Show of hands

Santa Fe Public Schools board members Maureen Cashmon and Lorraine Price will call for a vote at next Wednesday's school board meeting to start the closure process for Acequia Madre, E.J. Martinez and Nava elementary schools ($TNM). The prospect of closing schools has been top of mind for the board, which earlier this month rejected a proposal from member Steve Carillo to stop considering such closures all together. Board President Kate Noble has also expressed misgivings about school closures at this time, setting the board up for a 2/2 split. That could leave member Rudy Garcia to break the tie—if he's there: Garcia has missed half of this year's meetings. Next Wednesday's meeting will follow Tuesday's school board election where three seats are on the ballot. Cashmon is not running for re-election and two candidates are vying for her seat. Garcia is unopposed. Carillo faces challenger Carmen Linda Gonzalez. Read the Santa Fe League of Women Voters guide to all the Nov. 5 races here.

Speaking of schools

New Mexico's fourth and eighth-graders ranked well below the national average for both reading and math, according to the latest Nation's Report Card. Specifically, 29% of the state's fourth-graders are proficient in math, only 24% in reading; approximately 21% of eighth-graders are proficient in math and only 23% are in reading. The poor rankings follow new filings earlier this week in litigation against the state over lack of resources for the state's at-risk students.

Who wants to be a city manager?

More than four dozen people. That's how many folks have applied to fill the City of Santa Fe's open city manager position ($TNM). Applicants include former Albuquerque Chief of Staff Santiago Chávez, former state controller Ronald "Ron" Spilman and city of Santa Fe planning and investment officer Bradley Fluetsch. The position pays $118,600 to $177,900 a year and will be open through Nov. 13. The city will be paying $17,600 to consulting firm Management Partners to help recruit and evaluate candidates.

No brainer

All three Democratic US House members of New Mexico's congressional delegation cast yes votes yesterday in the resolution regarding the impeachment proceedings against President Donald Trump. Prior to the vote, US Rep. Ben Ray Lujan of D3 said "President Trump endangered our national security, undermined our elections, and abused his power–all for his own political gain." Congresswoman Deb Haaland said "I cannot stand by while this President continues to abuse his office to enrich himself and his friends while New Mexicans are struggling to get by and puts his political interests ahead of our country." And D2 Rep. Xochitl Torres Small said that she had come to DC to work on solutions to daily challenges and "…to do that work, I must also constantly act to support and defend the Constitution." Torres Small has been targeted by Republicans because her district is seen as vulnerable in the 2020 election.

Mr. Spruce goes to Washington

New Mexico is readying to chop down a 60-foot blue spruce and send it to Washington, DC where it will serve as this year's Christmas tree at the nation's capital. A tree-cutting ceremony will be held Nov. 6 in the Carson National Forest, attended by New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham along with forest officials (the event will livestream as well). A community celebration in Red River follows. Then, the tree will embark on a cross-country tour, which can be monitored online as well. The pièce de résistance, aka the national Christmas tree lighting, takes place Dec. 5. The first-ever national Christmas tree was a 48-foot Balsam fir circa November of 1923. If falling down a rabbit hole to read up on the history of the national Christmas tree and its many decades of tree lighting ceremonies sounds like fun, have at it.

Plankers, rejoice

Ski season has begun. Sipapu Resort opened yesterday and, as has been its tradition for the last 17 years, is the first ski resort to kick off the season with a combination of man-made and real snow. The resort's official opening was yesterday, but it's closed today, and only open on weekends through Nov. 22. Check out the complete schedule here. Ski Santa Fe is tentatively scheduled to open on Thanksgiving, Nov. 28, and is gearing up to do some hiring for the season: The Ski Santa Fe Hiring Fair takes place Nov. 15-16.

Trick or treat redux

If actual Halloween was just a scant too brisk for you to galavant last night, don't you worry. Halloween festivities continue throughout the weekend. Consider tonight's second annual Nightmare on Rufina Street concert at Second Street Brewery's Rufina Taproom, featuring local bands, DJ Mr Gray and a pop-up market. Plenty of other macabre and scary activities throughout the weekend, so be sure to scope SFR's calendar.

Siler Road, here we come

ICYMI, the Siler Yard: Arts+Creativity Center moved one step closer to completion this week, as the Santa Fe City Council signed off on approving the transfer of deed for the land the project will occupy; construction is expected to start in early 2020. Organizers have been actively working on seeing the project to fruition since proposing it in 2014: The development will include 65 affordable live/work rental housing, as well as retail and studio space and a shared maker space for artists and entrepreneurs.

Resuming fall now

Sunny today with highs in the mid 50s. Same tomorrow, but starting Sunday the daytime highs head back into the 60s. Northwest winds 10 to 15 mph shifting to the west this afternoon, with lows tonight in the 20s. And, yes, the cold temps this week and month did set some records.

Thanks for reading! The Word thinks she will take advantage of early voting either today or tomorrow in the Santa Fe City election, but it's more likely she'll actually vote on election day, Tuesday, Nov. 5. Either way, it's nice to have choices.