Vote Democrat Frank Baca For Bernalillo County Commission, District 2

EDITOR’S DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed in this guest column written by Frank Baca  are those of Mr. Baca  and do not necessarily reflect those of the blog. Mr. Baca did not  pay to publish his opinion column and Mr. Baca was not compensated for it.  The article  is published as a public service to voters of Bernalillo County Commission District 2.

Democrat District 2 Bernalillo County Commissioner Steven Michael Quezada cannot run for reelection because he will have served two consecutive four-year terms. Two Democrats, Frank Baca and William Walker, and one Republican, Mary Ingham are now running to fill the seat.


Frank Baca has a long history of involvement with community and economic development groups, including having served on the board of the Rio Grande Community Development Corporation for 12 years, ten years as president and on the board of the New Mexico Hispanic Bar Association for six years, two (2) as president.  A native of New Mexico, Frank graduated from Rio Grande High School, Yale University (B.A. in History), and earned a law degree from the University of New Mexico School of Law.


Mr. Baca has submitted the following guest column to for publication:

“I recently read a column in the Albuquerque Journal which opined that focusing on the bottom-dwelling results of the various national rankings is a rather negative, if not unproductive, way to seek change in our community. The question I pose then is what concrete, positive, steps can we take?

As a candidate for Bernalillo County Commission, District 2, I have had the opportunity to meet with a number of amazing individuals and to learn more about their impactful work, from neighborhood associations to non-profit organizations to existing government programs. I am impressed and inspired by the incredible work being done in the community.  I am especially proud that so many of these individuals and organizations are situated in or have their roots in District 2, which includes the South Valley, Barelas, the Southwest Mesa and adjoining communities.

At times, the challenges in our community can seem insurmountable and overwhelming. I know I have been inspired and encouraged knowing that work is underway to address a myriad of social issues.  I believe the public would also be inspired and encouraged and would be more likely to become engaged in finding solutions if they were more aware of what is being done. As a County Commissioner, I believe I would be well situated to help change the view from a negative approach to a more positive, collaborative and, hopefully, more productive mindset!

Education is the foundation for any community. From secondary to post-secondary to the trades and other vocational education, quality programs must be available and fully funded and supported. A Commissioner can promote communication and partnerships between the educational organizations but there MUST be accountability for good results.

We can build on that foundation by funding our infrastructure needs, including residential  roads, lighting and drainage. Infrastructure projects serve the dual purpose of safety and transportation as well as providing good paying jobs that have benefits. Infrastructure funding MUST be a priority!

In addition, we all want to live in a healthy and safe community. We have a serious problem with crime and homelessness. The County is in a position to provide behavioral health resources through the 1/8 of 1% GRT that is currently generating in excess of $33 million dollars per year. We need more facilities, therapists and social workers to make sure the resources connect with the needs. However, there MUST be accountability for these expenditures!

Along these lines, one specific positive and concrete step is to begin a campaign to highlight and promote the good work that is occurring. The benefits of such a public relations campaign would include:

  • Generating support for the particular organizations or initiative,
  • Increasing opportunities for partnering and avoiding overlap among the organizations and, most importantly,
  • Inspiring others in the community by increasing awareness that this work is currently being done.

 What I’ve come to appreciate is that community work provides an opportunity for everyone to do something. I also understand that no one organization or individual can do it alone. Supporting our existing community based initiatives and organizations that are currently in the trenches seem to me to be an effective way to make change. As a Commissioner for District 2, I would be mindful of the “health” of our workers and community based organizations and look for ways to support and perhaps replicate their good work across the county.

 We should never be afraid to demand accountability! Accountability begins with policy-makers establishing clearly-defined goals and measures for success. If those with that authority fulfill their role, those charged with implementation can do theirs.

 As a person who attended public schools in the South Valley, graduated from Rio  Grande High School, Yale University and the University of New Mexico School of Law, and who has essentially lived my entire life in Commission District 2, I feel I am ideally qualified to connect the dots and help lift up the successful initiatives and organizations, as well as to identify ways to support and encourage community involvement. I look forward to the opportunity to work with  community based  organizations and the citizens of Bernalillo County  to improve the quality of life all across the County.”


Frank A. Baca,  Attorney at Law

Candidate for Bernalillo County Commission, District 2


For the last 2 years, the Bernalillo County Commission has been an embarrassment plagued by infighting and very personal, hidden political  agendas with no attempt to arrive at a consensus amongst all 5 commissioners. Things have gotten so bad that 3 commissioners are now faced with complaints that they have violated the New Mexico Open Meetings Act to develop a selection for county manager as they seek to marginalize the opinions and input of commissioners they disagree with. The same 3 county commissioners have inserted themselves in the active recruitment of candidates to fill vacancies in the New Mexico legislature giving little or no regard to more qualified candidates who have applied for the positions.

Frank Baca has a solid reputation as a longtime practicing attorney within the New Mexico Bar and of being able to work with those he may disagree.  He has the common sense and the understanding of the law and our criminal justice system that is so desperately needed on the Bernalillo County Commission during difficult times. Frank Baca  will provide a level of expertise in the law  that is sorely needed on the Bernalillo County Commission.  Frank Baca’s background and expertise makes him the most qualified of all 3  of the candidates running for Bernalillo County Commission District 2.  Voters are encouraged to vote for him in the June 4 primary and the November 5 general election.


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Pete Dinelli was born and raised in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He is of Italian and Hispanic descent. He is a 1970 graduate of Del Norte High School, a 1974 graduate of Eastern New Mexico University with a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration and a 1977 graduate of St. Mary's School of Law, San Antonio, Texas. Pete has a 40 year history of community involvement and service as an elected and appointed official and as a practicing attorney in Albuquerque. Pete and his wife Betty Case Dinelli have been married since 1984 and they have two adult sons, Mark, who is an attorney and George, who is an Emergency Medical Technician (EMT). Pete has been a licensed New Mexico attorney since 1978. Pete has over 27 years of municipal and state government service. Pete’s service to Albuquerque has been extensive. He has been an elected Albuquerque City Councilor, serving as Vice President. He has served as a Worker’s Compensation Judge with Statewide jurisdiction. Pete has been a prosecutor for 15 years and has served as a Bernalillo County Chief Deputy District Attorney, as an Assistant Attorney General and Assistant District Attorney and as a Deputy City Attorney. For eight years, Pete was employed with the City of Albuquerque both as a Deputy City Attorney and Chief Public Safety Officer overseeing the city departments of police, fire, 911 emergency call center and the emergency operations center. While with the City of Albuquerque Legal Department, Pete served as Director of the Safe City Strike Force and Interim Director of the 911 Emergency Operations Center. Pete’s community involvement includes being a past President of the Albuquerque Kiwanis Club, past President of the Our Lady of Fatima School Board, and Board of Directors of the Albuquerque Museum Foundation.