CONEJOS COUNTY — Democrat Jacob D. Ortiz, born and raised in Conejos County, is seeking the position of Conejos County Sheriff.
Ortiz graduated from Centauri High School and has served the Manassa community as a firefighter for 16 years.
“I am not a certified police officer but if elected will get certified at my own cost and within the required time period,” Ortiz said. “I would be new to this. I am tired of seeing ‘certified’ officers get elected to sheriff.”
Ortiz added, “I think the good ‘ole boy routine should not be an option. Each case should be followed through thoroughly. In my opinion, the sheriff’s office has been run second rate for some time, not returning calls or not following through on reports in a timely manner.”
Ortiz said not much has changed in the sheriff’s office since he won the primary four years ago and lost in the general election.
“At that time we were told outside assistance and an open door policy were not needed, and obviously it is needed,” Ortiz said.
He said drugs and thefts are a big concern and need to be dealt with immediately.
“The sheriff’s office should make the safety and well-being of our youth and communities a priority.”
Ortiz said he understands it is not an easy task covering 1,290 square miles but it needs to be done. He said in spite of a low budget, “We are responsible to do a job.”
Ortiz said he also does not believe in nepotism and would not have family working for him if elected.
“I don’t like to use the word ‘change,’” he said. “There will be a difference.”
He concluded that if elected, “the sheriff’s office will know it is a true duty to protect and a real heartfelt honor to serve.”