Pathway a waste of taxpayer money

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As I read the Oct. 25 article, “Path Project,” many thoughts went through my mind. This project will impede the flow of irrigation water to the west side of Cinder Road, which I and the ditch majordomo stressed to the county officials. Our concerns fell on deaf ears.

Acequia waters should not be obstructed in any way.

When Cinder Road was blacktopped a few years ago, three poorly designed culverts between Mills Avenue and Palo Verde were put in place after the fact, causing dangerous dips in the road. These culverts have never been maintained by the county, causing dangerous flooding on the east side of Cinder Road.  According to the state engineer, “Land must be irrigated or property owners will lose water rights.” Hopefully this project will not be as poorly designed as the blacktopping of Cinder Road has been.

To shell out $1.6 million seems like a gross amount of money (citizens’ hard-earned taxes) to be used for a walking path two miles long. How can we allow elected officials to misuse our taxes in this manner?

Some concerned citizens spoke to these county officials about better use of this huge amount of money. One gentleman felt this money could be used for winterizing senior citizens homes. Another citizen shared that such a tremendous amount of money to be spent on a path should serve a  “commuter purpose.” I feel such a path would better serve the public along Hot Springs Boulevard, where hospital patients walk on the street for lack of sidewalks. This “commuter path” would also serve the hundreds of state employees, many of whom could ride their bikes during this energy crunch.

Furthermore, this path would serve the large community at Camp Luna and the students of Luna Community College. This way the building contractor would keep its hard-working employees earning a living.  Hopefully most of the money is going to the construction company and its dedicated workers and not elsewhere.

At a meeting, one person supporting the path made a ridiculous statement of a high percentage of obesity and diabetes in San Miguel County. I assume he was claiming a $1.6 million path would do away with these problems. A county employee said he was tired of jogging “round and round” at our local track fields. I guess our million dollar Abe Montoya recreational center, Robertson High sports complex, West Las Vegas High School track, or the Highlands Wilson Complex are not good enough for this individual.

I was told by one of the county “experts” in charge they would inform my family on design and details to avoid flooding or any problems with irrigation on my property on Cinder Road. My neighbors, my immediate family or myself have yet to be contacted.

I worked on President Barack Obama’s campaign for several months. I went to the campaign headquarters on a daily basis and not once did I see any local politicians except for one day when Bill Richardson showed up. President Obama’s “stimulus funds” were meant to put people to work, not for local bosses to misuse. This is the kind of project people opposed to wasteful stimulus spending are capitalizing on.
Let‘s put $1.6 million to better use.
José Maestas
Las Vegas