Candidate Profiles: County Commission District 2

Editor’s note: The CNJ sent out a questionnaire to candidates
running for county positions up for election. Candidates had a 300
word-limit for each question and their responses are published as
submitted.

Alan Glen Sumrall

Age: 58

Occupation: Farmer/Rancher

Previous elected offices: 9 years Curry County Fair Board; 2 terms
Grady School Board; elected twice as President of New Mexico Wheat
Growers Association; currently Treasurer of Curry County Mounted Patrol

What is your long-term vision for the county? And how will you plan for that?

My long-term vision for the county includes financial security,
adequate water, and promoting steady economic growth. Financially, we
need to take care of our budget responsibilities so that we ensure we
are spending taxpayers’ money in a fiscally responsible manner. I
support the continued efforts towards building the Ute Water Pipeline.
I support looking at all other available ways to conserve water for
future residential, agricultural and industrial uses. I support
attracting businesses and manufacturers that don’t use large quantities
of water.

Are you in favor of zoning or creating an ordinance to clean up the county?

I am not in favor of zoning laws in the county. I do support other
beautification efforts for the entrances to Clovis such as planting
trees and clean-up teams.

What do you think the county should do to address water conservation?

I will support voluntary conservation efforts for residential users,
but still support personal property rights. Residential users account
for only five percent of all water use in the county, so mandating
residential restrictions would literally be just a drop in the bucket.
For agriculture, farmers already conserve water the best they can, and
mandating restrictions on agricultural use would only result in
increasing food prices.

What do you consider the county’s greatest need today? And how should we resolve that issue?

The county’s greatest need is to be in better control of its finances.
The detention centers (adult and juvenile) account for forty-four
percent of the county budget. We have to make sure we are as efficient
as possible in our spending, while still carrying out the detention
centers’ roles to house those charged with and convicted of crimes.

What is your stance on alcohol sales at the Curry County Special Events Center?

I do not support allowing alcohol sales at the County Events Center. I
don’t want alcohol to be sold at functions where children are in
attendance that are intended to be family entertainment. This is not a
restriction of people’s personal choices to drink, but there are plenty
of other places to go to drink alcohol. In addition, allowing alcohol
sales will expose the county to more liability, which means an increase
in insurance premiums and/or the potential for devastating losses in a
lawsuit.

What can county commissioners do to avoid any more “unaccounted for”
funds in light of the money missing from the 2007 county fair?

The county may need to adopt more stringent controls of any funds
received or paid. I support implementing the suggestions from the
recent State Auditor’s report on the missing funds. There should also
be only one person in charge of the fair funds who is totally
accountable for all transactions.

Daniel J. Stoddard

Party Affiliation: Republican

Age: 48

Occupation: Owner of Fairhaven Assisted Living Facility

Previous elected offices: None

What is your long-term vision for the county? And how will you plan for that?

My long term vision for the county is to help the county grow in a
balanced manner. We have a lot of changes with the new mission at
Cannon Air Force Base so we need to be ready ahead of the influx of new
personnel.

Safety: We must staff our sheriff’s department so that our county stays
a safe place for our residents that are here now and in the future. I
will ensure our sheriff’s department has adequate resources.

Economic Development: I will work with our county government to search
out new companies that will complement what our county has to offer
which is a great place to live and a community that cares. We can do
this by cooperating with the Clovis/Curry County Chamber of Commerce
and the Clovis Industrial Development Corporation as well as economic
development agencies at the state and federal level.

Are you in favor of zoning or creating an ordinance to clean up the county?

I feel we have to address the need to clean up our entrances into Curry
County. I will support every effort made in this area to get it done.
There is a committee working on this right now and we need to listen to
what our county residents feel will work for the good of the community.
I don’t feel we need to change the zoning but we must look at the
ordinances we have on the books and determine how to enforce those
before making any new ordinances. Many of these violations are health
and safety issues and must be dealt with.

What do you think the county should do to address water conservation?

This very important issue affects everyone that lives in Curry County.
I feel we all need to begin by conserving where we can at home and
work. Next is to continue working on the Ute Water Pipeline Project.
If that is going to stay out of our reach them we must look for other
alternatives.

What do you consider the county’s greatest need today? And how should we resolve that issue?

I think that our county’s greatest need at this time is to get the
County Special Event Center working in a positive direction. We need to
attract events that will support the cost of maintaining this facility.
We do not have Lodger’s Tax so we need to sponsor special events that
will contribute to the operating costs of the facility. We have spent
millions of dollars on this project and this is not the time to burden
our county residents with higher property taxes to support the event
center.

What is your stance on alcohol sales at the Curry County Special Events Center?

My stance on alcohol sales at the Special Events Center is to find
event sponsors for the facility so we don’t have to raise property
taxes. Financially, times are hard enough on our families in this
community. I am open to looking at all the options that can make the
Special Event Center something the residents can enjoy without causing
a financial burden on the county.

What can county commissioners do to avoid any more “unaccounted for”
funds in light of the money missing from the 2007 county fair?

We have hired an outstanding county manager and county finance
director. They have been given the State Auditor’s report on this
subject and are instituting new guidelines and procedures for handling
this type of funds. I think the county commission’s role in this is not
to micromanage the issue but to review the recommendations for change
to ensure adequate changes have been made. I think further oversight
of such operations by the commissioners is part of their responsibility
to the taxpayers. As a businessman I have a good understanding of
positive control of funds and an accounting of all moneys spent and
received.