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Carlson announces candidacy for county commission

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Ernest Carlson

Carlsbad native Ernest B. Carlson has announced he is seeking election to the Eddy County Commission, District 1.

As a single father, Carlson says he chose to raise his daughter and son in the family-friendly environment that exists in Eddy County. A 1968 graduate of Carlsbad High School, he earned a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting from New Mexico State University and is a Certified Public Accountant, having practiced accounting for almost 40 years. Carlson, who also ran for county commission in 2014, will run as a Republican in the 2018 election.

“There is no place for partisan politics in Eddy County,” Carlson says. “Like myself and most other citizens of Eddy County, we believe in sound fiscal responsibility and common-sense governance. Eddy County is experiencing unprecedented growth and now is not the time for the ‘same old, business as usual’ politics. It is the County Government’s obligation to serve the citizens of Eddy County and when policies and choices negatively impact the citizens, then it is the duty of the elected officials to change them. I have the knowledge and experience to move Eddy County forward for the benefit of our neighbors.

“The condition of our county roads was a major concern of Eddy County in the 2014 election, and they still are. I have always been an advocate of improving our rural roads and since the last election I have personally made several trips to Santa Fe to deliver presentations at legislative committee hearings and work with our state legislators to find solutions for funding road improvements in Eddy County. Additionally, Carlson currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Associated Contractors of New Mexico, travelling every month to Albuquerque to push for more funding and better roads for our State and Municipalities. It’s easy to say you support better roads, but it takes action to make that happen. As a businessman, I believe in solutions, not excuses.”

Carlson says he also wants to push for evening commission meetings so every citizen has the opportunity to voice their concerns and ideas about Eddy County without having to place a hardship on their families by missing work. Committees formed to offer recommendations that affect the daily lives of citizens need to be comprised of a broad spectrum of people across the county, not a select few, he says, stating that meetings need to be adequately advertised so they can be well attended by citizens.

“The citizens of Eddy County have a right to open government,” Carlson says. “A government that does not hear the voice of the people cannot govern. The new county policy of a four-day work week has negatively impacted many businesses and citizens of Eddy County. Part of Eddy County’s responsibility to serve the people is to have those services available when people need them to be available, not when they choose to be. Government needs to be the solution, not the problem.”

Carlson also says he is an advocate of private property rights and will fight for them.

“It’s time to make a change in county government,” he says. “My 40-plus years of business experience, accounting, and financial background as well as expertise in funding and building roads makes me uniquely qualified to lead Eddy County during these times of growth and challenges. We must make Eddy County government serve our citizens, not the other way around.”

A resident of Otis since 1993, Carlson has been employed as the Chief Financial Officer of Constructors Inc. for more than 25 years. Prior to this, he practiced as a CPA, primarily in oil and gas accounting. Carlson is past president of the Associated Contractors of New Mexico and the Eddy County Sheriff’s Posse, member of the Mayor’s Nuclear Task Force and Mayor’s Energy Summit Committee, and chairman of the Energy Summit Sponsors’ Event.

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