Embattled Santa Fe mayor hit with ethics complaint regarding corruption, abuse of power

On Tuesday, the Hispanic cultural organization Union Protectíva de Santa Fé announced that it filed an ethics complaint this week with the Santa Fe Ethics and Campaign Review Board claiming corruption, bullying, and abuse of power by Mayor Alan Webber and his campaign.

The complaint, which is the third this election cycle according to the Santa Fe New Mexican, accuses Webber’s campaign of “bullying.” It notes messages sent out by the Webber campaign frivolously alleging “Trump MAGA” operatives are working to “take over the Mayor’s office.” It was filed by Virgil Vigil, the group, and Gilbert Romero.

The complaint also takes aim at an Ethics Commission member, Ruth Kovnat, who the group claims failed to disclose her conflicts of interest during a previous meeting handling a complaint against Webber.

“Ms. Kovnat has knowingly supported and made political contributions in multiple instances to the campaigns of Alan Webber, Brian Egolf of Egolf+ Ferlic+ Martinez+ Harwood LLC, and political action committees that regularly donate to Alan Webber’s Campaign. On or about 7/15/2021 an ethics complaint was filed against Mayor Alan Webber. Mayor Webber retained the firm of Egolf+ Ferlic + Martinez + Harwood LLC shortly thereafter. As a result of this conflict Ms. Kovnat should have immediately recused herself but failed to do so during Ethics and Campaign Review Board hearing on 8/19/2021,” the group wrote.

As well, the compliant claims Webber violated a law regarding “improper gifts” when he used a public event with the Santa Fe Fire Department to campaign for his political race for mayor — a violation of multiple laws.

“As the Mayor continues to retaliate against Hispanic, military, veteran, and Catholic families for standing up for their ideals and heritage, Union Protectiva de Santa Fé will not be intimidated,” the group wrote in a press release.

“The degree of corruption and abuse of power by Mayor Alan Webber has reached a level we have never experienced in Santa Fe,” said Vigil. “Mr. Romero and I will not be intimidated by Mayor Webber’s hateful and divisive rhetoric, nor will we stop our work advocating for our local Hispanic, military, veteran, and Catholic families in Santa Fe.”

Mayor has been widely criticized by many Hispanics and others — of both parties — for his unforgivable refusal to protect the Soldiers Monument which was destroyed by violent anarchists in 2020. Webber told the Santa Fe Police Department to stand down. He then partnered with anti-Hispanic hate groups to rip down culturally significant Hispanic and Catholic artifacts through a Marxist “Culture, History, Art, Reconciliation” commission.Since the violent insurrection at the Santa Fe Plaza, multiple Hispanic cultural artifacts and monuments have been desecrated and vandalized by domestic terrorists targeting Catholics and Hispanics.

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