We expect Census numbers to be released later this week, and yesterday the City of Carlsbad participated in to a meeting to discuss possible redistricting options. It’s still very early in the process – and the committee is largely listening to feedback at this point.
Our community had very unfortunate timing with the Census 2020 – the spring crash in oil prices last year meant that our population in April was quite a bit lower than it was a month before then, or is now. Still, projections indicate that, even despite that setback, there will be a sizeable population increase for both Eddy and Lea Counties. These new population numbers will be used to determine a wide variety of political breakouts, including the state’s representative and senate districts and the federal House of Representative districts. Even if there isn’t enough of a population boost to add additional representation to the area, shifts in population could result in representation being more concentrated in Carlsbad and the surrounding area.
Drawing up the new map lines based on new population numbers is therefore an incredibly important process because it needs to be done fairly to ensure that our community is fairly represented. We’ve been very fortunate the have excellent representation in the Round House from our local elected officials, but they are also often outnumbered.
We encourage you to keep yourself informed on upcoming redistricting developments by visiting https://www.nmredistricting.org/
We have been informed that the moratorium on cutoffs for unpaid bills ended on Aug. 12. That means private power and gas companies may resume cutoffs in instances with very high past due balances. While these aren’t City of Carlsbad utilities, we certainly want to assist with giving everyone the information they might need to help them resolve this issue.
You can contact the New Mexico Gas Company at (575) 763-8460. You may contact Xcel Energy at 1-800-895-4999 or online at https://www.xcelenergy.com/billing_and_payment.
Xcel does work out pay arrangements, but may not do so in instances where there is a past default. Their cutoffs will be in instances with $1,000 or more past due.
We’re fortunate to live in a community with a number of resources devoted to helping individuals in need. For example, the United Way of Eddy County offers some utilities assistance. Please visit https://www.uweddyco.org/resources or call the 211 line. The Faith, Hope & Love Foundation also offers utilities assistance. Please visit https://www.fhlcarlsbad.org/ or call (575) 941-2022. Finally, you can contact the Income Support Office at 885-8815 to see if any assistance is available.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway