Citizens’ Initiative Trash Ordinance Succeeds – City Will ‘Consider’ it Nov. 13

By Kathleen Sloan

HERALD Reporter

A petition, certified as being in the correct form by Truth or Consequences City Clerk Mary Penner, started circulating Aug. 9. The petition seeks to “get the city out of the trash business” by Jan. 1, 2013. Petitioners turned signatures in Oct.8, but Truth or Consequences City Manager Juan Fuentes claimed the city had until Oct. 23 to verify the petition. That meant, if the petition had enough signatures, it couldn’t go to vote until March 2013, said Fuentes at the city’s Oct. 9 meeting.

So much for the Jan. 1 deadline.

Next step: State Statute 3-1-5(J) states that if a petition “is certified as having excess the number of valid names, then such certification shall be recorded as part of the minutes at the next meeting of the governing body.”

The city met that requirement. The certification of signatures was not on the city’s agenda – as it was for Mayor John Mulcahy’s recall petition. At the special meeting held Monday, Oct. 22, City Manager Juan Fuentes mentioned, during his report, that the petition had enough valid signatures, verified by City Clerk Penner. The minutes aren’t available yet, but this mention will be minuted for sure.

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