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VOTE411 Voter Guide

Valencia County Treasurer

The County Treasurer is responsible for collecting property taxes in the county and distributing them to different government agencies. The Treasurer is also responsible for the supervision and investment of funds. Elected for a four-year term with no more than two terms in succession.

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    Leyda Martinez Hahn

  • Candidate picture

    Ronald D Saiz

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    Michelle D Tafoya

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    Danielle Marie Trujillo

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 investment strategies do you think would benefit the county most?

What are the biggest challenges in the County Treasurer’s office?

Should the County Treasurer position continue to be an elected position? Why or why not?

Campaign Mailing Address PO Box 1874
Los Lunas, NM 87031
Campaign Phone 505-261-1642
Occupation Senior Escrow Officer, FIRST AMERICAN TITLE
My expertise lies in financial management, budget oversight, and ensuring fiscal integrity. With a background in navigating complex financial systems and a commitment to transparency, I am dedicated to maximizing the county's resources while upholding ethical standards. I bring a strategic mindset and collaborative approach to the role, poised to serve Valencia County with integrity and reliability.
My primary focus is on ensuring fiscal responsibility and transparency in managing the county's finances. This involves implementing measures for transparent financial reporting, efficient budget management, and prudent investment and debt strategies.
Valencia County can benefit from a balanced investment strategy that emphasizes safety, income generation, and long-term growth. This involves diversifying investments across bonds, stocks, and real estate to manage risk while aiming for steady returns.
The County Treasurer's office faces multifaceted challenges ranging from efficient financial management and revenue collection to ensuring compliance with regulations, optimizing cash flow, and navigating the complexities of investment management. Balancing these demands requires astute leadership, proactive risk management, and a commitment to public service, all aimed at safeguarding the county's financial integrity while meeting the diverse needs of its constituents.
The County Treasurer position should remain elected to ensure accountability to Valencia County residents. However, making it non-partisan would prioritize competence over political affiliation, ensuring the Treasurer serves all residents equally.
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Campaign Mailing Address 311 Perizitte
Belen, NM 87002
Campaign Phone 505-720-3262
Occupation Retired
Having worked at mostly government institutions throughout my life, I recognize the value of team-building, the challenges of meeting deadlines and following rules, and the importance of participation and buy-in for each and every coworker in a safe, nurturing environment, free of drama. All my mentors had one thing in common and that was to let people do their jobs without micromanaging them. Best practices will be encouraged as well as respectful communications of listening and learning.
My top priority is to learn the boundaries of my position, the reporting requirements including records management & to learn our internal processes, specifically our interface with the public. I will need & will ask for help; as an essential part of the governance of my county, I plan on attending all training/workshops available to me & I plan on holding short, weekly staff meetings to assess how we are doing & to manage and build team unity to continue trustworthy service to the public.
We all see that parts of Valencia County are growing while other parts are stagnant. A good investment strategy is always going to include smart stewardship of our resources & our infrastructure while assuring our right to safety & security no matter where we live in the county. We must support expanded services for the whole county, more law enforcement positions throughout, school resource officers in every school & we must push for the 2nd exit for LL to stay on track w/o further delays.
As with most public service offices, the challenges are usually about communicating to the customer what can & can’t be done in a manner that helps them understand their options while acknowledging their frustrations & then finding solutions together. I see that the employees at the Treasurer’s office have been approachable & helpful and I appreciate their efforts to be nice to people who might be having a bad day. The Treasurer's office has an excellent reputation, helpful and friendly.
Most definitely, I think it should continue to be an elected position to keep the bar high and maintain the trust of the people who elected you to uphold your oath of office. The swearing in ceremony of myself & people I’ve been privileged to know & love has always triggered both pride & a sense of duty to carry on. I wouldn’t want to see our ability to elect people to office be compromised or ever replaced. In a democracy, voting, aka the people's voices must always be protected & heeded.
Campaign Mailing Address 980 N Molina Rd
Belen, NM 87002-7524
Campaign Phone 505-804-4082
I am a quick learner and a born natural servant. I will serve the public with integrity and fortitude.
My top priority would be to have more transparency inside the Treasurer’s Office. As a local taxpayer myself, I would like to host workshops and reach out on social media for the community to have better insight on how the Treasurer’s Office works and the importance of paying your taxes on time.
Checking with local banks on the interest rates and investing with the bank that offers the best return. When you build more, you are able to keep more. As Treasurer, it would be my purpose to safeguard the money for current and future investment opportunities. Always working in the best interest of the county to warrant that future generations may prosper as well.
One of the biggest challenges for the Treasurer’s Office is the collection of delinquent taxes before they are referred to the state. When taxpayers get behind on their property taxes for 3 years, the local government can take taxpayer property and sell it in an auction to recoup the tax debt that is owed to them. (That is why it is best to plan ahead and pay your property taxes on time.)

Having an elected treasurer means that citizens of the county are the ones who get to make a choice and they are choosing from candidates who are ready to run for office. Whereas, an indefinite treasurer would likely be more qualified but chosen by commissioners or other county management.

In all honesty, I can see pros and cons in both, but I say leave the choice to the people.