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re: terrorized in Rio Rancho
The Rio Rancho Department of Public Safety will take serious allegations
against you without question. RRDPS officers will lie in wait until
they have an opportune time to walk into your home without explanation
or warrant. They will pepper you with questions even when you exercise
your right to remain silent and they find no evidence to support
the allegations. They will threaten you with physical violence when
you refuse to answer their questions and injure you with a forced
They will use off-line communications that can’t be recorded.
And then walk away with impunity, filing no reports, letting the
When you ask for explanations, no one—not the mayor, not
the city manager, not the city attorney, not the RRDPS director,
not even your city councilor—will give you an answer.
Your constitutional rights in Rio Rancho have been revoked. And
you’re stuck with the medical bills. Isn’t freedom wonderful?
—CHARLES ARASIM, Rio Rancho
re: Costco vs. Wal-Mart
WomenWork!, a national network for women’s employment, recently
reported good news about Costco.
In a competitive retail market that often credits success with
low wages and few benefits, Costco is breaking the mold. The average
Costco worker earns $16 an hour, and both full-time and part-time
employees have access to solid benefit packages that include health
and dental insurance for workers and their families. Besides medical
benefits, Costco offers part-time employees life insurance policies
and enrollment in a 401(k) plan.
Unlike Wal-Mart/Sam’s Club, Costco employees will not be
using public assistance to make ends meet. The staff of the House
Committee on Education and Workforce estimates that because of low
wages at Wal-Mart/Sam’s Club, the superstore conglomerate
costs New Mexico $108,000 a year for children’s health care
costs and $42,000 annually for low-income housing assistance—per
The NM Commission on the Status of Women, which in 2004 announced
it would no longer take charitable contributions from Wal-Mart,
is proud to see businesses such as Costco prioritize their employees’
The commission, as the voice for New Mexico women, believes in
the practices of Costco’s comprehensive benefit package and
wages. As a commission, we support pay equity and equality for women,
minorities, and all New Mexicans.
—MARY MOLINA MESCALL, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, NM COMMISSION
ON THE STATUS OF WOMEN
re: response to dog-napping dogcatcher
In response to “dog-napping dogcatcher” [March 2006
Signpost], by Susana Vincent, of Placitas, we would like thank Ms.
Vincent for helping direct a loose animal to safety at Watermelon
Mountain Ranch. So often we see roaming animals whose outcome is
tragic and we therefore encourage pet owners to microchip or tag
their animals so that if they are captured they can be reunited
quickly with their owners. Sadly, the vast majority of animals we
receive have no identification.
While we do not know the circumstances under which the Sandoval
County Animal Control officer, George Griegos, was contacted, we
wanted to assure you that our experience with Mr. Griegos has primarily
been positive and helpful. Unfortunately, animal-control officers
face a tougher job than most would ever realize—vicious animals,
sick and dying animals, abuse, uncaring owners and seeing far too
many animals euthanized at our local shelters. This is known in
our industry as compassion fatigue, and many shelter staff and animal-control
officers face burnout after a year or two.
What most residents may not realize is that Sandoval County has
only one animal-control officer to assist over a hundred thousand
residents in an area that covers nearly four thousand square miles
and includes seven pueblos. On average, residents have a minimum
of two animals per household, so if you do the math you can only
imagine the impossible task of handling and meeting our community’s
needs. We ask that you please request support for this important
department to be adequately funded. At the very least an additional
animal-control officer and vehicle are needed.
We also encourage the public to help out by spaying and neutering
their animals, ensuring that they are properly tagged or microchipped,
and by being responsible pet owners.
—JULIEN MCROBERTS, DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT, WATERMELON
re: dognapping dogcatcher postscript
The question is why, given the 4000 square miles and 100k residents
in Sandoval Co., the county's only dogcatcher would choose to take
a dog from its own yard in the "Animal Friendly" Village
of Placitas. Placitas isn't exactly a hotbed of abused, sick or
vicious animals; on the contrary, we have local animal advocate
groups who work tirelessly, as well as many Placitas residents who
provide foster homes and devote their own time and effort to rescues
and to reuniting lost animals with their owners. Quite a few of
us have adopted shelter animals, as well. Sandoval County animal
control clearly has a daunting task; however, unless the dogcatcher
prioritizes his time and uses some discretion, existing county resources
are being used frivolously.
—SUSANA VINCENT, Placitas