PVA Meeting Recap – March 22, 2012

February Unified Action Follow-up: The Sheriff’s Standard Operating Procedures

Mariaelena Johnson of CAFé (Comunidades en Acción y de Fé) reported that attendance for the presentation to the County Commission on February 28 was “amazing” and the feedback from the commissioners has been positive. Meetings for community input and a commissioner’s work session are being scheduled.

For more information send email to Mariaelena or call her at 575-645-9880.

Rep. Cervantes Will Run for State Senate

State Representative Joseph Cervantes pointed out that he succeeded in getting a constitutional amendment placed on the November ballot regarding the Public Regulation Commission. He noted that his efforts led to a budget process that is now open to the public. “Perseverance and determination get things done in Santa Fe,” he said.

Joseph announced that he will run for the senate seat being vacated by Cynthia Nava. He has an opponent in the primary (the former mayor of Sunland Park) and will face a strong Republican candidate in the general election.

For more information send email to Joseph or call him at 575-526-5600.

Late Teens to Geezerdom

Carl Zimmerman reported on the status of Occupy Las Cruces. The group is diverse, including members whose ages range from “late teens to geezerdom.” They peacefully occupied Johnson Park for 105 days, taking down their tents in February to move to a new phase of activism.

Everyone is invited to protest Walmart’s use of Monsanto’s genetically-engineered corn.

Stop Monsanto’s Genetically Engineered Sweet Corn
Saturday, March 24, 9 to 11 a.m.
Walmart on Valley Drive

For more information send email to Carl or call him at 575-522-1935.

County Assessor Has Open Door Policy

Andy Segovia, county assessor, warned that property assessments are in the mail. His department is committed to helping citizens understand and sign up for all the exemptions for which they are eligible. The protest process in online now and the assessor’s office stands ready to help.

For more information send email to Andy or call him at 575-640-5675.

CAFé Is Hiring for Voter Registration Campaign and More

Mariaelena Johnson announced that CAFé is hiring people to work on a nonpartisan get-out-the-vote campaign. The organization’s goal is to register 3,000 voters by the November election. A description of the job is listed online at idealist.org.

CAFé is planning civic engagement events for March 31 and April 26. Details are on Facebook.

For more information call Mariaelena at 575-520-1624.

El Paso Electric Works on Community Outreach

Rico Gonzales introduced himself as an El Paso Electric employee who will be working on the utility company’s community outreach efforts in Las Cruces. He announced two upcoming events.

Big Brothers and Sisters Bowl for Kids
Sunday, April 1
10 Pin Alley, 1201 E. Amador

March of Dimes Walk
Monday, April 30
Young Park

For more information send email to Rico or call him at 575-202-3369.

Commissioner Scott Krahling’s Campaigns

In response to Cliff Pelton’s question about what is happening with the sheriff and immigration procedures, Commissioner Krahling explained that Commission Chair Karen Perez is forming a working group to move forward with the county’s work on the issue. “Things are happening,” he promised.

Scott also spoke of his work on the prevention of bullying and announced that the Web site, CommunityUnityCoalition.org, a resource for local information is now ready for visitors.

For more information send email to Scott, find him on Facebook, visit his Web site, and check out the anti-bullying coalition.

Doreen Gallegos for State Representative, District 52

Doreen Gallegos introduced herself and announced that she will be running for State Representative in District 52 (the seat vacated by Joseph Cervantes, who will run for state senator in District 31).

Doreen spoke of her experience as executive director of Mesilla Valley CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) and her background in social work.

Doreen Gallegos Fundraiser
Sunday, April 1, 3 to 5 p.m.
4210 Senna Drive

For more information send email to Doreen or call her at 575-649-6325.

Wayne Hancock for County Commission, District 4

Pat Aguirre spoke in support of Wayne Hancock, who is running for County Commission in District 4 (the district that was Commissioner Krahling’s before redistricting). She noted Wayne’s experience as a veteran and a businessman and described him as fully engaged in the community, citing his work with Parks and Recreation, food programs, and environmental issues such as glass recycling and the use of gray water for irrigation. He is committed to building cooperation between city and county government.

For more information send email to Pat or call her at 575-532-427.

Paul Martinez for Magistrate Judge

Paul “Pablo” Martinez announced that he is running for Magistrate Judge, Division 3. He cited his long career in law enforcement and his work on civil rights issues. He stated that Governor Martinez wants every magistrate judge to be an attorney. Paul expressed his opposition to this policy and his belief that the governor doesn’t have the authority to make that decision. He vowed to fight to stay on the ballot should the governor pursue the attorneys-only policy.

For more information send email to Paul or call him at 575-527-2460.

Joanne Ferrary for State Representative, District 37

Joanne Ferrary announced that she will run for State Representative in District 37 (the seat now held by Terry McMillan). She noted her work with nonprofit organizations such as Make A Wish and her experience as a hard working volunteer with MoveOn.org and Obama for America.

For more information send email to Joanne or call her at 575-649-1231 and join her on Facebook.

Gallery Opening Plus Albuquerque Starts Its Own PVA

Jim Moore announced that Albuquerque is ready to hold its first PVA meeting in May.

Jim issued an invitation to an exhibit of artwork by himself, Dean Lively, and Rosario Jeremias.

Art Show, April 6 to April 28
Friday, April 6, 5 to 7 p.m.
Mountain Gallery and Studios
138 W. Mountain Avenue

For more information send email to Jim or call him at 575-522-6089.

Obama Softens up New Mexico’s Southeast Side

Lloyd Covens was a guest at Obama’s talk to the oil and gas people in eastern New Mexico. He said it went well.

Lloyd announced the OFA office is open every day at 151 N. Solano. They are working on voter identification and registration and forming groups for veterans and others. They are looking for teenagers to be poll workers on election day.

For more information send email to Lloyd or call him at 575-312-8331.

Filmmaker Tackles Immigration Violence and Bullying

City Councilor Sharon Thomas recommended a film on bullying by Patrice O’Neill.

Not In Our Town—Class Action, Bullying
Tuesday, March 27, 6 p.m.
Corbett Center

For more information send email to Sharon or call her at 575-644-2517.

Nate Cote for State Representative

Cheryl Frank spoke in support of Nate Cote, who is running for State Representative in District 52 (the seat currently held by Rick Little) and noted that New Mexico has an anti-racial profiling law because of Nate’s energetic work in the legislature before the 2010 election.

Cheryl invited volunteers to join the campaign and promised that it will be fun as usual. Phone callers are needed now to identify supporters in the district, which covers a huge area, much of it rural. Everyone is invited to a launch party and fundraiser in April.

Nate Cote Launch Party
Saturday, April 14, 5 to 8 pm.
Los Compas at 1120 Commerce Drive
RSVP to Alexandrea at 575-496-8578

For more information send email to Cheryl or call her at 575-650-7607.

Immigration Stories from Real People

Kristin Connor, a lawyer with Diocesan Migrant and Refugee Services in El Paso, told two stories to illustrate immigrant experience in our county. One of her clients was pulled over by a Doña Ana County Sheriff’s Deputy. The client produced a valid driver’s license and proof of insurance but was detained. After a 30-minute wait, the Border Patrol arrived. The client was eligible for a $7,000 immigration bond. With immigration bonds, the total amount must be paid.

Another client is a seventeen year old high school student. After her hearing in immigration court, she invited the judge to attend her high school play that evening.

Kristin urged that we learn about and support the DREAM Act.

For more information send email to Kristin or call her at 575-640-5806.

A PAC You Can Respect

Ann McCullough thanked all those who have donated to New Mexicans for Democracy PAC (aka, the good PAC) and welcomed more donors. You can visit their Web site and donate using Pay Pal.

For more information call Ann at 575-524-2601.

Senator Mary Kay Papen Will Run for Reelection

Senator Papen announced that she will run for reelection to the State Senate in District 38. She observed that she does not have an opponent in the primary. Of the general election she said, “I don’t know my Republican opponent, but I plan to beat him.” She mentioned her long term commitment to working for mental health. In the recent session she supported a Spaceport bill that did not pass and a bill that did pass and will bring many millions for improvements to the colonias.

For more information send email to Mary Kay or call her at 575-649-7853.

Deep Thoughts? Not This Time

Wes Wilson invited everyone to come to the Wilson home and enjoy the iris garden that he and his wife have created. Hundreds and hundreds of iris will be blooming, in every color of the rainbow.

Iris Garden Viewing and Social at the Wilsons
Saturday, April 28, 2 to 5 p.m.
700 Olde Country Road, Las Cruces

For more information send email to Wes or call him at 303-910-7765.

Bill McCamley for State Representative, District 33

Bill McCamley will run for District 33 State Representative (the seat vacated by Joni Gutierrez). Bill spoke of his experience as a county commissioner and his continued commitment to economic development, education for jobs, and alternative energy.

For more information send email to Bill, call him at 575-496-5731, and join him on Facebook.

Let Us Unify Your Action

Don Kurtz let everyone know that the executive committee of the PVA welcomes suggestions for the PVA Unified Action. Any member of the committee will gladly accept your suggestion or you can join them at their monthly meeting held on the second Thursday of most months, 5:30 p.m. at International Delights.

For more information send email to Don or call him at 575-644-9672.

Good to See So Many Politicians

Michael “Sasha” Miller began by observing, “It’s good to see so many politicians.” He urged that we change the dialog from driver’s licenses and immigration to the violence and poverty in Mexico, the policies that contribute to the situation, and the remedies.

For more information send email to Michael or call him at 575-635-6952.

News from SWEC and More

Jason Burke, who wore a hoodie in recognition of the tragic death of Trayvon Martin, mentioned a few highlights from the Southwest Environmental Center’s calendar. April is Activism Month at SWEC and they will celebrate by hosting a free showing of “Erin Brockovich,” the story of one episode in the life of real-life activist Erin Brockovich.

Free Film: “Erin Brockovich”
Friday, April 6, 7:30 to 9 p.m.
Southwest Environmental Center

For more information send email to Jason or call him at 575-522-5552. Join SWEC on Facebook and visit their Web site.

Report from City Councilor Olga Pedroza

Councilor Pedroza pointed out that Catholic Charities Legal Services received the Fighting for Justice Award given annually by MALSA (the Mexican American Law Students Association).

Olga reported that the city councilors received a host of phone calls and emails supporting Camp Hope. It was almost as if there had been an unified action.

She urged participation in the J. Paul Taylor Symposium: Quality of Life as Social Justice.

J. Paul Taylor Symposium
March 25 and 26

For more information send email to Olga or call her at 575-640-2564.

Report from City Councilor Gill Sorg

Councilor Sorg announced that the city is planning a whole week of special events around Earth Day. Issues such as water and sustainability will be addressed.

Earth Day Week
Tuesday to Saturday, April 17 to 21
Various Celebrations at City Hall and Young Park

For more information send email to Gill or call him at 575-644-0660.

Report from City Councilor Nathan Small

Councilor Small spoke in support of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument proposal. The plan was rolled out at the Farm and Ranch Museum on March 20. The areas in the proposal contain one thousand years of history, six-hundred-year-old petroglyphs, the Butterfield Trail, the Camino Real, Kilbourne Hole Volcanic Center, and many more treasures. In the case of National Monuments, the President–not the Congress–gets to decide.

For more information send email to Nathan and visit Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument, a terrific Web site with great information and beautiful photos. You can follow them on Twitter and join them on Facebook.

Commissioner Krahling Running in a New District

Mary Lujan, campaign treasurer, invited everyone to a fundraiser for Scott Krahling, who must run in a new district because of changes brought about by redistricting.

Scott for Commissioner Fundraiser
Wednesday, March 28
Copperstone Apartments Clubhouse on Roadrunner Parkway

For more information send email to Mary and visit Scott’s campaign Web site where you can join him on Facebook, follow him on Twitter, and (in a first for the recap) circle him on Google+.

MoveOn Holds Training

ViAnn Beadle announced a training session that will teach attendees how to lead sustained nonviolent actions in our community. You can learn more about the event and register online here.

99% Spring Action Training
Sunday, April 15, 2:30 p.m.
Good Samaritan Auditorium

For more information send email to ViAnn.

PVA Meets Again
Thursday, April 26, 7 p.m.
Munson Senior Center
975 S. Mesquite


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