Letter to council from former mayors 2021

A letter signed by nine former Taos mayors and town councilmembers was sent to Mayor Dan Barrone expressing their concern over a possible extension of terms.

Nine former mayors and councilmembers of the Town of Taos wrote a strongly worded letter of disapproval to Town of Taos Mayor Daniel Barrone and Taos Councilmembers on Wednesday (June 2), in opposition to the proposed extension of terms in office.

“To self-impose a 1-year and 10 month extension is arbitrary, unacceptable and will knowingly disenfranchise the voters of the Town of Taos from having a say in this March 1, 2022 election,” the letter stated.

Signatories of the letter included Hon. Mayor Frederick A. Peralta, Hon. Mayor Bobby F. Duran, Hon. Mayor Darren M. Cordova, Hon. Councilmember Erlinda S. Gonzales, Hon. Councilmember Rudy Abeyta, Hon. Councilmember Michael “Bardy” Silva, Hon. Councilmember Amy Quintana, Hon. Councilmember Andrew T. Gonzales and Hon. Councilmember Judith Cantu.

According to those who signed the letter, the Local Election Act of 2018 “allows municipalities in New Mexico the option to realign municipal elections from March of even-numbered years to November of odd-numbered years.”

Therefore, they strongly encouraged a reduction of the mayor’s and Councilmembers’ current terms in office, along with the regularly scheduled elections as planned “so that the Governing Body does NOT disenfranchise any voters of the Town of Taos.”

The letter also stated that any extension of terms in office without an election would be a willful silencing of the people’s voice.

The signatories recommended the ordinance be amended to “allow the enactment of the ordinance to happen on June 22, 2021 with a reduction of terms which would create a November 2021 election” or “allow the voters to vote on the ordinance during the upcoming March 1, 2022 Mayoral election as there has been little to no public knowledge of the ordinance or this governing body’s intention.”

This story is developing.

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(5) comments

Elaine Ray

So glad to see former elected Taos Representatives are voicing their objection to this. I think term limits should be in place not term extensions (especially without voter input). The free ride continues. You can attend a town council to voice your opinion on this matter, oh right, the last meeting was cancelled. This is not a party issue, this is an ethical matter, if the people of America give up their right of vote in a free and fare election then we may as just well have dictators instead of elected officials.

Nicholas Oppenheimer

Absolute power corrupts absolutely. Taos continues to shoot itself in the foot by electing politicians who care only for the perks of the position and are not qualified to lead the town and the county out of the good old boys' club and into the 21st century. Ya basta. Taos needs to pass a law that forbids anyone who has served an elected position from ever running for another political job. Political welfare is keeping Taos in the Dark Ages.

Barbara Norris

Voter disenfranchisement is a flashing red neon sign pointing toward the destruction of democracy and the rise of autocracy. Stop these people. They're drunk on power or beholden to someone who is.

David Hanna

As a soon to be member of the Taos community, I stand in total agreement with the position of the past mayors and council members. An arbitrary extension of terms without any input from voters at the ballot box seems antithetical to the spirit of Taos long history of independent thinking and action.

Marci Wedel

What do they think they are? Republicans?

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