Quay County Sun - Serving the High Plains

By Steve Hansen

District 5 commissioner to be appointed

Three candidates have been interviewed.


March 22, 2017

Tucumcari city commissioners are expected to appoint a new District 5 commissioner on Thursday.

Former District 5 Commissioner John Mihm died suddenly in December.

Three candidates expressed interest in the position and all were interviewed by commissioners during an executive session on March 16.

The candidates are Todd Duplantis, regional coordinator for emergency communities for Quay, Harding and parts of San Miguel County; Allen Manley, co-owner of a Tucumcari construction firm; and Bill Menges, a retired building trades instructor and former chair of the Quay County Republican Party.

The commission is expected to discuss the candidates at a public work session at 5 p.m. Thursday, then vote on a candidate at the regular city commission meeting at 6 p.m. the same night.

DuPlantis said he is running mainly because “I love my community.”

“I served my country, and now a spot has opened up for someone to serve my community,” said DuPlantis, who served in the U.S. Air Force.

One of the main things he would like the city to accomplish if he serves as commissioner is healing the division between city and county.

“I want to find solutions that bring people together,” he said. “Getting people together is the only way we’re going to solve our problems.”

In addition, he said, he would like to get more young people involved in the city and “build pride in the community.”

DuPlantis said his main qualifications for the position are leadership and listening.

“I don’t jump to solutions, and I listen when people complain to solutions they offer,” he said.

Manley said he is seeking the commission seat, because he is concerned about Tucumcari losing events like Rockabilly on the Route, but more importantly, he wants “to serve my neighborhood.”

He said as a commissioner, he would like to see “small businesses prosper in the city.”

“There are some things coming up downtown, and I’d like to see them happen,” Manley said. “I would like to see some positive things happen in the community,” such as the proposed disc golf course for Five Mile Park and constructing trails for walking and hiking around Tucumcari Lake.

Manley said his qualifications for commissioner include 26 years of leadership in the military and business experience. He worked for Century Link “running my own show.”

Menges said he wants the commission seat mainly to address problems related to streets and abandoned buildings in town, and to “return Tucumcari to what it used to be.” In addition, he would like to see advances in the city’s economic development and infrastructure.

“I would like the community to look better,” he said. “I don’t know what the city can do, but the streets are terrible, and there are a lot of old homes that are falling apart.”

City residents “don’t know what’s going on. They need to be better informed,” he said. “(And) If people don’t like what’s going on, they should say so.”

Menges said his main qualification is “30 years in the military, where you learn leadership and discipline.”

He taught building trades at Mesalands Community College and served as the chair of the Quay County Republican Party.


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