Lack of Records at Sunland "Staggering"

Susana Martinez
It became abundantly clear soon after the press conference in the office of Governor Susana Martinez began this afternoon that what has been taking place within the municipal government in the City of Sunland Park, New Mexico is not just an isolated pocket of problems. Governor Martinez said the problems are "Across the board," and "New Mexico is better than this."
Hector Balderas
According to State Auditor Hector Balderas, who also participated in the press conference, “Part of what makes the auditing of the city unprecedented is, "Allegations of criminal activity in addition to civil mismanagement and malfeasance.” Balderas also said, “The volume of records that are missing is staggering.” Balderas revealed that the auditing process has already caused his office to share information with federal agencies regarding possible violations of federal laws. Balderas added that there are incomplete payroll records, incomplete purchasing records, and a complete lack of supporting documents for travel expenses, payments to city officials, and water utility operations. The State Auditor said he is, "Exploring use of certified fraud examiners," to make sure the lack of resources in his office does not become a problem. Balderas says Governor Martinez agrees that additional resources may be required to finish the job. Apparently all divisions of the government are under scrutiny.
“There is a culture of fear,” at city hall and the criminal charges filed against both the old and new mayor makes the investigation more difficult, Balderas said.
It was also made clear by Governor Martinez that advantage was taken of the absence of a photo voter identification law in the state. There have been numerous reports of widespread voter fraud in latest municipal election in addition to all the other elements of corruption that have now given the area in Southern Dona Ana County a reputation for being one of the most corrupt municipalities in the nation.



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