Letter to the editor: Councilman responds to letter

I have remained silent on the attacks that have come from some in the community over the last few months but I adamantly believe that I can no longer remain as such with what was brought up in yesterday’s issue of the Valley Courier. I am appalled and discouraged by the author’s words, and accusing me, and council of falsifying statements and calling into question our integrity.

First, the Vali 3 Theater was donated to the city in 2013, and after many meetings, discussions and outreach, the council AND the community came together and were able to re-open the doors and keep it running on an all-volunteer force since. My wife and I are consistently volunteering our time on a normal crew and as needed because we see the benefit of this asset in our community. More than one or two members in this community have donated to the theater with both time and money, myself included. When I made my last donation, I didn’t ask for praise, or an article in the paper, or even a pat on the back, I did this because I wanted to help my community and a project that I feel passionately about. Additionally, there are more ways than just financial donations that community members can contribute to a project or an idea, and that dollar value (while appreciated) shouldn’t determine “who gets credit” for sole success or failure.  

For businesses, I am pleased to list all of the businesses that have either opened their doors or found replacement businesses in the last four years and go into explanation on how WE have helped (No “Fake News”): Big R, Top Value, Honey’s Home Cooking, Bucks & Bulls, Widow Maker Apparel, Rio Grande Hospital Clinic, Java Dave’s, China Garden, Cherokee Outdoors, Quincy’s, Salon Herrera, SLV Curiosities, 3 Guy’s Farms, Good Speed Automotive, Mike’s Auto Repair, Gateway Motors, the Vali 3 Theater and Proximity Malt.  

How have we helped these businesses you ask? Well first and foremost is shopping local, I practice what I preach. Secondly, I will highlight Proximity Malt. WE have been working with them for quite some time before they started construction and after to help assist them in their needs. When there was a roadblock in regards to their water discharge, WE had a joint meeting between the manager from Proximity Malt, the city and the county on how WE could help. What was decided was that the city solely would help with a pipeline to our old wastewater treatment facility by Home Lake. This would allow them to keep the same production levels year round as well as to bring in 25, living wage jobs, into this community. Since some in the community want a dollar value listed, I will tell you, it was around $76,000 that WE loaned them to make sure they could open up their doors when they wanted to. (Please feel free to verify at City Hall)

I am not wealthy, I never have been and I probably never will be, and that is just fine by me. The endeavors that I have embarked on have not been to obtain financial superiority over others, they have been to give back. My first job out of college and in my first year elected to the council, I made $10,000 for 10 months as a part time employee, helping veterans and solidifying a project that I helped restart.

I have stated that, to say this, for too long in this community, those with the most money, or perceived power have run this community for far longer than I have been on council. You have heard a lot about “new ideas” or “new direction” in the last few months, and if you look at who founded, the head of, and donates significant time and/or money to this Political Action Committee in Monte Vista, the answer is clear. These are not “new ideas” these are the same ideas from those that quite frankly had their chance to try and fix this town for the last 30-40 years, and we have seen how well that has worked out. I have not, and will not be “For Sale!” I am not someone that can be bought and sold, or bow down to those with money or perceived power in this community. I am not beholden to one or two people who think they control this town. I am beholden to ALL in the community, regardless of the size of your house, or the length of your tenure in this city.

Councilman Matthew Martinez
City of Monte Vista


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