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Tuesday, January 25, 2000

Commissioners hunt for task force funds

Staff Writer
PECOS, Jan. 25, 2000 - Lack of funds in the Trans Pecos Drug Task Force was the cause of a lively discussion at the regular Reeves County Commissioners Court meeting held Monday morning.

After a lengthy review of the issue, commissioners approved a grant application for FY 2000-2001 and a cooperative agreement and resolution on the force, which was created in late 1998.

Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo voiced his concern that the bed space option to fund the matching funds for the grant had not been met. "Right now, the bed space objective is at zero," he said.

Funds for the Reeves County-based task force were supposed to come from housing U.S. Marshal's Service prisoners at the Reeves County Jail, while local inmates would be sent to other counties participating in the task force operation.

But Galindo said that no federal prisoners have been housed at the Reeves County facility, and that some were shipped to other counties. "Right now we have a bill from Kermit for $20,000," he said. "Our objective was to get funds from the bed space."

"The bed space option was to be used as a means to provide the matching grant funds, and here a year later we're at zero," said Galindo. "We need to decide where do we go from here."

Reeves County Sheriff Andy Gomez and Trans Pecos Drug Task Force Commander Gary Richards were on hand for the regular session. "There are some cities and counties that are participating that haven't given us their match portion," said Gomez. "Maybe what we need to do is ask for the money up front or they don't participate."

"One thing you have to understand is that the task force is doing their job, as far as fighting the war on drugs," said Gomez.

About $150,000 worth of drugs and cash have been confiscated, with some of it already expended for December bills, according to Richards.

"The problem we have as far as seizures is waiting for the court to award it to us," Richards said. "We're waiting for some seizures to be awarded to us from some other counties."

"Which counties owe is another concern," said Galindo.

"I'm just going to have to work on those other counties," said Gomez.

Richards said that submitting the grant application was the first step, and that it needed to get done immediately.

"Well the problem now, is that we set out with the objective of a means of getting the matching funds and here we ended up with a negative balance, with inmates that belong in Reeves County being sent to other counties," said Galindo. "And now we owe those counties."

"I'll check with the cash match and see how much money we owe the other counties, they might not even charge us," said Gomez.

"They expected us to make money through the marshal services and Reeves County would provide the bed space, instead we end up owing more," said Galindo.

"I don't think they'll submit you a bill for those inmates," said Richards.

Gomez said all new projects and entities have problems when they first began. "We have had some problems, some obstacles, we can't guarantee that it will work 100 percent," he said. "We can just do our best," he said.

"It's one thing not to make match portion, but a whole other deal to put our inmates in another jail," said Galindo.

Galindo said that's just adding to the problem. "They won't want to pay the matching grant funds," he said. "Instead of owing us the $22,000 for matching funds, they'll tell us we owe you just $10,000 for keeping your inmates in our jail."

Richards said approval of the resolution and grant was needed by Monday and the other problems could be worked out later. "We need to go ahead and submit it, this is just our application of our intent for the state to look at, then they'll sent it back to the court."

"Who determines the movement of inmates?" asked Galindo.

"The jail administrator and Jeffrey (Baeza)," said Gomez. "Jeff, is the liaison at the task force who coordinates with the jail administrator," he said.

"So the jail administrator has been sending inmates to other counties in the region?" asked Galindo.

Galindo stated that that action has left the county with a bill, a bill that the county will have to take care of.

"I don't think they'll deduct it from the cash match that they need to come up with," said Richards. "I've gotten a firm commitment from the counties about a cash match."

Richards stated that he thinks the service the task force has provided has more than made up for the match.

"I think they need to commit from the start, or we'll leave them out," said Gomez. "It's the financial part that's been the problem, not the service the task force has been providing."

"We do want to hurt the drug dealers where it hurts the most, their pockets, but we don't want to give the wrong impression. We've been very successful in taking their drugs and their drug money," Richards said.

Richards added that the drug dealers are beginning to bypass this area, because they know that this task force is here and working hard.

Galindo asked Gomez when the court could get a report on bed space and said that the county needs to become responsible for the bed space. He also suggested that the sheriff keep in touch with the sheriffs and commissioners courts from the other counties and cities with the task force.

"Someone has to be the point of contact from one county to the other," he said. "It's better if this is done person to person, not just a phone call."

"It would really fall into place if you would be the liaison, would help communications with the counties, the judge, the commissioners courts and sheriffs," he said.

"We do keep them informed," said Gomez.

"It's just like us, we don't know what the task force is doing, the only way we do know what they're doing is through the newspaper," said commissioner precinct 1 Felipe Arredondo. "They don't give us a report or anything, when have they come in here and told us what they're doing?"

"When they need money," said Galindo.

"It works both ways, if you want to see what we're doing you're welcome to visit us," said Gomez.

At this point Reeves County has put in $96,000 for the task force, with the task force providing $30,800, which comes to about $120,000, according to county auditor Lynn Owens. "That's about half of cash match that's required," he said.

"And I understand that another $60,000 is pending," said Galindo.

"We have vehicles and cash that the court might award us," said Richards.

"Those $96,000 are coming back in," said Gomez.

Richards told the court that they have gained a good reputation and that people are impressed with the way that things are done.

"We need to have each county commit the $22,000 and have each one commit two bed spaces, and that we resolve the cash issue," said Galindo.

Gomez thanked the court for supporting the task force. "I'm proud that you took the responsibility, we're struggling, but we're doing our best," he said. "We can make it work and we really appreciate it."

"Everybody is for law enforcement," said Arredondo.

Ten counties and cities have committed themselves to the task force including, Reeves County, Ward County, Andrews County, Culberson County, Winkler and Jeff Davis counties, Reagan County, Midland County, City of Kermit and the City of Monahans.

Matching funds sought from these counties is $22,296 apiece.

County OKs deputy's car, won't pay `dog gone' bill

Staff Writer
PECOS, Jan. 25, 2000 - Reeves County Commissioners approved a new patrol car for the Reeves County Sheriff's Department, a golf tournament and payments to different companies during their Commissioners Court meeting on Monday. But the commissioners withheld payment on a "missing" drug dog during their second meeting of the year.

Reeves County Sheriff Andy Gomez told the group that the department needed to replace a unit.

"There's been a number of accidents lately," said Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo.

Gomez told the court that the unit is the same one that was involved in a previous accident. "It's the same patrol car and now someone ran a stop sign and hit Hilda's (Woods, the RCSD juvenile officer) car," said Gomez. "Their insurance is going to pay for it."

A request from the Knights of Columbus to hold a golf tournament on July 22-23 at the Reeves County Golf Course was approved by the court. The golf tournament is the Sonny Gordon Memorial Golf Tournament.

A payment for $1.9 million to Banes General Contractors was approved. The contractors are in charge of the construction of the 1,000-bed addition at the Reeves County Detention Center.

"Construction is moving on schedule, but we can have a more detailed schedule and how we have actually spent at the next meeting," said Mark Schumacker.

A contract with Pitney Bowes with the RCDC was approved. "We have a state contract, but we have never received the actual contract," said county auditor Lynn Owens. "We just need the formality of executing the contract."

A contract with KTTK, Inc., for a software system at the RCDC was also approved during the regular session. "This contract was already approved by the commissioners court, but now they have changed their name," said RCDC Warden Rudy Franco.

"The software is up and running. We've filed a lot more applications and this system has saved time and money," according to Franco. "It's much better that what we had."

Franco said that everything would remain the same, except for the name change.

During a discussion on semi-monthly bills, Owens told the court that there was a bill for the Trans Pecos Drug Task Force that needed to be paid. "In our original bill, we had paid for two drug dogs and since I don't have the time to go out and check to see if the departments actually receive the items that we are paying for, I didn't know we hadn't received them."

"I have to rely on the department heads to find out about the items," said Owens. "We got reimbursed for one, but not for the other one. That's why I kind of held off on this one bill, I don't want to get into trouble with the state of Texas."

"I told the sheriff that we needed to assert that we do receive these items, before I pay the bill," said Owens.

"We never got refunded for the other dog and I don't want to get into trouble with the state," he said. "But we didn't get the dog."

"The payment to the canine provider will be withheld until we are reimbursed by the former provider," said Owens.

New hires for the county's early election primary voting were Estella Nichols, Mary Ann Clark, Patsy Rogers and Geneva Florez.

Olga Florez and Vanessa Valencia will be working as part-time employees in the county clerk's office during the elections.

Deputation and oath was approved for Debbie Millan.

Personnel and salary changes at the RCDC included a promotion for Joel Martinez to safety manager at $28,500 and the Reeves County Juvenile Detention Center, Debra Rayos and George Aranda, as a part-time, as-needed basis at $6 per hour.

Appointments of hospital staff on board agenda

PECOS, Jan. 25, 2000 - Reeves County Hospital board members will discuss re-appointment of hospital staff for the years 2000-2001 during their regular monthly meeting at 4:30 p.m. today in the hospital classroom.

The board will discuss reappointing the active medical staff, allied health professionals, courtesy medical staff and consulting medial staff, and will discuss/take action on appointing Dr. Louis Novoa-Takara to consulting staff as a pathologist, along with granting him clinical privileges.

Other items on the agenda include discuss/consider/take action on recommendations from the finance committee on orthopedic surgical equipment, a patient/nurse communications system and a cable TV advertisement. They will also discuss/take action on the RCH financial statements and budget amendments and on payment of bills.

Other items include the tax collection and administrator's reports, take public comments and review the minutes from the board's December meeting.

PHA to discuss commissioner, honor by HUD

PECOS, Jan. 25, 2000 - The Pecos Housing Authority will discuss an honor from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, and discuss the appointment of a new resident commissioner during its regular monthly meeting, at 5 p.m. on Thursday at the PHA office, 600 Meadowbrook Drive.

The board will discuss a letter from Mayor Dot Stafford regarding the appointment of Sandra Lira as a resident commissioner for a two year term and a letter from Harold Lucas, Assistant HUD Secretary regarding an award based on advisory score. The PHA has also received an invitation to HUD Headquarters in Washington, D.C. for a ceremony to acknowledge the authority as a successful performer for the good work in public housing management.

Under new business, the board will discuss/approve the resignation of two commissioners and the PHA/Farm Labor Housing annual report.


AUSTIN (AP) _ Results of the Cash 5 drawing Monday night: Winning numbers drawn: 1-6-34-36-37. Number matching five of five: 0. Matching four of five: 179. Prize: $1,082.


AUSTIN (AP) - The winning Pick 3 numbers drawn Monday by the Texas Lottery, in order: 5-1-2 (five, one, two)


Sara Rose De La Rosa

Sara Rose De La Rosa, 56, of Pecos, died Friday, Jan. 21, 2000 at her residence.

Services will be held at 2 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 26, at West Park Baptist Church with

Rev. Rey Carreon officiating. Burial will be in Greenwood Cemetery.

She was born Aug. 2, 1943, in Dyersburg, Tenn., had lived in Pecos for three years, was an inventory clerk and a Baptist.

Survivors include her husband, Edmundo De La Rosa of Pecos; one son, Edmundo De La Rosa Jr. of San Diego, Calif.; one daughter, Ana Conejo of Sacramento, Calif.; one brother, Frank Rose of Memphis, Tenn. and five grandchildren.

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Lillian Renshaw

Lillian Esther "Jacque" Renshaw, 81, of Pecos, died Sunday, Jan. 23, 2000, at the Monahans Managed Care Center.

Services will be held at 11 a.m., Wednesday, Jan. 26, at the Pecos Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Virgil Gage officiating. Burial will be in Mt. Evergreen Cemetery.

She was born June 12, 1918, in Fort Worth, had lived in Pecos for 31 years, was a member of the Eastern Star, life member of Disabled American Veterans and a member of Veterans of Foreign Wars. She volunteered with Reeves County Hospital Auxiliary, West of the Pecos Museum and served on the board of directors of the Pecos Senior Center. She had served in the U.S. Army as Chief Clerk Quartermaster, being part of the first couple to enlist in the military service after Pearl Harbor.

She married Virgil "Buck" Renshaw on Oct. 9, 1937 in Fort Worth. He preceded her in death in 1990.

Survivors include one son, Butch Renshaw of Pecos; two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


High Monday 73. Low this morning 46. Forecast for tonight: Increasing cloudiness. Low near 30. East to southeast wind 5-15 mph. Wednesday: Mostly cloudy. High in the lower 60s. Southeast wind 5-15 mph: Becoming south in the afternoon. Wednesday night: Mostly cloudy. Low in the lower 30s.

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.

324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321

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