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Albuquerque Journal from Albuquerque, New Mexico • Page 13
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Albuquerque Journal from Albuquerque, New Mexico • Page 13

Albuquerque, New Mexico
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METROPOLITAN tST AVAIUtEUE COPY Wednesday, February 26, 1986 Albuquerque Journal Page 1, Section Erroneous Schools Amendment Can't Be Removed By Jeff Await JOURNAL STAFF WRITER Finance) Committee, we may be looking at a veto by the governor," said Dan Weaks, executive assistant to the governor. But, because of the amendment, either of Anaya's choices means bad news for Albuquerque Public Schools. If Anaya signs House Bill 317, APS and the other districts would have to seek civil rights liability coverage from private insurers. However, if Anaya does not sign the bill, APS and six other school districts would be left without general liability insurance coverage from the state. Because insurance companies nationally are recovering from a period of heavy losses, school districts such as APS have been unable to find general liability coverage in the private market.

The districts turned to Risk Management for assistance through the state's liability fund. But because laws only specified that the fund could be used for municipalities, a broader law was sought. HB 317 authorizes Risk Management to provide general liability coverage to the schools on condition that districts continue to search for coverage from private companies and pay the state based on private rates subsequently obtained. But the amendment to the bill, introduced by Sen. Joseph Fidel, D-Cibola, says that districts can get state assistance only if they cannot get an offer from a private insurer.

Because the amendment does not specify that its restrictions apply only to general liability, Risk Management attorneys believe it would also restrict civil rights coverage. The state has provided that coverage, which protects schools against lawsuits based on civil rights complaints, since 1979. Fidel said the amended bill passed because of a clerical error during the last-minute rush of the Legislature. Although the Senate Finance Committee approved another form of the bill, Fidel said, the amended version was sent by accident to the full House and Senate for approval. However, state Risk Management officials have questioned Fidel's account, suggesting they were conned into supporting the amendment.

"I stood up in committee and testified that we were in full agreement with Sen. Fidel's amendment," Risk Management Director Albert Gallegos said. "I was under the assumption that the copy of the amendment I was reading was the same amendment submitted to the committee." An erroneous amendment stripping civil rights liability insurance from Albuquerque Public Schools and more than80 other districts cannot be removed from the bill because the measure contained no appropriations or funding, officials said Tuesday. Gov. Toney Anaya, who was expected to return today t6 Santa Fe, has the option of signing or vetoing the entire bill.

"If a vote was made on an erroneous amendment coming out of (the Senate Minority Program Chief Changing Jobs J3r yVdfTi. iLj By Jim Martin JOURNAL STAFF WRITER fc'7 iL KM I Ml -i 1' 9 I i r'PmiT'lllllllKlIllliilllllllWlilliM said. Finance and Management Director Mike Werner, who oversees the purchasing department, confirmed that Sanchez received a letter of reprimand following a Feb. 3 presentation to councilors. The reprimand came from Trinidad Morra, head of purchasing, Werner said.

"Morra determined that the presentation by Sanchez and his subordinate was not professional, and did not accurately or positively reflect what the goals of this administration are regarding the MBE program," Werner said. Morra could not be reached for comment. At the Feb. 3 meeting, the council passed a bill setting a target of awarding 13 percent of the city's business to minority and women contractors. During the discussion before the bill was passed Sanchez's assistant, Gerald Cisneros, told the council: "I sit here and hear you lawmakers say you are going to drag your feet like the previous administration.

The minority business community is getting tired of seeing someone get all the benefits from their tax dollars." Sanchez said Tuesday the Schultz administration has been supportive of the MBE program. The program was not supported by the administration of former Mayor Harry Kinney under which Sanchez was hired, City Hall sources said, "I put my sweat and blood into this program," Sanchez said. "I'm sure the current administration will move forward with meeting the program's goals; but unfortunately, I won't be part of it." Eugene J. Sanchez, head of the city's Minority Business Enterprise program, said Tuesday he is being shuffled to another city job because he was too aggressive in opening doors for minority and women contractors. "I started this office with a ballpoint pen and an ordinance," said Sanchez, who took over his job with the city in December 1984.

"I had to push to get things done, and stepped on some peoples' toes." Sanchez said he was told last week by Chief Administrative Officer Gene Romo that he will be transferred to another city slot as part of the City Hall reorganization expected to be in place by March 1. "We're not taking punitive action against anyone, including Eugene Sanchez," Romo said. "If changes are made, it will be to put people in jobs where they are best suited." Romo acknowledged talking to Sanchez last week, but said any personnel changes are still tentative. "If there are complaints about Eugene Sanchez, they haven't come from me or my staff," Romo added. "I did see some memos from the purchasing department which were critical of the professionalism shown in some presentations Sanchez and his people have made to the City Council and other groups." The MBE program is part of the purchasing department, but will be transferred to the CAO's office to qualify for federal grants, Sanchez JOURNAL PHOTOS EUGENE BURTON Wiiliam Lansdell, left, and State Police Crime Lab Director Tom VanValkenburgh examine car belonging to Debbie Lansdell.

Land-Use Program For La Cueva OK'd State Police Check Car For Clues Missing Woman's Porsche Contains Stains, Prints By Arley Sanchez 1 I if vk JOURNAL STFF WRITER J1 If ft ff From left, parents William arid Shirley Lansdell and brother Steve Lansdell watch as police look over Debbie Lansdell's car. By Mary O'DriscoIl JOURNAL STAFF WRITER The Bernalillo County Commission unanimously approved a plan Tuesday that would govern land use in the North Albuquerque Acres area surrounding the new La Cueva High School. Called the La Cueva Land Use Guide, it calls for landowners to pool their land within certain segments of the 790-acre area to encourage development. Development in that part of the county has been stymied because of the number of landowners 1,000 in the area of North Albuquerque Acres. "For once, I hope we'll have a good-looking, planned community," said William Jackson, a North Albuquerque Acres resident and a member of the citizens advisory board that helped put the plan together.

The guide previously had been called a sector development plan, but commissioners approved it as a land-use guide because the city and county still must make a number of specific land-use and development decisions. And commissioners had to approve the guide before March 1, the date the area's development moratorium will be lifted. Without it, development in the North Albuquerque Acres area would have been able to begin without any guidelines. The guide approved by the commission calls for the county to maintain the agricultural uses of the land within the area and restrict special-use permits only to those that complement the agricultural zones. The city must be responsible for developing specific annexation methods.

The guide states that city staff must meet with the private sector to develop the criteria, which then would be subject to review by the County Planning Commission and the city's Environmental Planning Commission. In other action, the commission voted to purchase 200 eletronic voting machines and computer software from the R.F. Shoup Corp. for $811,520. The purchase of the voting machines must be approved by the state Board of Finance because the money is coming from an interest-free state loan that must be paid off in 10 years.

Srate Police Tuesday examined fingerprints and "dark stains" found in a car belonging to a missing Belen woman but said they didn't believe the stains were left by blood. Investigator Tommy Otero said the State Police crime lab is trying to determine whether the fingerprints found in the car, which belonged to Belen nurse Debbie Lansdell, are of high-enough quality to be used for comparisons. He said preliminary tests done on dark stains from the car's back seat indicate they were not left by blood. Miss Lansdell has been missing since last Sept. 21, and police are treating her disappearance as a possible homicide.

Otero denied reports that two men arrested in the Linda Daniels slaying were suspects in Miss Lansdell's disappearance. "We didn't say that," he said. "The way it should read is that we're investigating to see if there is a possible link." Otero has said that police would like to question Wallace Randolph Pierce and Johnny Zinn about the possibility of a connection between the two cases because of reports that the two were seen in the Belen-Los Lunas area in early January. "We don't have real good evidence to lead us to believe that they were involved," Otero said. "The only evidence we have is that they were in the Belen area on the first (of January).

"We're definitely going to compare Zinn and Pierce's fingerprints to what we have." He said prints lifted from the car also would be compared with those of other suspects in the case. On the advice of their attorneys, Zinn and Pierce have declined to speak to' investigators, Otero said. Police received their first break in the Lansdell case when they got a tip Monday that the woman's car was parked behind an apartment complex at 1520 Gold SE. Tenants said the car, a 1978 rust-colored Porsche 924, had been parked there for four months. Otero said officers found some dents and scratches on the Porsche that the woman's mother said were not present when her daughter disappeared.

He said officers found no obvious signs of foul play. "With the evidence that we found in the car, we don't know if there is anything that will help anything of real substance," Otero said. The woman's mother, Mrs. Shirley Lansdell of Peralta, said she identified the car as belonging to her daughter. Mrs.

Lansdell said the finding of the car has left her with mixed emotions. "I felt that with the car still missing, that Debbie was with the car someplace trying to work things out. "I don't have a lot of hope now, although I still hope, of course. I feel that it (the found car) is a definite sign that we may not find her," Mrs. Lansdell said.

She added that she has been told by police to disregard any speculation that her daughter's disappearance may be linked to the suspects arrested in the Linda Daniels case. Schultz Calls for Telephone Courtesy Secretary Wants 'Immediate Action' on Polar Bear Permit By Paul R. Wieck City Hall employees who don't watch their telephone etiquette could be getting an earful of reprimands from Mayor Ken Schultz's office. A member of the mayor's staff has been assigned to make periodic calls to city offices to ensure that telephones are answered in a cheerful, courteous tone, Schultz spokesman John Parker confirmed Tuesday. Department heads circulated memos to their staff this week reminding them that the mayor is still unhappy with the way some city phones are being answered, Parker said.

"This is exactly the way the mayor wants everyone of us to answer: 'Good morning, good afternoon, or good evening; your department name, your name. May I help one of the department head's memo read. A uniform telephone answering policy is necessary because the city does not have a central switchboard, and citizens can call departments directly, Parker said. "There aren't any plans I know of to take disciplinary actions against violators, but the mayor does want all city phones answered in the same way," Parker added. attention earlier.

Obviously angered at what he called "these ridiculous rules" that are holding up the zoo's acquisition of the three bears, Domenici told Hodel he would use "whatever influence I have around here to change that situation." The "ridiculous rules" are contained in the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972, which established a Marine Mammal Commission that must approve the importation of such animals as polar bears. Under the act, bears nursing in the wild must be part of a research project acceptable to the commission in order to be taken in by a zoo. The Rio Grande Zoo has agreed to continue research on the three bear sought from Canada. Linda, the adult bear, has been tracked in the wild and at the Churchill, Manitoba, town dump. The Marine Mammal Commission is expected to begin reviewing the zoo's application soon.

Commission officials say the process usually takes about a month. Domenici said he was concerned about the health of Linda and one of her cubs, which are being held in a 15-by-15 foot cage. "We may have only two or three weeks," Domenici said. Reports that one of the cubs, a female, had died proved untrue, but that cub was acquired by a zoo in West Germany. In its place, the Rio Grande Zoo is expected to obtain a different female cub from the Toronto Zoo.

OF THE JOURNAL'S WASHINGTON BUREAU WASHINGTON Secretary of Interior Donald Hodel Tuesday said he has requested "an immediate response" from the Fish and Wildlife Service on what can be done to speed a permit needed to import an adult polar bear and two cubs from Canada to the Rio Grande Zoo in Albuquerque. "I understand we may already be two months too late," Hodel told Sen. Pete Domenici, who brought the matter up at a Senate subcommittee hearing. Domenici had brought the matter to Hodel's.

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