As you peruse this latest edition of the news section of Weekly Alibi, please note that the midterm elections are less than two weeks away. Early voting in Bernalillo County is happening right now, as I write this.
There is only one contested $56,973-a-year Bernalillo County Commission position on the ballot. District 5 takes in the East Mountains and Sandia Labs area and has Charlene Pyskoty-D and James Smith-R vying for a seat on a surprisingly influential group of local and regional lawmakers. With that growing knowledge in mind, we’ve agreed that a progressive majority is a plus for this group. This is especially true in light of the additional facts regarding Steven Michael Quezada’s recent voting record.
Last month, Weekly Alibi profiled the Democratic candidate Pyskoty and honestly believe she is the individual best suited for the job. Pyskoty’s addition to the county legislative body would help enact progressive planks that involve fracking bans, sustainable water-use goals, cautious and conscious urban development of the East mountains and West mesa.
The race for Bernalillo County Sheriff and its $90,338 salary has Manuel Gonzales-D and Louis Golson-R saddling up for this top deputy dawg position. This election is of some concern to Weekly Alibi’s editorial board, mainly because the Democratic incumbent, Manuel Gonzales III, a seasoned and very reasonable local leader and lawman, does not favor the use of body cameras on Bernalillo County Sheriff’s Deputies who are on duty.
His opponent, Lou Golson, the, gasp, Republican, is a former Air Force Law Enforcement Specialist who happened to stay in Burque to live and raise a family after his tour of duty ended. He became a lauded police officer who retired with honor after 20 years only to come back and get in a life-threatening fire fight. Now he’s running for sheriff and he says that body cameras are “the national standard, and I’ll see that we have them on every deputy, every day.
We will all learn more about this important race next week, when Alibi news correspondent Joshua Lee reports on the sheriff’s election in BernCo.
Amendment One changes the way we get state court cases up the ladder to the state Supreme Court. In a nutshell, it will allow cases to go from metro court to the state Court of Appeals without going through a State District court review.
Amendment Two creates a separate, independent statewide ethics commission with teeth to investigate, adjudicate and issue advisory opinions regarding ethics and standards of conduct among government and other agencies.
The State of New Mexico has four bond requests for this election:
A is to provide for $10.7 million in aging and long-term services for state residents
B requests $12.8 million in library bonds to improve collections, infrastructure and staff career development among other things
C is for $6.1 million to go towards school bus improvements and purchases
D is for $136 million to upgrade higher education facilities throughout the state
Bernalillo County meanwhile, has six bond questions.
• $1.75 million for libraries
• $16.75 million for several improvements to the county’s public safety infrastructure
• $4.9 million for county parks and recreation improvements
• $8.5 million for county road improvements
• $5.5 million for drainage and storm sewer improvements
• $1.2 million for public housing improvements
The Albuquerque Metropolitan Arroyo Flood Control Authority is asking to issue $25 million in bonds to improve the area’s aging flood control infrastructure. These do not mean a tax increase.
There are several ways to cast your vote. Between now and Saturday, Nov. 3 you can vote early at one of a whole bunch of early voting places now open. Also, a mobile voting booth will be hitting some parts of the county until Nov. 3. Or you can go old school and wait for the Nov. 6 polls to open. Check out the Secretary of State website for more interesting information at: sos.state.nm.us. For early and mobile voting locations, along with just about all the other election information visit bernco.gov/elections. For other vote rocking ideas check out rockthevote.org. For the full League of Women Voters of Central New Mexico guide, which includes short candidate questions along with more information about the bond questions and amendments, check out lwvcnm.org. Most importantly, stay tuned to Weekly Alibi for more election profiles and coverage.