Mayor and KCEC CEO to lead chorus in “Kumbaya”

By: Bill Whaley
9 June, 2017


The Coop has called an annual meeting for members at 9:30 am on Saturday, June 10, at the Taos High School Gymnasium. Registration begins at 8 am. The Coop notice says the meeting will hear reports from officers, trustees, committees and take questions from members. What they won’t tell you is the truth about the Coop balance sheet.

CEO Reyes will orchestrate a meeting featuring his public relations task force and talk about the expanding Broadband network and proposed Solar generation of energy while saying ng the “retroactive billing” scandal, was due to “inadvertent errors,” discovered months later thanks to dastardly intervenes. Yet at press time, the Coop has yet to fully resolved the alleged “errors” since Sept. and Dec. 2016, despite urgent requests from the Public Regulation Commission staff.

The members, mostly KCEC employees and their families, will gather to congratulate each other on a job well-done as the Coop sets new records of indebtedness and declares failure a success.

Town of Taos

In one of the more cynical re-election ploys, the Town of Taos is marketing itself as open and hospital to the community in its “Strong at Heart project.” They don’t call it “the Mayor’s kickoff for his reelection campaign.” The slogan itself sounds like a Hallmark Card.

“Strong at Heart?” What does it mean?

The vague press release claims the fathers and one mother want to create a Taos Downtown Strategy with shared values, guiding principles and vision for the downtown, which includes an action-plan to get things done. Sounds like Vision 2020 combined with one of the prior historico-cultural plans vetted and created by the community but shelved. Why reinvent the wheel? Why go to meetings only to be ignored?

You can display your hometown credentials at the June 27 Town Meeting where the Council plans to approve the four-tory hotel, the end result of a process fraught with “conflict of interest,” and “insider dealing.” The manager has kept the public off-balance via his Machiavellian strategy, revealed in the “secret emails.”

Meanwhile, the Council continues to break the law and close the Plaza despite an ordinance forbidding same except during Fiesta. Why not repeal the ordinance and close the Plaza legally for the Farmer’s Market? Or spread the farmers around and keep two sides of the Plaza open for business?

Why not conduct a survey and see if folks want to curtail the traditional height limit? Why are the Council, Mayor, and Manager so afraid of 3 or 4 “CAVE” people or white-hairs and a couple of Taos Natives, who want to preserve and protect their community? Why is the first instinct of this Barrone-Bellis administration to lie to the public?

The Town of Taos and the hotel promoters have characterized opponents of their ideas as being anti-growth. But the citizens who oppose extreme change want growth monitored in order to reflect the historic continuity of architecture and culture, which contributes to the enduring appeal of Taos. Town’s own architectural standards do not match the proposed “box” and “cosmetics” of the Holiday Inn Express. At least the Town should follow its own published codes.

Meanwhile, the Town’s park supervisor, who trained as a DJ, stagehand, and music promoter embarrassed himself at a Historic Commission meeting with his “ad hoc” plan, which defied practical design and construction considerations for the Plaza. Now a two or three week job aimed at “fixing a wall” is turning into a fiasco: see all the construction equipment parked in the Plaza. The promoter himself went on vacation.

As Flavio says, all the Town needed to do was sweep the Plaza and water the flowers.

Why should an abused citizenry trust a Mayor who tells tales about where he lives or a Council that rubber-stamps the Manager’s policies of prevarication about “purple hairs” or encourages corporate construction policies that defy local design standards? There are municipalities in our neighboring Rocky Mountain communities, which require corporate builders to transform standard boxes into reflections of local culture and architecture.

Further the Town’s Planning department is fronting for a developer who wants to build 49 houses (“ugly” according to one P&Zer) on 49 lots across from Cid’s on the west side of the Mitchell pasture. An easement for traffic means green will turn black as more traffic is dumped on Paseo del Pueblo Norte. Like the proposed hotel, the Mitchell Pasture developer has no “traffic plan.”

Vision 2020, a very thorough mission statement, proposed back in 1999 the creation of a master plan in order to protect, preserve, and manage growth. “Father Fred” Peralta and “Slick Gus” Cordova helped push Vision 2020 through and got it adopted by the community. Bellis and Barrone would rather play the “bully” and push their weight around while creating photo ops for pig sticking and singing Kumbaya.

The members of the Coop demonstrated their disgust with CEO Reyes and the KCEC Trustees by shunning recent elections. You might have a “strong heart” but you’ll need a stronger stomach if you want to sing with the Mayor on Monday night at the Sagebrush Convention center. Me? I’m going native and plan to boycott both events.

Pray for us!

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