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"One Person, One Vote" Constitutional Mandate May Force Change For One Las Cruces Area Election

Peter Goodman

It appears a big change will be coming to elections in the Dona Ana County Soil and Water Conservation District. 

Judge James Martin with the Third Judicial District Court ruled in favor of a challenge to the way elections are conducted for the conservation district.

The problem?  Voters in four zones elect supervisors.  But one zone…which includes the city of Las Cruces…has more than half of the total registered voters in the district.  Meaning, of course, fewer than half of the voters in the other zones get to elect three supervisors…while city voters only get to elect one supervisor.

Local attorney Peter Goodman successfully argued that’s a violation of the state and federal “one person, one vote” constitutional mandate.

Goodman says he does not expect an appeal of the order.  Without an appeal, it appears changes to the voting zones will need to be made in time for the November election.