Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Tuesday, September 19, 2000
County outlines details of payment to city
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, September 19, 2000 - An amendment to the water distribution agreement
between Reeves County and the City of Pecos and an amendment to DRG Architectural
services agreement for the Reeves County Detention Center were approved
Monday during a special meeting of the Reeves County Commissioners Court.
The special meeting was scheduled after Reeves County Judge Jimmy B.
Galindo told the court that the city had requested payment for the water
"I had some questions in regard to actual loan and whether or not the
first payment was actually due, so I've come to the court to request authorization
to transfer those funds," said Galindo, who met with Pecos City Council
members last Thursday to work out the problem.
Under the escrow agreement Reeves County will transfer $422,320, in
the Bank of New York.
The Water Distribution Agreement was made and entered into on March
27, between the two entities. However, a dispute erupted earlier this month
when the city said the county failed to make the first payment by the scheduled
Aug. 30 deadline.
City officials said the money was to be used to guarantee loans from
the Texas Water Development Board to begin development of the new South
Worsham Water Field, while Galindo said the county believed the first payment
would not have to be made until after the loans were received.
Under the agreement, the county will place the money in an escrow account,
which will not be accessed directly by the city, but can be used to guarantee
the state loans for the South Worsham project, which is designed to assure
Pecos of an adequate water supply after 2008.
Interest earned from the $422,320 will be divided between the city and
Finance Director Steve McCormick was on hand for the special meeting
and told the court that, "that was basically what we agreed to."
The amendments to the agreement were not approved, since they haven't
been drawn up yet, but were discussed briefly on Monday.
Amendment 1 was to pay $422,320 on the same date, Aug. 30; Under Amendement
2 interest made from the money would, half would come to the county and
would go towards operations at RCDC, the second half would go the city
dedicated to debt service. Amendment 3 stated that the terms to the Water
Distribution agreement the money would be deposited in an account designated
to debt service.
The amendments were tabled because the city and county don't have it
all mapped out yet, according to Galindo.
"We can't do anything until Monday, since we have to do a budget amendment,"
said Reeves County Auditor Lynn Owens.
Galindo asked McCormick if that was all right with him, if not they
could schedule another "special" meeting to have the funds wired immediately.
"I'll talk to the Water Development Board, but I think that would be
alright," said McCormick.
"The important thing was to show the water development board that there
would be a place accessible to them," said Galindo.
"We could post a 24-hour meeting to amend the budget and transfer those
funds if necessary, if we need to act sooner than Monday," he said.
Commissioners approved amendment to Dailey Rabke and Gondeck, architects
for architectural services agreement for the RCDC expansion project.
"About $47,000 will be paid to the architect for extended services from
Aug. 16 until Oct. 16," said Galindo.
The additional funds will come from the contingencies maximum price,
according to Galindo.
"The funds are there," he said.
In addition, the group agreed to pay Banes General Contractor payment
number 17, in the amount of $1.7 million. Banes is the construction company
in charge of the renovations and the new buildings at the Reeves County
"How many more payments?" asked Precinct 3 Commissioner Herman Tarin.
"You lack three," said Banes General Contractor Supervisor Mark Schumacher.
Schumacher updated the court on how construction is coming along at
the detention center.
"We have turned over three buildings to the staff at the center and
they have moved in an furnished those," said Schumacher.
The buildings will be then be inspected by the U.S. Bureau of Prisons
and the Texas Commission of Jail Standards (TDCJ).
"The rest of the buildings will be turned over in increments as they
are completed," said Schumacher.
Professional services contract for remodeling at the "old" RCDC were
"There are a number of things that need to get renovated in the old
portion of the Reeves County Detention Center," said Galindo.
Once everyone is moved up, the front part of the building will no longer
be the entrance, but will be renovated into visitation space, according
"Entry will be through the rear gate, and the front will be used for
visitation for the inmates only," he said.
Commissioners agreed to set aside $125,000 to DRG for design, bidding
and actual construction phase.
"We talked about putting in internal crews, but we still have to go
through the design, documentation and bidding phases," said Galindo.
Galindo said the county has to have the design before taking it before
the TDCJ, which must approve the renovations.
The court agreed to transfer funds to the Juvenile Justice Grant Fund
from the General Fund. "They're going to use the funds to purchase more
cameras for the high school," said Owens. "It is a reimbursement, upon
receipt of the grant funds."
Terms of agreement on water fund payment
PECOS, September 19, 2000 - Here is the agreement between Reeves County
and the Town of Pecos City on the $422,320 payment as part of the March
27, 2000 agreement:
"In 1985, the County determined that water distribution and sanitary
sewer collection and treatment services were necessary, useful and appropriate
for the operation of the newly constructed Reeves County Detention Center
and Juvenile Detention Center and entered into two separate contracts with
the city relating to the city providing water distribution and sanitary
sewer services, both of whom have expired."
"The city continues to own an existing water distribution system and
an existing sanitary sewer collection and treatment system and without
a formal contract continues to provide such services to the center."
"The county desires to purchase from city, and city desires to sell
to county, water distribution services at the center, pursuant to and in
accordance with this services agreement;
"The county is significantly expanding the center and desires that the
city formally agrees to the terms and conditions of the city providing
water services to the center;
"In 1999, the city and county have had a dispute concerning the water
rates that the city is to charge the county and both believe it mutually
desirable that a formal long term contract be executed to effectuate the
understanding which has resolved the dispute;
"The county is authorized under the Constitution of the State of Texas
and the laws of the State of Texas to enter into this Services agreement
for the purposes set forth in this services agreement."
"Under the agreement the county shall pay to the city water payments
during the term of this service agreement. Such water payments shall be
due and payable on the or before the 10th day of the month.
Each water payment shall be for each 1,000 gallons of water (a "unit")
delivered during each month to the county for use at the center. The amount
of each payment shall be equal to the water multiplied by the number of
units delivered by the city to the county at the delivery point during
the immediately preceding calendar month."
"The parties acknowledge that the county is in process of substantially
expanding the capacity of the center and that within approximately eight
years the city's existing source of groundwater will be inadequate for
existing city utility customers and the center. The city has applied to
the Texas Water Development Board for long term financing to obtain capital
to develop an alternative source of groundwater."
"Accordingly, in addition to water distribution payments, in order to
be assured that the city has an adequate capacity of quality groundwater
and a viable delivery and treatment system to supply the center with water
over the term of this services agreement, the county agreed to reimburse
the city over the first 10 years of this agreement $4 million, plus interest
accrued at the rate of 1 percent annually (advanced payments). On or before
Aug. 30 of each year, the county will pay $422,320 to the city."
"The $422,320 payment is not an assumption by the county of any of the
city's debt service obligations to the Texas Water Development Board, and
is not the lending of the county's credit to the city."
Head Start opens doors on new Pecos site
By LEIA HOLLAND
PECOS, September 19, 2000 - Head Start is back in Pecos after two years.
Pecos' Head Start began classes today at the Carver Center on East 12th
Street, the first time it has been located in Pecos after moving to Barstow
two years ago, in order to take advantage of the extra space at the former
Head Start moved to Barstow from its former location in a small metal
building on East Fifth Street when the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD closed the
Barstow campus in 1998. It got the chance to move back into Pecos when
the school district shut Lamar Middle School this summer and moved the
alternative education program there from the Carver Center.
Site Manager for Head Start, Linda Briceno, said they have had a few
problems getting started but are up and running well now.
"We had a staggered beginning with the move," she said.
Briceno said despite all the problems the first day has gone well.
"So far so good," she said.
Briceno said would have opened yesterday but they did not have a fence
up around the building yet. This morning, workers were building the chain
link fence while classes began inside.
Briceno said the move to Carver Center is better for the community,
and while the building in Barstow is bigger than the Carver Center, she
said the Pecos location is more convenient for most parents.
She said that a few years ago Head Start gave a parent survey that asked
at one point for any comments. The majority of the parents commented on
wanting Head Start to move back to Pecos.
Briceno said the Greater Opportunity of the Permian Basin (GOPB), which
runs Head Start, listened to the parents' comments and needs and started
looking for a building, and when the school district planned to close the
Carver Center, the GOPB asked the P-B-T school board if Head Start could
use the building.
When the l board agreed, new carpet and tiles were laid down and the
building was coated with fresh paint.
She said they are trying to arrange a monthly meeting for the parents
but does not know where they would be held.
"We'll have monthly training for parents," Briceno said.
She said they bring in consultants from Pecos and out of town for the
training and the Head Start staff also provides classes on nutrition, health,
child development as well as child and domestic abuse.
"This is not just for the child but for the families," Briceno said.
The first Head start in this area started in Saragosa with Pecos following
a few years later. Briceno said Pecos has had Head Start for over 20 years.
She said there are now teachers at the Saragosa Head Start that went
there as children.
"We have a lot of memories," she said. "We're a happy family."
Children that are the ages of three and four are able to enroll in Head
Start. Briceno said some children turn five while they're there but are
soon moved up to the "big school", Pecos Kindergarten.
She said the Head Start teachers try to help the older kids with their
transition to Kindergarten. She said teachers from the kindergarten come
over and meet the classes and the older kids take a field trip to the kindergarten
to meet the principal and get to know the teachers.
Briceno said Betty Carter, GOPB executive director, is in the process
of working on an early Head Start for babies.
Briceno said that currently enrollment at Head Start is at the maximum
of 94 children. She said they had trouble getting the maximum at Barstow
Elementary because most Pecos parents didn't want to drive their children
six miles to Barstow every day.
Briceno said there is even a waiting list this year.
There is no cost for enrollment and although pre-registration for the
next year is in April, registration is on going throughout the year.
Head Start begins in August every year and closes for the summer. Briceno
said to help out parents who have to be at work by eight, the building
opens at 7:30 a.m. each morning and last until 2:30 p.m. for the three-year-olds
and 3:30 p.m. for the four-year-olds.
Briceno said she would like to thank Sheriff Andy Gomez helping with
their move from Barstow by allowing Reeves County Jail inmates to work
on fixing up the Carver Center.
"I'd like to thank the Sheriff for letting us have the trustees everyday
for two weeks to help us move," she said.
The Head Start staff would like to invite the community to visit the
campus at any time. They would also like to invite any volunteers to come
and help with the classes.
For more information about enrollment or the Head Start program call
Name change goes into effect for WTNB
By LEIA HOLLAND
PECOS, September 19, 2000 - First National Bank of Pecos, which has
been in operation since 1907, is now officially West Texas National Bank.
The name change became official on Monday, and is the result of a merger
between the First National Banks in Pecos and banks in Alpine, Seminole,
Denver City, Crane, Kermit and Terlingua.
President of West Texas National Bank in Pecos, John Grant, said in
a press release that the merger would strengthen the banks.
"The combination of these banks, gives each of our banks the strength
of combined assets of over $250 million," he said. "It's an exciting time
to be in banking and West Texas National Bank is an exciting new bank organization."
The bank already has changed the design of the bank statements to include
the new West Texas National Bank logo.
Grant said the bank signs are being changed all over West Texas and
the signs at the Pecos bank would be changed in the near future.
"Signage will be changed in October or November," he said.
J.L. Davis of Midland has owned First National Bank for the past 15
years. He has added other banks in the Permian Basin and Trans-Pecos to
his company since then and announced plans earlier this year to merge them
into a single bank holding company.
The new West Texas National Bank will have administrative offices in
Midland, but the company said local management under the guidance of its
community directors would make daily decisions.
Grant said the bank understands the change would cause inconvenience
to customers with checks with First National Bank printed on them.
"Those checks will be honored for up to three years," he said.
All Grant asks of the customers is to have the new logo printed on their
checks when reordering.
A new automatic teller machine will be built on the corner of Sixth
and Cedar Streets. Grant said ground breaking for the new ATM building
is set for next week.
"We believe we will provide a broader range of services to our customers,"
"We appreciate our customers and their patience in this time of transition
and look forward to serving them," Grant said.
Election registration deadline Oct. 10
PECOS, September 19, 2000 - The last day to register to vote for the Nov.
7 general elections has been set for Oct. 10, according to the Reeves County
Clerk Dianne Florez.
The first day to apply for a ballot by mail was Sept. 8 and the last
day to apply for a ballot by mail is Oct. 31.
The first day to vote early by personal appearance has been set for
Oct. 23, while the last day to vote early by personal appearance will be
Any qualified voter may vote early by mail if the voter:
· Expects to be absent from the county of residency on Election
Day and during the regular hours of early voting by personal appearance.
· Is disabled, a voter has a sickness or disability that prevents
him/her from going to a polling place on election day without likelihood
of needing assistance or injuring the voters health;
· Is 65 years of age or older on election day; or
· Is confined in jail as follows: serving time on a misdemeanor
sentence which ends on or after election day, pending trial after being
denied bail, without bail awaiting the outcome of an appeal of a felony
conviction or release on bail before election day is unlikely.
PECOS, September 19, 2000 - High Monday 97. Low this morning 59. Forecast
for tonight: Mostly clear. Low in the lower 60s. South wind 5-15 mph. Wednesday:
Partly cloudy and breezy. High in the lower 90s. Southwest wind 15-25 mph
and gusty. Wednesday night: Partly cloudy. Low near 60. Thursday: Partly
cloudy. Low near 60. High in the lower 90s.
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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Copyright 2000 by Pecos Enterprise