Friday, May 3, 2013

Domingo Running for State Auditor

Domingo Martinez

County Assessor Domingo Martinez, a former state auditor, is running for that position again.

Martinez, who is finishing his second term as assessor, served two four-year terms as state auditor beginning in 1999.

Martinez has the distinction of being the first public official to find evidence suggesting corruption in former state Treasurer Robert Vigil.

During his first term as auditor, Martinez ordered an audit of Vigil's years as state auditor in the 1990s. That audit uncovered possible violations of state laws, including the filtering of money to a former assistant through an accounting company and money being given to a nonprofit group headed by Vigil’s wife.

State police forwarded the investigation to the FBI, with the state police chief saying Martinez's audit " "strong patterns of public corruption" during Vigil's tenure. But no charges were filed.

Vigil, who went on to be elected state treasurer in 2002 despite the bad publicity from Martinez's audit report, dismissed the audit was the result of a "vendetta" by Martinez. But before Vigil's first term in office was over, he was indicted on federal corruption charges (unrelated to the findings in Martinez's report) and eventually served time in prison.

Current auditor Hector Balderas is running for attorney general. He couldn't seek re-election as auditor due to term limits.

Check tomorrow's New Mexican for more    information.