San Miguel County Commission Chairman David Salazar announced Thursday that he is running for a second term.
Salazar, 62, is the commissioner who proposed the county look into setting up a rock crusher operation as a way of lowering costs for road improvements. The county is now moving in that direction and plans to dedicate a voter-approved tax toward that purpose.
Initially, the county had planned to use the money from the tax by dividing it equally among all five commission districts. But Salazar said the portions would have been too small to make any real difference.
“All districts would benefit from the crusher,” he said. “That’s one of the projects I’d like to see get finished. We don’t have money for roads other than the state. But we may not always get that money.”
As for making decisions on road projects, Salazar said the commission makes a practice of listening to the recommendations of the county’s public works supervisor.
Salazar, a Democrat who became chairman in January, represents District 4, which includes the Valley, Romeroville, Tecolote and Ojitos Frios. He is the first to announce a run for the District 4 commission seat.
One of the bigger issues in Salazar’s district is the city’s increased pumping at Taylor Wells, which residents in areas such as Ojitos Frios and Romeroville contend has cause their well levels to drop.
“We’re trying to get money to do a hydrological study. We want to know how much water is available in the area,” said Salazar, a retired West Las Vegas schools superintendent.
Salazar, a member of the Las Vegas Community Water Board, said he would like to see well-monitoring in areas of the county that are experiencing water supply problems.
Salazar praised the performance of County Manager Les Montoya.
“He has been doing a heck of a good job for us. He explains to us what is happening. It makes it a lot easier for us,” he said.
As for his role as commissioner, Salazar said it is to set policy, not get involved with the daily operations.
“If we have any questions, we ask Les Montoya. We have no business interfering with county supervisors,” Salazar said. “I don’t hire people myself, and I don’t recommend people to get hired. They (supervisors) do the hiring.”
The Democratic primary is June 3.