma Hot Springs in January applied for non-profit status. Its board consists of local folks who for years have done monthly cleanings of the springs.

    The goal is to reduce the legal exposure of the school, while empowering community members to take greater responsibility for site management.

  • Fort Union Days celebration

    (From left) Sofia Martinez, Alra Maestas, Asundia Garafolo and Larissa Ruiz dance during the Fort Union Days celebration. They were a part of the New Mexican folkloric dancing by the Los Zapateados Dancers. This year’s event centered around the Buffalo Soldiers, spotlighting the all-black infantries that served in the western frontier during the 19th century.

  • Border official says aid needed to save lives

    The Associated Press

    When 16-year-old Carlos Hernandez Vasquez fell ill in a holding facility at the U.S.-Mexico border, he was diagnosed with the flu and given medication, then sent back to a cell to recuperate on a concrete bench.

    But Carlos didn’t get better. The Guatemalan migrant died May 20 from flu complications — a glaring sign that Border Patrol stations aren’t set up to manage thousands of children.

  • New sushi bar is Vegas' latest craze

    A new sushi bar has rolled into town — and Las Vegans are storming in for their fix.

    Oishi pronounced (“oh-ih-she”) is the newest addition to the El Fidel Hotel, and it has already seen a large stream of customers since it opened earlier this month, according to Nicole Thomas, the director of special events and food and beverage manager for El Fidel Hotel who is also operating as the front-of-house manager for the restaurant.

  • City council approves public works funds pending 'hardship' waivers

    The Las Vegas City Council approved funds for a pair of Public Works projects Wednesday, but “hardship” waivers from the New Mexico Department of Transportation might eliminate any need for city money.

    The projects included improvements to Mountain View Drive and West National Avenue. The Mountain View project is in its second stage, while the West National project is in its third stage.

  • Daughter, dad are now Luna graduates

    Luna Community College

    When she was 8 years old, Jasmine Gallegos was her dad Gary’s designated go-fer, handing him wrenches and other tools while he worked on cars.

    Later, she followed him into full-time mechanic work and then into work as volunteer firefighters.

  • Cinco de Mayo ‘brawl’ results in child abuse charges

    By Ryan Lowery, Special to the Optic

    What should have been a fun celebration of Cinco de Mayo deteriorated into a fight that resulted in three people being charged with felony child abuse.

    Elauterio L. Lujan, 38, of Las Vegas, faces one count of third-degree felony child abuse, and one count of misdemeanor aggravated battery. He was booked into the San Miguel County Detention Center May 9, and released the next day on a $2,000 bond.

  • Deadline arrives for clergy abuse claims

    By Susan Montoya Bryant, The Associated Press

    ALBUQUERQUE— Monday marked the deadline for filing claims against New Mexico’s largest Roman Catholic diocese as it wades through a bankruptcy prompted by the clergy sex abuse scandal.

    Lawyers for hundreds of people who are submitting claims are hopeful the case will shed more light on a scandal that has rocked parishes across the globe.

  • Report: Santa Fe losing millions, thanks to Airbnb, others

    The Associated Press

    SANTA FE— A new report says Santa Fe is missing out on about $3.8 million in lodger and gross receipts taxes annually thanks to short-term rental units.

    The Albuquerque Journal says the report issued Wednesday by the nonprofit group Homewise Inc. says hosts from apps like Airbnb aren’t following city’s ordinances and the city should do more to enforce the laws.