Candidate Q&As: Commission District 3

 

January 26, 2020



The Clovis city commission seat representing the west side of the city is up for re-election this year, with David Bryant challenging incumbent Helen Casaus for the District 3 seat.

Election Day is March 3, while early voting begins Feb. 4.

The News sat down with both candidates to ask some questions about their campaigns.

Helen Casaus

Why did you decide to run?

I feel like there's still some unfinished business I would like to accomplish.

I enjoy being in this community and I support my community. I do what my constituents want me to do.

What specific experiences and qualifications do you have that prepare you for the next four years?

I was appointed at first and then I ran for election for the two-year. I won that election and really got interested in the city's politics. I want to continue because there's a lot of things I would like to do for my district.

I’m an educator with a degree in nursing. I support my policemen, my EMTs and my firemen.

I do a lot of reading and I educate myself because there’s a lot going on in my state and city.

I’m very concerned with our crime rate going up.

Have you been arrested or charged with any crime beyond traffic violations? If so, what were the circumstances and outcome?

No.

What is the most important issue facing the city in the next few years, and what do you think needs to happen with it?

I think the biggest problem we have is the water issue. Another issue is crime. Crime is going up and I think we need a solution for that. Then there's fixing our roads up.

What's an issue specific to your district that needs city attention, and how does the issue need to be addressed?

District 3 seems to be a lot of the low income in the west part of town. It’s the older section of the city, but I think people need to take responsibility for their yards and their homes.

We need to clean up the area.

A lot of people ask me “Why don't businesses come to the west part of town?” and I have to tell them “Would you want your business next to a house that is falling down?”

Working on the district and doing what we can to try and get businesses in the area.

How does a community know when it's been taxed enough? Do you feel Clovis residents should pay more taxes, fewer taxes or about the same as they do now? And on what do you base your opinion?

The last time we voted for a tax increase I was a commissioner who voted against it. I believe we need to leave those decisions to the citizens.

We do need more policemen, more firemen. A tax increase I do support, but only if the residents want it.

Recreational marijuana could be a reality in New Mexico as soon as July 1. Should that happen, do you believe the city should create its own regulations within its incorporated areas, take no position and leave regulations in the state's hands or keep recreational marijuana illegal in city limits?



It’s funny you ask that. I was watching the news and there are 80,000 people in New Mexico who have the marijuana card.

I think it’s inevitable and I'd like to see the tax income from it. I think we can make a lot of money on this, but what are we going to do with businesses that do drug tests?

It could go either way, but I think it's inevitable and I think it’s going to pass.

David Bryant

Why did you decide to run?

I was born and raised in Clovis and I've been here all my life, 50 years. I have a desire to serve the community.

I was purchasing agent for the city of Clovis for several years and retired from that, but I'm ready to get back in.

What specific experiences and qualifications do you have that prepare you for the next four years?

I worked for the city of Clovis for several years as the purchasing agent and took care of all the tort claims, all the procurement in the finance office and I've worked with all the city commissioners, the mayor and the city manager.

I'm pretty well voiced in all the happenings there are for the city and to get things done.

Have you been arrested or charged with any crime beyond traffic violations? If so, what were the circumstances and outcome?

Absolutely not.

What is the most important issue facing the city in the next few years, and what do you think needs to happen with it?

Water seems to be the big thing now with everybody and I think I'd want to get into that.

I've heard we had a 10-year supply and a 30-year water supply, but of course my lifetime here in Clovis, water’s been an issue for the last 50 years, as long as I can remember.

I think we need to tackle it and get it going. We've drug our feet too long.

What's an issue specific to your district that needs city attention, and how does the issue need to be addressed?

The biggest issue all over is roads and streets. It's putting funding in it and get working on the streets.

How does a community know when it's been taxed enough? Do you feel Clovis residents should pay more taxes, fewer taxes or about the same as they do now? And on what do you base your opinion?

I think we need to look into tax increases that we've done in the past. We need to look at property taxes and the increases and the times they were increased and sales tax and when they were increased.

We'll look at those increases and what they were for, whether that be streets or anything else. If those projects are completed those taxes should have gone back down.

I think there are a lot of taxes right now citizens are still paying that are not necessary.

I'm for no tax increases.

Recreational marijuana could be a reality in New Mexico as soon as July 1. Should that happen, do you believe the city should create its own regulations within its incorporated areas, take no position and leave regulations in the state's hands or keep recreational marijuana illegal in city limits?

I think it needs to stay in the state and the people's hands. It doesn't matter if I agree with it, I think it’s inevitable and once it happens it needs to be treated just like alcohol. Same laws, regulations, taxes, everything.

It’s not a matter of whether I agree or disagree, we'll need to decide if it'll be legal.

— Compiled by Staff Writer Mathew Brock

 
 

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