Four general obligation bonds totaling $8 million are before voters this year for improvements to roads and facilities across Valencia County.
In a unanimous vote, Valencia County commissioners approved the four bond questions for the ballot: $1 million for sheriff and fire department facilities, $4 million for county roads, $1.5 million for parks and recreation facilities and $1.5 million for community and senior centers.
Voters will be able to vote yes or no for each individual bond question, meaning any number of them could be approved or not.
Approval of the GO bonds won’t increase property taxes since the rate will remain the same, said Valencia County public works director Lina Benavidez.
The last time the county held a general obligation bond election was in the summer of 2018, and voters were asked to continue a .87 mill property tax to support the sale of $7 million in general obligation bonds. Ultimately, voters approved a $5.1 million bond for construction and repair of roads, as well as road equipment.
The 2022 GO bond questions, if approved, will continue that same .87 mill rate, Benavidez said.
“We could have asked for an increase, but with other things going up, we didn’t think it would be appropriate,” she said.
While specific roads haven’t been identified for the new bond question, Benavidez said the focus would be on main arterial roads and school bus routes. The sheriff and fire departments are working jointly to develop a list of priority projects, including facilities and equipment, for public safety.
“With the other two, we’re looking at establishing small parks in different areas, and improving parks and facilities at existing community centers,” Benavidez said.
Other GO bond questions
There are three statewide general obligation bond questions on the ballot as well.
Question 1 is for $24,470,000 for improvements, construction and equipping of certain senior citizen centers.
Question 2 is $19,266,000 for academic, public school, tribal and public library resources.
Question 3 is $215,986,000 for certain higher education, special schools and tribal schools capital improvements and acquisitions.
Amendment 1 will provide for additional distributions from the land grant permanent funds for early childhood education and certain other educational purposes
Amendment 2 will allow the use of state funds for essential services such as broadband internet, energy, water and wastewater.
Amendment 3 would delay the general election for a judge appointed by the governor until at least one year has passed since the appointment.
2022 Constitutional Amendments: Summary & Arguments
2022 Constitutional Amendments & GO Bond Questions
Julia M. Dendinger began working at the VCNB in 2006. She covers Valencia County government, Belen Consolidated Schools and the village of Bosque Farms. She is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists Rio Grande chapter’s board of directors.