City council resolution could stop battles over neighborhood associations

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Apparently things were getting nasty in some Albuquerque neighborhood associations.

Fighting over boundaries and control has led a city councilor to say enough is enough. Now the city’s trying to come up with some new rules.

“We’re a major stakeholder in the city,” said Dr. Joe Valles, the president of the Grande Heights neighborhood association.

Albuquerque is full of neighborhood associations, almost 100 of them , and they take great pride in their communities.

“We’ve had situations where there’s been, I guess you can call it a hostile takeover,” said Valles.

Some associations have tried to be part of other neighborhoods or replace an existing neighborhood association, with a new one.

“They were controversial in the neighborhoods where they occurred,” said City Councilor Isaac Benton, who has dealt with some of those battles.

Just last year, the Silver Platinum neighborhood tried to swoop in and claim the Barelas neighborhood as its own.

Now, the council has taken over the office that oversees neighborhood associations, which used to be under the City’s Planning and Zoning Department.

Councilor Isaac Benton has proposed a resolution that’ll be up for a vote next month.

Read the proposed city council resolution >>

“The idea is to kind of have a pause of any new such expansion of boundaries, or new boundaries,” said Benton.

The resolution states associations cannot overlap. If there is a proposal to take over an inactive association, the old one has 60 days to reestablish itself.

“I see the language in Ike Benton’s resolution and the most important thing that we can do right now, is get public input on this,” said Gina Naomi Dennis.

Dennis helps oversee nine associations in southeast Albuquerque.

She has already spoken to some groups about it, others already feel it could help.

“When you read the interim guidelines, it makes total sense,” said Valles.

Benton said this resolution won’t change the rules on how neighborhood associations run themselves — it just puts the brakes on new ones popping up until the city can come up with a more permanent plan.

The resolution is on city council’s agenda for October 4.

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