PVA Meeting Recap – August 28, 2008

Joint Energy Initiative for City and County

County Commissioner Bill McCamley and City Councilor Nathan Small announced a City-County Energy Initiative, which contains several proposals for moving the city of Las Cruces and Dona Ana County toward energy efficiency, the use of renewable energy, and an overall sustainable energy future for our community The plan, which is in its beginning stages, includes various energy-saving initiatives and incentives.

Their proposals include:

  1. greater use of solar and wind energy
  2. a sustainability coordinator staff position for the city to be filled in early 2009
  3. an energy audit to establish a baseline against which to measure progress
  4. use of local foods to supply government agencies such as schools and senior programs
  5. creative financing options to promote consumer installation of solar energy systems

The first proposals will be presented at the upcoming County Commission meeting on September 9 and the City Council meeting on September 15. Nathan and Bill emphasized that strong community support will be the key to the program’s success.
You can obtain more information, or be added to a list of people interested in supporting this initiative, by contacting Bill or Nathan.
Bill McCamley, billmccamley@zianet.com
Nathan Small, nathan.p.small@gmail.com

Scott Krahling for County Commission District 4

Scott noted that as a county commissioner he would be an strong supporter of a city-county energy initiative. He welcomed volunteers to his campaign. For more information or to contact Scott, visit his Web site, scottforcommissioner.com.

Kent Wingenroth for Magistrate Judge

Kent, the winner in the Democratic primary election for Magistrate Judge, thanked the PVA members for providing a forum for candidates. Kent can be contacted at krwing80@comcast.net.

Steve Fischmann for New Mexico Senate

Steve invited us to an NEA-sponsored fundraiser on September 7. Information about Steve and the issues in this campaign are available at his Web site: stevefornmsenate.com. If you would like to volunteer for Steve’s campaign, contact Terry Miller at terrymiller575@gmail.com.

City Council Gets Serious About Sustainability

Sharon Thomas, City Councilor for District 6, informed us that the city of Las Cruces is in the process of revamping its Strategic Plan. The new document will be organized around long-term sustainability for the city, and will include:

  1. neighborhoods
  2. agriculture and open space
  3. transportation
  4. economic development and quality of life
  5. planning and development decision process

A summary of the five points is available here.

Citizens have the unprecedented opportunity to participate in the development of each point in the city’s Strategic Plan. To participate or for more information, email Sharon at skthomas_10@msn.com.

Obama for President

Allison Zelman, Obama for America Regional Field Director, invited us all to visit the Las Cruces field office at 255 E. Lohman. They are open from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. every day from now until Election Day. They will be having coordinated phone banks starting Labor Day. A picnic is planned for September. For more information call the office at 575-915-0614 or contact Allison at azelman@nmforchange.com or 575-680-6015.

Allison reminded us that New Mexico is one of the top five battleground states identified by the Obama campaign, so there will be lots of activity here.

Udall for U.S. Senate

Xochi Torres of the Udall campaign spoke on behalf of Mr. Udall and welcomed volunteers. For more information you can send email to Xochi xochitltorres@gmail.com or call her at 575-496-5782.

In addition, Xochi invited us to wish Nathan Small a happy twenty-sixth birthday and join him for cake and punch after the meeting. And we did!

Representative Nate Cote’s Re-election Campaign

Cheryl Frank spoke on behalf of Nate Cote. She cited Nate’s outstanding achievements in his first term in the legislature and urged us to work for his re-election. If you would like to pitch in, send an email to Cheryl at cheralla@msn.com or call her at 650-7607.

The Peace Alliance

Jim Moore invited us to join him in The Peace Alliance, a campaign to establish a United States Department of Peace. For more information, or to be involved, send email to Jim at freebird2020@comcast.net.

Curbside Recycling for Las Cruces

Al McBrayer summarized current efforts to bring curbside recycling to Las Cruces. This is the time for citizens to express support for the program. Al announced an open meeting for interested citizens to be held September 25, 10 a.m., at the South Central Recycling Partnership, 2855 W. Amador. For more information or to get involved, email Al at amc0337@aol.com or call him at 575-541-9667.


Theresa Westbrock brought us up to date on efforts to bring backyard chickens (no more than five hens; NO roosters) to Las Cruces. A draft ordinance is ready for presentation to the city council, and there will be opportunity for public comment, and then a vote. Theresa modeled the CLUCK logo, designed by Bob Diven and printed on an orange t-shirt. For more information or to become involved, contact Theresa at twestbrock@gmail.com or call her at 575-640-1817.

AFSCME Has New Headquarters

Barbara Arispe invited us to visit AFSCME at their new office: 138 S. Downtown Mall, next to White’s Music Box. On October 18 they will be sponsoring an open house and a candidates’ forum at their new location.  Save that date and look for details in the September PVA meeting recap! For more information, contact Barbara at barispe@nmsu.edu 575-525-6649.

Annual Labor Day Democrat Breakfast

We were invited to come to the Annual Labor Day Breakfast on September 1, sponsored by the Democratic Party of Doña Ana County, where J. Paul Taylor was honored. For details about Democratic Party activities, visit the party’s Web site.

Conservation Works—Take it from an Engineer

In light of the fact that there is no official Unified Action this month, Bob Hearn suggested we try some unofficial energy conservation actions. He challenged us to make a conscious effort to do one thing each day to save energy. It may be something as simple as turning off a light or a computer, bundling our car trips, or adjusting our thermostats. He reminded us that there is real power in many small actions.

Representative Jeff Steinborn’s Re-election Campaign

Nathan Small spoke on behalf of Jeff’s campaign. He reminded us that Jeff was an outstanding freshman representative whose work included ethics reform, health care, and bringing the New Mexico Veterans’ Museum to Las Cruces. For more information or to become involved in the campaign, visit his web site jeffsteinborn.com or call 575-635-5615.

Help for Labor-Friendly Candidates

Donna Hill of AFSCME announced that the New Mexico Federation of Labor will have a presence in Las Cruces with the purpose of rallying support for union-friendly candidates. For more information, email Donna at djhillsf@aol.com or call her at 575-640-2105.

Protect the Vote

Mary Lujan urged members to volunteer to be poll watchers or challengers for the upcoming election. Many training opportunities for volunteers have been scheduled. For more information, contact Peter Ossorio at ossorios@zianet.com.

The next PVA meeting will be
Thursday, September 25, 2008, 7 p.m.
Munson Senior Center, 975 S. Mesquite.
See you all there!

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