releases candidate survey on water issues
The Middle Rio Grande Water Assembly, a volunteer regional water
planning group, released the results of a survey of state legislative
candidates. Entitled, “What Do They Know (and Believe) About
Water Policy,” the report includes the survey questionnaire,
tabulated and individual responses, and candidate comments.
The survey shows significant support for requiring water rights
for new domestic wells, for prohibiting or restricting the condemnation
of water rights through eminent domain, and for prohibiting or restricting
long-distance water transfers. The survey also shows unanimous support
for the prompt adjudication of Middle Rio Grande water rights. Adjudication
would determine who holds senior and junior water rights and whether
the region’s water is over-appropriated.
Candidates, however, were divided in their responses to such questions
as whether the Legislature should be given authority to establish
water use priorities and whether in-stream flow, i.e., keeping water
in the river, should be recognized under state law as a beneficial
use. While ten respondents agreed that county governments should
be prohibited from approving new subdivisions without an affirmative
finding of water availability from the State Engineer, seven were
opposed or neutral on the issue.
Nineteen of seventy New Mexico House and Senate candidates in Valencia,
Bernalillo, and Sandoval Counties responded to the thirteen-question
survey. Incumbents who completed the survey were Miguel P. Garcia,
Mimi Stewart, Larry Larranaga, Jimmie C. Hall, Jane F. Powdrell-Culbert,
Gerald Ortiz y Pino, Diane Snyder, Cisco McSorley, and Sue Wilson-Beffort.
Challengers who completed the survey were Bill B. O’Neill,
Janice Saxton, Benjamin Rodefer, Paula Papponi, John Sapien, Victor
Paul Raigoza, Eric Griego, Tim Eichenberg, Sander Rue, and Spiro
The Water Assembly supports the adoption of sustainable water management
policies to achieve the Regional Water Plan’s goal of balancing
water use with renewable supply.
To download the Water Survey please click
Bond issues carry price tag
—TY BELKNAP, SIGNPOST
Voters in the Signpost readership will see three bond
questions on the right side of their general election ballots for
the November 4 election. The combined price tag on the first two
questions—a flood control bond question and the hospital tax
question—is about $208 per year per $100,000 full value of
a home, as it appears on the Notice of Value that is mailed annually
by the Sandoval County Assessor.
A third question asks voters to decide whether or not Sandoval
County will impose a one-eighth of one percent gross receipts tax
to support operating expenses of the Rail Runner Express and fund
expansion of the Rio Metro Transit System. The increased tax would
amount to a mere twelve cents on a $100 purchase. The same question
appears on Bernalillo County ballots.
The Sandoval County Commission authorized all three questions to
appear on the ballot. They were instrumental in the 2007 state legislative
passage of HB 939—the Eastern Sandoval County Arroyo Flood
Control Authority Act. HB 939 is permissive legislation only, meaning
that residents have a chance to vote on the flood control plan that
was developed and the continued existence of ESCAFCA.
Governor Bill Richardson appointed five directors to ESCAFCA. The
five appointees are Debbie Kilfoy and William Sapien of Bernalillo,
Wayne Sandoval and Dan Dennison of Placitas, and Salvador Reyes
of Algodones. Board membership is based on population. The legislation
was prompted by the extensive flooding that occurred in the area
during the summer of 2006.
With the exception of Jack Torres, who replaced Bill Sapien on
the board, all the originally appointed directors appear on the
ballot and are running unopposed.
The town of Bernalillo has serious flood control issues which have
developed over the years due to poor planning and lack of enforcement.
The town council supports the passage of ESCAFCA.
Critics of ESCAFCA point out that the county and town simply need
to enforce drainage regulations that already exist, and that throwing
money at the problem and creating another level of government is
not the answer. Currently, proposed subdivisions must submit drainage
plans that are confined to the subdivision itself. ESCAFCA supporters
say that ESCAFCA has mapped the entire watershed and could incorporate
new development into an environmentally-friendly flood control plan
that would include the area as a whole. (See letters in the Gauntlet.)
During the past two years, the directors have conducted public
meetings to gather information about flooding problems. They have
also hired an engineering firm to study the watershed and flood
control. Dan Dennison stated that, if approved by voters, the $6
million raised for ESCAFCA would be leveraged and other agencies
and grants could help pay for over $60 million in flood control
projects that have already been identified. Although the question
on the ballot makes no mention of the mil levy, approval of ESCAFCA
will annually cost property owners $65.83 per $100,000 of the assessed
value of a home.
On August 17, County commissioners approved the request in support
of hospitals in Rio Rancho to impose a tax levy of 4.25 mills each
year, for not less than four and not more than eight years, on each
dollar of net taxable value of property in Sandoval County, to pay
contracting hospitals in accordance with health care facilities
contracts. The annual cost to taxpayers would be $141.66 per $100,000
of the assessed value of a home.
Supporters say that passage of the mil levy will help bring top-level
hospitals and treatment facilities, more jobs, education, and training
for healthcare professionals to Sandoval County. They point out
that this teaching hospital, in conjunction with the future CNM
and UNM Rio Rancho campuses, will address a critical nursing shortage
while providing the opportunity for students to achieve their goals
without leaving their hometown. They promise 1,632 new jobs, $1.5
billion in new gross receipts, and $24 million in property added
to the tax base.
Bernalillo County currently enjoys these benefits and absorbs the
costs. The cost of most health care for people without health insurance
and indigents is currently shouldered by UNM Hospital in Albuquerque.
Bernalillo County residents are being asked to continue a mil levy
which translates to over $400 on a $200,000 home per year.
Criticism of the Sandoval County mil levy centers mostly on the
cost. Many county residents will continue to seek health care in
Albuquerque and would not directly share in the benefits. During
this time of economic meltdown, voting in favor of tax increases
to fund the greater good is a tough decision.
Placitas Area Plan update
On two occasions in October, the Sandoval County Development Division
met with the public to hear presentations on Placitas Plan issues
and existing conditions, and listen to community presentations.
Attendance at the meetings, one held at El Zocalo and the other
at the County Commission Chambers, appears to be a far cry from
the July 17 meeting at the Placitas Community Center where hundreds
of Placitas residents converged to be a part of the process (see
Signpost, August 2008).
Project Facilitator, Cliff Spirock, is responsible for interaction
with all parties involved in the planning process. He serves as
the communication channel between those parties, and finally compiles
a report on what are and are not consensus positions regarding the
various planning issues. The parties involved are officials of both
Sandoval County and the Town of Bernalillo, property owners in Placitas,
and organized groups representing special and general interests.
Mr. Spirock has also emphasized his outreach function, which includes
meeting with groups that have well formulated positions and concerns
regarding the planning process. The larger the group that expresses
those positions and concerns, the greater weight they will have
in the process.
Mr. Spirock presided over the meetings which included a presentation
by Assistant Director of Public Works, Chris Miller, who spoke about
current and pending road issues in the county, and what the county
requires to accept maintenance responsibilities on existing, and
future, roads and bar ditches. Sandoval County Fire Chief, Jon Tibbetts,
Deputy Chief, James Maxon, and Placitas Fire Chief, Bud Brinkerhoff,
supplied information regarding the current status of the County’s
fire departments, EMT trained responders, and how the Insurance
Services Office (ISO) rates the region on a scale of 1-10 (a 1 rating
being perfect and a 10 rating meaning a community with no fire department).
Placitas is currently scored at a 7-9 split rating. This is largely
due to the lack of water supply and hydrants, and the fact it takes
roughly three times the number of people to fight a fire in older
areas of Placitas due to the crews having to shuttle water to the
site. Mr. Maxon expects that with future installations of county
fire stations and equipment, hydrants, and fire personnel, that
the rating will drop to a 5-6. Improved ISO ratings can affect insurance
premiums and increase funding from the state. Chief Brinkerhoff
reminded the crowd that Placitas is currently looking for new members
to be a part of the volunteer fire brigade.
Debbie Bowman, with the NM DOT, discussed transportation projects
in the Placitas Area. “There are currently no plans to widen
Hwy 165, but there are signage concerns that the DOT has for the
highway.” The interchange at Hwy 550 and I-25 will have federal
project funds available in the amounts of $16.6 million in 2010,
and $8.3 million in 2011 for improvements to the congested area.
Ms. Bowman expressed that the current Placitas Planning & Zoning
activities could not happen at a better time, as the DOT will look
at concerns and ideas from the community for the interchange project.
It is certain that a number of Placitas residents will want to have
input into this project due to not only the traffic concerns, but
the potential implementation of wildlife corridors in the future
Jennifer Ickes, with the New Mexico Environmental Department,
tackled the essence of liquid waste in the Placitas area. The state
has seen a declining number of liquid waste permits in the region,
which is following the building permit decline. Most of the waste
systems in Placitas are conventional septic systems. Ickes reported
that the state is seeing more less-than-ideal lots seeking permits,
which may require more technical and advanced treatment systems
for poor soils or steep slopes. There are many rules governing placement
and designs of waste systems, and for vacant lots, the grandfather
clauses for conventional systems will expire in 2010. It is recommended
for those who do not have permitted systems to get them permitted
with the state now. If systems are not permitted before the 2010
deadline, when a transfer of property occurs, there will be a fee
associated with the inspection and possibly maintenance of the system.
Ms. Ickes suggests that Placitas is well suited for septic waste
systems and the state would prefer the area’s emphasis be
on good management of such systems, as opposed to upgrading existing
and future hardware with a “big pipe” approach. In future
development, Placitas may want to look at “cluster systems”
that tie multiple homes together to a central system. Currently,
the state is using GPS mapping for existing and new septic tanks
and placing the information in the GIS system to track location
Knight Seavy, from Cashwell Properties, and a representative from
the civil engineering and planning firm of Bohannon-Huston, both
discussed elements of the planning and design hierarchy for commercial
spaces, pedestrian connectivity, lighting, water recharge, landscaping,
roads, parking, and the need for a “building vocabulary”
for future development. Their presentations focused on the need
for the Area Plan to include design standards that will apply to
Placitas and future buildable areas.
Bob Wessely, with Friends of Placitas, presented the group’s
list of five goals they would like to see addressed in the Area
Plan. Included in the list were the concerns that any plan should
continue to keep Placitas a coherent community with no new through
roads, protection of the limited surface and ground water, protection
of existing users water supply, ensuring that the historic, rural,
small town culture is maintained, and that any plan is adhered to
both now and in the future. Mr. Wessely supported the list of goals
with abundant rationales and justifications for the group’s
There are signs that the initial enthusiasm for the Placitas Area
Planning process is beginning to wane. The initial meetings brought
standing room only crowds, but currently the attrition rate for
attendees appears to be significant. The surest path to create a
logical and effective Area Plan is for residents to be active in
the process, because the planners take public interest seriously.
Mr. Spirock has set up an FTP site that contains all the public
documents. All documents contained in the site are available for
downloading. Persons can also upload documents to the FTP site,
but they should first be scanned for viruses, and an email should
be sent to Mr. Spirock informing him of the upload. Please e-mail
Mr. Spirock for FTP address, user name and password.
The best way to communicate comments and questions about the Area
Plan, even those directed to specific officials, is through Mr.
Spirock. He will post these communications publicly, and direct
them to the appropriate officials. He will also attempt to respond
to these communications. Obviously all such communications should
be respectful and focused. Where possible, factual support should
be given for the claims one makes. Mr. Spirock may be reached by
e-mail at email@example.com,
or through regular mail at Community Sciences Corporation, P.O.
Box 1328, Corrales, NM 87048.
The next Placitas Area Planning meeting will be held on Wednesday,
October 29th, at 6 PM, at the Sandoval County Courthouse in the
Commission Chambers where presentations and discussion will involve
“Community Presentations, Goals and Recommendations: Various
Community Groups presenting, including OnePlacitas.”
Mark your calendars for these future P&Z meetings at the Sandoval
- Wednesday, November 5: Staff Recommendations: Facilitator Report
of Consensus/Contention, and Staff Recommendations to P&Z
- Thursday, November 13: Approval of Plan Goals and Recommendations
- Thursday, December 11: Review of Draft Plan
- Thursday, January 29, 2009: Review of Final Plan
- Thursday, January 29, 2009: Review of Final Plan
- February 2009: Final Hearing for Plan Adoption
NOTE: These meetings are subject to change in regard to time and
—JOSHUA MADALENA, CHAIRMAN, SANDOVAL COUNTY COMMISSION
As American humorist Will Rogers quipped decades ago, taxes are
among life’s certainties. Another sure thing: Property tax
bills will be arriving in mailboxes across New Mexico in just a
matter of days.
Sandoval County is mailing about 110,000 tax bills with a net taxable
value of $3.24 billion. State law requires the bills be mailed early
in November to everyone owning property in New Mexico. Payments
for the first one-half of 2008 property taxes become delinquent
after December 10 and payments for the second half must be remitted
no later than May 10, 2009.
Sandoval County Treasurer Lorraine Dominguez is the “taxman”
responsible for collecting property taxes for all taxing districts
in the County. Yet, most of the money her office collects is channeled
directly to the State, local governments in incorporated areas,
school districts and, where applicable, CNM. Still other funds are
collected for a variety of such “special” tax districts
as the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District, Southern Sandoval
County Arroyo Flood Control Authority, and others.
Only a small percentage of the taxes collected—about twenty-two
cents of each dollar—funds Sandoval County’s programs
and services for residents.
County Assessor Rudy Casaus and his staff have been working hard
to place new construction on tax rolls as quickly as possible and
fairly assess values of vacant land and existing properties. Those
efforts, combined with the County Commission’s diligence to
create cost-saving partnerships with public and private entities
and keep budgets reasonable, are continuing to ease the “sticker
shock” that comes with the arrival of annual property tax
The bottom line result for Sandoval County taxpayers: While property
assessments have risen in step with market values, the County Commission
has not increased property tax rates since 1995. Again this year,
tax rates are lower for homeowners across Sandoval County.
The County portion of tax rate remains the same regardless of where
you reside in Sandoval County. For a home valued at $100,000, about
$168 will be collected for County programs and services.
Other components of the bill—taxes for local schools, cities,
and other agencies—vary widely from one area to another, which
means the total dollar amounts of tax bills, too, will range somewhat
from one community to the next.
Based on a home worth $100,000, for example, property taxes in
Rio Rancho and within the Rio Rancho School District and CNM boundaries
will be about $947, plus any special districts, or about $10 less
than last year. Taxes on a similarly-priced property in Placitas
will be under $607, or almost $15 less than in 2007.
In Jemez Springs, taxes on a home valued at $100,000 will be about
$725, or $16 less than last year, and taxes on a same-valued home
in Corrales will be $767, or about $22 less.
In Bernalillo, taxes on a home valued at $100,000 will be $692,
or about $17 less than in 2007, compared to $760, or $14 less, for
a same-valued residence in Cuba. In San Ysidro, taxes on a $100,000
home will be $782, or about $12 less than last year.
Further tax savings are available to homeowners and, separately,
veterans who qualify for exemptions that each provide $2,000 reductions
in the taxable values of their homes. It’s too late to qualify
for the exemptions this tax year. But, in order to receive the savings
in future years, you must apply at the Assessor’s Office between
January 1 and February 28. Once granted, the exemptions automatically
apply in later years until the home is sold.
Questions or comments for Commissioner Madalena can be mailed to
him in care of Sandoval County Administrative Offices, PO Box 40,
Bernalillo, NM 87004, or emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
County Commission Watch
—L.A. WILLIAMS, SIGNPOST
Sandoval County will welcome the former manager of Bernalillo County,
Juan Vigil, as the successor to outgoing county manager Debbie Hays,
assuming a contract is agreed upon between the applicant and the
Vigil, who was hired as a special assistant to Hays earlier this
year, was selected as her replacement from an original pool of fifty
applicants. The commissioners voted 3-2 in favor of Vigil. Commission
Chairman Joshua Madalena and Commissioner Orlando Lucero voted against
Vigil, noting their preference for the position would have been
Phil Rios, the county’s public works director. Both Vigil
and Rios have extensive résumés in government administrative
positions and many years of relevant experience. Should Vigil accept
a contract with the county, he will manage approximately 450 employees
and a roughly $93 million budget.
Big news for county departments, officials, and employees: Tyler
Technologies, Inc. has been given the green light to supply new
operating software to replace the current system. The requests for
the county to purchase new software, replace all existing software
and hardware, and require uniformity of usage in Sandoval County
departments and divisions was unanimously approved. Mike Good, Director
of the Division of Information Technology, pointed out that the
current system lacks centralized data management and that it doesn’t
allow for easy interface between departments. The existing antiquated
county software will be replaced with a county-wide integrated platform
which can eliminate the possibility of duplicate information and
allow for different departments to seamlessly interact. Expect a
transition to take six to twelve months for the migration of information
from the existing system to the new Tyler software.
The Commission held a special meeting for the approval of Certificate
of Tax Rates for the 2008 tax year (see Commissioner
Chairman Madalena’s “County Line,“ this issue).
Although the values of property in the county have increased, the
Commission has not increased property tax rates, and Commissioner
Chairman Madalena expects that tax rates will be lower for homeowners
across Sandoval County.
The Sandoval County Administrative Building, to be built at Plazuela
de Sandoval, located in the northwest quadrant of Idalia and NM
528, will house all of the current divisions presently located in
the Courthouse on Camino del Pueblo. The Commission approved a request
to enter into contract with Cameron Construction, the low bidder
for the project, with a base bid of $10,650,000 plus gross receipts
taxes. Expect a fifteen-month construction period for the 82,000
square foot building once the work begins.
Director of the Division of Public Affairs, Gayland Bryant, presented
Resolution No. 10-16-08.12, setting forth the legislative priorities
for the 2009 year. In order to allow for the most efficient use
of taxpayer dollars, the county will be seeking legislative assistance
and approval of the following:
STATE / REGIONAL LEGISLATIVE INITIATIVES
Local Government Road Fund—to “increase the reimbursement
rate through the Local Government Road Fund’s County Arterial
Program that allocates money for construction, improvements, maintenance,
and rights-of-way acquisition for county roads in New Mexico.”
Santa Ana Regional Fire Station—to “support legislation
to design, construct, and furnish a $2.116 million regional fire
station on the Pueblo of Santa Ana to provide critically needed
services throughout southern Sandoval County.”
Senior Programs/Agency on Aging—to “gain approval for
the Aging and Long-Term Services Department’s funding package
that includes $343,000 for specialized vehicles for home delivery
of meals, medical transport vehicles, a fifteen-person van; and
improvements, repairs and upgrades for the Bernalillo Senior Center
($20,000), the Corrales Center ($25,000), the Cuba Center ($44,500),
the Jemez Valley Center ($18,000), and the Placitas Center ($10,000).”
Changing Terms of County Elected Officials—to “seek
approval of a proposed Constitutional Amendment to extend existing
terms for county elected officials to three four-year terms.”
SANDOVAL COUNTY CAPITAL OUTLAY PROJECTS
Land Acquisition for District Court/County Judicial Complex, $3.7
million—“A Legislative appropriation of $3.7 million
is requested for Sandoval County to purchase property needed to
expand the 13th Judicial District Court, and Judicial Complex and
adjacent parking area.”
Sandoval County Administrative Building, $480,000—“Legislative
funding of $480,000 is necessary to match County funds of $12.112
million to construct a Community Room as part of the County’s
new administrative complex being built at La Plazuela de Sandoval,
located in the Town of Bernalillo on Idalia Road.”
Veterans Memorial Park, $1.5 million—“Sandoval County
is requesting Legislative funding of $1.5 million to construct a
Veterans Memorial Park at the master-planned La Plazuela de Sandoval
Magistrate Court/Detention Center Parking Lot, $227,000—“A
Legislative appropriation of $227,000 is requested to match County
funds to purchase land and construct parking areas to serve both
Magistrate Court and the County Detention Center.”
Sandoval County Road Projects:
NM 165 Improvements/Placitas, $193,800—“Sandoval County
is requesting $193,800 to design, realign, and construct an intersection
on NM 165 to provide safe entry and turn-out by motorists to and
from the County-owned property that serves the Placitas Community
Library and Multi-Use Center.”
Regina Cut-Off Road/Regina, $170,000 —“A $170,000 appropriation
is requested to complete asphalt overlay and provide all-weather
access on a 3.2-mile section of the Regina Cut-Off Road.”
Algodones Basketball Court Recreational Facility, $29,375—to
“plan, design, and construct a regulation-size basketball
court, with two-foot apron, to serve as a recreational facility
for the community of Algodones.”
The Commission listened as Charlotte Little spoke on behalf of
San Felipe Pueblo in its request for approval of an early voting
site at the Pueblo. A 2007 federal law allows tribes, nations, and
pueblos the ability to request alternate and/or early voting sites
when distances to voting facilities are greater than fifteen miles.
Little stated that the Pueblo’s residents would indeed have
to travel beyond the federally-mandated fifteen miles, while representatives
from the county insisted that after multiple attempts, the distance
never measured more than thirteen miles. There was lengthy discussion
regarding the distance, availability of equipment, poll workers,
and county funds, but in the end, the request was denied for lack
of a second after Commissioner David Bency moved for motion.
Rudy Montoya, elected to sheriff of Sandoval County in 1956, and
Frank Sisneros, a former State Representative and County Assessor,
were presented Community Leadership Awards by Commissioner Orlando
Lucero for their dedicated service to Sandoval County and the State
of New Mexico. Mr. Montoya, who was one of the youngest sheriffs
ever to be elected in the county, remarked, “It is very nice
to be remembered.” Johnnie Archibeque, former State Representative
and County Clerk, was not present, but also was honored with a Community
Commissioners Don Leonard and Jack Thomas presented Marine Corps
representatives Paul Caputo and Ron Cummings with funds for the
Lance Corporal Christopher Adlesperger Detachment 1316 of the Marine
Corps League in Rio Rancho. The chapter is the only detachment in
Sandoval County and the second in New Mexico. Lance Corporal Adlesperger
was the second New Mexico Marine killed in Iraq; he died in 2007.
Among many services, the Marine Corps league supports ROTC programs
in schools and help for returning Marines to find employment in
County Fire Department Chief Jon Tibbetts presented a plaque honoring
Steve Schneider of the Placitas Fire Department. Schneider is a
paramedic and firefighter who will be moving to Michigan after his
twenty-three years of service in Placitas. Bud Brinkerhoff called
Schneider “an exceptional member of the Placitas Fire Brigade,”
and said he will be “much missed.”
The request for a professional services agreement between the county
and Watermelon Mountain Ranch (WMR) for the continued operation
and expansion of the Kasey Says Program was unanimously approved.
The one-year agreement provides $45,000 of funding for the program
that works with at-risk youth. Mike Davis, speaking for WMR, noted
that roughly seventy-five percent of the youth who have gone through
the program return as volunteers, devoting time and energy by working
and training animals at the ranch.
Mike Good, Director of the Division of Information Technology,
gave an update on the Broadband Project (see Sandoval County Commission
Watch, Signpost, October 2008). The project is once again in “active”
status after a short delay. Cost overages on the project are expected
to be no more than ten percent of the initial budget, and equipment
is currently arriving, being inventoried, and installed. Good says
each site will have a twenty-four-hour UPS power backup, and that
frequencies have been assigned and are in the process of being licensed.
Phase 1 of the project, the infrastructure backbone, is still expected
to be completed in December 2008. Phase II will follow, delivering
broadband service in a one-year testing period in order to try out
different vendors and services.
Sandoval County Commissioners also approved the following:
•A request for approval of the Preliminary Plat for Lots
4-A through 4-E, Centro de Algodones, a Type Three Subdivision consisting
of approximately 10.5963 acres located in Algodones.
•A request for Preliminary Plat for Lots 1-11, Vistas Sandias,
a Type Three Subdivision consisting of approximately 11.2514 acres
located along Camino Cuesta del Aire in Placitas. The project was
already in the works and not part of the six-month moratorium on
subdivision applications in the Placitas area.
•A request by Debbie Hays, County Manager, for $70,000 in
Bond Funds for the purpose of planning and construction of the landscaping
of the two median entrances to Sandoval County on I-25. Hays has
attempted to get this accomplished for roughly seventeen years to
improve the image of the county she faithfully served. The estimated
completion of the project is December 2008.
Town of Bernalillo receives first bond rating
Mayor attributes excellent rating to the Town’s
Mayor Patricia A. Chávez announced that the town received
an ‘A+’ rating for its 2008 gross receipts tax improvement
revenue bonds. Last week, Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services
assigned its A+ rating to Bernalillo’s series 2008 gross receipts
tax (GRT) improvement bonds.
Mayor Chávez said the town should be very proud of this
rating. The bond rating will give the town investment potential
when financing capital improvements such as public safety buildings,
water and sewer systems, and transit upgrades. It will also save
the town thousands of dollars each year.
In order to obtain the Standard & Poor’s rating, the
town had to demonstrate prudent financial management and a plan
to implement capital improvement projects. This is the culmination
of years of hard work by the town council and town government.
“We can thank Town of Bernalillo Finance Director Santiago
Chávez for establishing recognized accounting principles
and securing a qualified audit this year,” said Mayor Chávez.
“We must also acknowledge the councilors for their support
of the Finance Department by providing staff and professional accounting
In New Mexico, the Gross Receipts Tax is the biggest income source
for municipal governments to provide community services and facilities.
Bernalillo’s increased GRT revenues from recent commercial
development will allow the town to finance new community service
projects at a beneficial rate.
Finance Director Chávez said that cities with high GRT revenues
have better public facilities such as senior centers, recreational
facilities, and public safety buildings.
“Our town is growing, and new businesses have increased the
gross receipts tax revenue for the town,” said Mr. Chávez.
“It is important that the town do what it can to encourage
development that would increase our GRT revenue stream.”
A brief on the Bernalillo Town Council
The Town Council unanimously approved a resolution increasing the
contracted overtime rate for the Town of Bernalillo Police Department.
Police Chief Fred Radosevich explained that the current billing
system entails charging varying rates, depending upon rank, for
dedicated personnel to a certain site or event. This method demands
more accounting time than the proposed flat rate billing. The new
flat rate will be $35 per hour for personnel working state, county,
or other contract events.
Susan Garcia was selected to take over the janitorial services
for the towns buildings and facilities, and in the financial section,
there was approval on all of the following items:
- General Fund Vouchers
- Utility Vouchers
- MVD Fund Vouchers
- Housing Low Rent Vouchers
- Waste Water Treatment Plant