UP -- The Aztec Farmer's Market has started its summer run. We support this kind of enterprise whole heartedly. The produce offered is grown within a radius of 100 miles, which supports the local economy. The food does not have to be trucked long distances, which means less air pollution and less wear on the roads. The market also provides a chance to get to know the people who grow your food.

 

UP -- The announcement of a planned living community in Bloomfield for senior citizens promises jobs and a boost to the local economy. Construction of the $79 million Waterfall Living Community is expected to provide as many as 2,200 direct and indirect jobs. We hope the project moves forward.

 

DOWN -- Navajo Nation President Ben Shelly's plan, which was announced in his state of the nation address earlier this week, was short on drought relief, according to Shiprock Council Delegate Russell Begaye. Begaye says emergency funding is needed to support "livestock owners who rely on the health of their animals." We agree that drought relief should be a priority.

 

UP -- Congratulations to Jacy Cave for his selection to the Louisville Slugger High School All-American first team as a multi-position player. Cave graduated from Piedra Vista High School in May and was the only New Mexico player selected to either the first or second team. We hope Cave has a long and productive career.

 

DOWN -- A 28-year-old Farmington man drowned last weekend in Navajo Lake. He was with his young nephew, who witnessed the incident. As hot summer days drive people to seek relief from the heat, we hope that people learn and remember water safety rules when they are enjoying the lake's bounties.

 

UP -- Another local person was recognized for his contribution to the sports scene, but this time it was a coach. John Gutierrez has coached for 52 years, most recently with Bloomfield High School. Gutierrez was named to the National High School Athletic Coaches Association Hall of Fame. We appreciate Gutierrez's humble response. "I think this is a community type honor," he said.

 

DOWN -- A meteorologists comment that predicted rains will not have a significant impact on New Mexico's dry conditions provided another reminder of the depth of the continuing drought. River flows are low and the total rainfall is below normal. It will take sustained wet weather, including rain and deep mountain snowpack, to change the direction of that trend. We think planners would be well served to assume that this won't change in the near future.

DOWN -- The report of a septic tank business illegally dumping waste on Bureau of Land Management property is infuriating. We'll leave it to the legal system to determine whether those accused are guilty, but there is no question that some are dumping illegally. If what we know about the case holds true, what would have cost $119.34 to legally dump in the landfill will cost an estimated $28,500 to cleanup.