COUNTY ACCEPTS HEALTH AWARD, UPDATES ASSESSMENTS, IMPLEMENTS BADGING

COUNTY ACCEPTS HEALTH AWARD, UPDATES ASSESSMENTS, IMPLEMENTS BADGING

Doña Ana County Commission Vice Chairman Paul B. Curry accepted an award last Thursday, April 25, presented by the New Mexico Public Health Association. The NMPHA recognized the county for its newly enacted Clean Air Ordinance, which took effect in February.

The NMPHA is a statewide non-profit association of health professionals, and they selected Doña Ana County for their 2002 Legislative Award based on the positive health impact that the new ordinance is expected to have on the residents of the county.

Curry said he was honored to accept the award on behalf of the county. He thanked his fellow commissioners, the management and the Legal Department for their assistance in getting the measure drafted and passed, and he recognized the county’s Public Information Director, the South Central New Mexico Prevention Coalition and the Sheriff’s Department for their help in coordinating the education and outreach components of the ordinance.

ASSESSMENTS UPDATED: The County Assessor’s Office has completed a comprehensive update of assessments in the Santa Teresa area, where industrial growth has been brisk over the past several years.

As a result of the comprehensive inventory of the area, the Assessor’s Office has identified more than $17 million in commercial, residential and airport-related assessments that will now appear on the 2002 tax rolls. This means that Doña Ana County will receive about $350,000 in additional property taxes each year as a result of the hard field work of Emma Johnson Ortiz, Chief Deputy Assessor Gary Perez and their staff.

BADGE SYSTEM IMPLEMENTED: In an effort to enhance security, Doña Ana County Manager David R. King has instructed the Human Resources Department to implement a badge program by which all county employees wear visible identification at all times on the job.

The badge policy will officially take effect May 1, 2002, but a steady stream of employees has been coming to the Personnel Technician Suite on the ground floor of the Manager’s Complex to have their pictures taken and receive a badge.

Certain employees who already wear identification (such as those at the Sheriff’s Department and Detention Center) or those for whom the regular operation of machinery would present a safety issue are exempt from wearing their badges, but they are required to carry their badges with them at all times on the job.

Visitors to county buildings also will be required to wear generic ‘V’ badges beginning May 1, 2002.

The implementation of the badge policy is the first step in an overall program designed to enhance workplace security in Doña Ana County, King said.