BY MAIRE O’NEILL
In an unusual move Friday, a Regional Coalition of LANL Communities meeting was postponed and rescheduled for next week due to the absence of Chair Henry Roybal, even though there was a quorum of the board present including Vice Chair Darien Fernandez.
Also present at the virtual meeting were Los Alamos County Councilor David Izraelevitz, City of Santa Fe Councilor Michael Garcia and Rio Arriba County Commissioner Leo Jaramillo.
When he admitted members of the public to the Zoom meeting, RCLC executive director Eric Vasquez announced that due to a family emergency involving a board member, the meeting would not be held and would be rescheduled so that “everyone would have an opportunity to participate”.
Vasquez said Roybal has been “deeply involved in all the discussions about everything that is supposed to occur in today’s meeting” and that he personally believed it would be beneficial to have him involved. He said Fernandez suggested that the meeting be postponed until next week.
Ironically, Friday’s meeting was called a week ago because of the urgency of items that could not wait until the board’s August meeting. Those items included discussion and possible action on contract extension and closeout with Chicanos Por La Causa for executive director services. Vasquez announced July 17 that CPLC will not be submitting a proposal for the contract, however he told the board that CPLC would be agreeable to a contract extension for a two-month transition period.
Also on the agenda was discussion and possible action on the development of a request for proposals for executive director services, as well as a timeline and publication details. The grant application for Department of Energy funds was also on the agenda as well as the amended RCLC joint powers agreement which has not yet been approved by the City of Santa Fe or Jemez Pueblo after more than a year. The University of New Mexico Bureau of Business and Economic Research report on the impact of Los Alamos National Laboratory on the region was back on the agenda.
Also, listed was discussion and review of the RCLC website which has drawn criticism during the past several months for not being updated. The Los Alamos Reporter complained to the RCLC executive committee in a June 24 email that there are no approved minutes on the website for the past two years and that draft minutes of meetings unavailable for review after 10 days as required in the Open Meetings Act. Draft minutes for the June meeting were posted as mandated but there has been no response to the issue of the approved minutes. She asked that the issue be placed on the agenda if not resolved within two weeks. The Los Alamos Reporter also read the email to the board at the July 17 meeting under public comment. As no response was received by Thursday, the Reporter submitted a complaint to the Office of the Attorney General.
Asked in an email following the meeting why Fernandez had not run the meeting as vice chair, Vasquez replied, “This was an unplanned event and it evolved the way it did because of scheduling availability”. In a phone call with the Reporter, Fernandez indicated that the meeting was postponed so that information could be obtained from Chair Roybal on agenda items.