The Independent (USA)
Regarding 'that Santa Fe New Mexican article' about Edgewood
Some of you may have read a recent news article in the Santa Fe New Mexican entitled “Time for a change in Edgewood after legal battles rocked New Mexico town.”
In this article about Edgewood, the author, Sean Thomas, begins by quoting someone who lives in “nearby Moriarty” and is apparently not an actual Edgewood voter. This is his first, but not only, mistake. Many people who own (or try to develop, sell, or rent) property in Edgewood do not live or vote in the town itself. That is just one aspect of this town’s complex problems. People (reporters included) who have little to no real historical knowledge of our town seem to try to speak to our perpetual internal strife. Yes, there is contention and dissatisfaction here. A lot of it.
I have lived here for over three decades and would like to offer a rather longer lens by which to view Edgewood. In Mr. Thomas’ article he arbitrarily mentioned “2 years of discord.” Unfortunately this corner of Santa Fe County has had a much longer history of discord based on attempts to remain unregulated and isolated. Thirty three years ago (11 years prior to the 1999 town incorporation) I was told by a local real estate agent that buying my property in this area would guarantee that I would be “left alone,” i.e., not bothered by pesky regulations etc. In those days that meant Santa Fe County would stay out of my business.
As Edgewood grew, Santa Fe County found that it needed to initiate increased oversight. Land developers, land owners, and real estate agents (an influential group even today) didn’t like that and started pushing for Edgewood to incorporate so they could start over, and make their own laws to skirt the increased county oversight. Fast forward 21 years, and we find the same discontent with the ever-increasing Town of Edgewood rules, initiatives, and oversight. This discontent is coming from basically the same groups who in the past wished to remain unregulated by the county.
So, what did these regulation-averse, disgruntled folks do? They gathered together in this era of ultrahyper activism and pushed a gullible portion of the community to “fight” the town leadership. They used the currently popular bullying, mis-information, and fear tactics we see employed at national levels. They managed to force the current town government to a grinding halt in hopes of once again getting out from under increasing local government control and progressive initiatives.
Now the town faces a newly organized system of government. The hyper-agitating reactionaries who initiated this change are set to get themselves voted in as a commission which is rumored to be willing to use $180K a year of taxpayer dollars to hire a hand-picked manager. We will see what they do to further their own,
mostly economic, self-aggrandizing goals. Don’t stop paying attention.
In a nutshell, what we have in Edgewood is an ever present undercurrent of dissatisfaction with the “rules.” We also have an unfortunate “perfect storm” of distrust and cynicism that has landed directly on top of this little town and portends an uncertain future, which I hope doesn’t completely destroy what we have built.