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Area Newspapers


Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Thursday, April 27, 2000

El Paso studies project to pump area's aquifers

EL PASO (AP) - Officials in El Paso are proposing a feasibility study to look at tapping aquifers under West Texas ranches, some 150 miles away in Culberson, Jeff Davis and Presidio counties.

Some officials are suggesting the study be conducted by the Hunt Building Corp., one of the nation's largest builders of military family housing and one of El Paso's major real estate developers.

"I believe that the time is now to do something bold like this," Ed Archuleta, general manager of El Paso Water Utilities, told the El Paso Times. "Given the water situation in El Paso, and the fact that our attorney said we could enter into a contract like this, I urge you not to get too hung up on other issues."

Under the plan, a minimum of 15,000 acre-feet of water per year would be pumped out of the West Texas aquifers and blended with 30,000 acre-feet of brackish water from the Hueco Bolson.

About 50,000 acre-feet is now drawn from the Hueco Bolson each year.

The idea to pump thousands of gallons from aquifers underneath ranches near Valentine and Van Horn surfaced years ago as a last-resort solution to an impending water crisis in El Paso, where the Hueco Bolson could run out of fresh water in less than 25 years.

El Paso purachsed a ranch in the Antelope Valley near Valentine in the

City selects Main Street committee

Staff Writer
PECOS, April 27, 2000 - The Town of Pecos City Council appointed a committee to study the Main Street Texas program and report back to the council, during its regularly scheduled meeting this morning at city hall.

Mya Griffin, Public Information Coordinator with Texas-New Mexico Power Co., spoke at length to the council concerning the program that she has had previous experience with in Fort Stockton.

Griffin stressed to the council that while the program was not a "fix-all," that it did offer tremendous benefits.

"What the success of any economic development program like this depends on is a community willing to take a look at itself, reevaluate itself, and realize that it can affect its future," Griffin said.

She added that the degree of success with the program was directly proportional to the degree of effort the community put into it.

"Without a strong volunteer base, this won't work," she said.

Griffin also explained that to be selected, which was not a sure thing, the city would have to commit to the program for three years and agree to finance a Program Director's position _ a financial commitment of about $150,000 over the three years.

The council appointed a committee to investigate the program and report back.

The committee consists of: Griffin, Mayor Dot Stafford, Councilmen Ricky Herrera and Larry Levario, Mya Griffin, Chamber of Commerce President Jeannette Alligood, City Attorney Scott Johnson, State Theater owner Richard Creasy, and Bob Curry, Chief Operating Officer for Battery Conservation Technology, Inc.

Councilmen Gerald Tellez and Danny Rodriguez were named as alternates to the committee.

In other business the council heard from Pecos resident Clark Lindley concerning the proposed nuclear waste site near Barstow; voiced support for the fire department's efforts to procure a rescue cam; approved the erection of a stop sign at the intersection of Cherry and Adams Streets; directed that the Plumbing Board be reactivated; agreed to advertise for sale two lots of land Caprock Communications wants to buy; approved hiring an independent appraiser to appraise the land under the old railroad depot; approved a new contract with the county for housing city prisoners at the jail; approved a new policy for the police department SWAT team; and appointed Elva Arreguy to replace Pauline Moore on the Pecos Economic Development Corporation Board.

Concerning the proposed nuclear waste site eight miles northeast of Barstow in Ward County, Lindley asked the council to draft letters to the house and senate committees considering the proposal asking that the State not allow the issue to be decided by a simple vote in Ward County.

Lindley said that the decision to allow construction of the facility should not be decided by a single county since the facility would affect all the residents in the area.

Most of Ward County's population lives in Monahans, 30 miles east of the site proposed by Envirocare of Texas to store low-level radioactive waste. The site would be only 14 miles from Pecos.

Representatives from Caprock Communications were present for this morning's meeting to propose that the city sell Caprock two lots of land just south of the hospital that would be used for a "regeneration station."

Kay Crozier, site acquisition manager for Caprock, explained that the unmanned site would be about 3,000 square feet and would have a "stone" appearance.

The company offered the city $10,000 for the land.

The council agreed to advertise the land for sale and let Caprock bid on it.

The council also directed City Manager Kenneth Neal to reactivate the Plumbing Board.

The new board would then advise the city as to plumbing codes, inspection rates and fees, Mayor Stafford said.

The action was taken after the council was asked to approve a fee increase for plumbing inspections.

Director of Public Works Octavio Garcia advised the council that the city had recently been forced to contract with a plumbing inspector out of Monahans, since there was no one in Pecos to do the state required inspections.

"Our current fee is $5 and this does not cover the cost," Garcia said.

Garcia also told the council that he has several employees preparing to take the test to become state certified inspectors but that even with local inspectors, the fee should be raised.

"We've had the same fee since the 1970's and it should probably be raised to meet the cost of inspection," he said.

The council put off any action on raising the fee rate until the board met and made a recommendation to the council

The council also approved a new contract with the county for housing city prisoners at the jail.

Police Chief Clay McKinney explained that under the new contract, the city would pay the county $30 per day to house inmates, and that the city would no longer provide dispatching service for the county and the drug task force.

Currently the county houses city inmates without charge in exchange for the dispatching services.

Four arrested in Wednesday heroin bust

Staff Writer
PECOS, April 27, 2000 - A drug arrest early Wednesday morning took some heroin off the streets and landed four individuals in jail according to Pecos police.

Officers made the arrests after executing a search warrant at 1217 E. Fifth St., at 8:20 a.m., Wednesday.

Once inside, police found syringes with suspected heroin in the house, while conducting their narcotics search.

"After we executed the search warrant we found several items pertaining to drugs," said Pecos Police Investigator Paul Deishler.

He added that officers also found all kinds of drug paraphernalia such as packaging materials, spoons and other drug-related items during their search.

"We had gotten a lot of complaints about the suspicious activity going on at that house," said Deishler. "We had been working on this case for about two months."

Arrested in connection with the search were, Miguel Garcia, 37, Michael Varela, 27, Jesus Hinojos, Jr., 40 and Alfredo Lopez, 46. All were charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Fundraiser set for Earl Bell Scholarship

PECOS, April 27, 2000 - The Earl Bell Scholarship Committee will hold an Enchilada Plate Sale, Friday at the Santa Rosa Hall.

The fundraiser will be held from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m. and plates will consist of enchiladas with rice, beans, salad and tea.

For orders to go call 445-2309. Those buying plates can eat in at the hall, or they will deliver.

Enchilada plates are $4.

Proceeds will benefit the Earl Bell Scholarship Fund, Inc.


Mary Francis Horton

Mary Francis Horton, 88, of Lubbock, died Wednesday, April 26, 2000, at Covenant Medical Center-Lakeside, in Lubbock.

Services will be held at 10 a.m., Friday, April 28, at the First United Methodist Church in Littlefield, with Reverend Andy Hurst of the Texas Tech Wesley Foundation officiating and Reverend George C. Price, Jr., pastor assisting.

Burial will be at 4 p.m., Friday, in Mount Evergreen Cemetery in Pecos.

She was born Feb. 6, 1912, in Alvord, graduated from Sylacauga High School in Sylacauga, Ala., and from Athens College at Athens, Ala. She moved to Pecos from Birmingham, Ala., in 1948. While in Pecos she owned and operated an army/navy surplus store.

She taught high school math for 10 years in Pecos, Edinburg and Sudan before retiring in 1977. She was a founding member of Delta Kappa Gamma in both Pecos and Littlefield. She was a very active Methodist having taught Sunday school for over 40 years. She was a member of the First United Methodist Church in Littlefield.

She was preceded in death by her husband, W. Ray Horton in August of 1970.

Survivors include one daughter, Sally Bradley of Lubbock; one son, Bill Horton of Fair Oaks, Calif., four grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

The family suggests memorials be made to the Hospice of Lubbock or the First United Methodist Church in Littlefield.


PECOS, April 27, 2000 - High Wednesday 99. Low this morning 59. Forecast for tonight: Partly cloudy. Low in the mid 50s. East wind 10-15 mph. Friday: Partly cloudy with a slight chance of afternoon thunderstorms. High in the mid 80s. Southeast wind 10-20 mph. Chance of rain 20 percent. Friday night: Increasing cloudiness with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms. Low in the mid 50s. Saturday: Mostly cloudy with a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms. Low in the mid 50s. High in the mid 80s.

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