Letters to the editor — Oct. 9

City manager’s dismissal irresponsible

The city manager’s hiring and firing is within the purview of the City Commission; in fact, that’s its primary function.

However, commissioners Dora Salinas-McTigue, Jimmy Sandoval and Ernie Dominguez have shown an astounding lack of judgment and a shocking degree of irresponsibility by firing City Manger Doug Powers without having someone in place to lead the city on an interim basis.

I am not questioning the ability and professionalism of city staff to continue performing regular duties — I am confident they will. However, in an organization with a range of services and obligations such as that of the city, uncommon, irregular issues arise constantly. More than morale can suffer when there is no authority to mitigate these issues.

Furthermore, the unconventional way in which the vote to terminate Powers was conducted concerns me.

The agenda item was labeled “… Discussion regarding Commission/Manager Communication …”

I was not at the meeting, but might have been had the issue of the city manager’s contract been openly advertised on the agenda.

The fact that apparently the vote was taken without first holding a discussion of limited personnel matters, generally a closed session, suggests to me the discussion may have already taken place.

I remind commissioners there is a compliance guide to the Open Meetings Act at the website of the state’s attorney general: http://www.nmag.gov/

It is no secret I consider Doug Powers a close friend. He’s a good and honorable man and I support him fully. He is arguably responsible for the acquisition and oversight of every major infrastructure project in our community over the last 20 years.

However, clearly he has lost the majority support on the City Commission. Unfortunately, that majority demonstrated an embarrassing lack of competency in the manner in which it terminated his employment.


Elizabeth J. Morris



City officials need to get back on track

Here is some background information on me:

My parents moved to Tucumcari in 1950 when I was 5. My parents owned and operated Quay County Butane. The entire family worked in the business.

I graduated from Tucumcari High in 1963, graduated from Eastern New Mexico University and returned to Tucumcari to work in the family business.

My dad was a city commissioner and on the school board during those years.

My daughter graduated from THS. My granddaughter graduated from Mesalands. My brothers both spent time here working with Engineers Inc.

When I retired and moved back it was only natural to want to do what I could to help the city. I had an extensive business background and thought I could. So, I ran for the City Commission District 5 seat.

It has been an honor to represent the city, even in tough times.

Tucumcari is my hometown and always will be.

With the recent turn of events and the firing of Doug Powers as city manager, it’s time we as city commissioners put aside our differences and do what is right for the city and its citizens.

It seems we are somehow off track and need to make some adjustments.

I want to believe we all have the best interest of the city at heart.

I am asking that we listen to the citizens we represent and do the right thing for the city.

Working together maybe we can make a positive difference, not a negative one.

It would be nice to hear from the citizens of Tucumcari at our next City Commission meeting at 6 p.m. on Thursday.

We work for the citizens and their comments are important.


Amiel Curnutt

Tucumcari mayor


Owners irresponsible in not spaying pets

This has just been a week of puppies that the city of Tucumcari Volunteer Rescue cannot handle again soon.

Just when we think we are making a difference, we get calls and emails about puppies left at the shelter, at the Logan dump, at a local festival, and in people’s back yards.

It’s absolutely out of control and totally irresponsible.

The behavior of this community shows how indifferent people are to the law and how little they know about the number of dogs euthanized in New Mexico: twice the national average per 1,000 people.

I would like to see all unlicensed breeders of non-registered Chihuahuas, pit bulls, labs, heelers and border collies be “sentenced” to assisting with euthanasia at a shelter for a month as it might just give them a new perspective on the “plenty of homes” claim they all make.

Any mixed breed dog being allowed to breed is purely selfish on the owner’s part and there is no excuse for allowing it.

Owners should not claimthey can’t afford to spay/neuter, because a flat-screen TV or tattoo costs far more than the surgery.

There are not plenty of homes in this community, or in New Mexico, for dogs and cats. In fact, right now there is a backlog of puppies trying to avoid being killed, headed to other states because other states do a better job than we do of stopping people from breeding dogs.

Quay County must step up and stop breeding unwanted litters. Our volunteers are paying for 16 puppies to avoid death this week, but we cannot compete with the people who refuse to acknowledge this problem even exists and continue to allow their pets to breed litter after litter.


Christina Fleming


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