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View Sample Pages : Santa Fe New Mexican, April 27, 2005

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New Mexican (Newspaper) - April 27, 2005, Santa Fe, New Mexico THE SANTA FE Locally owned audit Serving Mexico for 156 years WEDNESDAY APRIL 27 2005 FIFTY CENTS Tudee sets Aamodt deadline By BEN NEARY The New Mexican The parties in the Aamodt water rights lawsuit Tuesday told the pre siding federal judge theyre inching closer to a possible settlement District Judge Martha Vazquez responded by giving the parties until January to hammer out a settlement If they cant she said they face the prospect of bringing the mammoth 40yearold lawsuit to trial The situation sounds much more hopeful than I had Vazquez said after hearing from sev eral lawyers However she said come January if theres no real progress she may have to set the case which has been pending since 1966 for trial The Aamodt suit seeks to deter mine the ownership of water rights in the Rio Pojoaque Rio Tesuque and Rio Nambe watersheds There are four American Indian pueblos in the area and determining the extent of their water rights has been difficult Vazquezs timetable is designed to give Congress time to consider legis lation to authorize funding for a pro posed regional water system which lies at the heart of settlement details made public so far A proposed settlement agreement released iast year after years of secret negotiations among the lawyers involved flopped It called for getting the federal government to foot most of the bill for a regional water system but many nonIndians who would have been forced to give up their private wells to connect to it protested they had never been informed of the deal beforehand Vazquez ordered the lawyers back to the table with instructions this time to Please see AAMODT Page A4 INSIDE TODAY Simple genius Todays madscientist Spanish chefs are playing with liquid nitrogen and dry ice agaragar and nitrous oxide working a kind of culinary alchemy to conjure vegetable foams and noodles cut from gelled consomme Luckily cookbook author Penelope Casas reminds us that the downtoearth regional cooking of Spain still exists and its easily translatable to American tables Taste Cl Get informed about Area G Members of the public can learn about plans for Los Alamos National Laboratorys Area G a controversial radioactivewaste dump at a public forum May 3 in Santa Fe Santa Fe El Norte Bl Todays obituaries Adelina Martinez 86 Santa Fe April 22 Crail F Hammond 61 Santa Fe April 18 Dorothy B Craig 77 Santa Fe April 24 Helen B Snarcy 90 Helen V Martinez 80 Santa Fe April 25 Jairo Gutierrez 30 Santa Fe April 18 James R Laird 62 April 22 Ramon N Montoya 77 Santa Fe April 22 Robert H Dinegar 83 Santa Fe April 21 Page B2 Todays forecast Partly cloudy windy showers High 68 low 38 Page B2 INDEX Annies Mailbox D7 Movies B2 Business D5 Muluals D5 Classifieds Opinion Comics A7 D8 Police notes B2 Crossword D7 Scoreboard D2 Horoscope D7 Sports Dl local news Bl Slocks Lotteries B2 Taste Cl The Wests ffidest Newspaper Four sections 32 pages 156th year Issue No 117 Publication No 596440 Late paper Classified ads News tips Main office 9840363 9863000 9863030 9833303 Learning by discovery Santa Fe schools explore expeditionarylearning concept Photos by Kathy De La New Mexican Sara Jen right counts plastic eggs Tuesday in Rayna Dineen and Suzanne Shakespeares prekindergarten and kin dergarten class at the Santa Fe School for the Arts a private school that uses the expeditionarylearning approach From left are Merit Willey Sarafina Borowska and Berke Borowska In the background is Adrienne Marquez By WENDY BROWN The New Mexican At the Santa Fe School for the Arts students recently learned about animals not by sitting in a classroom but by welcoming a crate full of chickens to a coop built next to the school They learned how to feed the chickens gather eggs and use the eggs for everything from food to decora tions The goal at the sixyearold private school on Jaguar Drive and at other schools that use a concept called expeditionary learning is to learn as much as possible by doing and to spend less time in the classroom and reading textbooks Its an approach that has drawn the attention of Santa Fe Public Schools officials YVhen Jody Drew asked the Santa Fe school board this winter for approval to open a public charter school next year based on the expeditionarylearning model board members liked the idea so much they talked about stealing it for the district as a whole While there are no immediate plans to convert exist ing public schools to expeditionarylearning schools local officials are exploring the concept Superinten dent Gloria Renddn and a group of principals have met with a representative from the Expeditionary Learning organization and Associate Superintendent Paula Dean traveled to Denver to attend a national conference in March Expeditionary learning is an excellent model for learning Dean said Theres no denying it They use all Chime Dolker holds one of several chickens that the School for the Arts keeps in a coop to help students learn about animals Students feed the chickens and gather eggs among other activities the best practices that educators ought to However she noted an obstacle to implementing it here Its a pretty expensive The Santa Fe School for the Arts near Capital High School and Ortiz Middle School educates 96 students in preschool through middle school The schools director Rayna Dineen said teachers started the lessons on animals by asking students what they already knew about animals From there teachers Please see LEARNING Page A6 Kathy De La New Mexican Eric Smith 18 pleads no contest Tuesday to aggra vated battery of a household member in connection with his mothers death At right is his attorney Sydney West teen avoids jail time in moms death By JASON AUSLANDER The New Mexican An 18yearold Santa Fe resident charged in connec tion with his mothers death last summer agreed to a plea bargain Tuesday that allows him to avoid jail or prison time Instead Eric Smith will face a maximum of three years in the custody of the New Mexico Children Youth and Families Department for admitting to striking his mother 40yearold Ruth Ann Smith at least twice the night she died in July Smith pleaded no contest Tuesday to aggravated bat tery of a household member and prosecutors agreed to drop a charge of firstdegree kidnapping which carries a mandatory 18year prison sentence Also prosecutors agreed Smith will be sen tenced as a juvenile the crime was committed when he was 17 instead of as an adult Pircher assistant attorney said she the plea mainly Ruth Ann Smiths didnt want Eric Smith to go to the state peni tentiary Hes also had a difficult Pircher said He has a lot of issues to work Smiths attorney Sydney West said she was com pletely unhappy with the plea but pointed out it was Smiths decision to accept it He deserved the oppor tunity to clear his West said She said the decision to accept the plea had nothing to do with rulings made by District Judge Michael Vigil on Tuesday morning Those decisions based on motions filed by prosecutors meant Heidi district offered because family Please see TEEN Page A8 Records reveal Delay lobbyist often in contact By SHARON THEIMER The Associated Press WASHINGTON Tom DeLay and his top aides were often in daily contact with lobbyist Jack Abramoff during the mid1990s as the lobby ist made campaign contributions and arranged travel for the House leader while seeking legislative help for a multimilliondollar client according to law firm records made public for the first time DeLays office kept Abramoff now under criminal investigation routinely apprised of congressional efforts to block new regulations on the Northern Mariana Islands Abramoffs firm reported it drafted legislative materials for DeLay and Abramoff boasted to island leadershe could use his close ties to Republican leaders to block legislation from receiving a House vote Getting the bill off the schedule for next week however should enable us to use our connections within the Leadership to ensure it will not come to the Abramoff wrote the islands in Sep tember 1996 The Northern Marianas bill ing and correspondence records of Abramoffs former lobbying Please see DELAY Page A5 Tom DeLay Congressman kept jobbyist Jack Abramoff apprised of efforts to block regulations on his client the Northern Mariana Islands INSIDE Delay joins Bush in Texas to push Social Security reform Page A2 Miami Beach mayor seeks to keep sex offenders out By MANUEL ROIGFRANZIA The Washington Post MIAMI BEACH Sprinkled among the pulsing dance clubs flashy cars and allnight every night glitter of this adult play ground are pockets of another world There are 15 schools and 38 parks in this gangly 7Amilelong barrier island city each pulsing with a sound of its own childrens voices Miami Beach Mayor David Dermer is close to building a virtual wall around the children rewriting municipal law to almost entirely block registered sex offenders from moving into his city If Dermer succeeds his pro posal was passed unanimously in the first of two required votes experts say Miami Beachwould have one of the most restrictive sexoffender policies in the United States if not the most restrictive Dermers measure would more than double the buf fer zone required between the homes of registered sex offenders and schools parks school bus stops or any place where children regu larly It is one in a flurry of proposals inspired Please see MAYOR Page A4 ;