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Pat Davis, Samuel Kerwin, Hess Yntema

Pat Davis, Samuel Kerwin, Hess Yntema

Municipal candidates vie for UNM district

Albuquerque municipal elections will be held Tuesday, and among the city council seats up for grabs is the representative for District 6, where UNM’s main campus is located.

Three candidates are running for the office: Pat Davis, a former police officer; Hess Yntema, an attorney; and Samuel Kerwin, a UNM student.

Registered voters will be able to cast their ballots at multiple locations around the city, including the SUB, from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Those interested can visit www.cabq.gov/voting-elections for other locations.

Pat Davis

On APD:

“What we’d like to do is put the police oversight commission up front. You have community members who sit up front and review the policies, they go to the police academy with the officers so they understand what they’re looking for, but the community sets the expectations up front. Then you can hold them accountable. We have a community police model in the sense that we have a police board, but they’re a judging board, they’re not a proactive board.”

On local infrastructure:

“There’s $2 million in bonds to build an international district library, and coming with that is community development block grants that the feds will match some of that money. Finding a way to leverage state money with city money to make that happen, all those are realities and the plans are in place for the new council to approve. I think we’ve got to work with what we have.”

On local economy:

“We’ve got lots of small businesses in innovation around arts, so it’s kind of a place where we get to sort of reinvent ourselves. At the end of the day, it’s about investing in local, but it’s hard for the city to do that unless we have a school system that works. So we’ve got to get that fixed first, before we keep spending money to say ‘’Look at us, we’re really pretty.”

On public transit:

“We need to make it work. There are bonds on the ballet that would add a few more buses, but we don’t have the staff to run them.”

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Samuel Kerwin

On APD:

“I think the biggest problem with APD is just a disconnect from the community. We need more police officers stationed in each neighborhood day in, day out. You always see police officers driving down Lomas or San Mateo, and that’s not where the crime’s happening; the crime is happening in the neighborhoods. So let’s get them back in there, get them talking to the folks.”

On local infrastructure:

“All the attention goes to Ridgecrest and Nob Hill, and a huge area of town just gets forgotten. My platform is centered on not only improving that part of town, but all the other forgotten parts of the city.”

On local economy:

“I think we should definitely be invested in technology. Some of the highest-paying jobs today are in programming and coding. But Albuquerque also ... one of its greatest strengths is in the arts and culture, and so I would also like to see a doubling down in the investment in arts and culture, to make sure that local artisans are making a living wage.”

“There’s a couple (things I would do). One would be to stop building public housing. If you look at where public housing is in the city, most of it is in the southeast heights, east of Central. By putting all the housing in one area, it ghettoizes the area. So (I would) stop that immediately. Second would be to get local small business, startups, and incentivize them so they take up the vacant storefronts. I think there’s a lot of entrepreneurs in the area who would jump at the opportunity.”

On public transit:

“I’m actually really shocked that everybody’s on board with (the city’s proposed transit project). It’s $20 million that would be much better spent filling in gaps elsewhere in the city, doubling the buses so they come every ten minutes instead of every 20 minutes. That’s how you do rapid transit.”

Hess Yntema

On the APD:

“They’ve got everything going against them, and it’s probably their fault. They need to stop circling the wagons. They need to get paid better. APD doesn’t do enough with bilingual outreach, which is very important in my district. It has structural issues; its buildings are shit. They don’t have enough cars. The whole thing is a disaster. It’s been nearly 24 years.”

On local infrastructure:

“Infrastructure became a lot more complicated when the city lost the water authority, so we’ve got to do a better job coordinating that. Over on base, or next to, in the War Zone we have the jet fuel spill, so the water authority and the feds are tearing up the roads and sort of replacing it, but not really. And as far as I know the city hasn’t coordinated with the water authority and the feds to just repave that entire area.

The industrial budget goes every two years, so it’s hard to organize it; I get that. But if the streets are being torn up for free, why don’t we come in and fix them with the money saved? It’s like the council just hasn’t thought about certain things, I guess.”

On local economy:

“We should focus on basic infrastructure that makes a business likely to succeed. We need certain particular subsidies to help the lower classes, and then a good base infrastructure.

On rapid transit:

‘I’m totally against (the city’s proposed transit project). It’s a waste of money. I can tell you what $20 million would do: Every kid in New Mexico, every single child in Albuquerque, could have two dinners a week that are with proper nutrition for $20 million a year, and then some. The one thing that nobody hits on, and we really should do, is have UNM and Bernalillo County, CNM, and Albuquerque unify the bus system.”

David Lynch is the news editor at the Daily Lobo. He can be reached at news@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @RealDavidLynch. J.R. Oppenheim is the managing editor for the Daily Lobo. Contact him at managingeditor@dailylobo.com or on Twitter @JROppenheim.

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