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Last updated 5:41AM ET
August 16, 2018
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First News: LANL may need to spend $10 million to correct security system problems. (listen)
(KSFR) - The national lab at Los Alamos may have to pay as much as $10 million to cover some of the costs of a new security system that's been plagued with problems. The money would cover costs that the federal government says might not be covered under terms of the contract. In the meantime, work is still halted on the huge project designed to give the lab a new security system being built around a plutonium facility. The $200 million project is over budget and still not operating properly.

The Bernalillo County Clerk is considering making changes to the way absentee ballots are counted. This comes after more than 100 ballots were found, uncounted, weeks after the November elections. The present process is to count absentee ballots by hand. KOB television reports they may move to an automated system. The ballots have since been counted but the results did not change any of the election outcomes.

Santa Fe Public Schools, under the leadership of new superintendent Joel Boyd, has presented a multi-option plan for improving high school education. The proposals were presented at last night's board meeting and were crafted by Boyd working with his appointed 13-member task force. Among ideas presented were creation of magnet schools--one of those a dual-language academy along with establishment of career academies. Superintendent Boyd is hoping to improve Santa Fe's dismal 56% graduation rate. The proposals unveiled last night will be the subject of multiple community forums early next year.

A new AT&T cellphone tower that was proposed for Santa Fe Community College will not be moving forward after residents of nearby Rancho Viejo gave a thumbs-down to the project. Today's New Mexican reports that SFCC president Ana Guzman decided not to refer the matter to the school's board in face of the opposition voiced at a community meeting last month. The telecom company had offered SFCC $25,000 a year in rent for the 70 foot structure.
Rancho Viejo homeowners expressed concern about the tower's health effects and negative effects on property values.

Farmers in the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District are being prepared for sharply curtailed water deliveries via the San Juan-Chama project next year. Today's Albuquerque Journal says federal authorities say drought has drained reserves and deliveries may be reduced by as much as 20%. Irrigation needs between Cochiti and Elephant Butte may be restricted to a shorter season. Snowpack around the headwaters that feed San Juan-Chama is at just 35% of average for this time of the year.

Santa Fe area residents are advised of an emergency preparedness drill taking place today from 9AM through noon. Conducted by a partnership of New Mexico Gas Company and the county fire department along with state police, the local office of emergency management says the drill will take place south of Santa Fe Downs on the west frontage road off of I-25.

Weather for Santa Fe - Sunny skies both today and Thursday with high temperatures nearing 60 degrees. Overnight lows in the low 30s. Forecasters say colder weather is on the way for the weekend with Saturday's highs in the upper 40s and just the mid 30s by Sunday with a slight chance for light precipitation.
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