Sponsored Legislation for District 2.
Councilor Benton has a proven record of working with others to get important legislation adopted. He has researched, developed, and carried many pieces of legislation, and he has also worked in partnership with nearly every other member of the Council to see resolutions and ordinances through the legislative process.
- Planning and Zoning
- Public Safety
- Economic Development
- Transportation and Infrastructure
- Transparency and Accountability
Downtown Neighborhood Area Traffic Study
Adopted as City policy the Downtown Neighborhood Area (DNA) Traffic Study (2014) and its findings and recommendations regarding neighborhood traffic management in the DNA. The study included a public process to identify traffic problems in the neighborhood and make recommendations for mitigation and traffic calming.
Creation of Unified Development Ordinance & Zoning Code Update
R-14-46 (Jones, Benton)
Directed the Planning Department and Council Services to engage with a consultant team to update the Zoning Code and other ordinances and policies regulating land use and transportation in the city to reflect best planning practices. The goal is to modernize and consolidate the many layers of regulations guiding development into a Unified Development Ordinance. This effort is intended to simplify the development process, making it easier to understand for property owners, developers, and neighbors, as well as making it more enforceable. Many U.S. cities have recently completed similar overhauls of land use and transportation regulatory systems. This effort aims to help keep Albuquerque competitive by supporting economic development and attracting and keeping young people, employers, and retirees, among others.
Partnership with APS
Declared the City Of Albuquerque’s commitment to develop a cooperative partnership with Albuquerque Public Schools for the purpose of cooperative transportation planning for the benefit of the citizens of the Albuquerque Metropolitan Area. It established a Task Force with representatives of APS and the City to address the impact of school-related traffic impacts, such as those related to student drop-off and pick-up, on neighborhood streets.
Rail Yards Master Development Plan
Adopted a Rail Yards Master Development Plan and Site Plan For Subdivision to provide the appropriate policy framework and regulations to guide the redevelopment of the City-owned Rail Yards site. The plan was developed through a public process that began in late 2012 after the selection of a Master Developer.
Gas Station Regulations
O-11-66 (Benton, Jones)
This Ordinance created new regulations on the development of gas stations in the C-1 zone to reduce the negative impacts, including traffic congestion, on residential neighborhoods that are adjacent to a gas station. It contains site layout and access requirements. It also makes stations with more than 8 fueling stations a conditional, rather than permissive, use for C-1 zoned properties, which requires neighborhood notification and a public hearing for approval.
Electronic Sign Regulations
This Ordinance created new regulations for electronic commercial signs, including restrictions on brightness, motion, and location. Previously, there were no regulations in the zoning code to keep such signs from becoming a nuisance.
Councilor Benton led a two-year effort to have new “mixed-use/transit-oriented” zones added to the City’s Zoning Code. The process included a citywide Town Hall meeting, 9 community meetings (one in each Council district), 4 hearings before the Environmental Planning Commission, one hearing at the Council’s Land Use, Planning and Zoning Committee, and one hearing before the full Council. Numerous hours spent working with different stakeholder groups to improve and revise legislation.
Front-Yard Parking Bill
O-07-61 (Benton, Mayer)
This Ordinance limits the percentage of a residential front yard that can be paved and used for parking
Barelas Sector Development Plan
This Resolution repealed an earlier sector plan for the Barelas Community from 1993, and replaced it with an updated one. The new sector plan was designed to increase safety and promote economic development while maintaining the culture, and preserving the historical significance and sense of community in the Barelas area.
South Yale Sector Development Plan
The South Yale Sector Plan was designed to develop retail and commercial businesses, promote safety and ease of access in the present neighborhoods, and reflect the culture of New Mexico in the South Yale area of Albuquerque.
R-14-59 (Benton, Gibson)
Relates to PNM’s plan to replace 836 megawatts at the San Juan Generating Station, directing the Mayor to work through the New Mexico Industrial Energy Consumers (NMIEC), of which the City is a member, to require that PNM’s replacement power plan include as much renewable energy as is technically and economically feasible, reduce carbon-dioxide emissions associated with its utility service, and consider the total environmental, health and societal costs of coal produced energy.
Water Rights for Los Poblanos Fields Open Space
Appropriated $66,000 for the acquisition of water rights for the Los Poblanos Fields Open Space. This City-owned Open Space provides recreational and educational opportunities, including community farming, bird-watching, walking and prescription trails and running courses. The previous agreement for leasing water rights had expired; this legislation provided funding to purchase, lease, or otherwise acquire water rights.
Labeling of Genetically Engineered Products
M-14-3 (Benton, Gibson)
Expressed support for the mandatory labeling of genetically engineered products to inform consumers about the content of food products.
2006 International Energy Conservation Code
O-07-73 (Benton, Cadigan)
Adoption of Uniform Administrative Code and Technical Code for Construction Projects
O-07-105 (Benton, Cadigan, Heinrich)
These Ordinances established green building and design standards to promote healthier living and greater environmental responsibility. These standards were designed with a high degree of cost effectiveness and implement part of the International Energy Conservation Code into Albuquerque’s building codes.
Tree removal moratorium
This Resolution prohibits removal of trees from city properties without consulting the City Forester.
Open Space Land Acquisition
R-07-260 (Benton, Heinrich)
This Resolution provided $500,000 for the purchase of 420 acres of land adjacent to open space land in Gutierrez Canyon to expand the open space area.
Investment into Energy Conservation and Renewable Energy
This Ordinance allocated 3% of the general capital improvement program fund to be used specifically in investing in energy conservation and renewable energy.
Suspension of Police Oversight Commission Pending New System
O-14-15 (Benton, Sanchez)
Immediately suspended the operation of the Police Oversight Commission (POC) pending the establishment of a new oversight system. The existing POC had been proven an ineffective oversight entity, and at the time of this legislation only two of the nine positions were filled.
Heading Home Program
R-14-89 (Benton, Peña, Winter)
Designated funds for the continuation of the Heading Home program. Heading Home has provided housing and case management services to medically vulnerable homeless people for the past three years and has proven to be an effective and successful program.
Task Force on Behavioral Health
M-14-5 (Winter, Benton)
Called for the City, State, and Bernalillo County to form a task force to discuss joint funding and collaboration opportunities and propose recommendations to address homelessness, substance abuse and mental health issues. A bipartisan group of elected officials from each of the three governmental entities established a Work Group and a Task Force, which includes members from many service provider agencies and organizations, the courts, public employees, and affected individuals from the community. A full recommendation is expected in October.
Housing Assistance Program
R-14-73 (Benton, Winter)
Supports a project with Bernalillo County for the purpose of implementing a housing assistance program for persons with mental illness being released from the Metropolitan Detention Center. The City will work with the County to fund a process to address recidivism and provide supportive housing for repeat offenders among the homeless population.
Rescue Unit at Fire Station 2
Appropriated funding to the Fire Department to establish a Rescue Unit at Fire Station 2. Councilor Benton worked for years to assist in funding the new Fire Station 2 on Gibson at University in order to accommodate a Rescue Unit because there was not room at the old facility. R-13-213 designated funding for the rescue vehicle and operating costs, including staffing.
APD Salary Increase
R-13-212 (Lewis, Benton, Harris)
Reserved funding to provide for salary increases and recruitment and retention incentive programs for Albuquerque’s police officers.
Engine Revving as Violation
This Ordinance was created to abate the excessive noise intentionally created by drivers of automobiles and motorcycles, as the excessive noise constituted a public nuisance.
Ban Hand-Held Cellular Phone Use While Driving
O-06-57 (Benton, Sanchez)
This Ordinance established a ban on using a non-hands free cellular device while driving; this was done in response to the rising number of traffic accidents caused by using cellular devices while driving.
No Tolerance for Gender Pay Inequality
Established a City policy of No Tolerance for Gender Pay Inequality and directed the Administration to identify all areas of pay inequality based on gender occurring in City of Albuquerque government and to prepare a report to the City Council on the City’s action plan for correcting and preventing such inequality. It also directed the Administration to implement a policy for requiring contractors and vendors doing business with the City to demonstrate their compliance with the Federal Equal Pay Act.
Workforce Housing Trust Funds for Property Acquisition
Redesignated Workforce Housing Trust Funds to acquire property on North Fourth Street for redevelopment. It also authorized the City to enter into an Intergovernmental Agreement with the County Of Bernalillo, calling for a joint planning collaboration between the City and the County for a mixed-used development at the site.
Affordable Housing Development Agreements
Designated Workforce Housing Trust Funds and Home Investment Partnerships Funds for affordable housing development projects and directed the Mayor to execute two affordable housing development agreements. The downtown grocery store/mixed use project at 2nd & Silver and Quatro, an affordable senior housing project, were authorized by this legislation.
Approving the Historic Central Metropolitan Redevelopment Area Plan
The Historical Central Metropolitan Redevelopment Area Plan is a holistic approach to rehabilitate, preserve historic structures, and improve the economic viability of the Historic Central Corridor, including redevelopment of the El Vado Motel and Casa Grande sites.
Designation of Appropriate Uses of the Rail Yards Property
This Resolution designated appropriate uses of the rail yards property that the city had acquired to ensure that the historic significance of the rail yards was maintained and that the residents of the Barelas and South Broadway neighborhoods had a voice in the redevelopment of the rail yards.
Acquisition and Development of the Historic Rail Yards
These resolutions appropriated funding for the purchase of the Historic BNSF Locomotive Shops in Barelas (Rail Yards).
Designation of El Vado Motel as City of Albuquerque Landmark
These Ordinances called upon the City to officially recognize the El Vado Motel as an Albuquerque Landmark for its historical significance in the motel’s architecture and association with automobile tourism on U.S. Highway 66. The City purchased the property for preservation.
Affordable Housing Trust Fund
This Ordinance created a trust fund for purchasing land and issuing home loans for affordable workforce housing projects and also established City policy with respect to affordable housing opportunities, incentives, planning, funding, and development.
Roundabout at Rio Grande and Candelaria
Reaffirmed the policy of the City Of Albuquerque that the construction of a roundabout at Rio Grande and Candelaria is a City project and amended the budget to reflect the increase in federal funds awarded for the project.
Transportation Infrastructure Improvements Tax
O-09-75 (Benton, Sanchez)
This Ordinance raised funds to be allocated for road rehabilitation, road maintenance, and public transit systems.
Pre-2010 District 3 Storm Drainage Prioritization
This Resolution called attention to the deficiencies within Albuquerque’s storm drainage infrastructure after flooding in 2006. It paved the way for subsequent appropriations for storm drainage infrastructure improvements and resulted in storm drainage retention ponds being built in Barelas (Tingley Park with brand new park constructed as well) and Santa Barbara Marinteztown (Lomas & Broadway pond) to prevent future devastating floods.
Open and Transparent Election Financing
R-13-179 (Benton, Garduño, Sanchez)
Directed the City Clerk to provide searchable financial reports and a link to each candidate’s and Measure Finance Committee’s financial reports on the City’s Website in order to establish a means for open and transparent election financing for municipal elections.