The Las Cruces City Council will conduct a regularly scheduled meeting at 1 p.m. Monday, March 7, 2022, in Council Chambers at City Hall, 700 N. Main St.
City Council will consider the adoption of an Ordinance to amend Section 9-38 of the Las Cruces Municipal Code (LCMC), 1997 that would simplify the process for the Mayor and City Council to use their emergency powers.
Almost two years ago, on March 27, 2020, the Council approved Ordinance 20-083, which amended LCMC, 1997 to include the Emergency Declaration Ordinance, LCMC Sections 9-35 through 9-41. The Emergency Declaration Ordinance authorizes the Mayor and the City Council to exercise their emergency powers through the issuance of a proclamation.
Under those amended provisions, the term for the proclamation is three days. The City Council then has the option to extend the term of the proclamation for as many as 14 days.
City Council approved the Emergency Declaration Ordinance in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Ordinance 20-083 empowers the Mayor and the City Council with the ability to respond quickly to emergencies without waiting for a regularly scheduled Council meeting to act.
The Mayor and City Council could – and has – used emergency powers several times the past two years to complement executive orders issued by the New Mexico Governor.
In the past two years, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham has issued numerous public health orders. Likewise, the Mayor has issued emergency proclamations in support of the Governor's quarantine orders and mask requirements, and the City Council extended the emergency proclamations by adopting numerous Resolutions.
The proposed ordinance would amend LCMC Section 9-38 by eliminating the 14-day limitation. The amendment would authorize City Council to tailor its response to the Mayor's emergency proclamations. By doing that, City Council could extend a proclamation to coincide with the Governor's executive orders to preclude the need for repeated proclamations and resolutions.
Additionally, at Monday’s meeting, City Council will consider adoption of a proposed Ordinance that could approve zone changes, with conditions, of an approximately 75-acre property that used to be the Las Cruces Country Club. The property is currently zoned R-1A, single-family medium density, but could be rezoned to multiple zoning designations with the Council’s approval.
Tetrad Property Group, the applicant, has proposed zone changes for seven planning areas of different acreage sizes on the property. The property has been vacant for several years, with the exception of the historic Las Cruces Country Club building.
A smaller portion of the property has already been developed into a hospital and ancillary uses. The property also is in an area designated as an Urban Neighborhood Place Type and is specifically identified as a Town Center.
Urban Neighborhoods include a variety of residential housing types at medium-to-high densities and areas of supporting neighborhood commercial development. The area would support live-work housing units.
Town Centers include a mix of residential and non-residential land uses that could support institutional, cultural, employment, shopping, and entertainment uses while also providing high-density residential living options to create an environment to live, work, and play.
Proposed representative land uses include single- and multi-family residential housing, office, retail, and commercial services. The property was included in the Apodaca Blueprint public planning initiative in 2018. The Blueprint developed a guiding land use and development plan for the property.
Tetrad Property Group intends to utilize the Apodaca Blueprint as the guiding land use document and master plan.
A neighborhood meeting was conducted by City staff on Dec. 9, 2021. At that meeting, some residents raised concerns about the state of the vacant property. Some residents expressed support for development of the site, while others have concerns about potential impacts, such as traffic.
All site development, including subdivision, roadway design, and site layouts, would be required to adhere to the concepts outlined in the Apodaca Blueprint and the conditions of zoning.
The agenda for Monday’s meeting is available online at https://lascruces.civicweb.net/Portal/MeetingInformation.aspx?Org=Cal&Id=356.
The Council meeting will be televised live on CLCTV, Comcast Cable channel 20, and in high definition on Comcast Cable channel 928. The meeting also will be available online at clctv.com and at YouTube.com/clctv20.