Should the village of Corrales let Sandoval County run its municipal elections?
It’s been considered before and the question was brought up again during the Village Council meeting on Feb. 28.
Village Clerk Melanie Romero explained to the council that having the county run village elections would bring some consistency to voters. Municipal elections, currently held in March of even numbered years, would be moved to November of odd numbered years and held concurrently with state and federal elections. That way, local voters wouldn’t have to go to the polls as many times and most elections would be in November, the exception being primary elections.
Corrales residents could also go to the same polling place to vote each time.
“Opting into the statewide election, or having the county run our election, would allow a Corrales voter to vote anywhere in the county,” Romero said.
But she noted that if the county took over elections, residents would still vote without leaving the village.
Councilor Rick Miera supported the idea.
“Constituents in Corrales really want to have one place where they go vote on a regular and consistent basis,” he said.
Councilor Mel Knight said the change could alleviate confusion over shifting voting locations that villagers have faced in the past.
“We want to make sure everyone has an easy time to vote,” Knight said.
If adopted, the change in election day from March to November would alter the length of terms of current councilors and the mayor. Councilors would have to decide whether to extend terms by 20 months, or shorten them by three months.
Having the county run municipal elections could also save the village money, Romero said.
“The costs of the election are going up,” she said. “While $18,000 is not a huge portion of the village’s budget, is it the best use of taxpayer resources if we have an option to have those expenses covered elsewhere?”
Miera said he would feel comfortable with the county running the elections as a matter of security and having the support of the Sandoval County Sheriff's Department.
Right now, moving the election is just an idea.
“I'm looking forward to having some open conversation about this,” Miera said.
Romero said that the council could hold a work study session on the matter. The village is also welcoming public input.
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