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Best declares intention to seek reelection

Jeanine Corn Best, Roswell City Council Ward 3 incumbent (Submitted Photo)

Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

Incumbent Jeanine Corn Best is setting out to campaign for her third four-year term on the nonpartisan Roswell City Council, to continue representing Ward 3.

“I’m the best of the best,” Best said. “… I’m working for the people. I want to see everybody content and happy. I want to go about it in an orderly fashion. We have to play by the rules because it’s a government. I’m seasoned … I’m not old — I’m seasoned. I understand the game. I understand the game from private and public. My door is always open …”

Best, 57, has no family members employed by the city. She ran in 2012, defeating Judy Stubbs. Stubbs was later elected to again serve Ward 3, in 2018.

Best ran unopposed in 2016 and she is seeking another four-year term beginning in 2020.

If re-elected, Best’s top three priorities are continuing to support public safety, seeing quality of life services increase their revenue streams and improving infrastructure, from roads to pipelines. At this time, Best doesn’t have a campaign manager and is looking for a treasurer.

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Best comes from four generations of pioneers and ranchers. Copy Rite (which closed in 2016 after 38 years), Grace Corn Heritage House and the Best-Corn Ranch are integral parts of Best’s personal and professional background. She is the mother of two daughters and a son.

Helping Roswell grow is what motivates Best as a councilor and why she wants to continue. She said more unity between Chaves County, the city of Roswell and the Roswell Independent School District is needed to make the city “great.”

Significant changes have happened since the 2015 election, Best said, from the closing and demolition of Cahoon Pool and the Yucca Recreation Center to the construction and opening of the Roswell Recreation & Aquatic Center.

An expansion of the Roswell Convention & Civic Center was also voted on and completed during her service. She said the city is being “proactive instead of reactive” when it comes to building maintenance.

For her accomplishments on the council, Best listed those two facilities and the resolution of support making this a Second Amendment sanctuary city. She said she is proud to be “pro-gun, proactive, pro-life” and of being available to communicate with her constituents.

As a councilor, Best addressed that she is known for saying what she thinks. One thing she has learned on the council is how to “agree to disagree” with the nine other councilors.

As the chair of the Public Safety Committee, Best supports the proposed $35 million public safety complex on East Second Street. A question of whether or not to pay for the complex will appear on the municipal election ballot, as approved by the council last month.

After lengthy discussions at Public Safety Committee meetings, Best said the city’s new animal ordinance, which she described as “absolutely awesome,” will be advertised next month and voted on in January.

She said she “loves” to support animal control, police and fire departments to get them to where they need to be. She said the police service aid program came after she was elected in her first term. Boosting morale for first-responders is another priority for her.

If re-elected, Best would like to continue to help Friends of Roswell Animals (FORA) and is proposing to allow them to use city property, through a service agreement, to rescue animals. Her other idea is to have a tiny-home community for veterans nearby that can help with the animals at FORA. In her own life, Best has been working with animal rescues since she was 11 years old.

Cost recovery for various city services has been a hot topic in the city. As a businesswoman and councilor, Best maintains the city is a business and needs to operate as such.

She supports the idea that quality of life services — like Roswell Public Library, Spring River Zoo and Roswell Museum and Art Center — should be operating in the black, or at least close, by generating income. On the zoo, Best is in favor of fencing off the zoo and charging admission. Whether to separate the park from the zoo is something she is still on the fence about.

“And that’s the whole thing of coming back, I know what’s going on,” Best said. “I care for our community. I listen to all of our community. I go to the forums. I want to see who goes … The people, if they care about their town, they’re gonna get out. They’re not going to sit on Facebook and keep trashing us. They’re going to give me a solution, so we can work the problem, and that’s the biggest thing. Give me a solution — because everybody has a mind — and we’ll work on the solution and let’s not reinvent the wheel.”

Best also serves on the Infrastructure Committee, which she has chaired in the past. Working with 100 miles of smaller pipeline on her property on the ranch has helped her have an insight into the city’s larger-scale system.

In light of the street survey, Best said the city now understands the state of the streets better and the cost to take care of them. She said it took “years for streets to fail” and they will take years to “rebuild.”

For more information, Best can be contacted at 575-420-8455, via text messages or calls.

Most of Ward 3 is in west Roswell with a section extending to McGaffey Road and ending at East Country Club Road. The five-ward map can be seen online at: roswell-nm.gov/DocumentCenter/View/2940/Ward-Map-PDF?bidId=.

Filing day is Jan. 7, early voting begins Feb. 4 and election day is March 3. The only contested race so far is between Bonnie Bizter and Jason Perry, former city councilor, for Ward 2. Cristina Arnold is planning to run for Ward 1 and Oswaldo Vazquez Nava has announced that he will run for Ward 5.

Special projects reporter Alison Penn can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or at reporter04@rdrnews.com.

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