Q&A Albuquerque District 7 City Council Mauro Montoya
Name: Mauro Montoya
Political party: Democratic
Education: JD, George Washington University National Law Center, 1984; BA, New Mexico State University, 1980; diploma, Highland High School Albuquerque, 1976
Occupation: Small business owner, retired civil rights lawyer
Family: Husband, Andy Walden-Montoya
Relevant experience: Civil rights lawyer, retired; SME boss; former president of the New Mexico Out Business Alliance; active ordained minister; former Big Brother of Big Brothers / Big Sisters, volunteer for various causes including elementary tutoring and adult literacy, current board member of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains and Wheels Museum. …
Campaign website: mauroforabq.com
What is the biggest problem your district is currently facing and how would you deal with it?
Crime affects the quality of life of citizens, business investments and the value of property. We need a fully staffed DPA, working in partnership with our community to make Albuquerque safer. It is essential to expand the community security service to alleviate the burden on the police, to increase the recruitment of officers and to comply with the ministry of justice.
What, if anything, can the Council do in law to reduce crime?
Continuing analysis of the city’s spending to find more money for the community safety service is the council’s best strategy for deploying more mental health professionals and enabling police to tackle violent crime. The amendment to the Department of Justice settlement agreement will allow us to hire more police officers and reduce the use of force problems.
The ODA continues to operate under a US Department of Justice settlement agreement that outlines reforms, policy changes, and mandatory training that police must complete over several years. Should the city continue with this agreement or try to change it? If so, how should the city try to change it?
Continue with CASA, but modify it to reduce the burden of paperwork for the police who take them off the streets for hours. “Use of force” and red tape are the main reasons police leave ODA. We need to reduce red tape while ensuring that the use of force is minimized.
About 31% of all city general fund spending currently goes to the police department. Is this the correct amount? If not, should it be higher or lower and why?
As we build the Community Safety Service, the police reach will have a reduced footprint, allowing Albuquerque to shift funds to programs that tackle the root causes of crime – education and treatment. drug addiction. However, with increasing rates of violent and property crime, it is premature to immediately reduce the “core” budget for policing.
What else do you think in the city’s current budget should have more or less funding and why?
Preventing sprawl is essential to consolidate vibrant local communities and concentrate complementary businesses. We need more mixed-use real estate to promote pedestrian and prosperous neighborhoods by locating apartments above retail. From the point of view of zoning and taxation, public / private partnerships will unlock this growth factor.
Under what circumstances, if any, would you be in favor of raising taxes?
Raising taxes as we fight the ongoing pandemic would slow Albuquerque’s economic recovery. Access to new technology and data allows budget planners to make smarter and more efficient budget allocations, and access to further federal relief will avoid having to raise taxes.
What’s your best idea for boosting the city’s economy?
Build new sustainable infrastructure to be able to incubate, grow and attract more technology companies. Simplify regulations to encourage entrepreneurs to start new businesses, as small businesses are the backbone of our economy.
If city voters approve a $ 50 million gross revenue tax liability for a new multi-purpose football stadium, where do you think it should be built?
The stadium is expected to be built downtown as part of a central arts and entertainment district. The benefit to the surrounding neighborhoods, the optimal use of public transportation, and the increased vibe of downtown Albuquerque must be factors in the location of the property. Respect for historic districts and local districts must be the priority.
What specific strategies do you have to reduce homelessness?
It is vital to increase budgets for mental health and addiction counseling to a level commensurate with need. Full funding for the Gateway Center and the Community Safety Department so that we can reach as many homeless people as possible to receive services to put them on the way out of homelessness.
What must the city do to ensure the success of its first Gateway Center?
Fully fund the center and make sure it is a one-stop-shop service center offering mental health and addiction counseling, educational, vocational and housing opportunities so our homeless people have a way out of roaming.
What should the city do, if anything, for people living on the streets who don’t want to stay in a shelter?
Criminalizing homelessness through begging and camping laws never tackles the root causes and simply pushes the most vulnerable into the shadows. The majority of homeless residents who do not wish to seek stable accommodation struggle with untreated addiction and / or mental health issues. It is essential to ensure that the services are widely available.
What major infrastructure projects would you push for in the city’s next capital implementation program?
A sustainable electricity network for the new electric future; cooler, more permeable alternatives to asphalt to lower city temperatures and increase drainage to our aquifer; and parking structures with solar panels and more trees to reduce the heat island.
What plans do you have to improve the quality of life for residents of Albuquerque?
Education is the miracle solution to all of society’s problems. Albuquerque can be a stronghold. We start by eliminating drugs and crime. We need public / private partnerships to create economic opportunities and increase funding for schools. Finally, environmental and economic justice reforms are essential to retaining our best and brightest.
What makes you different from your opponents?
I love Albuquerque, being born, raised and educated here. I am a past president of the New Mexico Out Business Alliance, owner of a local business, board member of the Wheels Museum and Planned Parenthood, ordained minister, openly gay, HIV positive and Latino. I am the only candidate with local, state and national approvals.
Name an issue not mentioned in the above questions that you plan to address as an advisor?
Environment. We need to lower the temperature in Albuquerque and do better to conserve our water resources. Planting more trees, using alternatives to asphalt, building parking lot shades with solar panels, using mulch instead of rocks, xeriscaping, and capturing more storm runoff are a few ways to start.
1. Have you or your business, if you are a business owner, ever been subject to state or federal tax liens?
2. Have you ever been involved in personal or business bankruptcy proceedings?
3. Have you ever been arrested, charged or convicted of impaired driving, any misdemeanor or felony in New Mexico or any other state?
Yes. Wrong in Washington, DC, in 1987 for demonstrating in front of the White House against the Reagan administration’s lack of policy on AIDS. I am proud of this arrest because it was for an important cause. This is my only arrest.