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Friday, June 8, 2001

Signing bonuses approved for critical teachers

Staff Writer

PECOS, Friday, June 8, 2001 -- Signing bonuses for all subject matter teacher shortage areas  were approved during the regular meeting of the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah  ISD Board.

The Board met Thursday evening in the boardroom to discuss several items.

Assistant Superintendent Gome Olibas told the group that he would like a fixed bonus amount to be set by the board. "The signing bonuses are all the way up to $5,000, but there is really no set amount," he said.

The bonuses that range all the way up to $5,000 will be awarded to math and science teachers, while signing bonuses of $1,500 will be given to special education and bilingual teachers.

School superintendent Don Love told the group that they really wanted to attract good teachers.

"Some of the school districts are offering them up to $7,500 bonuses," said Olibas.

Olibas told the group that these are bigger schools that are offering this amount.

"I would like to see just one set amount set for the shortage area teachers," said Olibas. "I want to just give one amount for each, instead of saying that it can be up to a certain amount," he said.

Following a lengthy discussion, the board voted to set an amount of $5,000 for each of the subject matter teacher shortage areas that include math, science, special education and bilingual education.

"Even if they come to Pecos for just one year, our kids will have the opportunity to learn from these people," said Love.

In other business, board members approved personnel changes including resignations, retirements, reassignments and appointments.

Rodolfo Martinez will be helping Pecos High School Principal Danny Rodriguez with duties at the school after being named assistant principal.

Martinez holds a Master of Education/Industrial Arts from Sul Ross State University and has nine years experience.

Other appointments include: Olga Abila who holds a Bachelor of Arts/Humanities/Bilingual Education from the University of Texas of the Permian Basin, no experience. She will be teaching third grade at Austin Elementary.

Eliza Acosta who holds a Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice from Southwest Texas State University and has six years experience will be teaching English at Crockett Middle School.

Rosa Granado who holds a Bachelor Arts in Spanish from the University of Texas of the Permian Basin and has no experience will be working as a bilingual teacher at Bessie Haynes Elementary School.

Lucy Lara who holds a Bachelor of Arts in Humanities from the University of Texas of the Permian Basin and has no experience will be teaching math and coaching at Crockett Middle School.

Charla Mills who holds a Bachelor of Arts in Education from Sul Ross State University, and has no experience will be teaching special education in the kindergarten.

Resignations were accepted from Eliza Acosta who is an English teacher and coach at Crockett Middle School and John Mitchell a sixth grade teacher at Zavala Elementary School.

Retirements include Jane Green who is a first grade teacher at Austin Elementary School and Jesse Villesca, an Industrial Arts Teacher at Pecos High School.

Rhonda Foster was reassigned from Bessie Haynes Elementary School fourth grade teacher to Austin Elementary School third grade teacher, and Oscar Guerrero was transferred from Crockett Middle School history teacher to Zavala Elementary sixth grade teacher.

School board approves interlocal agreement for baseball field

Staff Writer

PECOS, Friday, June 8, 2001 -- Younger children will have a chance to use the Pecos High  School baseball field, following the approval of an interlocal agreement  between the school, the county and the city.

"I met with Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo about these kids wanting to use the baseball field," said school superintendent Don Love, during the regular Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD Board meeting.

"These kids need a good place to play," he said, referring to the Summer Recreation Baseball League sponsored by Reeves County.

Love said that they had come up with the details and he was presenting it to the board for approval. "We can do this through an interlocal agreement," said Love. "There are other things we have done with the county and the city through interlocal agreements," he said.

Head coach Bubba Williams said he had talked to UIL and they had advised him there would be no problem. "The only equipment they can't use are the pitching machines and uniforms," he said.

This agreement would be for kids, ages 13-18, according to Love.

The group also agreed to allow the county to plant pine trees on school-owned property, located at 5th and Peach streets and the practice field.

Cafeteria guidelines and prices were approved. Food Services Director for the district, Helen Miller said the prices would remain the same as last year.

Board members received a round of applause after the group agreed to reinstate holidays for hourly custodial, maintenance and bus barn employees.

Marge Timmerman spoke for the group and told board members that when they were hired, they were told they would be receiving the vacation days.

"When they were hired, they were told this was one of the things that they would receive, 17 holidays," said Timmerman. "You took seven paid holidays away and didn't increase their pay," she said.

Timmerman said that the group has been receiving only 10 holidays.

"They like the school district and they're loyal employees," she said.

Board member Michele Galindo told the group that she would like to commend them, and that they were a big part of the team that makes up the school district.

The board approved selling foreclosed property including property located at 2030 S. Eddy. "This is the old Revco building," said tax-assessor collector Lydia Prieto.

Prieto presented several properties to the board and the board accepted all the bids presented.

"We really need to get all this property back on the tax roll," said Love.

Ian Martin , of Berkeley, Calif., bid $7,500 on the property located at 2030 S. Eddy.

A bid for property located at 131 and 133 S. Oak, presented by James Brownlee in the amount of $12,500 was approved.

"He is paying taxes on about $80,000 already, has a business in Pecos and the roof on that building he is bidding on will cost about $40,000 to fix," said Love.

"He's still going to pump in a lot of money to get it back to code," said board member Chip Flores, who said that the board should agree to sell the property.

"He's going to need to put in a new roof among other things," said Flores.

Two bids were presented for property located at 418 Mulberry Streets and board members accepted the highest bid for $600 from Jesus Galindo.

Property located at 1120 E. 8th Street, was awarded to Ismael Fuentes of Andrews, who bid $1,551; 501 S. Orange, to Salvador Nichols, Jr., in the amount of $1,800; property located three miles southeast of Toyah, to Jack Williams of Toyah who bid, $1,148 and property located in Ward County Property, Barstow, located one block south of Highway 80, to Juanita Galindo who bid $250 on the property.

The bids will also have to be approved by the county, the city and the Reeves County Hospital Board.

Heroin bust leads to arrest

Staff Wrier

PECOS, Friday, June 8, 2001 --A deadly drug has been taken off the streets following the execution  of a search warrant yesterday. 

The warrant was executed by officers from the Pecos Police Department, the Reeves County Sheriff's Department and the Trans Pecos Drug Task Force at 1402 S. Oak Street.

Once the officers executed the warrant and the occupants of the residence were secured, officers proceeded to search the residence.

"During the search of the residence, officers located a substance believed to be heroin," said Pecos Police Investigator Paul Deishler.

Also found during the search was paraphernalia commonly used in the injecting, cooking and packaging of heroin, Deishler said.

Officers completed their search of the residence, and Jose Camacho, 45, was placed under arrest for the offense of possession of a controlled substance, (heroin) and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Bond for Camacho has not been set and he remains in Reeves County Jail, as of press time today.

Commissioners to discuss third prison expansion

PECOS, Friday, June 8, 2001 -- A resolution setting the terms of the RCDC III Project financing and  a professional services contract between Reeves County and  LMD Architects will be the topics of discussion of the Reeves  County Commissioners Court meeting. The RCDC III project is the  County's proposed expansion of the prison by another 1,000 beds for a total of 3,000. 

Commissioners will meet at 9:30 a.m., Monday, June 11, in the third floor courtroom to discuss several items.

The group will discuss and take action on a bank depository bid; on a professional services contract between Reeves County and Carothers Construction, Inc. concerning the RCDC III Project; on a professional services contract between Reeves County and Frank X. Spencer and Associates for the Project; and RCDC inmate transportation crew payment as well as service, food and kitchen supply bids.

Commissioners will discuss interagency agreements with Trans Pecos Drug Task Force, Andrews County and the city of Andrews and also property bids and reimbursement of loss property.

Construction underway on school's Technology Center

Staff Writer

PECOS, Friday, June 8, 2001 -- With the approval of the school board and Superintendent Don  Love, Director of the Career and Technology Center Larry Sloan  is looking forward to the new building that will be located on Eddy Street.

"When this first started it was just an idea," Sloan said. "I got a lot of support from Mr. Love and the School Board."

The new facility will be used to explore new methods of technology and we will see if it will be something that can used to improve education, Sloan said.

"It will be a place were we can keep ourselves on the edge of technology," Sloan said.

The new building will have an office for the director of Career and Technology Center, a student assessment office, a lab, conference room and plenty of storage room, he said.

"The focus is the lab," Sloan said. "The possibilities for the use of the lab are endless."

An idea for the lab was to use it as a room primarily for staff development. However, Sloan hopes to also use it as a way in which students can use it without having the lab tied up as a classroom.

The lab is also being considered for the uses by the community. Though the community may have access to the lab it will not be used as a meeting place but rather as a learning place, Sloan said.

"The lab is designed to be used in a very flexible way," Sloan said. "Anyone connected with the school district can use the building."

"It is going to be an attractive," Sloan said.

The lab will contain a wireless network with the possibility of up to 40 computer connections. A community network with the hospital, Odessa College and other agencies are also planned.

Possibilities for the community to use the system will be to post resumes and look for jobs, Sloan said.

Money that students raised thought the state of Texas will fund the project. All of the money has come from the state. No local money will be used, Sloan said.

The money that is given to the school by the state is also to be used for technology purposes such as paying for the technology classes and for paying the teachers.

In the past two-years the money raised by the students has been used for rebuilding three computer labs, purchasing new vehicles for the agriculture program and having air conditioners installed in several rooms.

Construction began on the Center about two weeks ago and it should be up and running by September 24th.

Support group will hold meeting Thursday 

PECOS, Friday, June 8, 2001 -- An Alzheimer's Support Group meeting will be held at 10  a.m., Thursday, June 14.

The group will meet in the Reeves County Hospital Classroom and everyone is invited to attend.

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