As the election grows near, voters want to know about the candidates. Over the next months the Observer will be posting Q and As as responses come in. These are the candidates in Sandoval County.
Lawrence Griego (R), candidate for Sandoval County Assessor
Observer: What is your background with politics, community and your education?
I was first involved with politics in 2019 when I decided to run for Sandoval County Clerk, desiring to make improvements in election integrity. It was a close race, but I didn’t prevail. I continued to stay involved and was elected chairman of the Sandoval County Republican Party. As the chair, I promoted the constitution and election integrity throughout the Sandoval County community by distributing over 6,000 pocket constitutions at community events.
I graduated from Menaul School in 1993 and my education afterward is tied into my experience with the Sandoval County Assessor’s Office where I started in 2006 as a part-time, temporary employee.
I worked my way up to Appraiser Supervisor, and as a full-time working parent, I earned a New Mexico Certified Appraiser Certificate in 2008, and a Bachelor of Science in Organizational Leadership in 2013. In 2018 I earned two nationally recognized professional designations in the public sector: I earned the New Mexico Certified Public Manager (NM CPM) designation from the New Mexico State University (NMSU) Education Designed to Generate Excellence (EDGE) Program and the national Residential Evaluation Specialist (RES) designation from the International Association of Assessing Officers (IAAO).
I have performed as an instructor with the NMSU EDGE Program where I taught appraisal courses for county government officials. I also passed the Instructor Training Workshop from the IAAO.
Observer: Why are you running for this position in particular?
I’m running for Sandoval County Assessor because I want to use my 16 years of experience and education in the field of property tax assessment to serve the property owners of Sandoval County. I will ensure fair and equitable assessments that equally distribute the tax burden, and this can only be done with experience and qualifications. As the Sandoval County Assessor, I will serve you with integrity, professionalism and respect. I’m ready to serve the taxpayers of Sandoval County on day one.
Observer: What do you plan to do in the first year (if you are elected)?
On my first day in office, I will meet with the staff to listen to the immediate needs required to accomplish the mission of the office and then provide assurance that I will be a hands-on assessor with an open-door policy for all the staff. In the following weeks, I plan to work with the staff to develop a plan for success and improvement for the next eight years. To ensure the accuracy and efficiency of our appraisal work, a yearly aerial survey flyover is critical, and I will investigate increasing the resolution of the imagery to make our appraisal reviews more accurate. This can reduce the inconvenience to property owners and provide a historical record of improvements and condition, not to mention savings in travel expenses and a positive impact on the environment.