Candidate Q&As: Clovis District 3

 

February 13, 2018



The following are Q&As with candidates for contested Clovis city commission races.

The election is March 6.

David Bryant, Jose Griego and Fidel Madrid are running for a four-year term in District 3. Madrid is the incumbent. Candidates were given the same questions, and asked to answer them on the spot.

David Bryant is retired, and is a former purchasing agent for the city.

Why do you want to run?

I want to serve the citizens of District 3. I think that they’ve been underrepresented for too many years. I don’t believe that any politician should be making a career out of running for office. So I think that we need somebody new.

What do you feel qualifies you for the position?

I was purchasing agent for the city of Clovis and the risk manager for the city of Clovis, and I was involved in just about everything there is to do with the city of Clovis — through finance, through politics, through bids and RFPs (requests for proposals). Also I’ve been through Leadership Clovis, I’ve been through Leadership New Mexico. I was awarded state purchasing agent of the year by the state of New Mexico. I’m very familiar with the police department; my son is a police officer. I’ve dealt with lawsuits with the city of Clovis and court claims with the city of Clovis. I don’t know how much more qualified you can be.


What’s an issue you want to tackle specific to your district?

Specifically to my district, like I said before I think our district has been unrepresented, at least over the past 12 years. District 3 is the district that is actually Clovis; if it wasn’t for District 3 there would not be a north Clovis. This district built the town. I think there are areas over here in this district that can be classified as historical districts, and there are streets and roads over here that are in major need of repair.

What is one simple thing the city or the commission could do to improve the lives of its residents?

Stop spending money ... Spending money we don’t have.

Is there anything the city or the commission currently handles that you think would be better in the hands of private citizens?

I would say for one, executive sessions. I don’t think those executive sessions need to happen. I think those executive sessions need to be in public; the public needs to know what’s going on in them. They put doubt in the public eyes as to what’s going on in our city.


Jose Griego is a retired educator.

Why do you want to run?

Well, I came back to Clovis some 12 years ago to take care of my dad and I had just retired from the Ysleta school district (in El Paso). And prior to that I had about six, seven years of community development experience with an organization headquartered in Chicago. The name of it is the Institute of Cultural Affairs. It was an organization where we did community development in basically rural areas … that’s where it all stemmed from, because I was an educator there in rural communities.

So, coming to my hometown I started attending meetings — all five agencies that are accountable to the state of New Mexico. So that’s where it started. Being from here, I wanted to be part of the community, so this was the best way for me to get involved. That’s where I’m at at the present. Every time I’m at a meeting, I get a chance to say I’m a student of the social processes.

What do you feel qualifies you for the position?

Well, that deals with being a citizen of the United States and being part of a social process and understanding it. We have culture, we have the economy. Our vocation defines us as who we are. And then we have governmental agencies that are the welfare of the community.


So to be able to understand all of that, I have studied the constitution of the United States and the constitution of New Mexico. So basically, you have to have law and order and you also have the dynamics of the legislative body, the administration and the judicial. So I understand where I fit in that process. It’s our responsibility to be part of the social process. That’s the best way I can answer.

What’s an issue you want to tackle specific to your district?

As a candidate, what they always ask me what it is that I’m going to do for them. And they’ll share their issues with me. But I tell them this: There’s a lot of issues in District 3.

This is what I want to do: I want to have four town meetings. They’ll last two hours each, with a lunch in between. We’re going to identify what the root of the issues are. We’re going to list them, organize them and then try to make practical proposals. We don’t want anyone coming into our community and trying to do for us what we can do for ourselves. That’s how I answer that — you have to do your share as well because they ain’t going to come in here and do it for you.

That’s the issue; we have to organize ourselves and whatever comes out of those four meetings, we’ll have an assembly, gather our documents and share that. It will be probably a four-year plan.

What is one simple thing the city or the commission could do to improve the lives of its residents?

For sure, and we’re talking long term — everybody drinks water. Nobody is immune to (needing) drinking water. But we have to regulate it. We have to somehow or another get involved in that plan that the city of Clovis has come up with at this present time, understand each of the pillars and do our share to obtain and keep the water cheapest available that we can.

I would probably say that the issue that is most pressing is water at the present time and in the future.

Is there anything the city or the commission currently handles that you think would be better in the hands of private citizens?

It is the responsibility of the people to start getting involved in the development of their community. ... Private citizens have to get involved. We’re not going to be able to do for everybody. Those that can, get involved. We have 30 percent of our community in Clovis that are senior citizens. They are limited in what they do, in terms of resources and mobility in terms of getting involved in a practical manner.

Fidel Madrid is retired from UPS.

Why do you want to run?

I want to finish what we started. Like MLK (Boulevard), we got the plans now and it’s going to be started as soon as we finish those plans. We’ll probably start it by the spring, I hope. We’ve been waiting two years on this thing; when Bobby (Sandoval) was there and I was there we secured the money from the state but it’s taken this long to get it. So I want to make sure that’s done.

There’s a lot of stuff we need to do in town, like we need to solve the water issues that we’ve been involved with since I’ve been on there. And then I think the quality of life is very important. The first time I ran, I ran on quality of life. We got the soccer fields and we bought that golf course up on Colonial. We got all those parks done, and all those parks are looking good. It gives people something to do in Clovis. We expanded our zoo; it’s the second-largest in New Mexico and it’s a really nice zoo.

We as a commission did a lot for our quality of life, and I can’t say that I did it, but it takes all of us to do it. It’s up to all of the commission. I was lucky that we had a good commission and we still have a good commission.

What do you feel qualifies you for the position?

Well, I’ve been on it for eight years now, and before I ran for the commission I was on several boards. I was on the CASA board, I was on the board for Knights of Columbus, I belonged to American Legion Post 25 and I belonged to the NAACP. I’ve always been involved, and I was on the parks and recreation board before I became a commissioner. I would say that I try to get involved in the city when I retired so I could do a lot of this stuff. I just want to give back, and it will be up to the voters whether they let me back or not.

What’s an issue you want to tackle specific to your district?

Like I said, we need to improve our roads all over the city. We got the money now for between Seventh and Grand; that’s going to get done. I want to get from Seventh to 21st and get that road done. I think it’s a safety hazard where they had the ditch (on MLK), and I see a lot of people walking down the road. I want a guard rail, curb and gutter and sidewalks there. Another road we need to fix is there on 21st to Wheaton. We need to expand that road to accommodate that traffic. We’ve been working on it and we’re trying to get a lot of stuff done now.

What is one simple thing the city or the commission could do to improve the lives of its residents?

You know, I still think quality of life is really important. Our kids are important and our older adults are important. So we need to work out and see what we can do for all of the people in Clovis. We’ve got soccer now, we have baseball, we have football for the young kids, now maybe we should work on something for the seniors — see if we can get them involved with the city. Maybe instead of people being lonely we can get them together. They should get out, meet other people and make their lives happier.

Is there anything the city or the commission currently handles that you think would be better in the hands of private citizens?

The city is here to provide services to the people of Clovis and that’s all we try to do. And if we have to handle something, sure, but sometimes it’s better for private enterprises to do stuff like the soccer fields, baseball, football. The city is here to provide services for everybody — for parades, protests, funerals. The city is here to serve the people.

— Compiled by Staff Writer David Grieder

 

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