52nd legislature - STATE OF NEW MEXICO - second session, 2016


Brian Egolf and Jim R. Trujillo









     WHEREAS, Luciano "Lucky" Varela was born on February 17, 1935 in Pecos; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela graduated from Pecos high school, where he played basketball and baseball, and he received a bachelor of business administration degree in accounting from the college of Santa Fe and a law degree from LaSalle university; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela began his public service career with the Santa Fe public school district; and

     WHEREAS, prior to being elected to office, Representative Varela was the state comptroller and retired as the financial control director of the department of finance and administration; and

     WHEREAS, in 1987, Representative Varela was elected to represent house district 48 and continues that representation; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela has been a key figure in state budgets and finances throughout his thirty years in the legislature; and

     WHEREAS, former Governor Bill Richardson once said that Representative Varela has forgotten more than most will ever know about state finances; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela has been the chair of the legislative finance committee every other year for the last fourteen years; and

     WHEREAS, during his tenure with the legislative finance committee, the state adopted performance-based budgeting through the Accountability in Government Act; public school funding and early childhood program funding were significantly increased; and public pension reform measures were enacted to ensure financial solvency; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela is a staunch supporter of state employees and an advocate for better schools and improved health care, fighting for these causes throughout his three-decade legislative career; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela has been known throughout his career as an advocate for children and the elderly and a supporter of equality for everyone; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela is an astute politician who expresses the utmost respect for his political mentors, such as former Senators Edward J. Lopez, Fabian Chavez, Jr., and Ben D. Altamirano and former Representatives Ben Lujan and Max Coll; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela is recognized as a facilitator rather than a dictator of public policy; and

     WHEREAS, while Representative Varela is conciliatory in his legislative work, he has always stood strong against fiscal irresponsibility and government inefficiency; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela has stated that his major personal accomplishment has been to raise a family, provide for the family's well-being and provide a good future for his grandchildren; and

     WHEREAS, because of his long political career, many people have fond memories from knowing or working with Representative Varela; and

     WHEREAS, while serving as the financial control director of the department of finance and administration, Representative Varela earned a reputation for throwing great Christmas parties out of the walk-in safe in the financial control area; and

     WHEREAS, this is Representative Varela's last term in the legislature; and

     WHEREAS, the loss of Representative Varela's institutional knowledge will be enormous; and

     WHEREAS, Representative Varela is the father of Bernadette, Jeff and James and has eleven grandchildren and two great-grandchildren; and

     WHEREAS, always physically active, Representative Varela enjoys spending time on his family's property in Pecos, cultivating a large garden and baling hay; and

     WHEREAS, the house of representatives is taking this opportunity to express its gratitude to Representative Varela for his dedication, expertise and compassion while serving in the legislature; and

     WHEREAS, while Representative Varela has been "Lucky" in life, the residents of New Mexico have been lucky to have such a fierce advocate representing them;

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE STATE OF NEW MEXICO that it recognize Representative Luciano "Lucky" Varela for his outstanding service to the state of New Mexico; and

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that a copy of this memorial be transmitted to Representative Luciano "Lucky" Varela.

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