In most elections, incumbents are considered to have a distinct advantage. But that offers little predictive value for Corrales’ upcoming election for mayor and three of the six members of the Village Council,  because only one incumbent is seeking re-election. 

So decision-making for Village government should look very different —but also likely very familiar— after Election Day March 1. That’s because the three mayoral candidates include former Mayor Gary Kanin and former Councillor Jim Fahey. And in Council District 4, one of the candidates to fill Tyson Parker’s seat  is none other than a former councillor representing that district, John Alsobrook.

The new year launches with optimism and flush bank accounts, at least for public institutions and maybe yours.

The State treasury is brimming, apparently with lots more revenue to come in 2022, and Village government is all smiles with $4 million tucked away. “The Village is in excellent financial health,” Mayor Jo Anne Roake crowed as the new year dawned. “The Village does a great deal with the annual $6 million budget… and we’ve got about $4 million invested with the Local Government Investment Pool.”

Your own personal finances may not be so rosy, and inflation may erode yours along with those of the Village and the State. The 2022 session of the N.M. Legislature begins January 18; it will be dedicated almost exclusively to

Commercial-scale growers of marijuana have been operating legally in Corrales for years, and at least nine new sites for cannabis businesses are proposed on land east and west of Loma Larga.

Two villagers, Janet Ruth and Dave Krueper, have issued as 2022 Trash Pick Up Challenge to make Corrales more litter-free by January 2023.

“We would like to issue a 2022 Trash Pick Up Challenge to Corraleños,” they told Corrales Comment December 31. “Today, New Year’s Eve morning, on our morning walk, we brought along two trash bags, and filled both of them on the loop we take which takes us about 45 minutes, or maybe 2.5 miles.

“If everyone did this on their walks through the village once a month in 2022, we would have a very clean village!”

Three Sandoval County commissioners made a decision last week to dramatically alter the voting power of many Sandoval County residents, especially those who live in Corrales. The meeting held on December 9 was a follow-up to one held on November 18, when the commissioners presented potential redistricting maps to the public. (See Corrales Comment Vol.XXXX No.20 December 4, 2021 “Gerrymandering: Is Corrales Voting Strength at Risk?”)

Former Republican Senator Rod Adair, whose business was contracted by Commissioner David Heil and Wayne Johnson, the County Manager,  presented four maps he had drawn, and a private citizen, Isaac Chavez, presented one. Public support for what came to be known as “the Chavez Plan” was overwhelming at the meeting and in the comments on the county website. Chairman Commissioner Heil found minor flaws in Chavez’s plan that according to him, made it obsolete.

Many Sandoval County residents, as well as Commissioner Katherine Bruch, saw flaws in Adair’s plans as well. After this meeting, Chavez teamed up with 

Thanks to The Nature Conservancy, a serious, but avoidable, mistake in managing the Corrales Bosque Preserve may be reversed by summer. Continuity of habitat for wildlife using the riverside forest will be restored over the next decade as a result of the wetlands project underway at the mouth of the Montoyas Arroyo. The wide, barren stretch of land between the east end of the Harvey Jones Flood Control Channel and the Rio Grande is to be filled in with vegetation that will be irrigated with stormwater

An appraisal for the front three acres of the Gonzales tract next to Wells Fargo Bank has not been released by Village officials despite citizens’ keen interest in having it purchased for public use. A report had been expected in October or November for the vacant three acres owned by descendants of Corrales’ founder, Juan Gonzales Bas, for possible use as a “village center” linking the Village Office complex east of Corrales Road, La Entrada Park and the library, and the 5.5-acre heritage farm extending west to the Corrales Acequia ditch bank.

Corrales Comment requested a copy of the appraisal report from Village Administrator Ron Curry November 22 but he replied Decembver 6 that it is “still under executive session protocols,” meaning for now, the appraisal is for the eyes of the mayor and council only.

Back on September 28, Curry was asked by a member of the Village Council for an update on the appraisal; he replied guardedly that those discussions had taken place in a closed session, but added he expected to be able to report to councillors within

Still no start-up date or timetable has been announced for construction of paths along upper Meadowlark Lane between Loma Larga and Rio Rancho. Earlier this year, Village Administrator Ron Curry predicted it might be complete by the end of 2021. But as of December 1, Corrales Public Works Director Mike Chavez reported “We are at 80 percent completion with the design,” which is being carried out by Village Engineer Steve Grollman. In his briefing for the mayor and Village Council 

In early December, the roof was being replaced on the old, one-room schoolhouse at the corner of Corrales Road and Rincon Road. The earthen structure is being restored by John Perea who also owns the adjacent Perea’s Restaurant and Tijuana Bar. Both historic buildings are to be managed in accordance with a common site development plan. Restoration of the old schoolhouse where Corrales kids were taught from the 1870s until 1925 is to be complete before next summer.

Corrales’ building inspector, Joe Benney, resigned in mid-November, another departure in the position with significant turn-over in recent years. No reason was disclosed publicly, although Corrales Comment has requested a copy of a letter or resignation if that exists.

Village Administrator Ron Curry, who met with Benney regarding that departure, said in an email that Benney resigned “to take another job that pays more.”

Controversy regarding actions taken by the building inspector in recent years has centered on  approvals for “casitas” which some villagers consider blatant violations of the Village’s long-standing restriction on residential density.

Manuel Pacheco had been Corrales’ building inspector for about five years, but when he left in 2018, he was replaced by Lee Brammeier who had more than 14 years of building code enforcement with the City of Rio Rancho, City of 

Outdoorsman and adventurer Bill Clark of Corrales died December 26 after a 41-year career with Los Alamos National Laboratories and 21 years fighting off cancer.

Family members noted that “The last few years of Bill’s life were filled with fewer adventures. He battled lung disease due to complications from radiation treatment with inspiring grace and positivity, and a determination not to let illness keep him from

A retiree to Corrales since 2015, Ron Bloch died unexpectedly on December 28. He was 77. The Missouri native joined the  Peace Corps in its early days after graduating from St. Louis University in 1966. While serving in that capacity in Venezuela, he was drafted into the Army during the war in Vietnam. Stationed to South Korea, he had responsibilities for nuclear weapons. After leaving the military, he went into human resources, primarily in the Boston area. In his retirement, one of his main projects was coaching returning Peace Corps volunteers. He was proud to have helped more than 4,000

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