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Tuesday, January 9, 2001

Commissioners given look at Pecos FD's Rescue Cam

Staff Writer

PECOS, January 9, 2001 - Reeves County Commissioners received a special presentation of the new "Rescue Cam" purchased recently by the Pecos Volunteer Fire Department during their regular meeting on Monday.

Fire chief Roy Pena and some of the volunteer firemen were on hand to demonstrate the special equipment during the meeting. Pena told the court that Reeves County had donated half of the amount needed for the Rescue Cam, while the rest of the funds came from donations from community businesses and individuals.

"How many times have you used the camera, since you purchased it?" asked commissioner precinct 3 Herman Tarin.

"We've had about 20 structure fires and used it about 17 times," said Pena.

Commissioner precinct 1 Felipe Arredondo inquired as to whether it had been used during the most recent trailer fire.

"We didn't use it this last time," said firefighter Gus Ybarra, but added that the camera has been instrumental during other incidents.

He told the court that he was enjoying using the latest in technology. "I used at La Tienda to find a shortage and we were able to locate the problem without a fire starting," Ybarra said.

Tarin donated $200 out of his own personal funds to the cause, saying, "I think the bottom line is to save lives, structures you can't always save, but it's the lives of the people that count."

Pena said that the group still has a balance at the bank of $1,100 that has drawn interest. "The board of directors of the fire department, has decided that since we already one camera, to use what we have left in the bank towards purchasing air tanks and batteries and other equipment needed," said Pena.

"We're very grateful to everyone in the community for being so generous," said Pena. "This camera doesn't belong to the fire department it belongs to the community."

Pena told commissioners that if any other group or organization would like a demonstration they can contact him or any fire department personnel to set up a presentation.

"We really appreciate the presentation this morning, we're very proud of all our firefighters," said Tarin.

In other action, bond and oath for newly-elected officials and deputies was approved during the regular meeting.

Approved bond and oaths included: Herman Tarin, commissioner precinct 3; Felipe Arredondo, commissioner precinct 1; Luis U. Carrasco, county attorney; Pat Tarin, district clerk; Elfida Zuniga, tax-assessor collector; Arnulfo "Andy" Gomez, sheriff; Arnulfo Granado, constable precinct #1; Jaime Salgado, constable, precinct #2; Tomas "Tommy" Martinez, constable, precinct #3; Heriberto "Eddy" Rodriguez, constable, precinct #4; Connie Lozano, deputy district clerk; Mandy Hinojos, deputy district clerk; Jeanette Herrera, chief deputy tax-assessor collector; Tracie Machuca, deputy tax-assessor collector; Sylvia Garcia, deputy tax assessor collector; Rosemary Chabarria, deputy tax assessor collector; Sylvia Garcia, chief deputy county clerk; Victorio Prieto, chief deputy sheriff; Elijio Lujan, deputy sheriff; Hilda Woods, deputy sheriff; Danny Leos, deputy sheriff; Michael Dominguez, deputy sheriff; Israel Campos, deputy sheriff; Tommy Acosta, deputy sheriff; Fernando Valenzuela, deputy sheriff; Ruben Dominguez, deputy sheriff; Richard Natividad, deputy sheriff and Damon Compton, deputy sheriff.

Commissioners also approved reports from various departments; budget amendments and line-item transfers and minutes from previous meetings.

Personnel and salary changes included: from Reeves County Detention Center, a promotion for Alfredo Paz, training director at $31,500; promotion of Bart Sanchez, food service II, $24,000; promotion of Cecilia Muniz, correctional officer II, $24,000; promotion of Clara Jean Brookshire, at $33,000; promotion of Joanna Villanueva, to commissary II at $24,000; and Charles Hannah, to correctional officer II at $24,000. From the District Clerk's office, new hire, Marylou Chavez as deputy clerk at $16,000; Reeves County Library on a part-time, temporary basis, Rosa Irene Gonzales at $5.75 an hour; in the Road and Bridges Department, Eloy Varela, as assistant at $29,000 per year; Reeves County Attorney's office, Anabel Orona, at $18,000 a year and in the Reeves County Sheriff's Office, Maribel Salinas Esparza, as a receptionist on a part-time basis, at $6.50 an hour.

"Is that a new position in the Road and Bridges Department?" asked Tarin.

"Yes, it's a new position that was included in this year's budget," said county auditor Lynn Owens.

Cooks, Bagley, Rodriguez get stock show honors

Staff Writer

PECOS, January 9, 2001 - Many animals including hogs, goats, sheep and one steer roamed the grounds of the Balmorhea High School this weekend during the Balmorhea Stock Show.

The show, held annually the weekend before the Reeves-Loving Junior Livestock Show, began at 9 a.m., on Saturday with four types of hogs, and Grand Champion in the hog division went to Chance Cook with his 181-pound Hamp hog.

Amber Cook took home Reserve Grand Champion with her 176-pound Duroc which also took Breed Champion in that division.

Senior Showmanship went to Julia Garlick and Junior Showmanship went to Russell Garlick.

In the Duroc hog division, Chance Cook took Reserve Breed Champion with his 228-pound hog while Savannah Matta placed third with her 175-pound hog.

Breed Champion for the York hog division went to Chance Cook's 157-pound hog.

Liberty Wofford's 222-pound York was able to snag Reserve Breed Champion while Julia Garlick placed third with her 195-pound hog.

Chance Cook also took home Breed Champion for the Hamp division with his 181-pound hog.

Another 181-pound hog, belonging to Jay Sanchez, was able to take Reserve Breed Champion while Wofford placed third.

In the Crossbred division, Amber Cook received Breed Champion for her 197-pound Lightweight hog that also took first in that division.

Robert Vasquez placed second in the lightweight division with his 188-pound hog but was able to take home Reserve Breed Champion for the Crossbred division.

Wofford placed third in the lightweight division with his 177-pound hog.

Levon Barragan's 223-pound Hog placed first in the heavyweight division while Julia Garlick's 228-pound hog placed second and Wofford's 216-pound hog placed third.

After lunch the goats, sheep and the steer were shown and judged.

Adrienne Bagley won Grand Champion in the Lamb division while Adriel Roman won Reserve Grand Champion.

Chance Cook also took Senior Showmanship in that division while Adam Roman received Junior Showmanship.

In the Finewool Lamb division Breed Champion went to the 111-pound lamb belonging to Adriel Roman. Adam Roman's 120-pound lamb received Reserve Breed Champion.

In the Crossbred division, Breed Champion went to Adrienne Bagley's 112-pound Lightweight lamb while Reserve Breed Champion went to Adriel Roman's 128-pound Heavyweight lamb.

For the Lightweight Crossbred Lambs, Bagley placed first, Amber Cook placed second and Miguel Rodriguez placed third.

For the Heavyweight Crossbred Lambs, Adriel Roman placed first, Adam Roman placed second and Chance Cook placed third.

Breed Champion in the Medium wool division was Adriel Roman for his 131-pound Heavyweight lamb while Bagley's 110-pound Lightweight lamb received Reserve Breed Champion.

In the lightweight division for medium wool, Bagley placed first, Candice Regelman placed second and Jogina Gallego placed third.

In the mediumweight division, Jennifer Ward placed first, Jogina Gallego placed second and Jamie Gallego placed third.

For the heavyweight division, Adriel Roman placed first, second and third.

Jose Rodriguez received Grand Champion honors in the goat division while Bagley received Reserve Grand Champion.

The Senior Showmanship award went to Arturo Rodriguez while Junior Showmanship went to Russell Garlick.

First place in the lightweight division when to Bagley's 68-pound lamb while Russell Garlick placed second and Abel Rodriguez placed third and fourth.

In the mediumweight division Arturo Rodriguez' 71-pound lamb placed first, Adriel Roman placed second and J.B. Moore placed third.

For light heavyweight lambs, Jose Rodriguez placed first with his 90-pound lamb, Amber Cook placed second and Roslyn Fleenor placed third.

Tyler Hebbert's 102-pound lamb placed first in the heavyweight division while Chance Cook placed second and Adriel Roman placed third.

Jennifer Ward was the only person to enter a steer in the show this year, though officials said overall the total number of entries was about the same as last year.

Red Bluff board studies water allocation

Staff Writer

PECOS, January 9, 2001 - Red Bluff Water Power Control board members acted on only a few items during their regular monthly meeting, but plan to take action next month on several others that were discussed at the board's office in Pecos on Monday.

The board held preliminary discussions on the water allocation amount for 2001, discussed action on allowing Conoco to set up a line to pump water from Red Bluff Lake to a gas field the company is developing in Culberson County and were given copies of the 2000 audit report done by Randy Graham.

The board was also given an update on the latest problem involving the Malaga Bend salt alleviation project, discussed leasing property on South Cedar Street to Kevin Duke and were briefed on problems with illegal hunting around Red Bluff Lake by Game Warden Jim Allen.

The board won't set the final allocation and water price until next month, but the board was told the lake currently has about 68,000 acre/feet, and is required to keep at least 20,000 acre/feet in the lake at all times.

Based on that, and the water losses from Red Bluff Lake to the farms downstream, board member Lloyd Goodrich said, "Twenty-four thousand (acre/feet) is what I have," for the 2001 allotment.

"The preliminary guess is between 24,000 and 27,000 with it being closer to the lower number," said board president Randall Hartman. That's below the 30,000 acre/feet allotted to the water districts along the Pecos River last year.

General manager Jim Ed Miller said, "I talked to J.W. (Thrasher, Pecos River compact commissioner) and he had talked to somebody who said New Mexico would by 10,000 acre/feet short," of their required delivery. However, Miller said New Mexico has a 24,000 acre/foot water credit from past years they can draw against, "So that means we're not going to get that much in the lake."

While the board took no action on the final release number, they did decide to send out a letter to the water districts informing them of the planned allotment.

Water releases for 2001 can't begin until final work is completed on the gate and valve replacement project at Red Bluff Dam. Completion of the nearly $1 million project is scheduled to be done no later than March 31, but Miller said work is ahead of schedule, and that David Wheelock of HDR Engineering would be in town for the beginning of the project's final phase this week.

"It's really nice to get something finished," said Goodrich, as the dam project update came following a report by Albert Wager on Loving Salt on the latest problem with the plan to pump salt water away from the Pecos River.

Wagner said that while objections by ranchers in southern Eddy County, N.M. and by the Interstate Stream Commission in New Mexico have been smoothed over, Loving Salt is now having problems with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, on whose land the salt would be mined for removal after being pumped from Malaga Bend.

He said a BOR official in Albuquerque "says we're on the property illegally. They say we don't have the right to mine salt." Wagner said the Albuquerque office took over the project from the Bureau's El Paso office, which was the one to originally give approval for the project.

"The guys in Albuquerque don't think it was legally done," said Wagner who added he has talked to officials in the BOR's El Paso office who confirmed the agreement, and that both he and Miller have faxed the information to Albuquerque.

Wagner said a conference call to BOR officials is scheduled for Thursday, while Miller said he would be in Carlsbad on Jan. 17 to talk with the BOR about the problem.

The problem the board focused on in the request by Conoco's John Grubbs to build a pipeline from the lake to U.S. 285, was whether or not there was any electrical source available at a well site at the north end of Red Bluff Lake, near the Texas-New Mexico state line.

The pipeline, which would be about two miles long, would connect up with an already existing line from U.S. 285 to the company's gas plant in far northwestern Reeves County. From there, the water would be used for the Conoco drilling rigs in Culberson County, where Grubbs said a six-year gas field development project is already underway.

The board decided to see if there was a power source for the pump, before taking any further action on the project, though they and Grubbs did discuss construction and maintenance of the new line and the cost of the water per barrel.

"Conoco told me we can help with the laying of the line," Grubbs said, but added the cost of the water would have to be about the same 25 cents per barrel they're currently paying for water hauled in from New Mexico. "I can talk to Conoco about running the line if you're willing to do it for 25 cents a barrel."

"Let us go find where the electricity is at, because the rest of the stuff is nothing," Hartman said.

Grubbs said Conoco was seeking Red Bluff's help because the district could lay the line for somewhere around $10,000, while the oil company would face tougher rules to lay it along roads in the area.

"The county road superintendent (Russ Salcido) wants it buried three feet below the lowest road grade. I can truck it in for cheaper than that," he said. Board members were reluctant to take up the cost of building the line, saying they wanted to make sure Red Bluff's costs didn't exceed the income they would get from the water sales to Conoco.

The board was told by Miller they would be better off not selling the district's property at Ninth and Cedar Street to Duke, because it is the site of a former Chevron station and Red Bluff would still be liable for any cleanup from leakage of underground tanks. But Duke said a state program would pay for monitoring and clean up of the site, and the board did agree to talk about leasing the property at their next meeting.

"Since we're going to be liable for it," I would recommend leasing it rather than buying it," Miller said.

Duke said he wanted the property to use as a used car lot for Colt Chevrolet, and said he would spend three months fixing up the land if an agreement is reached.

In other action, the board delayed action on the audit report because Graham was unable to attend Monday's meeting, and were briefed by Allen on state laws on poaching and trespassing, and the various fines. Miller said he also discussed how to order no hunting signs for the lake, where hunting is prohibited.

Account set up for family after home burned by fire

Staff Writer

PECOS, January 9, 2001 - An account has been set up at a local bank for a family who lost everything during a mobile home fire Friday night on the east side of Pecos

Pecos Volunteer Firefighters responded to the fire, which broke out at 8:30 p.m. at the trailer house of Elida Munoz and her family at 604 S. Mesquite St. But the fire spread too quickly for firefighters to save the structure.

Fire Marshall Jack Brookshire said the fire started with a kerosene heater the family was trying to light. "It didn't take long for it to become fully involved," Brookshire said.

The family was able to get out of the house safely before the entire trailer was engulfed in flames, but Munoz said, "We lost everything in that fire."

It seems the family has had their share of troubles in this New Year. Munoz said her husband is without a job and finding a new place to stay is very hard.

"He tried to get unemployment, but that is being put on hold as well," said Munoz. "It just seems that everything is happening at once."

And since he doesn't have a job, the family has no income coming in to help with rent or anything else.

The couple has two children, 14-month-old Joe Albert Adame and 11-year-old David Lee Duran.

They also need help with other necessities, since the fire consumed everything they owned.

Anyone who wants to help out this local family can make a donation to their account at West Texas National Bank, account number 5161940.

Wrestling show set Jan. 20 at PHS gym to benefit boosters

PECOS, January 9, 2001 - A wrestling show will be staged on Saturday, Jan. 20 at the Pecos High School gym to benefit the Pecos Eagle Athletic Booster Club.

South Central Wrestling will put on the show, which will begin at 5 p.m. in the new PHS gym. Tickets are $5 apiece and seats will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis.

Five matches are scheduled on the night, with the feature attraction pitting "The Warlock", 6-foot-7 and 345 pounds from Midland, against "Mr. Big Time" of New York City. Before that, a tag-team match featuring Junk Yard Dog, Jr. of Charlotte, N.C. and Chief Running Deer of Great Falls, Mo., will be pitted against "The Texas Cowboy" and "Justin Tough," both out of Lubbock.

Tickets will be available at the gate, while advance tickets are available at Terrazas Drive Inn, Dan's Music and Video and from Pecos High School coaches at the PHS Field House.


PECOS, January 9, 2001 - High Monday 58. Low this morning 29. Forecast for tonight: Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of rain. Low around 35. Southeast to east wind 5 to 15 mph. Wednesday, cloudy and cool with rain likely. High 45 to 50. Chance of rain 60 percent. East wind 5 to 15 mph, becoming west in the afternoon. Wednesday night, mostly cloudy. Low around 35. Thursday, partly cloudy. Highs around 60. Friday, increasing cloudiness. Lows in the 30s. Highs around 60. Friday, cloudy with a chance of rain. Lows 35 to 40. Highs in the 50s.

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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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