Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Thursday, March 7, 2002
Matta fixing up signs following Galindo protest
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Thurs., March 7, 2002 -- A candidate for county judge in next Tuesday's
Democratic Primary election in Reeves County didn't realize that some
of his signs were not in compliance with state election rules, but
said he has changed the signs to meet state guidelines.
Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo said Wednesday that his opponent
Louis Matta had violated several campaign rules. Galindo filed a formal complaint
with Reeves County Sheriff Andy Gomez, who will then take the complaint to
District Attorney Randy Reynolds.
"They had been measured to be in compliance, the printer was under the
impression that they were," said Matta, about the allegation that his signs
did not meet the election requirements because the word "for" in the sign
was not at least one-half the type size of the words county, judge, which
is in clear violation of Section 255.006, part c, section two of the Texas
"The printer made a bigger `for' and we're just pasting it over the other
one on the signs," said Matta.
Matta said that he and his campaign workers did not intentionally mean
to break the law. "When the printer designed it, he was under the impression
that he was in compliance with the law," said Matta.
The county judge also complained that flyers mailed out to Reeves County
homes attacking him did not list the name of the group or individual paying
for the mailings, which also in violation of the Texas Election Code.
Galindo cited Section 255.01 of the code, which deals with required disclosure
on political advertising.
"I have no idea who mad those flyers that were distributed like that,"
said Matta. "My campaign committee had nothing to do with that," he said.
Matta said he had spoken to the sheriff about the issue.
"I'm hoping that as long as we try to comply and make things right, the
district attorney will not fine me," said Matta. "I'm suspecting that it's
part of the dirty politics that's been circulating around."
Matta also wanted to clarify reports that he had said top positions at
the Reeves County Detention Center should be held by Pecos individuals only.
Matta said he did not mean that the current officials in charge at the 2,000-bed
detention center should be removed.
"I believe that RCDC management should move here and establish residency,"
said Matta. "I realize they are qualified, competent officials."
Hundreds of thousands of dollars are lost to Reeves County because those
paychecks are not spent or invested locally, according to Matta.
Warden Rudy Franco was hired by Reeves County in 1995 after a series of
prison escapes and riots had caused the U.S. Bureau of Prisons to remove
about half their inmates from the then-600 bed facility due to a lack of
confidence in county employees running the detention center. Franco, a former
federal prison warden in the El Paso area, is currently Reeves County's highest-paid
employee, but in the past five years the facility has been expanded to 2,000
beds, with another 960 beds currently under construction and due to be completed
by the end of this year.
Matta did say that he would work to initiate a training program for qualified
residents whereby they can qualify to become warden or assistant warden at
the RCDC. "I think with time, we can have someone from our hometown in the
top positions at the detention center," he said.
Council picks phone service, doctor for CJC
By LEIA HOLLAND
PECOS, Thurs., March 7, 2002 -- The Town of Pecos City Council approved the
final agreement with Inmate Communications & Hospitality Inc.,
of Midland, for the inmate phone system at the Pecos Municipal Criminal
Justice Center during a special meeting early this afternoon at City
City Attorney Scott Johnson went over the contract with the Council before
they approved the agreement which has a term of three years.
Inmates were moved into the new 98-bed Criminal Justice Center last month,
but several items, including the installation of regular phone service, are
still to be completed. The CJC was build by the city to house both Pecos
Police Department prisoners and those being held for trial in U.S. District
Court in Pecos by the U.S. Marshal's Serivce.
The Council also approved the lowest bid for physician services at the
new detention facility.
"We had two bids and we recommend the lower of the two," City Manager
Carlos Yerena said.
The two bids came from Dr. Orville Cerna and Dr. Haitham Jifi with Cerna
turning in the lowest bid of $450 per week.
McKinney explained that the doctor would go into the detention facility
once a week to see each inmate that needs medical attention.
Jifi currently is the physician that is working with the Reeves County
Also on the agenda for the special meeting was discussion on bids for
work on the city swimming pool, located next to Rocket Park.
The Council decided to table that agenda item until the regular meeting
next week for more information.
PECOS, Thurs., March 7, 2002 -- High Wednesday 80. Low this morning 42.
Forecast for tonight: Mostly cloudy. Lows 45 to 50. South winds 10
to 15 mph. Friday: Partly cloudy and breezy. Highs near 80. Southwest
winds 15 to 25 mph. Friday night: Partly cloudy: Breezy and cooler.
Lows in the mid 30s. Saturday: Partly cloudy and breezy. Highs near
60. Sunday: Partly cloudy. Lows in the upper 20s. Highs in the lower
Norine J. Hoover, Ann Shaw, Max Stook and Ernest Vargas
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 2002 by Pecos Enterprise