New Santa Fe mayor says: "This town is not for sale'

  Defying predictions and the clout of big money, Santa Fe, N.M., voters elected former city councilor Debbie Jaramillo mayor March 1. She promised to rein in runaway development and return city government to the people.


Pre-election polls and campaign funds had shown Jaramillo lagging well behind other candidates. Projected winner Peso Chavez raised $86,400 from local business and development interests, compared to Jaramillo's $34,000. But money didn't talk this time.


"The real politics is not about money, or about power. It's about people," said Jaramillo in a victory speech. "This town is not for sale. It belongs to the community."


Her "Take Back Santa Fe" volunteers had hit the streets weeks earlier to register more senior citizens, low income, Native and Hispanic voters (HCN, 2/7/94). At dawn on election day, the volunteers were out again with bullhorns reminding people to vote, said volunteer organizer Gloria Mendoza. Grass-roots campaigning drew many first-time voters to the polls, as well as people who had given up on voting years ago, Mendoza added.


The 59 percent turnout proved to be a Santa Fe record.


The new mayor told the Santa Fe Reporter that she is not anti-development, but wants to guide "development that will work for everyone." Jaramillo said she will push for more affordable housing, less emphasis on tourism and high-end construction, and a more diverse local economy.


It will be an uphill battle, but at least Jaramillo won't have to fight city hall. Three other grass-roots candidates were elected to the city council, creating "the most progressive governing body in the history of Santa Fe," according to new councilor Frank Montaûo.


Chavez's pro-development supporters "are still in denial," said Mendoza. One unidentified Chavez supporter told the Albuquerque Journal that Santa Feans are going to regret electing Jaramillo, and that she "won't last six months."


But Mendoza believes the election will begin "a domino effect all through northern New Mexico." Grass-roots candidates also won the Espaûola mayor's seat and city council seats in Las Vegas, N.M. Take Back New Mexico next goes after the governor's seat.


"We want to get the people involved and to change the image of New Mexico as a resort target, to preserve the culture, values and natural resources of the state," said Mendoza.


For more information contact Gloria Mendoza at 505/473-2090.








* Ernie Atencio





High Country News Classifieds
  • RARE CHIRICAHUA RIPARIAN LAND FOR SALE: NEAR CHRICAHUA NATIONAL PARK
    2 (20 acre sites): 110 miles from Tucson:AZ Native trees: Birder's heaven: dark skies: Creek: borders State lease & National forest: /13-16 inches of rain...
  • DIRECTOR - SONORAN DESERT INN & CONFERENCE CENTER
    The Sonoran Desert Inn & Conference Center is a non-profit lodging and event venue in Ajo, Arizona, located on the historic Curley School Campus. We...
  • CANYONLANDS FIELD INSTITUTE
    Field Seminars for adults: cultural and natural history of the Colorado Plateau. With guest experts, local insights, small groups, and lodge or base camp formats....
  • PLANNED GIVING OFFICER
    National Parks Conservation Association (NPCA), the nation's oldest and largest national parks nonprofit advocacy organization seeks a Planned Giving Officer. Do you find energy in...
  • DEPUTY DIRECTOR
    The Methow Valley Citizens Council has a distinguished history of advocating for progressive land use and environmental values in the Methow Valley and Okanogan County...
  • ACTING INDIGENOUS AFFAIRS DESK EDITOR
    High Country News is seeking an Acting Indigenous Affairs Editor to oversee the work of our award-winning Indigenous Affairs Desk while our editor is on...
  • GRANTS PROGRAM DIRECTOR
    The Cinnabar Foundation seeks an enthusiastic, team-oriented and knowledgeable Grants Program Director to work from their home in Montana. Established in 1983, the Cinnabar Foundation...
  • ARTEMIS PROGRAM MANAGER
    The Artemis Program Manager will work with National Wildlife Federation sporting and public lands staff to change this dynamic, continue to build upon our successful...
  • ALASKA SEA KAYAK BUSINESS FOR SALE
    Well-known and successful sea kayak, raft, hike, camp guiding & water taxi service. Sale includes everything needed to run the business, including office & gear...
  • MEMBERSHIP AND EVENTS PROGRAM COORDINATOR
    Great Old Broads for Wilderness seeks a detail-oriented and enthusiastic Membership and Events Coordinator to join our small, but mighty-fun team to oversee our membership...
  • PROGRAM DEVELOPMENT FACILITATOR
    ABOUT THE HIGH DESERT MUSEUM Since opening in 1982, HIGH DESERT MUSEUM has brought together wildlife, culture, art and natural resources to promote an understanding...
  • LAND STEWARD, ARAVAIPA
    Steward will live on-site in housing provided by TNC and maintains preserve areas frequented by the visiting public and performs land management activities. The Land...
  • DEVELOPMENT WRITER
    Who We Are: The Nature Conservancy's mission is to protect the lands and waters upon which all life depends. As a science-based organization, we create...
  • DEVELOPMENT DIRECTOR
    Driggs, ID based non-profit. Full time. Full job description available at tvtap.org. Submit cover letter and resume to [email protected]
  • ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSTRUCTION GEOPHYSICS
    - We find groundwater, buried debris and assist with new construction projects for a fraction of drilling costs.
  • SPRING MOUNTAINS SOLAR OFF GRID MOUNTAIN HOME
    Located 50 miles northwest of Las Vegas, Nevada in the pine forest of Lee Canyon at 8000 feet elevation. One of a kind property surrounded...
  • MAJOR GIFTS MANAGER - MOUNTAIN WEST, THE CONSERVATION FUND
    Cultivate, solicit and steward a portfolio of 75-125 donors.
  • NATURE'S BEST IN ARAVAIPA CANYON
    10 acre private oasis in one of Arizona's beautiful canyons. Fully furnished, 2123 sq ft architectural custom-built contemporary home with spectacular views and many extras....
  • HEALTH FOOD STORE IN NW MONTANA
    Turn-key business includes 2500 sq ft commercial building in main business district of Libby, Montana. 406.293.6771 /or [email protected]
  • LUNATEC ODOR-FREE DISHCLOTHS
    are a must try. They stay odor-free, dry fast, are durable and don't require machine washing. Try today.