The makeup of the Doña Ana County Board of Commissioners will change dramatically next year.
Democratic primary voters on Tuesday ousted Wayne Hancock, the commission chairman and District 4 representative, and David Garcia, who represents District 2. Their terms will expire at the end of 2015.
Democrats nominated Isabela Solis instead of Hancock in a three-way primary. With all voting centers reporting, Solis had 54 percent of the vote to Hancock’s 36 percent and 10 percent for David Bonner.
Solis will face Republican William Webb in November, who won his own primary against Roman Jimenez on Tuesday with 68 percent of the vote.
“I am honored that the people of Doña Ana County came out to vote,” Solis told NMPolitics.net.
And in District 2, Ramon Gonzalez won with 60 percent of the vote to Garcia’s 40 percent. There’s no Republican in the race, so Gonzalez is likely to take office in January.
“It was a good team effort,” the Las Cruces Sun-News quoted Gonzalez as saying. “We had a strong effort from everybody during the month. We were passing out our fliers and talking to people. I’m very pleased at how it all turned out.”
Alex Cotoia, who ran unsuccessfully against Garcia four years ago, attributed Garcia’s loss to “his own failure to engage the constituency he made a lot of promises to in 2012.”
“I’ve watched my former opponent Commissioner Garcia carefully over the past four years with high hopes,” Cotoia said. “I’m a bit disheartened by his lack of engagement on issues that are critical to south county residents beyond blanket statements about the importance of public infrastructure.”
Three of five county commissioners will be new in 2016. District 5’s Leticia Duarte-Benavidez was term-limited from running again. John Vasquez won a three-way primary for the Democratic nomination for that seat on Tuesday with 43 percent of the vote. Republican Kim Hakes won a two-person Republican primary with 58 percent of the vote.