Letters to the Editor


The SEC board missed the point!!

I had to chuckle to myself when I saw that the board of trustees missed the point and didn’t take any action regarding Mr. (Don) Steinnerd’s request for an independent study of other cooperatives (El Defensor Chieftain, Feb. 13). It seems to me that the SEC board of trustees views anyone who addresses them a their board meetings as enemies.



From what I hear around town and read, Mr. Steinnerd was trying to tell the board that he feels they are not adequately compensated and asked to have their payment package reviewed — so as to bring it up to date with other cooperatives. If the board really stops to read and evaluate Mr. Steinnerd’s request, they will realize that he was actually trying to help them, not hurt them.

Wake up Board of Trustees — not everyone is your enemy, just because they appear before you in the required, formal way of addressing such an important group that we, the members, voted for and some of them are actually on your side.

Not everyone is your enemy and from what I can see, certainly not Mr. Steinnerd in his request and questions for clarification of the bylaws.

Shelly Fernandez



More SEC concerns

I’m a member of the SEC Reform Group who attended the Board meeting on Tuesday of this week (Feb. 9), and I’m deeply concerned about the proposed informational special meeting that has been proposed for this March.

This informational special meeting is only three weeks away from the annual meeting that we’ve been awaiting for a whole year. The only way to pass the member resolutions that are so necessary in restoring fairness and returning some of the control to the member-owners is to have an excellent member turnout.

Many of our fellow members live in Magdalena, Datil, Quemado and many places both north and south of Socorro. Is it fair to expect them to drive that distance twice?

The figure quoted for the cost of the meeting is $20,000. Why? Employees will be there, but it is assumed they’ll just be getting their regular salary? However, they’re going to pay for security in case any of us decide to get rowdy. There will be printing costs associated in mailing out notices and for postage, and while that will be a considerable amount, it’s way less than half of the projected cost.

I’d bet the trustees are going to be paid also. These guys get $75 every time they attend a 10-minute board meeting and, of course, the attorney will be well paid. Thank God they don’t plan on handing out cash prizes!

By tacking on the word “special” to the type of meeting this is supposed to be, they have acquired the right to have voting. Uh-oh. This board, with a few notable exceptions, is opposed to passage of our resolutions. If those of us who want change are few in number, some changes could be made (if they have a quorum) that could completely stop further progress by us.

I believe this meeting is being used by the board to offer resolutions counter to the member resolutions. If you agree that we don’t need this duplication of meetings, I urge you to let the representative for your district know.

Audrie Clifford



Candidate explains

I am Noah D. Jaramillo, candidate for city council in Ward 1.

I did not receive the questionnaire sent out by the Defensor Chieftain to all candidates in a timely manner. I was contacted by the Chieftain on Thursday, Feb. 18, at 10:15 a.m., asking me if I had responded to the questions that were sent to me via the mail. I informed them I had not received the questions.

I was then told they would e-mail them to me and they had to be answered by noon that very same day. That gave me less than two hours to answer. I was working and very busy. I told them I didn’t have the time because I was busy.

I then asked them to put “unable to answer” due to the fact that I had not received the questions. I do not know how the mix up happened, but it did.

I have chosen to spend my own money to answer the questions in the competing newspaper in our town. Please understand that it was not my intent to avoid or not answer the questions.

I’m sure all of you can understand that I work for a living and cannot just drop everything and rush through a questionnaire. Than you for your understanding in this regrettable mishap.

Noah D. Jaramillo



Editor’s Note: As a courtesy, El Defensor Chieftain made attempts to contact Mr. Jaramillo during the week prior to the publication of the candidate questionnaires in our Feb. 20 edition. Jaramillo ultimately told the Chieftain he could not respond in time to meet our deadline. Jaramillo’s family owns the Mountain Mail, the competing newspaper to which he refers.