CORE ignoring facts about special election

In his letter to the editor in last week’s Independent (“Edgewood election will give recall power to voters,” June 19-25), Jerry Powers reminded me of the famous “Big Lie” propaganda technique employed in Europe during the 1930s. It went something like this, “tell a big enough lie, long enough and loud enough and soon it will be thought of as the truth.”

In his letter last week, Powers once again ignores the facts about the events of March, April and May which lead up to the call for a special election to be held in August. For an honest account about those events I would direct you instead to a letter published June 12 by Councilor Linda Holle in The Independent under the title, “Edgewood and the special election slated Aug. 24.”

Powers goes on to claim that I found some sort of legal loophole which has allowed me to “wiggle” out of an election this November. When the Secretary of State’s office issued an opinion which was favorable to Powers, he and his cohorts at CORE waved that letter all over social media, but when that same Secretary of State issued another opinion favorable to myself and several members of the Council, Powers grumbles about a “legal loophole.”

Following the method of the “Big Lie,” Powers and his friends at EPCOR have laid down one false allegation after another in an attempt to get the voters of Edgewood riled up in such a way that they go to the polls in August and vote against their own best interests. What Powers is not telling you is that instead of increasing your voice in town government, his cockamamie idea will reduce it.

For those of you who want to know what the August 24 special election is costing the Town of Edgewood, I can tell you that between the money spent on legal fees sorting out various aspects of the special election during March, April and May, a response to the unnecessary Writ of Mandamus filed by Councilors Jaramillo and Abraham, as well as the deposit that must be paid to the Santa Fe County Clerk prior to the election, plus whatever other fees her office will require when the election has been completed, we are now looking at well over $30,000.00 dollars.

At this rate Powers and his cohorts, by promising special election after special election, will nickel and dime the Town into bankruptcy. I don’t think this is really about me, and I know for sure it isn’t about giving voters in Edgewood more say in who is elected. It looks more like an all-out attempt by EPCOR and Powers to prevent another Bullhead City.

John Bassett

Mayor, Town of Edgewood

 

Remember Campbell Ranch?

When I was a councilor for the Town of Edgewood, there were several issues, like Campbell Ranch, which were opposed overwhelmingly by the citizens of Edgewood. If we had had a commission-manager form of government, they could have been stopped.

Now, again, the mayor and two councilors are considering, and spending a lot of money, on the condemnation of our water company, Epcor. They are doing it in spite of the overwhelming opposition of the citizens at public meetings. They ignore the fact that Epcor asked their customers if they were willing to have increases in their water rates to pay for the cost of softening their water. The overwhelming majority said no. In spite of this public opposition the town is pursuing the condemnation, which will increase the water rates by a factor of 2 or 3, based on the experience of towns across the country. This experience includes Eldorado, a community south of Santa Fe. Those cost increases did not even include the cost of softening their water.

The mayor has a habit of attacking, personally, anyone who disagrees with him, or who dare to offer ideas which are different from his. Thus, in last week’s letter (“Aug. 24 special election will be vote on EPCOR,” June 19-25) he appears to dismiss the possibility of a partnership with the town to soften Edgewood’s water, and instead, personally attacks those who suggest it. I hope the mayor and other two councilors will seriously consider it.

It appears that the only way to stop the mayor and two councilors from continuing to pursue the condemnation and purchase of Epcor is to change the form of government. If you don’t want your water rates to be greatly increased, I urge you to join me in voting for the Commission-Manager form of government in the August 24 election.

Robert Stearley,

Former councilor and Mayor, Town of Edgewood

 

If not law enforcement, ‘they were acting as vigilantes’

The picture on the front page of the June 12-18 edition of The Independent is worth many words. It shows apparently armed men (see text) walking close to some kids and at least a couple of more senior citizens who have gathered in Edgewood to protest police killings of Blacks. “Militia members said they were there to keep the peace and make sure there was no looting,” according to the article. If these people were not duly authorized law enforcement officers, then they were acting as vigilantes and possibly should have been arrested by the actual cops.

These sorts of encounters could easily mushroom into confrontations. A child or adult might be injured or even killed. Let’s face it, a grown man who fears looting at noon in the center of Edgewood, New Mexico very possibly has mental issues. The next legislative session would be a good time to outlaw open carry outside motor vehicles in city limits in our state. Even the Senate of the Roman Empire two thousand years ago did not allow weapons to be carried inside, yet anyone today can legally carry an AR-15 or Kalashnikov into the Roundhouse.

John F. Mihelich, Estancia

 

Keep the meeting live-streams going

Thank you to Leota Harriman and The Independent for live-streaming Edgewood council meetings. I hope it will be a forever thing for Edgewood. When I see that hundreds have viewed a meeting on Facebook, knowing I have never seen more than 50 people in the room (and that was rare, e.g., the 2nd amendment issue) it represents a big step forward for Edgewood and community involvement in local government.

It is also convenient to be able to watch the meetings later if you’re busy on Wednesday evening. This increased participation is so good for Edgewood.

The Independent plays an important role in the Town, our growth and community awareness. Thank you for bringing it to the next level via social media.

Karen Kiser, Edgewood

 

Elected officials ‘know the truth very well’

CORE LLC (Citizens for an Open and Responsible Edgewood) recently sent another one of their “off the rails” postcards to the public with more misinformation. I won’t refute a lot of it which I have already done elsewhere. The latest new accusation against the Town of Edgewood and Mayor Bassett from CORE, part of an ever-shifting collection of lies and half truths they feed the public, is that Mayor Bassett “canceled the agreement for the equestrian arena.”
I was on Town Council (2006 – 2010) when the arena, on a hill above the northwest intersection of I-40 and 344, and the agreement for its use and maintenance, were first conceived. It was to be part of a long multi-use trail system that was envisioned by the Santa Fe County Open Lands, Trails and Parks Advisory Committee (COLTPAC); and a rest area for equestrians moving up and down the associated trail. The agreement was crafted when the arena had not yet been constructed and existed from 2009 – 2012. It was not renewed by former Mayor Brad Hill.
One of the most recent posts on the Eye on Edgewood Facebook page, owned by Thomas McGill, also the registered agent for the video production company, CORE LLC, includes a posed photo of three former Edgewood Mayors, Calkins, Stearley and Hill. All three served in town government at the time the COLTPAC agreement was struck and implemented. Mr. McGill needed only to ask the three in his photo about the matter to ascertain the truth about how it sunsetted. But Mr. McGill’s single-minded agenda to defame and remove this Mayor apparently takes priority over seeking the truth. It’s perhaps more disappointing that our former elected officials who know the truth very well have stood by silently and by so doing, participate in the lie.

Glenn Felton
, Edgewood

 

Antifa means ‘anti-fascist’

As the current trend is to demonize Antifa I feel a need to point out two things.

As a point of clarification Antifa stands for “Anti-fascist.”

During World War II as we fought to destroy Hitler and Mussolini, our whole country was anti-fascist.

Jantina Eshleman, Mountainair

Leota Harriman
Leota Harriman

Leota started working for The Independent in 2006, working her way up through the ranks. An employee buyout in 2010 led to her ownership of the newspaper. Leota has served on the board of the N.M. Press Association, and is currently its First Vice President. She is passionate about health and wellness, especially mental health, and loves making art. She can be reached at news.ind.editor@gmail.com.