ABQ Election 2013: Mayor, City Council, Bonds

Oct 7, 2013

A screenshot from the New Mexico In Focus 2013 Mayoral Debate hosted by Gene Grant on September 30th.
Credit NewMexicoPBS.org

Albuquerque will hold its municipal election today, October 8th. On the line are the Mayor's office, several seats on the City Council, and millions of dollars of City-issued general obligation bonds.

The Mayor's Office

Incumbent Mayor Richard Berry (R) will be at the top of the ballot. Berry was chosen at random to head the list of candidates in the 2013 municipal election. Paul Heh (R) and Pete Dinelli (D) are also after the Mayor’s job.

The Albuquerque Journal noted that 50 percent of the vote is needed to win the Mayor's office which could lead to a run-off in this three-way race. In their final debate, the mayoral candidates focused on the economy and public safety.

The New Mexico PBS (KNME) mayoral debate was the last of the candidates' three meetings.

You can also watch the second debate from KOB-TV and the first debate from KOAT-TV.

The City Council

There will also be candidates battling opponents for five of Albuquerque’s nine City Council positions. Among them, the District 2 race has been especially remarkable after accusations that special interest dollars were being funneled into campaigns. Isaac Benton (D) is running against Roxanna Meyers (R) for the seat. Benton’s campaign claims that his opponent’s PAC has now collected nearly $100,000. The candidates both have city council experience, but it is redistricting that has set them at odds this year. District 2 comprises downtown and the Near North and South Valleys. 

General Obligation Bonds

After picking candidates to fill available seats in City Hall, voters will weigh in on whether to issue any of ten city general obligation bonds. If approved, the bonds would fund projects as varied as public safety infrastructure, parks and recreation, and street repair and construction. The Albuquerque Journal reports that these bonds are only issued as older bonds are paid off, in part through revenue generated with property taxes.

Do Voters Need to Bring Any ID?

Don’t forget to bring photo identification with you when you visit any of the fifty polling places around Albuquerque. Section 14 of the Albuquerque City Election Code, adopted in 2005, requires election workers to verify a voter’s identity before giving out a ballot. Any government issued ID with a photo, student ID, debit or credit card, or even an insurance or union membership card is sufficient. 

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