Sandoval Signpost


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  The Gauntlet

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Roosevelt Elementary School in Bernalillo—possible site for future military museum

re: military museum in Bernalillo?

I am writing in response to the article in the January, 2015, issue of the Signpost, “Vacant school conjures vision of military museum.”

To our military veterans, I would first like to say that I appreciate your lifelong sacrifice of service to our country. Your braveness and valor is nothing but outstanding.

While a military museum is indeed an excellent way to honor our servicemen and women, I do not agree the Roosevelt property is best suited for this purpose. While I understand that Mr. Tapia and Mr. Montano agree this idea is the most viable and promising option so far for this property, I believe they are not thinking of the community they are serving.

The article states that this museum is “projected to draw one hundred thousand visitors during its first year.” I have to ask: are you serious? One hundred thousand visitors in my neighborhood?

The Town of Bernalillo, through no control of their own but via the Santa Fe Housing Authority, is currently in the process of building and remodeling the low-income housing which is directly located across the street from the Roosevelt property. New units have been added, which means more tenants, more traffic, and, more than likely, more children to the area.

As it already is, since the expansion of Rio Rancho over the last decade, our neighborhood has had to endure an increase in traffic. With that comes traffic violators. I would say that it is not safe to walk the dog, let the kids ride their bicycles or even play at the park with another “one hundred thousand visitors” looming on the horizon. I do not think it would be cool to look out my front window and see a Huey helicopter or a F-100 Super Sabre fighter jet parked on the Roosevelt property. No. Not me.

The vandalism to vacant buildings, as well as occupied buildings in Bernalillo is nothing new. My home has been vandalized; rocks thrown through my windows and grafitti on my fence. The Roosevelt property being vandalized is not a good enough reason to add more issues to the area. Bernalillo Public Schools should have boarded up the windows, but instead chose to abandon the property.

A military museum is not going to help the town economy. We’ve already lost our hardware store. Our only supermarket is in jeopardy of closing. Visitors to a military museum are not going to shop in Bernalillo. How will this idea help our economy? What am I going to get out an increase of traffic in the area and of looking out my front window to a parking lot and vintage military displays?

Again, this commentary is by no means a personal attack on our veterans. I am a member of this community. Since nobody thought enough of that to ask what I thought, I chose to let it be known publicly. I realize Bernalillo Public Schools and the Town of Bernalillo, as well as the group of veterans pushing for this project, may not have an interest in my opinion, but, nonetheless, I am a member of this community and I oppose a military museum in my neighborhood.

—C. Garcia, Bernalillo

Eastern Sandoval Citizens Association

—Chris Daul

The Eastern Sandoval Citizens Association (ES-CA), with the strength of Placitas residents, was able to succeed in enacting a number of conditions on the annexation and operation of the Fisher Sand and Gravel Mine. ES-CA, working with Mayor Jack Torres of Bernalillo, was able to limit the length of mining operations to seven years, limit the hours of operation to 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (Monday through Friday), and to require Fisher to provide a bond for land reclamation. ES-CA continues to oppose all mining in this area, but believed that Fisher was going to operate regardless of opposition. The final resolution provides the limitations that should insure a safe and controlled operation.

ES-CA has drafted legislation that would increase the County’s authority in leveling penalties for zoning violations, which would include mining operations. Currently, Sandoval County has limited enforcement options as we have seen in relation to the Vulcan (Lafarge) mining site. Legislation has also been drafted that would include sand-and-gravel mining within the State Mining Act. This would provide greater protections to the public that are lacking in the present process regulating sand-and-gravel operations. ES-CA is hopeful that our local State legislators will push these bills during the State Legislative session that is currently underway.

The ES-CA Board elected new officers for 2015. Bob Gorrell will be the president, Ed Majka will be vice president, Lynn Koch will be secretary, and new Board member, Susan Fullas, will be treasurer. ES-CA is sorry to say good-by to Orin Safier, who is moving away. As many Placitans know, Orin has served the community in a variety of roles and he will be sorely missed.

The next ES-CA Board meeting is February 2, at 6:30 p.m., at La Puerta Real Estate Services on Highway 165, in Placitas. All are welcome to attend. Visit the website at for updates on issues affecting Placitas.

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