Thursday, April 22, 2010

EDITORIAL: Now It’s Time For The Co-op To Start Over

Just Thinking Out Loud...
By John Severance and Gary Jaramillo

The members have spoken and now it’s time to sort it all out.
But more importantly, it’s time for everybody to get along.
The members made it clear Saturday night during the Socorro Electric Cooperative annual meeting they wanted to change and were sick and tired of the status quo.
And that’s what they got.
With the bylaws going into effect immediately, the trustees will meet Friday to figure out what to do next.
How are they going to get down to five trustees?
How are they going to redistrict?
How are they going to run their business with a $10,000 spending limit after having an open checkbook for so many years?
Members also voted on term limits, meaning six of the board members already have served more than two.
Are they the first to go?
Anyway, here are some ideas. They don’t exactly follow the bylaws but they make a lot of economic sense.
The county paid more than $300,000 when it changed its districts in the early 2000s.
The co-op could follow the county blueprint when it comes to redistricting adding in Catron County to the west and Valencia County up to Belen in the north.
This next idea is way out there but it does make sense even though it’s not fair to the four trustees who still have terms to fill out.
The members voted for the co-op to be run by five trustees.
Simple enough.
Hold an election in 60 to 90 days and anybody, who is a co-op member-owner can run for office.
As far as the election is concerned, voting can take place at precincts in the coverage area and voters can pick their five favorite candidates.
The five with the most votes wins. They will run the co-op and in order to get adequate representation, the co-op can move its meetings around Socorro and Catron Counties so all members can have a chance to express their views.
The most important thing, though, is that this is a chance for fresh start.
And everybody should take advantage of it and do their absolute best to get along.
Let's not forget that all of this began with questions of money and how it was being spent. If we skip re-districting, call a quick meeting and elect new trustees (who will oversee ALL established districts), then we can start the healing and transparency everyone so badly wanted - and save a ton of money in the process.
It doesn't have to be complicated - and all of us here at the Mountain Mail hope that those involved work together to make it as simple and as quick as possible -for everyone's sanity.


• In the Reserve election story on page 8, Village clerk Kathy Harris, County Clerk Sharon Armijo and Judge Clayton Atwood canvassed the election. The election board was not present at the canvass.

• On page three, Tom Cassady’s name was misspelled in the obituary and the wrong photo was run. The correct obituary and photo appear on page three of this issue.

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