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Ethics

Information about Election, Ethics, and Voter Complaints.

Any charge or charges that a candidate, candidate’s committee, Measure Finance Committee, or any other group has committed a violation of the Election Code, Code of Ethics, Open and Ethical Elections Code, or the Rules and Regulations promulgated by the Board of Ethics or the City Clerk shall be made in writing, notarized and brought before the City Clerk.

Complaints received that are outside the scope of the City Clerk’s authority are not investigated by our office.  However, we will make reasonable efforts to inform the Complainant of agencies that may have authority over the issues outlined in the complaint.

If you believe your complaint falls under the authority of our office, please submit your complaint, in writing, to our office, on the Complaint Form. Our office accepts complaints in electronic form via e-mail, but the complaint form with the Complainant’s original signature is required in our office within 5 days of filing the complaint.

All complaints require the following information:

  • Complainant’s name, address, and telephone number;
  • The Respondent’s name, address, and telephone number;
  • If the Respondent is a candidate, the office or position sought;
  • Whether Complainant has filed this complaint with any law enforcement agency, and if so, which one(s). A copy of complaints filed with any law enforcement agency must be attached to the complaint;
  • A description in reasonable detail of the alleged violation, including the Section(s) or Part(s) of the Election Code, Code of Ethics, Open and Ethical Elections Code, or Rules and Regulations of the Board or City Clerk that the Complainant believes were violated, an explanation of how the Complainant believes the Election Code, Code of Ethics, Open and Ethical Elections Code, or Rules and Regulations of the Board of Ethics or City Clerk were violated, and any other pertinent information;
  • A description of the inquiry undertaken regarding the alleged violation;
  • Evidence that supports the Complainant’s allegations, including but not limited to:
    • The names/telephone numbers of persons whom Complainant believes may be witnesses to the facts;
    • A copy or picture of any political advertisement(s) Complainant references;
    • A copy of each document Complainant references; and
    • Any other evidence supporting Complainant’s allegations;
  • A certification that: To the best of Complainant’s knowledge, information, and belief, formed after a reasonable inquiry under the circumstances, each factual contention of the complaint is supported by evidence;
    • If, after a reasonable inquiry under the circumstances, the Complainant is unable to certify that certain specifically identified factual contentions of the complaint are supported by evidence, the Complainant may also certify that: To the best of Complainant’s knowledge, information, and belief, there are grounds to conclude that those specifically identified factual contentions are likely to be supported by evidence after a reasonable opportunity for further inquiry;
  • The Complainant’s notarized signature immediately after the certification or certifications.

Complaints must also meet the following criteria:

  • A single Respondent has been named in the complaint. A complaint cannot be filed against more than one person;
  • The complaint has not been submitted anonymously;
  • All exhibits or attachments referenced in the complaint have been included with the complaint;
  • The complaint was signed by the Complainant under oath in the presence of a notary public or other person authorized by law to administer oaths;
  • The complaint contains the original signature of the Complainant;
  • The complaint alleges a violation of the Election Code, Code of Ethics, Open and Ethical Elections Code, or Rules and Regulations of the Board of Ethics or City Clerk;
  • The complaint contains specific facts upon which the Complainant bases the allegation of a violation of the Election Code, Code of Ethics, Open and Ethical Elections Code, or Rules and Regulations of the Board of Ethics or City Clerk;
  • The complaint alleges a violation that occurred within 120 days of the date the complaint is filed with the City Clerk; and
  • The complaint is based on personal knowledge or information other than hearsay. Complainant should differentiate between statements based on the Complainant's personal knowledge and those based on information and belief. Statements not based on personal knowledge should identify the source of the information.

The City Clerk will communicate with both parties via their indicated preferred method of communication.  However, it is the responsibility of the Complainant, to the best of their knowledge, to provide valid contact information for both parties.  We will not investigate contact information for either party.

Within five (5) days of receiving of the complaint, the City Clerk will review the complaint, along with any attachments or exhibits.  If it is determined that the complaint does not include all required information, we will reject the complaint, and give the Complainant, Respondent, and the Board of Ethics written notice of the reason for the rejection. The Complainant may then file a new complaint (which should include information that cures the deficiency), or appeal the rejection to the Board of Ethics.  

If the complaint is complete, within five (5) days of receiving the complaint, the City Clerk may attempt to require the Respondent correct the violation or prevent further violations by informal methods and may enter into a voluntary compliance agreement with the Respondent prior to referring the complaint to the Board of Ethics and Campaign Practices. If the complaint is resolved by informal methods or a voluntary compliance agreement, the City Clerk shall give written notice to the Board and the Complainant of the details of the resolution. In the event of an informal resolution, Complainant may file a new complaint with the City Clerk within ten (10) days of receiving notice of the resolution.

If the City Clerk is unable to correct the violation or prevent further violations informally within fifteen (15) calendar days of the filing of the complaint, the City Clerk shall refer the complaint to the Board of Ethics and Campaign Practices. The City Clerk shall give written notice to the Complainant and the Respondent of the referral of the complaint to the Board.

All documents submitted with or pertaining to a complaint are subject to inspection under the New Mexico Inspection of Public Records Act.

If you have any additional questions, please contact the Office of the City Clerk.