Thumbs DOWN for ... STILL PENDING. Once again, a habitually divided Las Vegas City Council has rejected the Charter Commission’s recommendation to establish a runoff process for municipal elections. This time, it was a new idea — to allow the council to decide with each election whether to go with instant runoffs or a separate, second election between the top two vote-getters — that derailed the recommendation.
You’d think council members are determining the future of our political process. They aren’t. They are determining what goes before the voters, so we all can decide. Everyone says we need runoffs, but people disagree on what kind.
We need a runoff proposal on the March municipal ballot. Let’s make it happen.
Thumbs UP for ... ANNOUNCEMENTS. Meanwhile, candidates are lining up for next year’s races. Locally, San Miguel County Treasurer Alfonso Ortiz has announced plans to run for Las Vegas mayor. And while incumbent Tony Marquez has yet to announced whether he’ll seek a second two-year term, we’re sure there will be other announcements for this race. It will be decided in March, unfortunately without a runoff in place.
Meanwhile Eric Cummings, a Luna Community College employee, has decided to go after the District 70 seat in the state House of Representatives. He’ll face Richard Vigil, who has served in that position since 1998, for the Democratic nomination in June — assuming, of course, that Vigil goes for a seventh term.
There’s nothing like politics in San Miguel County. Let the contests begin.
Thumbs UP for ... NO PRAYER. No, we’re not opposed to prayer — in fact, we think lifting up our voices to a higher power is a good thing — but we are opposed to state-sanctioned prayer. So we’re glad to see that the Las Vegas City Council unanimously voted the latest prayer proposal down.
Again, we ask, if we’re going to have a prayer at government meetings, whose prayer would that be?
Thumbs UP for ... NO MINCING OF WORDS. East school board President Phillip Vigil was right to set the record straight that, contrary to an unfounded news report, Superintendent Rick Romero’s job is secure. We’re glad he stated it ion uncertain terms.
Thumbs DOWN for ... MISALIGNED. On the Salvation Army corner of Eighth Street and Douglas Avenue, a bank of traffic lights points diagonally. Whether the wind blew it that way or a truck jostled the post, the lights point directly to the entrance of the building that once housed Beall’s. The lights have been that way for several days.
Let’s align them so people don’t run a red light while thinking the green lights points to them.
• • •
AND WE QUOTE
“This will affect me and my kids for the rest of my life. ... I can deal with it, but my kids witnessed it.”
— Germaine Lovato, the fiancée of Benito Lemos, who was shot and killed at 12th Street and National Avenue by Richard Baca, after Lemos reportedly got out of his car and confronted Baca about cutting him off while the two were driving through another area of town.