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Geoff Rodgers held a seat on the Los Alamos County Council from 2000-2004 and he describes the current level of contention in the community as a major factor in his decision to seek a new term.
“The recent petition drive to subject county spending to voter approval indicates that a significant segment of the public has lost confidence in the county’s fiscal management,” Rodgers said during an interview Thursday. “I am running for the council to add a voice of fiscal restraint. I believe the county’s role is to provide basic municipal services. I believe the county does provide a high level of basic services and it is when the county steps outside this role that the results are not always positive and many times very costly.”
Rodgers, 48, lost a bid for re-election following his first term on council. He attributes that loss to the turbulence that occurred during the latter part of that term.
Rodgers worked as the transportation director for the Los Alamos Public Schools at the time and an employee filed a harassment suit against him with the Civil Rights Commission. The allegation was made prior to the election and remained unresolved until several weeks later.
“Those allegations were retracted in writing and that retraction was published in the Los Alamos Monitor,” Rodgers said. “If someone has questions — it is their right to factor that into their vote — as for me, I bear no ill will and I moved on a long time ago.”
Rodgers discussed the standard areas he said every county councilor should focus on. The first area is what he terms economic progress of which he said the first step is to reign in county spending.Economic progress should begin downtown with the priority being the Trinity Site Project, he said.
“I think the process for selecting a developer (for Trinity Site) should be competitive and transparent and not repeat the Boyer experience,” he said.
The county council severed ties with the Boyer Company recently because it failed to launch the project after several years of trying.
“I favor a design for the Trinity Site Project that resembles the original design of mixed use as opposed to a sea of asphalt and a big box,” Rodgers said.
Rodgers was born in Morristown, N.J., where he lived for just 14 days before his family moved to another town.
“My father was in advertising so we moved all over the country but I basically grew up in Dallas, Texas,” he said.
Rodgers holds a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from the University of Chicago. Prior to college, he served as a helicopter pilot for five years in the U.S. Army.
He has been married to Marla Rodgers for 15 years. They moved to Los Alamos in 1996 when he went to work for the school district.
Rodgers resigned from LAPS in 2008 to become a full-time father to the couple’s sons Garrett, now 10 and Jason, 2.
Editor’s note: Incumbents seeking re-election were featured in the Monitor during the last several weeks. Non-incumbents are now being featured leading up to the March 16 filing day. To be included, e-mail lanews@lamonitor