PRC chairman isn't seeking Block's resignation

Posted 4/08/2009 03:42:00 PM

Public Regulation Commission Chairman Sandy Jones says indicted Commissioner Jerome Block Jr. has done a good job in his first few months in office, and Jones isn’t calling on Block to resign.

“I can tell you, since he’s been here he’s been pretty solid,” Jones said in an interview. “… He comes to work early every morning, he’s done a good job at the Legislature, he’s working hard.”

Jones, who like Block is a Democrat, said he’s “not particularly surprised” that Block was indicted today because he knew there was a grand jury. “Seldom do grand juries convene without issuing indictments,” Jones said, “but by the same token not everyone that gets indicted is convicted.”

“I wouldn’t call on him to resign right now,” Jones said. Block has said he won’t resign.

Jones said he can speak only to his experience since Block took office in January and knows little about what happened during last year’s campaign.

Jones also said Block is only one of five members of the commission, so the public “is safe with the decisions we’re making.”

“If I didn’t think that, I would be more concerned,” Jones said.

Colón: Block deserves his day in court

Meanwhile, Brian Colón, chairman of the Democratic Party of New Mexico, said in a prepared statement that the charges against Block Jr. are “very serious… and like anyone else in our society he deserves, and will get, his day in court.”

“The Democratic Party believes in open, honest and transparent government,” Colón said. “We hold all our elected officials, regardless of party, to the highest ethical standards. There is no greater crime against Democracy than the breaking of the public trust between an elected official and their constituents.”

Block and his father Jerome Block Sr., a former PRC member, were charged with violating the elections code, conspiring to violate the elections code, tampering with evidence and conspiring to tamper with evidence. The charges against the younger Block also include embezzlement of between $500 and $2,500.

Block Jr.’s publicly funded campaign was plagued by scandal last year. He filed a false campaign report, paid a band to play at a rally that never took place and lied to newspaper reporters about his criminal history and education. He was fined by the secretary of state for filing the false report and ordered to return $10,000 of the money he was given under the public financing system. He was also fined for making a contribution to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, which is an invalid use of the public funds.

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At 7:34 PM, April 08, 2009, Blogger El Politico said...

My, My, My. The Democrats now surround thier "wagaons" around father and son. They want to let them have "their day in court." What corruption at the PRC. Mr. Jones is violating his responsibilites and duties to see that the PRC is free from any corruption or preception thereof. Again, we see how the strong grip of political "old boy" system at work. If the reverse happened and it was a GOP member, they would have "tarred and feathered" them and the hell with their day in court. What a double-standard! This is unacceptable Mr. Jones and if you don't ask for Mr. Block's resignation, maybe you should resign in his place for your lack of leadership in upholding ethics in your agency. My fellow New Mexicans, how much longer will you tolerate this behavior and lack of honesty and intergrity of our elected officials? Again, this is the result of one party domination that has plagued NM for over sixty-years!

At 8:21 AM, April 09, 2009, Blogger Doyle Pruitt said...

This time I agree with El Politico in respects to Mr. Jones being derelict in his duties as Chairman of the PRC. The PRC should be completely free of improprieties and free from corruption. All government offices and jobs should be free of these problems. I ran for the PRC when Mr. Jones did in 2006 and the people put him in office. I might say that the people should not cry because they are getting bad representation now, since they chose this man.
As for Mr. Block, I would say that if a Grand Jury indicted him, they must have had some good reasons to do so. Guilty or not, he should step down from his post, so as not to besmear ch the PRC any further.


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