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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Monday, May 5, 2003

Tellez, Sanchez, Rodriguez earn seats on Council

Staff Writer

PECOS, Mon., May 5, 2003 -- Pecos voters elected two current city council members to new two-year terms and returned a third council member to the council after a year absence, as the result of Saturday's election.

Town of Pecos City Mayor Pro-Tem Gerald Tellez will keep his seat as will Councilman Frank Sanchez, while Pecos High School Principal Danny Rodriguez will replace outgoing Councilman Johnny Terrazas, who opted not to run for a new two-year term.

Tellez received 1,111 votes, while Sanchez received 768 and Rodriguez 667 in the four-person race. The other candidate seeking a seat on the council, Mark Bragg, picked up 218 votes.

"It is a real honor to be elected again," Sanchez said. "I would like to thank all of my supporters."

Sanchez said that he would continue to do the things that benefit the city such as keeping the tax rate low, the budget balanced and Pecos cleaner.

"I would like to clean up the town as much as we can," Sanchez added.

He said that with the completion of the land filled the cleaning of the town would be much easier.

While still in office, Sanchez said that he would continue to fix the water and sewer problems as well.

"These are all projects that we started," Sanchez said. "That is why I ran again."

Tellez and Rodriguez could not be reached for comment.

Saturday's voting brought out 590 people to cast ballots at the Pecos Community Center. A total of 945 people voted early in the city election, for a combined 1,535 voters.

School voters put Valenzuela, Miller on board

Staff Writer

PECOS, Mon., May 5, 2003 -- Pecos-Barstow-Toyah School Board voters elected one new member and returned an incumbent to the board for three more years, after results from the May 3 elections were counted Saturday night.

Newcomer Amy Montgomery Miller received 722 votes during the May 3 election to place second in the four-person race for the two available seats on the P-B-T ISD board. She will join incumbent, Steve Valenzuela, who had 761 votes to lead all vote getters in this year's election.

Miller beat out another challenger, Randy Baeza, by 38 votes for the second seat on the school board. Baeza finished with 684 votes, while the other incumbent, David L. Flores, received 579 votes.

Valenzuela who just completed his first term on the board said that he was surprised and pleased by the results.

"I'm extremely pleased by the results, its something that all the candidates have worked hard for and all the candidates ran a really clean campaign," said Valenzuela. "I was really surprised at the results, but at the same time I was really pleased."

"I appreciate all the support and I'm at a point where I've already served on the board and have learned how it works," said Valenzuela. "I'm confident and plan to work harder," he said.

"I think that I will be more effective this go-around," he said.

Valenzuela, a pharmacist at Professional Pharmacy, was first elected to the board along with Flores in 2000.

Miller is not new to the school system. She has 71/2 years teaching experience, is certified to teach grades 1-12; certified librarian for Pre-K through 12 and was a 1984 Pecos High School graduate. She graduated from Texas Tech with a Bachelor of Science Degree in 1988 and a Masters of Education degree from Texas Tech.

"I appreciate everyone who voted for me and I'm here to serve," said Miller. "I plan to work hard and I will do the best I can," she said.

A total of 1,736 people voted in this year's school election, which was down slightly from a year ago. A total of 1,022 people voted early for this year's election, and another 714 people cast ballots on Saturday at the Pecos Community Center, and at voting sites in Barstow, Toyah and Saragosa.

Incumbents win 3 of 5 available Balmorhea seats

Staff Writer

PECOS, Mon., May 5, 2003 -- Two incumbents will be serving on the Balmorhea City Council for another two years, following Saturday's elections, and will be joined by one newcomer who placed third in the five-person race for the council.

Balmorhea voters also returned one of two incumbents to office in Saturday's school board election, where five candidates also were running, and were seeking two available three-year terms on the board.

City Council incumbents Sammy Baeza and Ike D. Ward were re-elected by Balmorhea voters, and will be joined by Dora Machuca on the council. Baeza received 103 votes, Ward picked up 85 votes and Machuca had 61 votes. Machuca narrowly beat out Marty May for the final seat on the council. May received 58 votes and former Balmorhea Mayor Norman Roman had 54 votes in his bid for a council seat.

In the Balmorhea School elections, incumbent Tommy Rey Dominguez retained his seat on the board, with 95 votes, and will be joined by newcomer Abel Baeza. He received 89 votes to beat out incumbent Paul Matta by 12 votes for the other available seat on the school board. Matta had 77 votes, while the other two challengers, Sharon Oates and Courtney Mellard, at 55 and 42 votes respectively in Saturday's election.

The votes will be canvassed on Thursday and all results will be final at that time.

Boy riding in bed of pickup killed in accident

PECOS, Mon., May 5, 2003 -- A one-vehicle accident claimed the life of a 10-year old boy from Artesia, N.M. Saturday night, the third weekend in a row a fatal accident has occurred in Reeves County.

According to the Texas Department of Public Safety report, the accident occurred about 11:18 p.m. on Saturday and also sent three other people from Artesia, including a 5-year-old boy, to Reeves County Hospital.

The DPS report said the accident involved a 1982 Chevrolet pick-up, which was traveling north on U.S. 285, about 13 miles south of Orla, while towing a trailer.

The driver of the pick-up, Robert Gonzales Jimenez, 19, of Fort Stockton then lost control and skidded to the right, causing the pickup to rollover before coming to rest on its top side.

The DPS said Jesse Levario Ortega, 10, of Artesia was found pinned under the bed of the pickup, where he had been riding when the rollover occurred. He was pronounced dead at the scene, while three other people riding inside the vehicle, Joshua Leyva, 5, Christina Tesill, 23, and Juan Martin Leyva, 37, all of Artesia, were transported to Reeves County Hospital by Pecos EMS crews for treatment of their injuries.

Trooper Arnulfo Rivas and Trooper James R. Johnson are investigating the accident.

State law prohibits children from riding in the beds of pickups, but there was no word on whether or not the driver or any of the passengers in the vehicle had been cited for allowing Ortega to ride in the bed of the Chevrolet.

Saturday's accident comes after three people were killed in a rollover on April 27 on Interstate 10 near Balmorhea, and two weeks after an Odessa woman died in a weekend rollover on April 20 just south of Pecos on Highway 17.

Letter carriers' food drive set for Saturday

PECOS, Mon., May 5, 2003 -- The annual Letter Carriers Food Drive is scheduled for this Saturday the day before Mother's Day.

Individuals are asked to leave non-perishable food by their mailboxes for pickup by letter carriers Saturday morning.

The event is sponsored by the National Association of Letter Carriers.


PECOS, Mon., May 5, 2003 -- High Sunday 92. Low this morning 67. Forecast for tonight: Mostly clear. Lows in the upper 50s. West winds 5 to 15 mph. Tuesday: Partly cloudy. Highs in the lower 90s. Southwest winds 10 to 20 mph. Tuesday night: Partly cloudy. Lows in the upper 50s. Wednesday: Partly cloudy. Highs in the mid 90s. Thursday: Partly cloudy and windy. Lows in the upper 50s. Highs in the lower 90s.


Alfonso Levario

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