Letter to the editor: A thank you from Commissioner Esquibel

I want to thank you for the opportunity to serve the residents of Costilla County for the last year and a half.

At the beginning of my appointment as county commissioner for District Three, I was literally in the dark, with no help or guidance in running my district. I have since learned the intricacies of county government, including personnel, budgets, credit card policies, and more. If elected, I would like to continue my quest for transparency and accountability, by asking the tough questions that need to be answered.

We have made vast improvements in District 3, by properly maintaining the many miles of county dirt roads used by our residents, including farmers and ranchers. Residents of District 3 and large land owners from other districts, who use our roads, have either stopped by or called to compliment the employees on their job performances. We were able to pave one mile of road in our district before our funding was cut. Our goal has been to improve roads to keep our residents safe, to keep and obtain HUTF funding. Our District 3 shop is now working like a well-oiled machine, despite rumors to the contrary. This year was a project in learning the ins and outs of roads, putting in place the best employees for our county shop and more.

One of our first projects was cleaning up and improving the rest area at the Stabilization Reservoir. Employees completed a cement project at the Mesita county shop (aprons) so that our vehicles don’t have to be maintained and washed on dirt. Costilla County commissioners have made it possible to improve the Carpenter Ranch property for better grazing. The county is also working with the Vega Board to clear sage on Vega property.

I would like to work on revising planning and zoning regulations. While I understand that the goal of planning and zoning is to promote livable communities to improve the quality of life, there must be a way to improve some of the regulations, that are prohibitive to our low-income residents, and are preventing growth in our county. Another goal for all of us should be to, either petition for more government housing units, or to encourage developers to build rental units in our county because there are none. Constituents have told me that our out of area teachers cannot find rentals in this county, and must commute from La Jara or Alamosa, area residents are looking for housing in other counties because housing here is so scarce.  

I have been back in my hometown/county for 16 years and feel I have made a difference, by volunteering as coach, mentoring our kids, and staying involved in community activities, etc. I will continue to stay involved.

Augustine “Roy” Esquibel


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