Change Address

VOTE411 Voter Guide

Bernalillo County Commissioner District 4

Represents a district in the New Mexico State Senate, which has 42 members. In odd-numbered years, the legislature meets for 60 days; in even-numbered years, it meets for 30 days. The Governor may call for special sessions. Senators sponsor and vote on “reasonable and appropriate laws,” represent the constituents of their districts, and serve on legislative committees. Positions are unpaid, except for per diem expenses. Elected for a four-year term.

Click a candidate icon to find more information about the candidate. To compare two candidates, click the "compare" button. To start over, click a candidate icon.

  • Candidate picture

    Walt Benson
    (Rep)

Biographical Information

What abilities do you have that qualify you for this office?

What is your top priority, and how do you plan to address it?

What additional water policies and actions, if any, are needed in New Mexico?

What, if anything, should be done to improve public safety?

What programs or actions, if any, would you support to provide more affordable housing?

How can New Mexico diversify its economy?

Should legislators be paid a salary? Why or why not?

Campaign Mailing Address PO Box 90381
Albuquerque, NM 87199
Campaign Phone 505-270-5283
Campaign Email bensonfornm@gmail.com
Twitter @@benson_walt
Occupation Financial Advisor
I am a 4th generation New Mexican born and raised in Albuquerque. I earned my BA, MA, and MBA and I am a small business owner. My wife is a Physician Assistant and we have 4 amazing children. I'm running for their future here in NM.
My top priority was, is, and continues to be crime in our community. I have worked diligently to provide the Bernalillo County Behavioral Health department with the funding and resources that they need. They are our first line of defense to stop crime before it happens - by addressing substance abuse as well as mental health crises. I've also partnered with the Sheriff's department to make sure they have the tools they need to keep our streets safe.
Water is one of our most precious resources and we must protect it. the Albuquerque Bernalillo County Water Authority is one of the best run water utilities in the nation. They have put Bernalillo County in the lead among all Southwestern cities in terms of water availability. With continued smart water conservation laws, we can remain a leader in the nation.
Bernalillo County has seen improving crime stats versus what the City of Abq is experiencing. We need to continue in that direction by keeping staffing adequate at MDC (county jail), continuing our Beh Health Initiatives, and supporting the Sheriff's and Fire Depts. One thing I would like to see updated by the state legislature is the Arnold Tool. It is too broad in its interpretation and therefore allows too many violent criminals to remain free and commit additional crimes.
We have recently created a Albuquerque/Bernalillo County Joint Housing Authority to address our lack of affordable housing. Funding is moving from both governmental entities to help create more available housing.
I've recently voted to pass Industrial Revenue Bonds to help incentivize local manufacturing jobs. Those were for Maxeon and Array Technologies. These two businesses will employ thousands of new employees - and furthermore, additional business will eventually form to support these two manufacturers. Both of these companies are solar related manufacturing businesses - manufacturing is one of the best next steps in diversifying our economy from our current dependency on government and oil.
Yes. New Mexico is the only state left in America with an unpaid legislature - and it limits who can run for office (a barrier to entry). Without a salary, the only people who can realistically hold state legislative office have to be a) retired; b) independently wealthy; c) a small business owner who can afford to be gone for up to 60 days/year; or d) an APS employee (They remain on payroll). BernCo Commission and Albuquerque City Council are given part-time salaries; legislatures should too.