La Coalición de Taos

Town Council/Mayoral Candidate Forum Questions Submitted by the Public

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Subject: Gentrification

A subject that is much in the forefront of the election conversation, and embedded within and exacerbated by the undeniable problem of accelerating gentrification and its negative impacts on Taos working people, small businesses, and affordable housing, is the existence of the historical trauma that has been perpetrated over centuries on the Indigenous People and the Spanish and Mexican colonial settlers, by the United States and also Spanish colonialism before that.

If elected, what will you do to begin healing this historical trauma?

Between 2014 and 2019, Census data show that the number of legacy Hispano residents living inside the town limits fell from 2,039 to 1,306. That’s a loss of more than 1/3 of the population that has called Taos home for generations in just five years. Do you believe that the Barrone administration has accelerated gentrification and displacement in the town by directing so much of time and money toward promoting events and amenities that cater primarily to visitors and well-to-do residents?

How would you preserve “Taos” and minimizes gentrification and out reach to disenfranchised locals. Assisting with a living wage and affordable housing?

Both the Town of Taos and the county overall has seen a dramatic decrease in the number of legacy or multi-generational Hispanic residents for over a decade. Between 2010 and 2019 Census Bureau numbers suggest this multi-generational Hispanic population of the Town decreased by as much as 20%. Census data also suggests the people who are leaving the Town are our working aged families. Our multi-generational community members are not able to live here affordably or find a position with a competitive wage that will support a family. Our community, culture, and economy will all benefit from allowing our locals to stay or return. What programs and partnerships could your administration create to incentivize our people to stay and or return to the community?

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