Candidates file for positions


September 4, 2019

Ron Warnick

Quay County Clerk Ellen White, left, helps Clyde Moon, accompanied by his wife Rachelle, file for re-election Aug. 27 for the Southwest Quay Soil & Water Conservation District. Moon was the last of 34 candidates who filed in Quay County that day for the November nonpartisan elections.

A total of 34 candidates went to the Quay County Clerk's Office on Aug. 27 to officially file as candidates for November's local nonpartisan elections.

Three of four open positions for Tucumcari City Commission will be contested on the Nov. 5 ballot, as well two of three positions each for the Logan and House school districts.

Tommy Snapp, who's challenging incumbent Tucumcari City Commission District 1 incumbent Ralph Moya, was the first to file at County Clerk Ellen White's office at 9:08 a.m., according to official records kept by the New Mexico Secretary of State.

Tucumcari District 4 incumbent Christopher Arias filed one minute later. Paul Villanueva, challenging Tucumcari District 2 incumbent Amy Gutierrez, filed three minutes after that.

Charlotte Hayoz filed late in the day to challenge Arias. Tucumcari District 3 incumbent Ruth Ann Litchfield, who also is mayor, filed within the first hour of the clerk's office opening and will be unopposed.

The last filing of the day was Clyde Moon's at 4:40 p.m., about 20 minutes before the office closed. He is running for re-election on the Southwest Quay Soil & Water Conservation District, in the House area.

The unprecedented number of Quay County filings occurred because of the New Mexico Legislature's Local Election Act of 2017, which consolidated many local elections. Tucumcari City Clerk Angelica Gray helped White's office collect candidate filings for most of the day.

"This is the first election we've had all these races together," White said shortly before her office closed. "I've been very steady all day."

Positions 1 and 3 for the Logan school board each will have three-way races. Edward Johnson, Kyle Don Perez and Toby Jon Willis - all newcomers - are vying for a four-year term in Position 1 after incumbent Lynn Birch didn't run for re-election. In Position 3, Susan Acosta and Kene Terry are challenging incumbent Bryan Roach.

For the House Municipal Schools district, Wendy Green-Grisby is taking on Position 4 incumbent William Runyan, and Dyron Ray is challenging incumbent Phillip Runyan in Position 5.

For Tucumcari school board, the only contested race is in District 2, where Jerry Joe Lopez is challenging incumbent Fernando Ureste.

However, that board still will have significant turnover after November - District 1's Carlos Romero, also board president, and District 5's Corrine Hayes declined to run for re-election. Newcomers Victor Matthew Pacheco and Bo William Wallace are unopposed in District 1 and 5, respectively.

Last week's filings weren't necessarily final. Candidates still could have withdrawn Tuesday, and write-in candidates could have filed that day as well. Results of those possibilities weren't known before press time.

No one filed for Positions 2 and 5 in the Southwest Quay Soil & Water Conservation District. Debbie Hughes, executive director of the New Mexico Association of Conservation Districts, said the Southwest Quay board could appoint new board members after the election, probably during its December meeting. The current officeholders are Tom Sidwell and Kandy Hutchins in Positions 2 and 5, respectively.

Two school districts holding elections - Grady's and Melrose's - primarily lie in Curry County but spill into southern Quay County. White's office took in one candidate filing for Melrose's Position 3, incumbent Cedar Rush; the others filed in Curry County.


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