New Mexico

Judge considers group's petition to recall Las Cruces Public School Board

LAS CRUCES, New Mexico - A Las Cruces judge will soon determine whether a group of former educators can move forward with attempts to recall the Las Cruces Public School Board.

As ABC-7 reported in April, a group called 'Enough,' made up of former educators, announced that they would try to put the school board members up for a recall election in November.

To do that, the group must demonstrate to Judge James Martin that the school board made several violations:

  1. The New Mexico Open Meetings Act
  2. The state's Inspection of Public Records Act
  3. The Board's own policy on site selection for a new school (Columbia Elementary)

In February, the LCPS board voted to demolish Columbia Elementary, which was infested with mold, and build it on a new site.

The group petitioning for a recall argued that the board violated its own policy by selecting a site without "community stakeholders" input, which includes the city of Las Cruces and Doña Ana County.

"Unfortunately, this is the only way we have as voters, as electorate to say, 'Enough!' when our public officials don't do their jobs," said CaraLyn Banks, who represents the group, 'Enough.'

"I'm confident that after we introduce all our evidence tomorrow and our legal arguments, that there will be no question that the board has acted properly," said Barry Berenberg, who represents the district.

Wednesday's hearing lasted more than three hours. Judge Martin said he will come to a decision by Thursday afternoon.

If the group is successful, they will have 90 days to gather 33 percent of the number of votes for each district from the last school board election.

If they can do that, those members will be up for re-election on the November ballot.

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