Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller and his team have put together COVID-19 Phase One re-opening documents similar to those recently wrestled into shape by Corrales Mayor Jo Anne Roake. And some of the material included should interest Corraleños.
For one, the Cultural Services Department is creating “Summer Camp at Home” activity kits, to be distributed beginning about May 24. The APS school year ended May 22. The kits will be created by the Albuquerque Museum, BioPark, and Balloon Museum. The Public Library is also planning a completely digital summer reading program.
The Open Space Visitors’ Center on Coors re-opened on May 19, subject to occupancy limits set by the State. Its new hours of operation are Tuesday through Saturday, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
COVID Safe Practices signs are strategically posted throughout facility, and Parks and Recreation is limiting the number of people in the building to 25 at a time. No groups larger than five may be inside, and everyone must wear a mask. Volunteers are allowed to return to assist with garden maintenance.
The Albuquerque BioPark will open to the public at a limited capacity with physical distancing, engineering controls, administrative controls and cloth masks for all on June 2, if state limitations allow. During the first week, only members will be allowed in.The BioPark will open to the general public on June 9. Timed ticketing with 300 tickets will be available per hour at the zoo, estimated possibly 25 percent capacity. Three hundred tickets will be available per hour at the Botanic Gardens, open seven hours per day. The staff will shepherd visitors in an organized flow and disrupt any potential mass gatherings. Admission prices may be reduced to reflect these changes. All indoor spaces will remain closed, including the aquarium. Notably, the BioPark estimates it will need $50,000 in additional support per month, since it has lost 75 percent of its revenue from closures and other limitations this calendar year.
The Albuquerque Public Library will open to the public at a limited capacity June 2, if the State permits. This follows one week of staff training prior to re-opening, focused on infectious disease control. The public will not be able to use computers, nor will seating be available. Sanitation stations and supplies will be readily available everywhere, and staff will clean on an hourly basis.
Customers may access physical collections, and returned items will be quarantined for a time based on expert opinion, between 24-72 hours. Ernie Pyle Library and Special Collections Library will remain closed.
Museums will open to the public June 2, if State limitations allow, at a limited capacity with physical distancing, and cloth masks required. The first week will be for members only, and museums will open to the general public on June 9. Museum stores will open for limited visitors.
Vinyl markers will be placed on the floor to space visitors, with customer barriers installed at the cashier desk. There will be no public or docent guided tours, or public programs or in-person classes. Exhibits and surfaces will be disinfected a minimum of four times per day. Explora will re-open to 25 percent capacity, or 50 people per hour. Staff will monitor interior traffic flow and adjust as needed.
Plant and shrub suppliers may not be going to hell in a handcart, an apt phrase derived from the dumping of the dead in carts during the plague in London in the 1600s, but they seem increasingly to be going to hemp growing, according to people close to the operations of the Village Mercantile. That means at a time when many more people are turning to gardening, a pandemic pastime on the rise, plants are harder not only to keep in stock, but harder to source.
“Hemp and hemp products are increasingly in demand,” said one gardener. “And they must be bringing in more revenue than tomato starts.”
“Business is booming in the garden center, especially as customers can walk around fairly safely and look at what we have,” a villager affirmed. “And right now, demand for geraniums is high,” especially as the La Paloma greenhouse of ARCA, once a local source of geraniums, was forced to close, due to N.M. Department of Health regulations. Its annual late April geranium sale was cancelled, so ARCA apparently gave away or tossed out many plants. “The Merc was not even allowed to pick them up,” said a source with regret.
Trees of Corrales recently delivered about 350 perennials to the Mercantile, including native plants. And a local grower said, “The garden center was slammed, immediately.” Color is prized, “to brighten up yards,” with plants such as impatiens, cosmos and zinnias favored. So are vegetable starts like lettuces, peppers, tomatoes and herbs, along with seeds.
Suppliers in Farmington, Las Cruces and Corrales grow and deliver most of the plants currently sold in the Mercantile, whose employees scramble to get products up, priced and on display before eager gardeners swoop in on them.
But, at least gardeners can access much of what they need. Park your car, put on your mask and stroll, with appropriate distancing, through the outdoor garden center. Place your choices on the table near the door, call the store at 897-9328, give them your credit card information and then await delivery to your vehicle. And should you need or want a comfortable mask, one that carries the Village Mercantile logo, and also contains an inner pocket for a filter, you can order one on the company website. The first batch sold out almost immediately.
The municipally-owned Juan Gonzales Bas Heritage Farm hasn’t looked this good in years. Purchased and preserved in perpetuity in 2008 by the people of Corrales, the 5.5-acre tract west of Wells Fargo Bank is at its most green in a decade, perhaps even more than when it was cultivated by the founder of Corrales himself.
The entire tract is planted in a cover crop while Village officials continue to explore leasing it. For more than a year, a lease transaction has awaited installation of an irrigation well and distribution lines. Historically and currently, the farm has been irrigated from the adjacent Corrales Acequia.
The land acquired by the Village of Corrales using municipal general obligation bonds approved by voters in 2004 is the middle portion of a much larger swath of green belt in the heart of Corrales. A three-acre parcel fronting Corrales Road next to the bank is bare this spring, but a larger segment west of the acequia is beginning to sprout a crop.
Over the years, both the frontage and the western parcel have attracted wistful eyes of villagers who want them preserved as green belt or at least open space. But a significant campaign to buy the frontage —or at least to pay for an appraisal on it— was unsuccessful about three years ago. Even so, strong community sentiment remains for it to be acquired for public use. In a guest commentary for Corrales Comment in 2019, former Village Councillor Fred Hashimoto made the following argument. His op-ed article was titled “A Central Heritage Park.”
“The primary objective of the Heritage Park Project proposal is to have the Village purchase the Gonzales three-acre property —which lies along Corrales Road and is nestled in between the library, La Entrada Park, the Gonzales-Bas farmland and the municipal complex —for a multi-use public park and recreation open space with opportunities and benefits for the whole village.
“Although much thought and effort has been put into drafting the Heritage Park Project proposal, it is a general proposal and conceptualization of the park has purposely been painted with broad brush strokes. Specifics can be put on the table and discussed and the project can be modified to best suit the needs of the village.
“During the past year, the Heritage Park planning committee has held a dozen or so design charrettes. Attendees have been a diverse group including representatives from Corrales Community Farms, Corrales Arts Partners, Corrales Growers’ Market, Village Council, Parks and Recreation, Bikeways/Pathways, Sandoval County Master Gardeners, Friends of the Corrales Library, and CHAMP. Professional landscape designers, tree nursery persons and the Corrales Tractor Club have said they would be willing to help.
“Notably, a recurring theme has been: get the land first and then planning can be more focused including: designated paths for walking and jogging, bicycling and horse riding; paths connecting the various Village holdings and the commercial district along Corrales Road to the east and the Acequia Madre to the west; drinking fountain, horse trough, tables and benches; extending La Entrada Park and the children’s playground; trees and gardens (heritage plants, pollinator, school children’s garden, etc.); structure(s) for shade and outdoor events; parking and access to the library, La Entrada Park and the Gonzales-Bas farmland from Corrales Road; and workout apparatuses, kiosk, restroom facilities, well and watering, and signs for history and education and tourism information.
“Once the Village makes the commitment to pursue purchasing the land, things can happen. Design specifics will be examined. Possibly legislative help can be enlisted to help gain some components of the project. The Heritage Park Planning Committee has many volunteers in its midst. Some of the committee’s volunteers already have worked on similar projects in Albuquerque and Rio Rancho. We feel that volunteers can supply much of the people power for the Heritage Park plan’s implementation and maintenance.”
Because the time window on purchasing any piece of land has limits, we have recently submitted a formal proposal. However, it is a flexible means to the end of the Village owning the property which will give Corrales a “Village Center” presence and visual cohesiveness and identity that will benefit many.
“Once the Village makes the commitment, then all interested parties can convene and discuss project details. We all can work together and celebrate our village commonalities, not differences. Let’s start the new year right and positively.”
Those three acres adjacent to Wells Fargo Bank have been zoned for commercial use since the 1980s; a site plan for an office complex there was presented in 2008 by developer Jack Westman. The project never happened, and the land reverted to ownership by the Gonzales family, descendants of Juan Gonzales Bas.
In 2017, a proposal was made for the mayor and Village Council to transform it into a botanical garden, a year-round growers’ market and a food canning facility for local produce.
At a work-study session on an Infrastructure Capital Improvement Plan (ICIP) for the Village of Corrales June 27, 2017 several villagers advocated that the land be purchased as the site for a produce market, an irrigation well for the adjacent Juan Gonzales Bas Heritage Farm and a two-acre botanical garden.
Speaking for the Corrales Tree Preservation Committee, John Thompson suggested the acreage could be used to grow heritage grapes and fruit trees as part of the botanical garden. He urged that the project be added to the Village’s ICIP to boost opportunities for future funding, and asked that a municipal bond proposal be put to Corrales voters the following March for those purposes.
According to the proposal at that time, two of the Gonzales’ three frontage acres might be used for the botanic garden and the remaining acre along Corrales Road could become a permanent growers’ market and food processing or canning facility, he suggested.
Several other citizens asked that a general obligation (GO) bond question be placed before voters for farmland preservation. The citizens included Amba and David Caldwell, Lisa Brown, Stacia Spragg-Braude, Elan Silverblatt, Sandi Hoover, Chantelle Wagner, Jimmy Wagner and Claudia Smith Miller.
During the public comment portion of the ICIP work-study session, Amba Caldwell asked councillors to give high priority to saving farmland from development as housing. “We are highly benefitted by the farming that takes place in our community.”
Her husband, David Caldwell, underscored that by adding, “Our agricultural heritage is integral to who we are.”
Spragg-Braude made the point that saving land for farming “is not just about buying land —it’s about saving open space for all kinds of activities that benefit the people here.”
Thompson addressed the mayor and council to explain how his committee’s goals would require some priority in the Village’s ICIP. If the council allowed a GO bond proposal to be put before voters, funds could be raised for the infrastructure associated with a heritage vineyard and orchard. Elan Silverblatt, co-owner of Silver Leaf Farms here in Corrales, also supported acquisition of the front three acres as a “multi-purpose space.”
“It seems like all the pieces are here to make this a reality, so I would encourage you all to take leadership to achieve this,” he urged. But the project died soon after Mayor Jo Anne Roake was elected amid an attorney’s opinion that proposed general obligation bonds likely could not be used for such an acquisition.
Aligning with Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s pandemic re-opening strategy, Mayor Jo Anne Roake released a plan to re-start the local economy and return to normal operations at Village facilities. “The Village is committed to helping our government and businesses reopen in a safe, responsible manner, recognizing that public health and safety is always our number one priority. Our goal is to return to normal government and economic activity, when deemed safe to do so, while taking steps to protect the public,” she announced May 15.
Local factors that will be involved in re-opening decisions, she said, include:
• The trajectory of positive cases in Sandoval County;
• Statistics of data related to positive cases, particularly as it relates to our ZIP code 87048 and those close to us in Rio Rancho and Albuquerque;
• Current local conditions and the governor's directives; and
• Awareness that many workers come from larger populated areas to work in our businesses and in our government.
She said portable hand washing stations will be installed along Corrales Road for our guests and locals and stand-alone hand sanitizer stations would be available as appropriate. Roake said the Village will adhere to all current directives from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and state health officials.
The mayor’s plan urges residents and visitors to wear fact coverings, practice social distancing, wash and sanitize hands and limit travel outside home.
• Village personnel will continue to work through modified operational processes currently in place to serve citizens. The Village will follow health and safety and CDC guidelines and protect our employees. Village Hall will continue to be closed to the public. Citizens will be able to conduct business online and by phone.
• Public meetings will continue as defined by the Attorney General guidelines and will be conducted via teleconference.
• Village staff will be back to work but continue to limit public access to our facilities.
We will follow the Governor's health orders for safeguarding employees, while continuing to provide services to the public through phone, online, and by email. Certain in-person meetings may also be permitted by appointment only and by following social distancing practices.
• The Village plans to reopen Village Hall, with some modifications to protect visitors and employees from the spread of COVID-19.
People will have to enter the building through the main entry doors, and only two customers will be allowed at the payment and Planning and Zoning areas at a time. There will be no waiting in the lobby area, and overflow waiting will be outside.
• The Village recommends visitors to Village Hall wear gloves and a mask.
•Appointments will be required to meet with Village staff members, and customers are encouraged to utilize online services or mail to conduct business with the Village.
• Public meetings may resume in person.
• B&Bs, phases one and two - no rentals to out of state visitors.
• Parks and Rec, phases one and two - limit gatherings to ten people or less
• Maintain social distancing when allowable• Benches and other high traffic areas will be sanitized daily
• Outdoor restrooms will be sanitized daily
• Play equipment will remain closed until otherwise stated
• Tennis courts will be limited to four people at a time If full, time limits will be set on players so that others may use the courts. Entrance gate will be sanitized daily
• Liam Knight Pond is not a state park and will be considered as a Parks and Recreation facility. That means it falls under the statement above and will remained closed until allowed to open. When allowed to open: maintain social distancing protocol; benches will be limited to one person each; capacity limits (20 persons); benches will be sanitized daily
• Corrales Swimming Pool: We are unable to get our annual inspection and a permit to operate until the Environmental Department gets approval from the state to resume operation. Until that time, the pool will remain closed. When allowed to open: Limits to capacity (50 persons); Time limit on patrons at the pool facilities (2-hour sessions) ; Glass barriers between patrons and cashier; Social distancing markers for entrance line; Sanitizing measures will be taken in between patron sessions (four times daily); Temperature checks of all patrons entering pool area. Everyone must shower before entering pool
• Robert Bell Skate Park: Maintain social distancing protocol; Benches limited to one person each; Benches and high traffic areas will be sanitized daily
• Corrales Library: Phase one - Starting June 1, 2020, Monday through Friday, 2 to 6 p.m. the library will offer patrons curbside delivery of items on hold. The library remains closed. For online website services see http://www.corraleslibrary.org.
With Democrat Ben Ray Lujan, first elected to the Third Congressional District seat in 2008, vying to become one of New Mexico’s two U.S. senators after Tom Udall’s retirement, there’s action aplenty already. Lujan’s congressional seat has drawn many would-be successors, including Democrats John Blair, Teresa Leger Fernandez, Laura Montoya, Valerie Plame, Joseph Sanchez, Marco Serna and Kyle Tisdel.
Among Republicans in the June 2 primary are Karen Bedonie, Alexis Johnson, Harry Montoya and write-in candidate Angela Gale Morales. New Mexico’s Third District comprises Colfax, Curry, Harding, Los Alamos, Mora, Quay, Rio Arriba, San Juan, San Miguel, Taos and Union Counties along with areas of Bernalillo, McKinley, Roosevelt, Sandoval and Santa Fe Counties.
Information for the brief candidate profiles below primarily was drawn from the website of each.
John Blair “got a humble start in politics as a legislative correspondent for Senator Jeff Bingaman,” his campaign material explains. “Working alongside New Mexico Supreme Court Justice Edward Chávez, John witnessed the principles of justice and fairness firsthand. John continued his service by working with then-U.S. Representative Martin Heinrich. John is proud to have played a role in the fight to make healthcare more affordable and accessible, and in Senator Heinrich’s efforts to make it easier for Native Americans to buy homes on tribal lands. And he was New Mexico Deputy Secretary of State for Maggie Toulouse Oliver, who has been fighting to make it easier for New Mexicans to vote.” http://www.johnblairfornewmexico.com
Teresa Leger Fernandez, Yale undergrad, Stanford law degree, founded Leger Law and Strategy in 2013. “A public impact law firm with an entrepreneurial and social impact culture. Areas of expertise include: impact litigation, financing, tribal law, business development, leasing, policy development, civil rights, voting rights, and cultural preservation. Together with our of counsel attorneys, we also address environmental and sustainability issues. We bring a sense of strategic thinking and in depth experience (and joy) to all our work.”
Prior to that, she worked 24 years with Nordhaus Law Firm, “serving as general counsel to Native American sovereigns and their business and social development entities. Drafted and implemented a wide range of tribal and state laws and legislation, from taxation to voting rights.” http://www.teresaforall.com
Laura Montoya’s campaign points out that “I believe our country is at a crossroads and we need to get back to the basics. We need public servants who encourage love, fairness, and equality instead of hate and divisiveness. We should celebrate our similarities and respect our differences.”
Montoya was elected Sandoval County Treasurer in 2012. She has been a public servant for more than 17 years, having worked in several capacities in both the New Mexico House of Representatives and the New Mexico Senate. Montoya got her start in government in 2001, working for a ranking member of the N.M. Senate Finance Committee. Following that, she worked as a constituent services representative for U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman. “I challenge all the candidates, Democrat and Republican, who filed to run for Congress in the District 3 race to donate 10 percent of what they have in their campaign funds as of end of quarter to a New Mexico non-profit.” http://lauramontoya4nm. com
Valerie Plame emphasized “What sets me apart is my national security experience, my leadership experience, crisis management in the CIA. And look, it's not something I asked for, but I do have national recognition, I have a national platform and national megaphone and I want to use that for the good of New Mexico.
“I want a brighter future for New Mexicans. Some of the issues I am determined to advance include lowering healthcare and prescription drug costs, protecting our clean air and water, ensuring voting and equal rights for all, combating gun violence and crime, building a brighter future for all our children and grandchildren through better public education, strengthening our economy, reducing poverty and homelessness.” https://valerieplameforcongress.com
Joseph Sanchez is The New Mexico State Representative for House District 40. He is a lifelong Democrat, and a 12th generation New Mexican from Alcalde. He “is committed to making sure the nation knows that New Mexico matters!”
Sanchez has over 20 years experience working at Los Alamos National Laboratory. Eight of those years were as an engineering manager where he helped oversee projects with budgets in the hundreds of millions of dollars. He also managed the largest electric cooperative in the state of New Mexico, Jemez Mountains Electric Cooperative, which serves five counties and over 30,000 meters. During this time he took the cooperative from near bankruptcy to the best financial position in its history. As an engineer with an MBA, he knows how to listen, and solve problems, his campaign asserts. http://www.josephsanchezforcongress.com
Marco Serna has served as a New Mexican Assistant Attorney General prosecuting Medicaid fraud and elder abuse, and also as an Assistant District Attorney in Valencia and Sandoval Counties where he prosecuted domestic violence and DWI misdemeanor offenses. He currently serves as First Judicial District Attorney in Santa Fe, Los Alamos and Rio Arribo Counties.
“Marco’s lifelong commitment to public service provides him with an understanding of the unique challenges facing our families. As First Judicial District Attorney, he has worked tirelessly to solve many of the problems facing our communities. From a treatment-oriented approach to our deeply entrenched drug problems, to cracking down on violent crimes, Marco has been on the front line defending and protecting our communities.” http://www.marcoforcongress.com
Kyle Tisdel is a public interest environmental attorney. His campaign said he has dedicated his career to “fighting for the environmental rights of people and communities in New Mexico and across the country. Currently, he directs the climate and energy program for a non-profit law firm from his office in Taos, New Mexico. His innovative work is at the nexus of public lands and fossil fuel exploitation, and he has achieved significant victories against the most environmentally reckless administration in American history, utilizing novel legal strategies to uphold climate science and to halt federal giveaways to the oil and gas industry.
“We are in a climate emergency, representing an existential threat to people across New Mexico, our country, and the entire planet. We need leaders in Congress who will make climate change a top priority, and recognize that the work we do to solve this crisis will help to bring greater equity and prosperity to all Americans.” http://www.tisdelforcongress.com
Karen Bedonie, a member of the Navajo Nation, states on her website that she is “an American. When my feet step outside my front door, I am a patriot chasing that American Dream just as freely as anyone else chooses. I fear no man, and when I see Old Glory in the wind, my heart knows that we are all equal, and this is the land of the free and the home of the brave…. I am here to help save our America from socialism, protect our rights, and fly our nation’s colors as freely and proudly as intended. With the strength of a Navajo woman and the heart of a patriot, and I shall lay my arms down never again.” http://www.karenbedonie.com
Alexis Johnson, an engineer who has worked in “the energy sector,” lives in Santa Fe, “and my family frequents Las Vegas, NM. Our family has cattle in Harding County. I was raised in Roswell and graduated high school in Las Cruces. Like so many N.M. families, I was reared by my grandparents. I went to college at Vanderbilt University and N.M. Tech. I graduated with an engineering degree in Socorro at N.M. Tech and have been married to my spouse, after college, and we have four beautiful children.” Her platform emphasizes economy, education, environment, entry into United States , and ensuring life. https://alexisjohnson nm.com
Harry Montoya is “running for Congress because I believe we need a conservative champion fighting for our future generations. I grew up here, I was educated here, and I became a counselor here to help New Mexicans suffering from addiction.” A former Democrat, Montoya founded Hands Across Cultures in Espanola, “with a mission to educate our youth on substance abuse prevention.” He currently is employed as constituent/legislative affairs director for the New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department. His website states he offers “Bold Leadership: Christian. Conservative. Counselor.” https://harrymontoya.com
Angela Gale Morales of Rio Rancho will not be on the primary ballot. She appears to have no campaign website. Meanwhile, Lujan, aiming to fill Udall’s seat, has no challenger in the Democratic primary.
According to his website, he is “a passionate supporter of the Equality Act. Ben Ray believes that all individuals, regardless of how they identify or who they love, should be protected from discrimination under the law. Ben Ray has also worked to combat the opioid epidemic in New Mexico by securing millions of dollars in treatment, education, and prevention funds for rural communities plagued by addiction.”
“A staunch advocate of campaign finance reform, Ben Ray has refused to accept corporate PAC money for his U.S. Senate campaign. He is proud to be endorsed by the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, End Citizens United, and Giffords: Courage to Fight Gun Violence.”
Lujan chaired the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, “leading the Democratic effort in 2018 to take back the majority in the U.S. House while electing the most diverse and youngest Congress in history.” https://benraylujan.com
Corrales began re-opening business and social activities May 15 in line with Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s statewide policies regarding public safety during the COVID-19 outbreak. Even as the governor announced the easing of restrictions, the state’s death toll rose to 253 due to COVID-19. Fifty-five were reported killed from the coronavirus disease in the four-day period ending May 15. As of May 18, the State had reported 265 deaths from COVID-19, with 5,938 positive cases.
Although the governor mandated use of face masks or coverings for all people in public, she made it clear no police action is to be expected. Some New Mexicans said they would defy those mandates and restrictions; the threat of armed resistance has arisen elsewhere.
Mayor Jo Anne Roake said she was not aware of such threats here during her May 14 “town hall” on response to the virus. She said she is aware that not all villagers agree with the governor’s shut-down orders, but that confrontations should be avoided. “We need to do this in a way that doesn’t sound punitive. That’s really not going to do it. Wagging your finger in somebody’s face and yelling at them is just not going to work.
“When we first started this, our fire department and first responders have very good relationships with most people in town. So if we have differences, and some people are not in compliance, usually just a gentle reminder gets the job done.
“If it doesn’t, there’s a phone number at the New Mexico government website that you can call if you see something that you feel is just outrageous, or… and our police do not want to do this… we have the option of calling the State Police.” Village Administrator Ron Curry added, “All of the folks who work for the Village of Corrales, we’ve told them about the ‘mask mandate.’ But one of the things we’re concerned about is not turning all of our department heads into compliance officers.
“Because, really, all the compliance officials we have on our payroll are our fire department and our police force. They are the compliance folks, and we have a compliance officer in our Planning and Zoning Department.
“So it’s really up to the citizens of Corrales and the businesses of Corrales to make it happen. Our folks will be polite, but they are not compliance officers. They will wear masks and they will ask politely to other people they are around to wear a mask as well.
“We ask them to be respectful to our residents, and we ask our residents to be respectful to them.”
The following policies were established by Mayor Roake to guide a phased re-opening of commercial and other business activities in Corrales, in collaboration with directives by the governor in mid-May.
• The Stay at Home Directive is extended for individuals until May 15.
- All vulnerable individuals should continue to follow the stay at home guidance.
- All individuals, apart from members of a household, should:
When in public (e.g., parks, outdoor recreation areas, shopping areas), maintain at least six feet of physical distance from others.
When in public they should use a mask and sanitizers.
Avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 people in circumstances that do not readily allow for appropriate physical distancing.
Minimize non-essential travel and adhere to New Mexico guidelines regarding quarantine.
- Develop and implement appropriate policies, in accordance with federal, state, and local regulations and guidance, and informed by industry best practices, regarding:
- Social distancing and protective equipment.
- Temperature checks to ensure it is not over 100.4 degrees and symptom screening.
- Testing, isolating, and contact tracing, in collaboration with public health authorities.
- Use and disinfecting of common and high-traffic areas.
- Monitor workforce for indicative symptoms. Do not allow people with symptoms of COVID-19 to work.
- Collaborate with public health officials when implementing policies and procedures for workforce contact tracing following an employee’s COVID-19 positive test result.
- If an employee tests positive for the virus they should self-isolate for 14 days.
- A business with an employee that has tested positive should close temporarily to allow for disinfecting.
● All employees should wear personal protective equipment (PPE); o Face Covering (Mask/Face Shield)
- Use sanitizer frequently or use gloves
● Except as otherwise specified in this guide, the operation of non-essential businesses provided in the Stay at Home Directive is extended until Phase One begins.
- Following the expiration of the Stay at Home Directive, businesses may no longer be designated essential or non-essential, except as otherwise provided in this guide.
Guidance for Vulnerable Population
• All vulnerable individuals should continue to follow the stay home guidance. Family and household members of vulnerable individuals should continue to follow the stay home guidance. Members of households with vulnerable residents should be aware that by returning to work or other environments where distancing is not practical, they could carry the virus back home. Precautions should be taken to isolate from vulnerable residents.
• Vulnerable individuals include people over 65 years of age and/or those with serious underlying health conditions, including uncontrolled high blood pressure with heart disease, chronic lung disease, uncontrolled diabetes, obesity, pregnant women, asthma, and those whose immune system is compromised such as by chemotherapy for cancer and other conditions requiring such therapy.
• Until the threat of the virus is lessened and we know more about the threat we are facing, we ask everybody to continue to follow the stay home guidance issued by the State of New Mexico. We also request that our residents and guests continue to educate themselves on ways to protect our community. We also request our local food businesses to expand home delivery and curb-side pickup while using personal protective equipment and screening protocols.
General Business Reopening Guidelines
● All employees should wear personal protective equipment (PPE);
- Face Covering (Mask/Face Shield)
- Sanitizer or gloves as needed
● Health assessments (temperature scan to ensure fever is not over 100.4 , flu-like symptoms) should be conducted for all employees at the beginning of each shift.
● Make hand sanitizer readily available for employees and customers.
● In establishments where customers wait in a line, non-household member customers should remain physically distanced.
● Waiting areas where adequate physical distancing may not be maintained should be closed.
● Customers should be encouraged to call for a reservation or an appointment, or establishments should use an online wait listing application.
● Physical distancing of six feet should be maintained between non-congregate customers,
● A reduction in capacity of 50 percent of total occupancy for restaurants and non-essential businesses;
- A reduction of seating in service and waiting areas;
- Management of waiting areas and waiting lines; or
- Systems that reduce the amount of contact time between customers and staff.
● Retail allowed capacity of 20 percent of Fire Code capacity
Phase Two: An increase in capacity to 75 percent of the total occupancy load;
● Group size has increased from 10 people to 50 people.
● All other provisions remain the same as Phase One for general business operations.
Phase Three: Return to normal operations.
It’s costing the Village to find out why we have nearly $5 million more than we thought we had. The Village has hired a forensic accounting firm, McHard Accounting Consulting LLC of Albuquerque, to discover how its investment account came to hold around $4.7 million.
“We are working with an accounting firm just to identify the funds, to make sure those funds are not encumbered,” Village Administrator Ron Curry said May 12. “We don’t think there is any money in there that shouldn’t be there, and we don’t anticipate that any of that money is encumbered.
“We think we should know within the next 30 to 90 days after we re-align accounts. We’re moving slowly and conservatively to make sure we can use it.”
Village officials were surprised to learn that sum was sitting in an investment account in Santa Fe after Corrales Comment asked late last year what Village government had in savings. (See Corrales Comment Vol.XXXVIII No. 20 January 11, 2020 “What’s Ahead for 2020?” and Vol.XXXIX No.1 February 22, 2020 “Mystery Continues For Village’s Extra $4.7 million.”)
Earlier this year, Curry told the mayor and council that “What made this jump out to us is that when you look at that amount of money, it is equivalent to our budget for one year. It is a good problem to have, but it definitely requires us doing due diligence. We don’t want to get into a situation where we owe that money if we spend it in the wrong way.”
Later in the same January 14 council meeting, then-Councillor George Wright asked Village Finance Officer Reyna Aragon what she knew about the perplexing sum in the Village’s investment account. She replied: “We do not yet know where it came from. In 2016, we see from Wells Fargo, general cash for $4 million going into an investment account. That’s all we know about is so far.”
Mayor Jo Anne Roake asked her, “Didn’t we also see something in 2014 and 2015 as well?” Aragon replied, “There was a big gap of about $2 million increase in all the money, combined.”
Then-Councillor Jim Fahey then asked, “So the most I ever remembered in that investment account with former Mayor Gasteyer is $1.8 million or something like that.”
Mayor Roake responded: “We aren’t going to spend any of it until we have a better idea, and just not that we have a healthy investment account at this point. I think healthy skepticism is good at this point. It is just very unexpected.”
Fahey directed another question to Aragon. “Is there any way it is bond money?” She replied: “We don’t know yet. In 2016 there was roughly $772,000 in there until they moved the $4 million in there.”
The January 14 discussion ended with Mayor Roake asking for anyone with answers to speak up. “If somebody talks to somebody and they say, ‘I know what that is,’ please share that with us.”
McHard Accounting describes itself as “a forensic accounting firm. We exclusively practice forensic and investigative accounting, including litigation support and investigation of matters arising out of financial disputes, including criminal or civil litigation employment issues, business or partnership disputes, financial fraud schemes or other disputed accounting matters and management consulting services.”
Its website says it specializes in “reconstructing accounting records.” Its founding partner is Janet M. McHard.