Question #4:

Cloudcroft has a modest budget and limited resources. What experience do you have managing a multi-million dollar budget? Grant money is one way to add new dollars. Discuss what kind of grants you would seek and how you expect to win them.

Jim Maynard: “Cloudcroft's budget is constantly challenged. This relates to the balancing of community issues. As a local business owner involved in real estate, construction and development I have managed multi-million dollar budgets for over 30 years. As a public servant I have been involved in the Village of Cloudcroft budget cycle for over 14 years. We as a community do not apply for enough grants. New Mexico in the last few years has had an enormous growth in the state budget. As mayor, I would work closely with our legislative representatives so that they are aware of our requests. I would reach out to the Southeastern New Mexico Economic Development District (SNMEDD) and discuss grant writing opportunities. I currently sit on the board of the New Mexico Municipal League as a director. They represent many New Mexico communities. My participation in this group enhances our community image at the state level. The grants I would seek would reference back to water, roads, and community issues.”

Richard Welch: “The first grant I would pursue would be getting a grant back from the State of New Mexico and the US Bureau of Reclamation. I would look into a grant that would be used for the roads. My family has had a house up here since 1962. In that time, the road situation hasn't changed much. I think in 60 years all the streets in Cloudcroft would have been paved by now. The first thing I would need to know is what happened in 2016. To get the parties involved again I would need to know why they pulled out in 2016. I don't know enough about getting a grant to help Cloudcroft pave roads to comment.”

Gail McCoy: “Every year in the spring, the village has a budget retreat. We review all the departments’ wishlists and budgets for the coming year. Our clerk keeps us straight on all the numbers.

It is three days of a team effort to balance the budget.  As a team we prioritize and select items that will give us the greatest value. Grant monies is something our project managers look into. We network with several agencies that help us write the verbiage in the grant so we can be approved. Our staff is well qualified for these duties.”

Craig Turner: “Throughout my 30 year career in the corporate sector, I managed a multi-million dollar budget each year. Managing a multi-million dollar budget requires strong financial management skills, strategic planning, and accountability. It involves various aspects such as budget creation, allocation of funds, monitoring expenditures, and ensuring financial sustainability. With my extensive experience and effective use of resources, I pledge to manage Cloudcroft’s budgets effectively.

Regarding grants, securing external funding through grant programs can be a valuable way to supplement Cloudcroft’s modest budget. To identify potential grants, it is essential to understand our needs, goals, and available funding opportunities.

Potential grant opportunities for Cloudcroft could include funding for affordable housing initiatives, economic development projects, tourism promotion, workforce development programs, infrastructure improvements, or sustainability initiatives. Researching and targeting grants specific to these areas can enhance our chances of securing additional funds to support our goals and economic growth.

Here's the process I plan to use for seeking and winning grants:

1. Research: Identify grant programs that align with Cloudcroft’s priorities and economic development goals. This can involve exploring government agencies, foundations, and private organizations that offer grants in areas such as economic development, affordable housing, small business support, tourism, or community development.
2. Grant Writing: Develop a compelling grant proposal that clearly articulates Cloudcroft's needs, proposed projects, and expected outcomes. This requires strong writing skills, an understanding of grant guidelines, and the ability to effectively communicate the community's vision and potential impact. I already have professional grant writers identified and would also seek available grant writing workshops to enhance our chances of success.
3. Collaboration: Seek partnerships with relevant organizations, community groups, or educational institutions to strengthen grant proposals. Collaborative efforts often have a higher chance of success as they demonstrate a broader community impact and increase the likelihood of meeting grant criteria.
4. Grant Management: If awarded a grant, proper grant management is crucial to ensure compliance with reporting requirements and effective use of funds. This involves establishing clear project benchmarks, monitoring progress, and providing regular updates to grantors.
5. Evaluation: After the grant period, evaluate the outcomes and impact of the funded projects. This information can be useful for future grant applications, showcasing successful initiatives, and building credibility for future funding opportunities.

It is important to note that grant-seeking is a competitive process, and success is not guaranteed. Building relationships with grantors, demonstrating community need, and presenting well-planned proposals are essential steps in increasing the likelihood of winning grants.”

Gerald ‘Dusty’ Wiley: “I was the Assistant Commissioner for the Riverside County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office.  I was the solely responsible for the $77M budget. It was my responsibility to maintain a department of 73 employees who worked with the farmers with over 200,000 acres of harvested farmland. Our department was also tasked with Weights & Measures. We were responsible for the certification of every scale or weight measure in Riverside County; this included everything from the scale at your local deli, the truck weigh stations, to over 17,000 gas pumps tested annually. I will aggressively seek out grants and funding at both the state and federal level.  There is currently over $1B in various grants in New Mexico alone that have been offered to various New Mexico cities, towns and villages and the proper steps have not been taken to secure these grants and this $1B is subject to recall. This is a travesty and should not be allowed to happen.  State or federal grants and funding is not going to make taxes increase.  The powers that Be have already set these monies aside and it is the responsibility of the city, town, or village to activity pursue these resources for the benefits of their communities.  If we do nothing to get any of this money, then we will not receive any of it. Its that simple.  I would study our current budget and do my best to have at a minimum a part time grant underwriter whose goal is to pursue these grants and fundings.

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