Portales City Council Ward A — Q&A

Ward A is the only contested race in the Portales City Council municipal election. Candidates were asked five questions. The questions and candidate responses:

 

Antonio Salguero

Q The police department has been hit hard by scandal and turnover in the past few years. What changes would you push for to improve the department?

A I feel that we are on the right track to improving our police department. The changes we have implemented are for the better. I think our police department is under good leadership at the present time, the morale of the department has improved tremendously, our recruiting and retention has improved. I will keep on working together with the police chief to stay informed.

Antonio Salquero

Antonio Salquero

Q The U.S. 70 improvement project is way past deadline. What specifically would you do as a councilor to speed up completion or bring relief to businesses?

A This is a state project, therefore we as councilors have little to do with the contractors. The biggest part of the project is completed. I hope the businesses have had the hardest part past by now.

Q What would you do to bring new business, industry and jobs to Portales?

A This is done through our work with the Industrial Park Complex, work with the Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development and any option available.

Q What specific improvements would you support for what many feel is the neglected north side of the city?

A I think our parks, community’s pride in our properties, our streets, law enforcement more visible, enforcement of our codes and ordinances are some of the things I feel need improvement.

Q What’s the best way for Portales to secure an entertainment venue?

A I feel that private industry would be the best. I feel we need to determine needs and costs for this venture, take it to the people to vote.

 

Veronica Pena

Veronica Pena

Veronica Pena

Q The police department has been hit hard by scandal and turnover in the past few years. What changes would you push for to improve the department?

A The first step was taken by hiring our new chief of police. We need a more extensive background check. Open advertisement to a larger area. Check salaries to make sure we can compete with other areas so good officers would want to come to Portales.

Q The U.S. 70 improvement project is way past deadline. What specifically would you do as a councilor to speed up completion or bring relief to businesses?

A A solid foundation takes time along with careful planning. A quick fix rarely works. They worked hard by making sure our businesses were not affected for a long time. The web, radio and PNT always provided information regarding detours. Another unforeseen circumstance was the weather. Overall we will reap positive benefits.

Q What would you do to bring new business, industry and jobs to Portales?

A Working alongside with the Chamber of Commerce and form a committee to research all resources. It takes a team to make things happen.

Q What specific improvements would you support for what many feel is the neglected north side of the city?

A First of all we need to quit segregating, calling it the north side of city. How about the north side of our community? There has been improvement of our streets but there is still more streets that need to be asphalted and curbed. Landowners that have rundown properties and empty lots need to take pride and clean them up.

Q What’s the best way for Portales to secure an entertainment venue?

A Check out the resources we have, like working with Eastern New Mexico University. Just like we are working as one big community, working together for the new (football) stadium, so we should work together for an entertainment venue.

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