Running for Taos Mayor 2022
I’m a fat guy in a race, I don’t expect to win. The seas are rising, our friends and relatives want to come home. There’s room at the inn, and somebody is gonna have to clean the stable. We have some social problems that need to be taken care of. The more out in front of this thing we can get the better.
I’m running because I want people to turn out to vote.
We are seeing poor turnout at the national, state and local levels. People aren’t showing up to vote, they don’t believe in the process, and that jaded cynicism is going to kill us all. We’ve got to get back to that 80’s idea of America where we all have a voice and we all matter because that’s what makes us strong. I believe Taos has thrived because of our syncretic nature. We can do this together.
My response to some questions about why I want to be Mayor.
Here’s my hot take on the issues I see facing us in 2022. I invite others to take these ideas and run with them.
La Coalición de Taos – The People’s Forum
February 1, 2022 – hosted by La Coalición de Taos. My thanks to La Coalición de Taos for taking questions from me via email and sharing them following my disconnection due to internet issues.
Given eight years of experience with the current Town Manager, what can we expect of you and the Town Manager you appoint when it comes to ensuring transparency and public input during your administration?
You can expect the unexpected 🙂
Seriously though, while decisions need to be made in a timely fashion; not every decision needs to be made by committee. You can expect that the hiring process for the new town manager will involve a worldwide search with preference shown to candidates who are familiar with Taos (as in, have lived here for more than five years), that the final candidates will be brought before the town council for interviews, and that process will be open for public viewing with a period for community feedback. Finding the “right” person for the job, and allowing that person a window of opportunity to show their worth to the town is the way to proceed. There are some transparency issues that need to be addressed with the way the council makes decisions and a way of addressing public concerns as they arise that seem pretty straight forward to everyone and I believe I’d implement the opportunity to observe and advise with the first available set of sessions.
Lightning round ( yes/no answers)
a) Will you support moving Town elections to the November election date to encourage more voter turnout, even if it means shortening your term in office?
b) Do you support annexing Ranchos de Taos into the Town of Taos?No.
How would you better prepare our community for the cascading effects of extreme weather events, and help ensure that we have the basic services we all need?
Resiliency starts with the individual. You, Me: Us.
If we all make an effort to befriend our four closest neighbors and genuinely become engaged with their lives we put ourselves a step ahead of the coming adversities.
As a community, we can prepare for the caring of ourselves by imagining the worst and making preparations for it. What if a wind storm comes and blows the roofs off a bunch of houses? Could we not imagine that city ordinances about construction could take a back seat to getting a lid back on those buildings and getting those families safe from the elements again? Inspections are important. Rules are important. They don’t need to take precedence in an emergency situation where they are best sidelined. This “imagination” exercise should be applied to our food, energy, and infrastructure. What happens when fire wipes out all the houses in the canyon? Where and how do we catch those neighbors of ours?
Life is change; and more people will be fleeing the coasts. The people who arrive here intending to stay won’t have been advertised to in Forbes. They will be our family, friends, and childhood neighbors. It would behoove us to prepare not just for their arrival but to begin the facilitation of their placement back into our community. Urging them to bring their high paying jobs back here remotely before it becomes an emergency isn’t the worst idea. Asking Kit Carson to lean into energy sustainability at each building isn’t the worst idea. Getting sustainable food sources locally and providing opportunities for local businesses to thrive on local production isn’t a bad idea either.
Fortunately for us all, Taos is populated by at least one expert in every one of these fields.
Lightning Round:(yes/no questions)
Thinking about climate change, would you:
a) Support funding to improve energy efficiency in existing low-income housing?
Yes, of course.
b) Add or change building codes to require energy efficiency in new construction
c) Commit resources to work with the Pueblo, County, Forest Service and BLM to mitigate the threat of wildfire?
Yes. Is that not already happening? That would become an immediate priority.
Taos News – Mayoral Forum
January 24, 2022 – hosted by the Taos News. Thank you to the Taos news for facilitating an online event so I could participate even when I had Covid.
Taos News Questionnaire (full transcript)
The Taos News sent candidates a questionnaire for Decisions 2022, here are my full answers.
The TK1 Youth Mayoral Forum
February 24, 2022 – hosted by True Kids 1 in partnership with Kit Carson Electric Cooperative and the Taos News.
Alternate Town of Taos Mayoral Candidates
I am open about how I feel about our other candidates, and I salute their willingness to serve. I would like to bring your attention to what I see them bringing to the table.
Mayor Barrone has solved a number of contentious county/town issues. I respect his understanding of the regional political landscape.
Pasqual has served Taos well in the past. I appreciate his expansive perspective.
Genevieve has a lot of first hand experience navigating the issues downtown faces. I admire her willingness to shape the future.