Wednesday, October 05, 2011

ABQ Animal Welfare Desperately Needs Homes for Cats: Can You Help?

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Please help spread the word about a desperate situation that has developed at The Cattery at the Albuquerque Animal Welfare shelter. The Cattery is facing a much larger population of cats than it can possibly deal with. I've gotten several emails about this, and local news programs have reportedly ignored requests to air this message. The shelter simply cannot handle any more cats, and needs additional support from the community. Please do what you can:

The Inn is Full
The Cattery at the Albuquerque Animal Welfare Department is nearly full. Last weekend they received 121 cats. Animal Welfare’s ability to house and care for such a large number of cats is approaching capacity, and they are in need of assistance.

The total number of cats has reached over 500, and while their cat adoptions are up 23 percent, as compared to this same time frame last year for the month of September, cats have come in at a higher-than-normal rate. In the month of September alone, an average of 35 cats per day was brought into the shelter. This new daily average for the month of September is greater than the average daily intake for the past year by 8 animals. This upward trend pushed even higher in the last week of September -- reaching an average daily intake high of 38 cats.

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Spay and Neuter Your Pets Please!
The shelter said the message it wants to emphasize is that while they endeavor to adopt out every animal they take in, they also ask that the public act responsibly by participating in the spay-neuter program at Animal Welfare, or in other programs supported by other animal facilities of their choice. Failure to spay or neuter pets brings uncertainty in the lives of these wonderful animals.

October: Half-Price Adoption Fees
Animal Welfare is also asking the members of the community to open their hearts and homes by adopting one or two of these wonderful felines today. During the entire month of October, adoption fees for cats will be half the usual price. Senior Citizens (50 years of age and up according to AARP) and all Veterans with proper identification and documentation get an additional $10.00 discount from the above fees.

Each adoption will include spaying or neutering, all vaccinations required by law and a microchip. For information visit the shelter's web site at www.cabq.gov/pets. Also check out Animal Welfare's Facebook page.

October 5, 2011 at 09:45 AM in 2010 Judicial Races, Animal Protection | Permalink | Comments (2)

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Negotiated Agreement: Attorney Dennis Montoya Suspended for Year for 3 Pending Disciplinary Actions

Images According to an Albuquerque Journal article, Rio Rancho attorney Dennis Montoya has agreed to a one-year suspension from the practice of law in a negotiated settlement over three pending disciplinary actions before the New Mexico Supreme Court:

The charges included misrepresentations, knowingly made false statements to the court and failure to account for funds received from settlements in a wrongful death lawsuit in state court, and complaints by federal judges about his handling of cases there.

As outlined by Chief Disciplinary Counsel Bill Slease, the agreement says Montoya will be permitted to reapply for admission to the bar after a year, but will be subject to oversight for three years by a supervising attorney if he is readmitted. Montoya paid almost $6,000 for the costs of the investigation.

Montoya unsuccessfully challenged Judge Linda Vanzi in last year's Democratic primary race for the New Mexico Court of Appeals Position 2 seat, losing by a margin of about 55% to 45%. The allegations of multiple acts of professional misconduct by Montoya made by the Disciplinary Board of the Supreme Court of the State of New Mexico became a heated issue in the campaign. In addition, Montoya was disqualified from receiving public funding for his campaign for violating several rules governing such funding.

In the recent NM Supreme Court hearing, Montoya claimed his misconduct was the result of a heavy work load:

In a polite but sometimes tense exchange with the court, Montoya said the problems he encountered, particularly with judges in federal court, were the result of overwork.

... Addressing the court, Montoya said, “What happened with me was the result of overwork, more than anything else.” He said he had taken on too many cases in a solo practice despite health problems to support his young and growing family.

One Justice was reluctant to accept that explanation:

Justice Richard Bosson questioned whether caseload was really the only problem.

“One impression I have is Mr. Montoya has a tendency to blame others for his own problems, I guess a human enough trait, and ascribe to others ill motives — racial motives, ethnic motives, discriminatory motives, they’re-coming-to-get-me motives, personal animus — when really it’s his own shortcomings that’s the cause of the problem,” Bosson said. “So I’m asking you again, has he accepted responsibility for this long, sorry affair?”

Montoya's attorney responded:

“I believe he has,” Vigil told the court. “I’ve had many discussions and he understands the buck stops with him, and you can’t blame staff or anyone else for how matters turned out.”

 The Chief Justice stressed how serious the charges were:

The court approved the agreement, though Chief Justice Charles Daniels told Montoya, “This came very close to a disbarment case — very close.”

May 12, 2011 at 12:23 AM in 2010 Judicial Races, Legal Issues | Permalink | Comments (1)

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Values Worth Fighting For

This is a post by contributing writer, Stephen Jones, of Las Cruces.

It is easy to get a little cynical on the political trail, even when you’re not a candidate. You see the same faces at scheduled events, and hear the same stump speeches over and over again. We hear the annoying rattle of thirty-second television advertising buys, over-heated paeans to our basest fears, constantly playing in a grating loop in the background. We watch paid political operatives, pretending to be “experts,” trying to out-shout each other to win the spin, on the Cable networks, and other places that pretend to be news outlets, and increasingly we appeal to our fellow citizens who are, all too often, really not interested.

Then, every now and then, some little event happens that reminds us that these things that we say we believe in, our core values, really are worth fighting for, after all. For me one of those moments came this past Tuesday evening, at an event in Las Cruces. At a get-out-the-vote rally for Diane Denish, one lone citizen appeared with his young daughter in hand, and momentarily got the attention of myself, and everyone else who was fortunate enough to meet him.

His name is Luis Flores, and he isn’t one of the usual pack of political activists who usually turn out for these events. In fact Tuesday’s event was the only one he’d ever attended. He just came to see the candidate for himself. Flores is a 24-year-old, unemployed, father of two, who is trying to get an education for both himself and his children. Faced with an uncertain future for himself and those he loves, he registered to vote for the first time last month. “I now know how important this is,” he told Diane Denish on Tuesday.

Luis Flores is one thread in the expansive fabric that is New Mexico. He is one parent among many. One of those invisible people we “I.D,” in political parlance, as voters. All he really wants is the chance at making a decent life for himself and his family. All we can really offer him is a partnership between a frequently distant government and individual citizens that might make that chance possible.

No one elected official, no single political organization, no individual person, can wave a magic wand and make everything turn out all right. What those people in government and politics, and those organizations can do is promise to try, to listen, and to attempt to respond to the core values that got them into this political business in the first place.

In less than two weeks we as voters, and as citizens who are active and care about the process, have the unique opportunity that comes around once every two years or so, to try to make that process work for us and our families. Above all, we can get out and vote, and ask others to do the same. We can vote for our values, first and foremost, and we can elect leadership who will respond to the demands that we make on them to try and respond to those values.

These are hard times. We are all worried about the future. But we should remember that these hard times are the best times to try to effect hope and change. We have a real choice in front of us, a choice between our values against all the money that special interests and fear can buy.

In twelve days the TV advertising will go away. In the end it is only our choice that matters.

When we make that choice over the next twelve days, just remember that sometimes, just when you're feeling a little cynical, a little let down by the national state of affairs; let down by the political leadership, both nationally and at home, some frightened, 24-year-old father of two, trying to earn an education and a future for both himself, and his children, comes out of nowhere to remind us that these things that we value the most really are worth fighting for.

To read more posts by Stephen Jones, visit our archive.

October 21, 2010 at 09:51 AM in 2010 Judicial Races, 2010 NM Governor's Race, By Stephen Jones, Contributing Writer, Children and Families, Diane Denish, Las Cruces | Permalink | Comments (2)

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Candidates Address Colonia Residents at Chaparral Forum


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Contributing writer Stephen Jones checks in with more on-the-ground coverage from Southern New Mexico.

Southern New Mexico candidates faced off at a well attended community forum held at the Betty McNight Multi-Purpose Community Center in Chaparral, New Mexico, a small rural community near the Texas border in south central New Mexico. About sixty residents turned out from Chaparral and surrounding communities to attend the event, which was sponsored by the Chaparral Community Development Association.

The forum drew candidates from both Doña Ana and Otero Counties. The community straddles the County line. Chaparral is designated by the State of New Mexico as a Colonia, a rural borderland community in an unincorporated area which has traditionally lacked adequate infrastructure.

County Assessor
The forum of both Democratic and Republican candidates was generally low key and friendly, though occasionally took on an edgy tone. “I’m an American and a God-fearing father of six,” said Tyson Murphy, the Republican candidate for Doña Ana County Assessor, in his opening remarks. The comment and tone seemed to be aimed at the largely Hispanic audience, many of whom were Spanish-speaking and immigrants.

In his opening remarks, Andy Segovia, the Democratic candidate for County Assessor responded, “I’ve come down to this community and worked to serve you. I’ve been here to support you,” Segovia said. Segovia is currently the deputy in the County Assessor’s office. Segovia and Tyson are vying to replace the outgoing Doña Ana County Assessor, Gary Perez. “Over the past eight years we’ve developed award-winning systems in the Assessor’s office,” Segovia said, “I’m bilingual and I am able to reach out to all of our communities. I’m always able to help you.” Asked what changes he would make to the office, if elected, Murphy said he would bring “fresh eyes” to the operation and “have an open mind toward changes.”

Most of the other opening remarks centered on the panel of candidates recounting their backgrounds and qualifications for the specific offices they were seeking.

Judicial Candidates
The three judicial candidates on hand, Democrats Jose “Joel” Cano, Appellate Judge Mannie Arrieta, and Rick Wellborn, his Republican opponent, spent considerable time explaining the different judicial levels and functions of the Doña Ana County Court system. Cano, who is seeking the position of Magistrate Judge, termed his office “the quality of life judge.” Magistrate Judges primarily handle traffic and minor civil cases. The Appellate Court is charged with major civil and criminal caseloads.

Cano, who is a retired police officer, suggested that the magistrate court needed to make greater use of legal provisions that permit communities to develop community service programs. “I’ve worked at every level of the community,” he said, “and I intend to bring that experience to the Court.” Arrieta and Wellborn resumed their ongoing debate over experience and how best to address the backlog of legal cases pending before the Court. Arrieta has 25 years of experience in primarily civil law. Wellborn has 15 years of experience, primarily in criminal law. 68% of the cases in the Appellate court are civil cases.

Another issue raised was the pending closure of the Anthony, New Mexico Magistrate Court, which is eleven miles from Chaparral. If the court is closed, Chaparral residents will have to travel to Las Cruces, 36 miles away. All of the candidates urged local residents to work with their representatives to keep the court open.

Immigration
Another contentious issue was immigration. Asked whether they would support the formation of an oversight commission to address complaints over enforcement practices in the region, all three Sheriff candidates responded they would not. Sheriff Todd Garrison, the Doña Ana County incumbent, responded that his office was the authority charged with enforcement, in coordination with Federal authorities, and he would not support a new authority to address the issue. Juan “JR” Stewart, the Democratic candidate, reminded the audience that immigration enforcement falls under Federal and not under local authority. He promised to work for fairness and coordination between all existing law enforcement authorities. Wally Anderson, the Democratic candidate for Otero County Sheriff, said that illegal immigration was caused by illegal employers and that State and Federal authorities needed to address what he called “the real issue.” Anderson has received support from the Border Patrol Unions.

Another controversial immigration issue was the New Mexico law that allows residents to acquire driver’s licenses without a Social Security number. Representative Joseph Cervantes pointed out that local law enforcement had actively lobbied for current law, and that the New Mexico policy had drastically reduced uninsured drivers and traffic enforcement issues. While New Mexico’s law has enhanced enforcement, Cervantes said, uninsured drivers and high auto insurance rates remain a major problem for neighboring states.

Representative Nate Cote (D-53) responded that he had not been in the legislature when the current statute was passed, but was willing to revisit it. “I think we can address the issue of non-citizens holding New Mexico driver’s licenses, while allowing people to drive and acquire insurance,” Cote said. “I’m opposed to it, right off the bat,” said Rick Little, the Republican candidate for the 53rd District. He said he would work to repeal the law.

Economic Development
The role of the legislature in economic development was also discussed. Reps. Nate Cote and Joseph Cervantes addressed the Colonia development funds that they have worked to acquire, including a million dollars in funds for Chaparral. “I was proud to get those funds for this community,” Cervantes said. Asked if he believed in “trickle-down” economics, Rick Little said “I do.” He called for a “tax break” for communities like Chaparral. Little said New Mexico needed to become a “business friendly state. Government isn’t going to spend us out of the problem,” he said.

Building Codes and Infrastructure
Local building code violations were also discussed extensively at the Chaparral forum. Code violations and substandard infrastructure are ongoing problems in the Colonias. Asked if State and County candidates were willing to act against violators, the candidates responded affirmatively. “We already have the laws,” said Janet White, an independent candidate for Otero County Board, “but if elected officials aren’t willing to enforce them they aren’t worth very much. Lack of enforcement leads to lack of credibility,” she said. L.C. Marshall, the Democratic candidate for Otero County Commission District 1, concurred, but also pointed out that he was already involved in working to insure that landowners met standards for code enforcement. “We’ve looked at a new subdivision here in Chaparral with 107 lots,” Marshall said, “and are working to make sure it meets the codes."

Members of the Chaparral Association at the forum pointed out that people who buy lots on unimproved lands have no reason to expect the seller to supply infrastructure, including roads, sewers and water. On the larger issue of code enforcement, Representative Cervantes noted that New Mexico’s Colonia law had created new code standards to protect the communities, and that residents should work with their representatives and the Attorney General’s office to ensure enforcement.

Public Regulation Commission
Stephanie DuBois was the only candidate seeking election to the Public Regulation Commission (PRC) to appear at the forum. She outlined the duties of the office, which regulates insurance and utilities in the state, and promised to be a watchdog for the public on the commission. “I’m running a publicly funded campaign,” she said. “My opponent is accepting  donations from the companies that are regulated by the commission. 16% of his contributors are from Texas. I might ask what interest Texas has in your public regulation commission.” DuBois' opponent is Patrick Lyons, who currently is the sitting Land Commissioner.

Asked what the first thing she would do if elected to the PRC, DuBois responded that she would establish methods of communication for her office. “The thing I hear most often from voters is that they have no way to communicate with members of the commission.”

Photos by Stephen Jones. To see more posts by Stephen, visit our archive.

October 14, 2010 at 10:41 AM in 2010 General Election, 2010 Judicial Races, 2010 NM Legislature Races, 2010 NM PRC Races, By Stephen Jones, Contributing Writer, Events | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Democrats Launch Election Stretch Run in Doña Ana County


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Contributing writer Stephen Jones checks in with another report from Southern New Mexico.

Surrounded by his family, Andy Segovia, Democratic candidate for Doña Ana County Assessor called on Democrats to fight for good government and urged voters to get out and vote at a well attended fundraising event at Mesilla Park on Friday. “I’m running for County Assessor because I believe in public service,” Segovia said. “I believe in working for people.” 

Jose L. "Joel" Cano, Democratic candidate for Magistrate Judge, echoed Segovia and promised to bring fairness to the Doña Ana County Magistrate Court if elected in November. Segovia and Cano, countywide candidates in New Mexico’s second largest county, have been working hard to raise the visibility of county offices that are often overlooked by voters in state and local election campaigns in southern New Mexico. 

A Turnout Election
Stressing that the campaign is now a “turnout election,” State Representative Mary Helen Garcia, whose district includes Sunland Park on the far southern border of New Mexico, was on hand in Mesilla Park on Friday to help rally area Democrats for the final push to victory in November. She praised Segovia and Cano for their leadership in the County and called on voters to also stand behind the entire Democratic team. 

Rep. Garcia warned that Democratic values should trump surname when voters cast their ballots next month, and that Democrats should “Come out big, and bring five of your friends to the polls with you.”

We Are Going to Win This Thing
On Saturday morning Segovia and Cano joined State Representative Nate Cote at the meeting of the Doña Ana County Democratic Women and again stressed their shared themes of good government and effective leadership. “Compare my record to my opponent, and I’m sure you’ll agree that electing me is the right thing to do” said Cano.

Segovia stressed the importance of Democrats remaining on message with County voters and not to “get derailed” by desperate negative campaigning on the other side. “We are going to come out and we are going to win this thing,” Segovia said. “I promise to make you proud.” When elected Segovia promised that, “First of all I am going to listen. Second of all, my office will provide fair and equitable services."

Representative Nate Cote said Doña Ana and neighboring Otero Counties were well positioned to become major economic engines for all of New Mexico. “We have the educational facilities and the people here to succeed,” Cote said, “We need to continue to provide the leadership to develop the infrastructure and support for education we’ve already begun here. It’s important you help us get Democrats elected,” Cote told the group.

Rep. Jeff Steinborn: Rocking the Robledos
On Saturday evening State Representative Jeff Steinborn and Democrats turned out to rock the Robledos at a well attended fundraiser held at the foot of the Robledo Mountains in northern Doña Ana County near Radium Springs. Music by the Mountains was Steinborn’s major fall fundraising event as the election season enters high gear.

Besides the food and festivities at the affair, the crowd was treated to Jeff Steinborn on the drums performing for the Rhythm City Dogs, the headline band, and one of three musical acts that wowed the crowd on Saturday night. Besides standing up for good government in Santa Fe, Representative Steinborn is an accomplished musician.

Others on hand at Steinborn’s Music by the Mountains event were Segovia, Cano, Las Cruces Mayor Pro Tem Sharon Thomas and Las Cruces Councillors Gil Sorg and Nathan Small.

Photos by Stephen Jones. To see more posts by Stephen, visit our archive.

October 3, 2010 at 12:44 PM in 2010 General Election, 2010 Judicial Races, 2010 NM Legislature Races, By Stephen Jones, Contributing Writer, Democratic Party | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, September 27, 2010

Pat Davis Guest Blog: Couldn't Have Said It Better Myself, Susana

PatDavis This is a guest blog by Pat Davis, an active Albuquerque Democrat and former candidate for Bernalillo County Sheriff.

Is the Albuquerque Journal turning against its own? Probably not, but with daily news of Republicans caught in lie after lie, its hard not to report at least some of it.

Democracy For New Mexico has done a great job all season of reporting on the various false accusations and ads heaped on the public by Republican candidates up and down the ticket. But, this past week saw three big stories about Republicans being caught in blatant lies about their opponents. And, it’s not just limited to state-wide candidates.

Last Wednesday, Bernalillo County GOP Chairman Larry Abraham released a harshly worded press release accusing Bernalillo County District Attorney Kari Brandenburg of engaging in “Chicago-style” tactics to intimidate a prosecutor in her office who is running as a Republican against Democrat Christina Argyres for the Metropolitan Court District XV seat. 
In the release, titled “Run for office, lose your job,” Abrams stated that Brandenburg had given the prosecutor/candidate an ultimatum to drop out of the race or be fired. As the Journal reports:

The trouble is, the candidate, Al Quintana, told the Journal he was given no such ultimatum.

Quintana is quoted in the news release as saying, "For Kari Brandenburg to tell me if I am going to remain on the ballot I have to resign my position is ridiculous.”


He told the Journal on Wednesday that he never said that.

"The story with Brandenburg was totally unauthorized by me," he said. "When I saw the press release at the lunch hour, I called (Abraham) and told him this was not something I was interested in. I was totally surprised. I had no idea he was going to do something like that. [Albuquerque Journal, “GOP Chair Flubs DA Claim”]

Any story that begins “Oops” is bound to come out poorly for someone. In this case it was Abrams and the Republican Party who did not let the facts get in the way of a cute sound bite. Maybe they thought no one would notice.

The Journal did not report that the release ended with a question from Abrams: "Is this how the Democratic Party of Bernalillo County operates? Is Brandenburg taking her orders directly from the Richardson-Denish administration?"

Perhaps the Republicans should turn that question around on themselves. Is that how the Republican Party acts? And, are they taking orders from the Martinez campaign?

More Lies
Given the past week's news, it seems so. In case you missed it, here are just a few highlights:

--Republican gubernatorial candidate Martinez falsely accuses Democrat Diane Denish of hiding a ‘scandal’ that Martinez falsely created to slander Denish’s husband.

--GOP congressional candidate Steve Pearce is caught in the act lying about opponent Harry Teague's support for the 2nd amendment and about his own previous support for privatizing Social Security. Peace also flat out lies about his record in Washington by denying he introduced a bill that would allow for the sale of public lands in Dona Ana County to private interests.

--Republican Land Commissioner Candidate Matt Rush blatantly lies about his education, while simultaneously touting his commitment to integrity and honesty in public service.

And now, taking a cue from the big boys, the county party creates another false scandal, makes up false quotes and facts and presents them as “news.”

Independent and liberal news outlets (mostly blogs in New Mexico) have been harping on this message for months with little mainstream attention. But, the onslaught of stories is so regular lately that even the conservative Journal has begun to take notice. (Granted, the Matt Rush story was buried in about 9 lines at the bottom of a big page on other political happenings, but they reported it nonetheless. Come to think of it, they even investigated the claim and uncovered the lie. Not bad for the Journal).

As each day passes, it becomes clearer that Republicans are less certain than they publicly pretend to be that they will be victorious in November. Blatant lies are tactics reserved for desperate times. A flexibility with the truth is becoming contagious in the Republican party, and candidates and party officials from the top to the bottom are catching it.

As Ms. Martinez said in one of her recent ads, “I don’t know what they’ll do next, but don’t be fooled. In this election, it’s a clear choice.” Couldn’t have said it better myself, Susana.

This is a guest blog by Pat Davis. If you'd like to submit a piece for consideration as a guest blog, contact me by clicking on the Email Me link at the upper left-hand corner of the page.

September 27, 2010 at 01:08 PM in 2010 General Election, 2010 Judicial Races, 2010 NM Governor's Race, Guest Blogger, Republican Party, Right Wing, Steve Pearce, Susana Martinez | Permalink | Comments (1)

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Southern New Mexico Candidates Square Off at League of Women’s Voters Forum


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Contributing writer Stephen Jones checks in with another report from Southern New Mexico.

Candidates for Public Regulation Commission, State Representative, and District Judge addressed voters at the Las Cruces League of Women Voters candidate forum held at the Munson Senior Center in Las Cruces on Wednesday evening. While all of the candidates for Public Regulation Commission demanded accountability and ethics on an elected board noted for its mismanagement and corruption, candidates for the State Legislature from both parties stressed the importance of education and jobs to the future of the region, and called for greater efficiencies in government services.

State Rep Candidates
When questioned about what government waste should be cut, Republican candidates for State Representative called for “lower taxes, less regulation, and less spending,” but failed to provide specifics. Debra L. White, Republican candidate for State Representative in the 36th District, said she would “cut bureaucrats.” When pressed for areas she would cut, White responded, “I got nothin’,” adding, “I’m not sure, really, I’m new at this. Give me a day and I’ll get back to you.” Terry McMillan, Republican candidate for State Representative in the 37th District, stressed his commitment to protecting education and health, which he termed “critical to our future,” but suggested we must stop “the unrestrained growth of government.” To restrain growth he said New Mexico needed to “cut the waste out of Medicare and Medicaid,” which he termed “important resources,” but the “biggest strain on insurance companies.” Medicare and Medicaid are public, not private insurance programs.

Ricky Little, Republican candidate for State Representative, in the 53rd District, said cutting taxes was the key to economic stability. “When you add up State, Federal and local taxes it comes to 63%,” Little said. Little added, “Our taxes are more than other states, like Texas.” Nate Cote, Democratic State Representative in the 53rd District, countered that our top tax income rate is 5.3%. “We had the biggest income tax cut in state history in 2003,” Cote said, “down from a top rate of 8%.”

State Representative Joseph Cervantes (D-52) said, “We have to be honest about the costs of government.” Cervantes noted that the economic downturn had deeply stressed New Mexico’s treasury, but that the state was in much better shape than most other states, including “all of our neighboring states.” Responding directly to Little, Cervantes said, “Someone here raised the Texas example. Texas is facing bankruptcy.” Besides education, jobs and health care, Rep. Cote said New Mexico had to rebuild its infrastructure in order to keep employers in the State.

PRC Candidates
In the two hotly contested contests for Public Regulation Commission (PRC) from the southern tier, all four candidates agreed that the PRC must step in and take a direct role in overseeing insurance rates and utility fees, something they found “lacking” in the current board. All four candidates agreed that the elected members of the PRC should be responsive and responsible for insurance oversight, which is currently in the hands of the Superintendant of Insurance, an office which is supposed to be accountable to the PRC, but whose decisions the PRC members, as elected officers, have no veto power over.

The long history of corruption on the PRC was also a central issue raised by the candidates. “This election comes down to two things,” said Bill McCamley, Democratic candidate for PRC in District 5, “accountability and ethics.” Bill Hall, the Republican candidate for District 5, called on the PRC to “act responsibly” in decisions made by the board, “before the legislature abolishes it and it winds up appointed by the Governor.” Poor governance from Santa Fe was another issue raised by all four candidates. Bill McCamley promised to bring meetings of the PRC out into the districts to allow the public to participate.

“I have no DWI's, never sexually harassed anybody, and haven't hit anyone in the head with a rock!” said Stephanie DuBois, Democratic candidate for PRC in District 2, referring to legal, ethical and criminal lapses that have occurred on the current PRC. She promised that she would be a full time member of the PRC. “The job pays $90,000. Voters have the right to expect a full time representative,” she said. DuBois also promised to demand that utilities prove they need rate hikes before she agreed to vote for one.

Patrick Lyons, the Republican candidate for District 2, promised to bring the PRC “up to snuff.” He pointed to his record as Land Commissioner, the only state office to have “a flat budget” during his tenure, he said.

District Judge
District Judge Mannie Arrieta and his opponent Richard Wellborn vied with each other over who had the most experience. Arrieta, who is seeking re-election, has a strong background in civil law. Wellborn, an assistant District Attorney, also has a background in criminal cases. The vast majority of cases in the District Court are civil cases. Arrieta has 26 years of experience in legal practice, Wellborn has 15 years of experience.

Others Participating
Also presenting at the forum were State Representative Joni Gutierrez (D-33) and her Republican opponent Virginia Robertson. Representative Jeff Steinborn and Representative Andy Nunez were unable to attend due to family issues. State Senator Mary Jane Garcia is presently hospitalized due to a mugging in Albuquerque and did not appear. Other candidates on hand, but not presenting at the forum, were Andy Segovia, Democratic candidate for Doña Ana County Assessor, Jose “Joel” Cano for Magistrate Judge and Billy Garrett, Democratic nominee to Doña Ana County Commissioner.

Photos by Stephen Jones. To see more posts by Stephen, visit our archive.

September 23, 2010 at 10:53 AM in 2010 Judicial Races, 2010 NM Legislature Races, 2010 NM PRC Races, By Stephen Jones, Contributing Writer, Las Cruces | Permalink | Comments (5)

Monday, September 20, 2010

9/27, 10/3: Campaign Events in Roswell with Appeals Court Judge Robert Robles

JudgeRobertRobles365
Judge Robles at recent DFA-DFNM Meetup

Appeals Court Judge Robert E. Robles will be in Roswell on Monday, Sept 27, 2010 for a forum that is being hosted by the "Leadership Roswell Alumni Association." The event will begin at 6:00 PM at the Baptist church (1 block over from Main Street by Sunwest Bank on 5th Street). The forum will also be televised on the local cable channel 75. If you can attend or tune in, you can learn more about who Judge Robles is and why he is the best person for the NM Court of Appeals position.

You're also invited to a fundraiser in Roswell in early October:

PLEASE JOIN
Carla Williams, Rod Shumacher, Stu Shanor, Bob Sabin, Lee Rodgers, Rich Olson, Al Pitts, Bryan Evans, and Drew Cloutier
FOR AN EVENING FUNDRAISER FOR:
Judge Robert E. Robles
New Mexico Court of Appeals
Sunday, October 3, 2010, 6:30-8:30PM
Pecos Flavors Winery
305 N. Main St., Roswell, NM
Food and Refreshments will be Served
VoteJudgeRobles.com
Please help us Keep Judge Robles in 2010

If mailed, please send contributions to: Joleen K. Youngers, Treasurer, Committee to Keep Judge Robert E. Robles, P.O. Box 7256, Las Cruces, NM 88006.

September 20, 2010 at 04:20 PM in 2010 Judicial Races, Events | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, September 05, 2010

9/15: NM House and Senate Judiciary Members Host Fundraiser for Appeals Court Judge Robert Robles

PLEASE JOIN
House and Senate Judiciary Chairmen
Al Park and Cisco McSorley
House Majority Floor Leader W. Ken Martinez
Senate Majority Floor Leader Michael S. Sanchez
Representatives
Gail Chasey, Antonio “Moe” Maestas and Mimi Stewart
Senators
Tim Eichenberg, Linda Lopez,
Richard Martinez and Bernadette Sanchez
FOR AN EVENING FUNDRAISER FOR:

Judge Robert E. Robles
New Mexico Court of Appeals
Wednesday, September 15, 2010, 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Home of Kulbir Singh Puri
407 Hermosa SE (ABQ 87108)
Food and Refreshments will be Served;
Premier Designs by Jaclyn Cassidy
Votejudgerobles.com
RSVP to [email protected]

Please help us Keep Judge Robles in 2010. 
Contributions Appreciated.  If mailed, please send to: 
Committee to Keep Judge Robert E. Robles, 4080 Montreal Loop NE, 
Rio Rancho, NM 87144.

September 5, 2010 at 09:00 AM in 2010 Judicial Races, Events, NM Legislature 2010 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Pueblo of Pojoaque Endorses NM Court of Appeals Judge Robert E. Robles

JudgeRobles110 Note: Judge Robert E. Robles will join Rep. Martin Heinrich as a guest speaker at tonight's DFA-DFNM Meetup. All are welcome to attend.

On August 25, 2010, the Pueblo of Pojoaque issued a release endorsing Judge Robles saying, “The Pueblo of Pojoaque is proud to support Judge Robert E. Robles for the New Mexico Court of Appeals.”

Governor George Rivera issued the following statement regarding the endorsement: “Judge Robles’ superior reputation as a New Mexico trial judge speaks volumes about him. It is evident that he has a clear understanding of Native American issues and we support his candidacy for the New Mexico Court of Appeals.”

"I am honored to be endorsed by the Pueblo of Pojoaque,” Judge Robles said in a statement released by his campaign. “As a judge, it is my sworn duty to support the Constitution and laws of the State of New Mexico, with due respect for the rights of sovereign nations.”

More on Judge Robles
In 1999, Judge Robles ruled in a 3rd District Court case that under the New Mexico Constitution, New Mexico residents who are United States citizens have a right to serve as jurors regardless of whether or not they are fluent in English. His ruling also stated that they are entitled to an interpreter in order to fully participate. The 3rd Judicial District Attorney representing the state in this matter took Judge Robles’ ruling to the New Mexico Supreme Court for review where it was affirmed. As a result, all state courts are required to adhere to this process to ensure everyone is afforded the opportunity to be judged by a jury of their peers.

A native of Albuquerque, Robles graduated with a juris doctorate from the University of New Mexico School of Law in 1975. He began his legal career as a New Mexico Assistant Attorney General. In 1978, Robles moved to Las Cruces where he practiced law for 13 years prior to being appointed by Governor Bruce King as a Third Judicial District Court judge in 1991. Robles served on the district court bench for more than 17 years, and was selected by his fellow judges to three, three-year terms as chief judge.

Judge Robles has also earned endorsements from the New Mexico Federation of Labor, NM AFL-CIO, American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees, AFSCME, which represents over 12,000 city, county, state and university employees along with home-based childcare providers, and the Office and Professional Employees International Union, OPEIU.

August 31, 2010 at 10:06 AM in 2010 Judicial Races, MeetUp, Native Americans | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, August 30, 2010

8/30: Fundraiser for Judge Robert Robles at Osteria d’ Assisi in Santa Fe

PLEASE JOIN
Democrat State Party Chairman
Javier Gonzales
Santa Fe County Chairman
Richard Ellenberg
Mark & Shana Baker; Michael Campbell; Steve Flance; David P. Garcia; Kurt Gilbert; Nancy Long; Elicia Montoya; Dan Najjar; Pete D. White & Geno Zamora
FOR AN EVENING FUNDRAISER FOR:
Judge Robert E. Robles
New Mexico Court of Appeals
Monday, August 30, 2010, 5:00 PM – 7:00 PM
Osteria d’ Assisi (upstairs)
58 S. Federal Place, Downtown Santa Fe
Food and Refreshments will be Served
Votejudgerobles.com
Please help us Keep Judge Robles in 2010
Click for Flyer (pdf)

Contributions appreciated. If mailed, please send to: Joleen K. Youngers, Treasurer, Committee to Keep Judge Robert E. Robles, P.O. Box 7256, Las Cruces, NM 88006.

August 30, 2010 at 01:11 PM in 2010 Judicial Races, Events | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, August 23, 2010

8/25: Evening Fundraiser in Albuquerque to Support Judge Robert Robles

PLEASE JOIN
Luis and Patricia Stelzner, Nancy Franchini, Bryan Garcia, Carolyn Ramos, Bruce Hall and Doug Schneebeck

FOR AN EVENING FUNDRAISER FOR:
Judge Robert E. Robles

New Mexico Court of Appeals
Wednesday, August 25, 2010, 5:30 PM-7:30 PM
At the home of Luis and Patricia Stelzner
3521 Campbell Ct. NW, Alb. 87104
Food and Refreshments will be Served
Please help us Keep Judge Robles in 2010

Contributions Appreciated. If mailed, please send to: Joleen K. Youngers, Treasurer, Committee to Keep Judge Robert E. Robles, P.O. Box 7256, Las Cruces, NM 88006. Directions to Event: From I-40, head North on Rio Grande, past Matthew. Turn Right on Campbell Rd., Curve to the right onto Campbell Ct.; 2nd house on the right.

August 23, 2010 at 09:14 AM in 2010 Judicial Races, Events | Permalink | Comments (0)