By Kathleen Sloan
The Truth or Consequences City Commission held a regular meeting on Tuesday, May 8. The following actions or discussions took place:
•Elizabeth Gutierrez and Jessie Anglin of the Truth or Consequences Housing Authority gave a presentation. They said they have 117 landlords under the “Section 8” program. Recruiting more Section 8 landlords is a goal, since it reduces blight and puts housing to a higher social use.
There are 100 public ho using units. About two-thirds of the units house elderly residents. They are trying to get grants to renovate some of the units.
The Family Self Sufficiency program trains people on banking skills, GED and housekeeping.
A recent grant that gained the Housing Authority two coordinators has helped greatly.
The community rooms are now filled, and case management issues are now shared with the coordinators who have initiated a buddy/reporting system.
•Warren Cross is one of the city’s three Sierra Vista Hospital Governing Board members. His term is up June 30. The city commission procedure is to interview prospective members on this and the Planning & Zoning Commission.
However, there is a long “learning curve,” pointed out City Commissioner Steve Green, and the hospital is at a “critical stage,” with the ER renovation and master planning.
Fellow commissioners agreed with Mayor John Mulcahy that Cross should be brought before the board for a report. “How do we know about his performance on the board?” asked Mulcahy.
The reappointment of Cross to the board has been postponed until their next meeting, scheduled for May 22.
•With no discussion, the city commission passed an amended resolution for city rules and procedures.
Rule 17 was removed, which states public comment must be constructive and pertain to city business. Such strictures on free speech are deemed unconstitutional by the American Civil Liberties Union, which contacted the city before it passed the rule in March. An addition was made to section one, which concerns who will decide who will be on the agenda. Application should be made to: “a member of the City Commission or City Manager, who shall make the determination whether to forward to the City Clerk to be place [sic] on the agenda.”
Rule 18 was amended. Added was: “A City Commission member who ‘abstains’ will be recorded as neither an ‘aye’ or ‘nay’ vote.” Deleted was, “If any City Commission member declines to vote, their vote shall be counted as an ‘aye’ vote.”
•Commissioners tabled a resolution that would allow the city to invest in the New Mexico State Treasurer’s Local Government Investment Pool. They had questions about bonding those who could withdraw funds from the account, pledged collateral, and insured amounts in case of ‘bank’ failure and the amount of administration fees.
•Commissioners unanimously approved the city police department’s request to take over the Motorola Solutions Maintenance & Support Contract.
The Sierra County Regional Dispatch Authority had been administering the contract, but lost “qualified personnel.”
The contract is for tech and software support on the mobile computer units in police cars.
Truth or Consequences Police Chief Priscilla Mullins said 10 terminals have been installed and five await installation, since they are awaiting new vehicles. It has greatly improved reporting methods, she said. It will cost about $160 to finish out the year and about $2,000 next year.