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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Monday, August 28, 2000

Pecos mayor facing foreclosure sale on home

Staff Writer

PECOS, August 28, 2000 - Foreclosure proceedings have begun on the home of the Town of Pecos City Mayor Ray Ortega and the property is scheduled to be put up for auction in October.

The property will be up for auction sale at 10 a.m., Tuesday, Oct. 3, on the front steps of the Reeves County Courthouse.

The Substitute Trustee will sell the property by public auction to the highest bidder for cash at the place and date specified.

Ortega, who was elected Town of Pecos City mayor in May, was out of town today and unavailable for comment.

The property is located in Block seven of the Jay Capps addition to the Town of Pecos City, according to the Town of Pecos City, Reeves County, Texas, according to the Plat of Record in Volume 3, Page 118 of Plat Records of Reeves County.

Original beneficiary on the home, located at 2100 S. Plum St., was Harlingen National Bank and the current beneficiary is Nationwide Home Mortgage Company F/K/A Allied Group Mortgage of West Des Moines Iowa.

The home was sold to Raymond Ortega, Jr., on Oct. 21, 1996 for $69,650, which included an improvement loan, for $10,568. The home was purchased on a 30-year note.

Taxes, insurance and escrow were also included his monthly payment, which came to about $700-$800 a month.

The first part in proceedings is delivering a letter and then they have 21 days to make this good, according to substitute trustee David Stephens.

They have those 21 days to catch up on any past payments, according to Stephens.

"For example, if you're behind $2,000 and you give it to them, then that makes everything okay," he said.

But if you don't come up with it, a second certified letter goes out, according to Stephens.

On the second letter, it will state that the note has been "accelerated," which means that you have to catch up on back payments and you have to pay off the note, according to Stephens.

"That means the homeowner has been given at least two certified letters," said Stephens.

The same home had been foreclosed on Drs. Orson and Eunice Anderson, who had purchased the home from the original owners, Ben and Jesusita "Emily" Matta. The foreclosure on the Andersons came in April 1996, after the couple moved from Pecos to Big Spring.

Feds release more WIPP road funds to N.M.

Staff Writer

PECOS, August 28, 2000 - The State of New Mexico has received another $20 million payment from the U.S. Department of Energy for funding improvements on highways leading to the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant, but a spokesman said it was unlikely similar funds would be made available to improve U.S. 285 running north from Pecos to the WIPP site.

WIPP is where the DOE plans to store low-level radioactive waste in storage containers placed in salt caverns 2,150 feet below the surface. The site is located 75 miles north of Pecos in Eddy County, N.M., and will receive waste from five sites in western states and five other sites located in the Midwest and on the East Coast.

The DOE approved a total of $80 million in federal funds eight years ago for New Mexico to improve the truck routes to the WIPP site. The state also planned to contribute $60 million of its own highway funds, and since then has expanded most of U.S. 285 from two to four lanes between Loving, N.M. and the junction with Interstate 40 in north-central New Mexico.

But the DOE withheld $20 million of that total when the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) included a provision for closure and post-closure activities at WIPP in the Hazardous Waste Facility Permit.

The DOE challenged the provisions in federal and state court in New Mexico, and said in a press release last week that the funds were released on Aug. 9 after NMED removed the financial assurance provisions from the permit.

NMED approved the DOE's proposed modifications to the WIPP hazardous waste permit, which are designed to strengthen protections for workers and insure safe and efficient operations. DOE then withdrew its lawsuits in federal and state court on Aug. 18 and Aug. 21.

The addition $20 million is designed to continue highway improvements to the WIPP site. When completed, the only two-lane highway the hazardous waste trucks will travel on will be the 70-mile stretch of U.S. 285 between Pecos and Loving, N.M.

Dan Balduni, public affairs manager for Westinghouse Waste Isolation Division, which oversees the WIPP site, said each state designates the route the trucks will use within its borders. The Texas route follows Interstate 20 from the Louisiana state line to Pecos, where trucks will exit the interstate and travel through Pecos on the way to the WIPP site.

"The impact assistance funds were explicitly given to New Mexico under the Land Withdrawal Act," Balduni said, explaining why no DOE funds are available for improving U.S. 285 in Texas.

The first radioactive waste shipments were sent to WIPP in March of 1999, though as of now no radioactive waste has been shipped from any of the five sites east of Texas. The Texas Department of Transportation has proposed to build a `half loop' around the east side of Pecos for the WIPP trucks to use, but funds will not be available for the project until 2005.

Local officials also went to a TxDOT hearing in San Angelo earlier this year to argue the case for including U.S. 285 in the Texas Trunk System program. U.S. 285 north of Fort Stockton was not included in the original 1990 Texas Trunk System, and officials cited the WIPP trucks as one reason the highway should be included in the revised 2000 highway plan.

Balmorhea preparing for annual festival

Staff Writer

PECOS, August 28, 2000 - The 25th Annual Oasis of West Texas Labor Day Festival is scheduled for this Saturday in Downtown Balmorhea.

Many events are planned, including a few new ones, such as the Gas Grill Fajita Cookoff in conjunction with the World Championship Frijole Bean Cookoff.

Festival Coordinator Pat Brijalba said they are limiting the entries to 20 per event and as of today has filled about half of the spots. He said since space is limited it would be best if participants call and sign up before Saturday.

Participants in these events can show off their cooking abilities for an entry fee of $20 per event.

Brijalba said he and the other festival officials would provide the fajitas and beans for each event and people could pick up the food as early as 9 a.m. to begin preparing and cooking.

Judging will begin at 4 p.m., with a panel of five judges from Balmorhea and the surrounding areas.

Brijalba said both events would be judged on appearance, taste, tenderness and aroma.

"We'll make the participants taste their food first so it won't kill our judges," he jokingly added.

Trophies will be given for first, second and third places in the Fajita Cookoff with a Ducane Gas Grill valued at $450 for first place. First, second and third places in the Bean Cookoff will also receive trophies with a propane two burner griddle valued at $350 for first place.

Other festivities will begin at 10 a.m. with the Second Annual Yo-Yo competition for the kids and the Washer Pitching Contest for the adults. There is no entry fee for the kids'event, but the washer contest will have a fee of $10 per team, with team trophies being awarded to the winners.

Besides the Yo-Yo competition, other kids events include the Watermelon Eating Contest, the Egg Toss and the newest event the Hula-Hoop contest, sponsored by Wal-Mart in Pecos.

All the games will begin at 3 p.m.

There will also be a Pie Bakeoff at Tami Dean's Main Street Café. There is no entry fee and the first place winner will win a steak dinner for two and second place wins dinner for two.

Brijalba said participants need to deliver their pies at noon and judging would begin at 1 p.m.

He said also new to the festival this year is team roping at Hoffman's Arena with cash prizes.

Various food vendors will be set up all day. Brijalba said there are still some spaces left, and if any more vendors want to participate they need to call soon before space runs out.

The fun filled day will end with a free street dance. This year, the festival welcomes an area favorite, Wayne West from Sierra Blanca.

Brijalba said people wanted a variety of country, Tejano and rock and believes West and his band would do that.

"This is the first time they have performed in Balmorhea," he said.

The dance will begin at 8:30 p.m. and go to 1 a.m.

With the day full of many different events and games everyone is bound to have fun.

"There's stuff going on for mom, dad, brother and sister," Brijalba said.

For more information on any of the events call 915-375-2206 or 915-375-2323.

School board to set budget, tax rate on Tuesday

Staff Writer

PECOS, August 28, 2000 - Setting the 2000-2001 budget and proposed tax rate, along with public comments, will be the topic at a special meeting of the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD Board, scheduled for Tuesday evening.

School board members will meet at 6 p.m., in the boardroom, 1304 S. Park St. The public is invited to attend.

Board members will discuss dedicating 1999-2000 budget; amending 1999-2000 budget and the adoption of the budget and tax rate for the just-begun school year.

The group will also meet in closed session with a private consultation with the board's attorney and to discuss personnel and hear complaints against personnel.

They will return to open session and take action, if any on items discussed in closed session.

Board members will discuss/approve professional personnel, assignments, change of contract and the resignation of board member.

The group will discuss the appointment of a new board member until the May 5, 2001 school board election. The board will be replacing Frank Apolinar, Jr., who turned in a letter of resignation following the board's regular monthly meeting on Aug. 10.

Scouts' sign-up set Wednesday at Civic Center

PECOS, August 28, 2000 - A sign-up date for new Cub Scout members will be held at 7 p.m., Wednesday at the Reeves County Civic Center.

Scouts will go camping, learn to shoot bows and arrows, learn to shoot BB guns and play lots of games, learn cool stuff and earn badges.

All youngsters are welcome to come sign up for an exciting year.

Police Report

EDITOR'S NOTE: Information contained in the Police Report is obtained from reports filed by the Pecos Police Department, Reeves County Sheriff's Office, or other officers of those agencies.

The serving of warrants by an officer for outstanding fines of either traffic citations, animal control violations or other court costs are considered arrests and will be printed as such unless indicated that the fines were paid. In such instanced we will indication payment and release.

Luis A. Mora, 59, was arrested at 1:47 a.m., on August 18 in the 900 block of South Cedar Street for public intoxication.

Arturo Estorga Chavez, 29, was arrested at 1:24 a.m., on August 21 across from Santa Rosa Hall on a warrant for no driver's license and no insurance.

Joel Mendoza, 19, was arrested at 10:50 p.m., on August 19 in the 800 block of Mulberry for driving while license is suspended.

Cleofas Muro Baeza, 17, was arrested at 2:33 a.m., on August 20 in the 200 block of Willow Street for public intoxication.

Christopher Fuentez, 18, was arrested at 4:37 p.m., on August 19 in the 1100 block of South Cypress Street for unlawfully carrying a weapon.

Alvaro Abila, Jr., 18, was arrested at 4:48 p.m., on August 19 in the 1000 block of Martinez Street on a warrant for deadly conduct.

Jesus J. Rayos, 44, was arrested at 10:49 p.m., on August 18 in the 2400 block of Sage Street for public intoxication.

Michael R. Pena, 17, was arrested at 11:51 p.m., on August 18 on Johnson Street for evading detention in motor vehicle, minor in possession and driving while under the influence by a minor.

Fabian Dominguez, 33, was arrested at 2:05 a.m., on August 19 in the 2100 block of Alamo Street for the family violence act.

James Esparza, 20, was arrested at 11:10 p.m., on August 18 in the 2000 block of Eddy Street for evading detention.

Greg Peters, 40, was arrested at 4:14 p.m., on August 18 in Winkler County on a warrant for assault by threat-Class C.

Bobby Jo Enmon, 17, was arrested at 4:47 p.m., on August 18 in the 500 block of South Oak Street on a warrant for criminal mischief-Class A.

Memorie Johnson, 31, was arrested at 10:25 a.m., on August 27 at the Greyhound Bus Station on a warrant for interfering with child custody.

Albino Tarango, 43, and Adan Padilla, 52, were arrested at 12:58 a.m., on August 27 in the 600 block of East Second Street for disorderly conduct (fighting).

Ismael Rodriguez, 51, was arrested at 1:24 a.m., on August 27 in the 600 block of East Second Street on a DPS warrant for driver not secured by a safety belt.

Ramiro C. Ramirez, 26, was arrested at 4:27 a.m., on August 27 at the Reeves County Civic Center for public intoxication.

Pedro Morales, 62, was arrested at 9:38 p.m., on August 26 at Second and Peach Streets for public intoxication.

Ignacio V. Suarez, 58, was arrested at 9:47 a.m., on August 26 at La Tienda Thriftway for theft-class C and public intoxication.

Irma Gabaldon, 25, was arrested at 4 p.m., on August 25 in the 500 block of South Oak Street on a warrant for theft by unlawfully appropriating property-State Jail Felony.

Ridessa Wright, 20, was arrested at 3:17 a.m., on August 25 in the 1100 block of Lunday Drive for disorderly conduct and resisting.

A male juvenile was arrested at 9:09 a.m., on August 24 at the Lamar Alternative Education Program for assault causing bodily injury.

A male juvenile was arrested at 10:49 p.m., on August 23 in the 900 block of South Elm Street for assault causing bodily injury-Family Violence Act.

Ramon Natividad, 54, Francisco Rico, 62, and Michael Varela, 27, were arrested at 7:37 p.m., on August 23 in the 2300 block of Country Club Drive, all for possession of a controlled substance with intent to distribute and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Armando Martinez, 29, was arrested at 8:55 p.m., on August 23 in the 900 block of Cherry Street for possession of a controlled substance within 1000 feet of a school.

Angela Anzaldua, 40, and a female juvenile were arrested at 9:03 p.m., on August 22 near the Flying J Truck Stop. Anzaldua was arrested for public intoxication and resisting arrest and the juvenile was arrested for obstructing.

Arnulfo Calderon, 77, was arrested at 6:44 p.m., on August 16 in the 700 block of East Eighth Street for assault with family violence.

Hal Pratt, 59, was arrested at 6:36 p.m., on August 23 in the 1000 block of South Cedar Street for public intoxication.


Armando Granado, Sr.

Armando H. Granado, Sr., 66, of Pecos, died Friday, Aug. 25, 2000, at Odessa Medical Center Hospital.

Mass was held at 10 a.m., today, at Santa Rosa Catholic Church with burial in Mt. Evergreen Cemetery.

He was born March 22, 1934, in Sierra Blanca, was a U.S. Army veteran, had lived in Pecos since 1950 and was retired.

He was preceded in death by a brother Rolando Granado and a sister, Lilia Canas.

Survivors include his wife, Modesta Granado of Pecos; one son, Mondi Granado of Pecos; two daughters, Anna Chavez of Arlington, Coach Becky Granado of Pecos; five brothers, Francisco and Arnulfo Granado of Pecos, Simon Granado of El Paso, Ramon Hernandez of Hobbs, N.M., Oscar Granado of Big Spring; two sisters, Emma Morales of Kermit, Consuelo Luedtke of South Dakota; six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Jodell Hannah

Jodell Hannah, 53, of Breckenridge, died Thursday, Aug. 24, 2000, in Mineral Wells.

Funeral services were held at 1 p.m., Sunday, Aug 27, with Lessie Woody Woodard officiating. Burial was in Breckenridge Cemetery.

He was born June 1, 1947, in Archer City, and grew up in Pecos. He was a Vietnam veteran, having served on the U.S.S. Constellation in the United States Navy from 1964 to 1968. He retired in 1998 from Dynegy in Oklahoma City, where he was an Operations Manager of Crude Oil Trucking. He moved to Breckenridge a year ago from Oklahoma City and was a Baptist.

He was preceded in death by his mother, Bobbie Young and one brother, Radell Hannah.

Survivors include his wife, Rayma Hannah of Breckenridge; one son, John Hannah of Oklahoma City; one daughter, Casey Dawn Hannah of Oklahoma City; his father, Odell Hannah of Waxahachie; two sisters, Donna Jannel Woodard of Pecos and Debbie Ann Rater of Antelope, one grandson and numerous nieces and nephews.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers that memorials be made to the donor's favorite charity.

Morehart Mortuary of Breckenridge is in charge of arrangements.

Gilbert Ortega

Gilbert D. "Blue Boy" Ortega, 60, died Saturday, Aug. 26, 2000, at Midland Memorial Hospital.

Funeral services were held at 10 a.m., today at Ellis Funeral Home Chapel in Midland, with Jo Albert Fuentes officiating.

He was born July 31, 1940 in Pecos, grew up and was educated in Pecos and had lived in Midland for the past 10 years.

He was preceded in death by his a sister, Mary A. Ornelas.

Survivors include his wife, Juanita Ortega of Odessa; three sons, Ricky Ortega of Las Vegas, Gilbert Ortega, Jr. and Romeo Ortega of Odessa; two daughters, Belinda Ortega of Lake Dallas and Janette Ortega of Odessa; three brothers, Herman Ortega of Abilene, Tony Jares of Irving and Jerry Jares of Dayton; four sisters, Yolanda Fuentes and Candy Martinez of Midland, Debbie Gomez of Andrews and Sandy Ortega of El Paso; five grandchildren and several nieces and nephews.

Ellis Funeral Home of Midland is in charge of arrangements.


PECOS, August 28, 2000 - High Sunday 105. Low this morning 72. Forecast for tonight: Clear. Low near 70. Southeast wind 5-10 mph. Tuesday: Sunny and continued hot. High near 101. South to southeast wind 10-20 mph. Tuesday night: Mostly clear. Low near 70. Wednesday: Mostly sunny and fair at night. Low in the upper 60s to near 70. High near 100.

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321

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