Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Monday, August 25, 2003
County OKs bond payment, water bill delay
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Mon., Aug. 25, 2003 -- Reeves County Commissioners opted for a bond
payment over a water bill payment this morning, during a discussion on the
county's large impending bills as part of the regular Commissioner's Court
meeting at the Reeves County Courthouse.
Commissioners discussed what to do about four bills totaling over $1.28
million. Of those, three related to work involving the Reeves County Detention
Center. They involved a 1999 maintenance lease payment in the amount of
$420,077; a 1999 maintenance reserve payment in the amount of $29,166 and
a 2001 lease payment of $411,117.
The other bill is a water payment to the Town of Pecos City in the amount
The county ran into financial problems earlier this year when the U.S.
Bureau of Prisons declined to put any new inmates into the just-completed
Reeves County Detention Center III project, and sought a $2.47 cut in the
interim man-day rate paid by the BOP to the county for housing inmates at
the RCDC I and II units. Last month, the county and BOP agreed to a $47.32
rate for housing the 2,000 BOP inmates at those units, 15 cents lower than
the interim rate, and a one-time payment to the county of $800,000
Reeves County is still seeking a new source of inmates for RCDC III,
and recently has been housing about 100 U.S. Marshal's Service inmates in
the 960-bed facility. The county faces a $950,000 bond payment at the end
of this month.
"I recommend that we pay the bond lease payment, contingent upon receiving
the reimbursement from BOP and the savings from the construction of RCDC
III," said Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo. "We're also expecting another
$87,000 from the Marshals Service."
Galindo did say that the county will see some a savings from the construction
of the RCDC III, after it came in about 2 percent under budget.
A change order for Carothers Construction was approved during last month's
regular meeting. "There was a savings on the project on the Guaranteed Maximum
Price," said Galindo, at that time.
The Guaranteed Maximum Price on the facility had been estimated at $30.3
million, but the price was actually $29.6 million. "That's a savings of
$647,809," said Galindo.
That sum will be split 70-30, between Reeves County and Carothers Construction,
with Carothers Construction receiving $194,342 and Reeves County $453,466.
"In other words, we came in under budget," said county auditor Lynn Owens.
"We'll have those funds and the $800,000 one-time lump sum payment from
the Bureau of Prisons," said Galindo.
Galindo told the group that further down in the agenda was a water payment
to the Town of Pecos City in the amount of $422,320.
The water payment is the county's part of funding construction of the
new South Worsham Water Field by the Town of Pecos City. That agreement
was reached in a deal between the county and city for additional city water
needed for inmates at the RCDC. The city began work on the new water field
nine years ago, after being told the current Worsham and Ward County water
fields could only supply Pecos with adequate water through the year 2008.
After a long discussion, commissioners voted that if the city did not
defer the payment of the water bill, that the 1999 bond series won't be
"I've been talking to the mayor before this meeting and the payment to
the city is actually not due until November," said Galindo. "That would
allow us a little more time to make that payment."
However, the city is set to meet Thursday afternoon and the item would
have to be posted as an emergency item, if the council had to take action
"It can't be under the audience portion, if you want the council to take
action on this," said Town of Pecos City Mayor Dot Stafford, who was on
hand for the regular county meeting.
"We would appreciate the city's help in this matter, at a time when the
county is going through some financial difficulties," said Galindo.
Galindo said that deferment of this payment would provide the county an
assurance that going into October that payment would be made. "But it helps
our cash flow at this time," said Galindo.
There are also three pay periods in this month for the county, "And I
think this would provide some securing in regards to the payment to the
city," he said.
Galindo outlined the discussion he had with the mayor and the water bill.
"This is the third payment of this water bill," said Galindo.
The project amortized is over a 30-year period and the county will pay
the first 10 years. Total amount of the project was $8.5 million according
"What we had agreed upon was that the county would pay $4 million to
get that water project completed," said Galindo. "The county would pay the
first 10 years of that," he said.
The payment is $420,000 for the first 10 years and the last 10 years,
the city would take over.
"This is at one percent interest to the city," said Galindo. "Over the
last month or so, we've been discussion deferring this payment to the city,
because the money is not actually due until November," he said.
Galindo said that the city's payment to the Texas Water Development Board
was not due until November and that deferring this payment until then would
help the county. "The mayor is here with us today, but she is only one member
of the council," he said.
"I would ask that we defer that payment until October and I believe at
that time we can make that payment," said Galindo.
Galindo said that he would be in San Antonio this week, but recommended
that some of the commissioners attend the city meeting on Thursday to represent
the county in this matter.
"I would also ask the mayor to make some comments on our behalf," said
"You mean some positive comments on behalf of deferring this payment,"
Stafford said that they could get the item posted on the agenda as an
"emergency," today and that it would be within the 72-hour time limit needed
for the Thursday evening meeting.
Stafford said that she would advise the council of the county's dilemma,
but ultimately it would be up to the entire council to decide whether to
go along with the delayed payment.
Balmorhea adds second cook-off to years festival
By JON FULBRIGHT
PECOS, Mon., Aug. 25, 2003 -- Two cook-off events are scheduled over two
days this coming weekend in Balmorhea, as part of its28th Annual Oasis of
West Texas Labor Day Weekend Festival.
Festivities are set to begin early Saturday morning when organizers hand
out the meat to competitors of the Frijole Bean and Fajita Cook-off. Prizes
will be awarded to the top finishers in both divisions.
The bean cook-off has been part of the festival for years. The fajita
competition was added several years ago, and event organizer Norman Ramon
said that while those cook-offs and most other events will take place on
Saturday, a second cook-off involving two different types of food is scheduled
for Sunday morning.
"Sunday there will be an Open Cook-off, starting about 8 a.m.," Ramon
said. "It will be chicken and ribs."
The frijole and fajita cook-off will also start at 8 a.m., with organizers
handing out the meat to the contestants at that time. Judging in that cook-off
will be about 4 p.m. on Saturday, while judging in the Sunday cook-off will
take place around 12 noon.
Ramon said events are scheduled all day on Saturday downtown, while a
softball tournament at the Balmorhea City Park will get underway Saturday
morning and continue through Sunday.
"The booths will open up at 9 in the morning, and the music will kick
off about 11," Ramon said. Marcos Mendoza Jr., and his West Texas Guitar
will perform downtown starting at 2 p.m., while a dance featuring El Gusto
Band will begin around sunset that night.
A washer-pitching tournament is also scheduled for Saturday afternoon,
and Ramon said, "The flea market will be opened on Saturday."
Ramon said anyone wanting information on either the Frijole Bean and
Fajita Cook-off or the Open Cook-off should call Mike or Mary Peacock at
375-2589 or 556-1634. Information on the softball tournament is available
through Balmorhea City Hall, at 375-2307, while anyone wanting information
on booths at the Labor Day weekend festival and other activities can call
Ramon at 375-0219 after 6 p.m. or Pat Brijalba at 375-2323 after 5 p.m.
PHA completes 2002 capital funds project
By JENNIFER GALVAN
PECOS, Mon., Aug. 25, 2003 -- Pecos Housing Authority Executive Director
Nellie Gomez informed the Board of Commissioners that the have closed out
their 2002 capital funds project, during Thursday's Pecos Housing Authority/Farm
Labor Housing meeting.
"We closed it out today," Gomez told the board.
The closure came after they paid some of their bills and made payroll,
"Everything was spent," Gomez said. "We paid everybody and paid the bill
all thru next Thursday."
She added that their projects of the fencing, paving of sidewalks and
the landscaping are coming along.
"The landscaping is an on going thing," Gomez said. "Jim we also have
cleaned all the lots. We paid quite a lot of money."
She reported that she had several of the migrant workers work on the
clean up of the vacant lots.
"I had migrant workers stay a couple of extra days to finish," Gomez
Gomez said that they paid $3,500 for the clean up.
She added that the gazebo on the eastside development was done and that
they were planning to place a picnic table in the middle of it.
P-B-T to study settlement deal in Galindo case
PECOS, Mon., Aug. 25, 2003 -- The resignation of the Pecos High School
assistant principal John Fabela and a discussion behind closed doors with
the board's attorney about a suit brought by Reeves County Judge Jimmy B.
Galindo and his wife Michelle are the topics for a special Pecos-Barstow-Toyah
ISD board meeting scheduled for Tuesday evening.
Board members will meet at 6 p.m., in the Technology Center, 1301 S.
Eddy Street and the public is invited to attend the option portion of the
The group will meet in closed session as authorized by the Texas Open
Meetings Act, Texas Government Code, Section 551.101 et. Seq., Section 551.074:
Discuss personnel or hear complaints against personnel and Section 551.071
(1) Consultation with board's attorney regarding Docket No. 330-SE-0613
Jimmy and Michelle G(alindo) vs. Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD
(2) Discuss resignation of Pecos High School assistant principal.
Board members will return to open session and take action, if any, on
items discussed in closed session including possible settlement of the suit
brought by (the Galindos) against Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD.
The Galindos' suit is not related to county business, but centers around
an incident involving their son at Austin Elementary School last year.
In open session, before going into closed session, board members will
hold a public meeting to discuss 2003-2004 budget and proposed tax rate;
consider and take possible action on amending the 2002-03 budget; dedicating
fund balance; adoption of 2003-04 budget by fund and function; adopt the
2003 tax rate by ordinance; consider and possible action on adoption of
a resolution for the Social Security Alternative 457 Master Retirement Plan
(Premier Advantage Plan) and Shattered Dreams Program for Pecos High School,
Season ticket sale for Eagle football starts
PECOS, Mon., Aug. 25, 2003 -- Pecos Eagle season tickets went on sale
today for first-time buyers at the P-B-T Business Office, 1302 S. Park St.
Tickets for the five originally scheduled 2003 home games, plus this
Friday's added home game against Midland Christian, are on sale during regular
business hours. Tickets for each game are $5 apiece, with the five regular
games, plus this Friday's contest costing $30.
The other five home games are on Sept 4 against Alpine; Sept. 25 versus
Crane; Oct. 10 against Kermit, Oct. 24 against Monahans and Nov. 7 against
For further information, contact the business office at 447-7204.
PECOS, Mon., Aug. 25, 2003 -- High Sun. 97. Low this morning 71. Forecast
for tonight: Partly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of evening thunderstorms.
Lows in the mid 60s. SE winds 5 to 15 mph. Tues.: Mostly sunny with isolated
afternoon thunderstorms. Highs in the lower 90s. East winds 5 to 15 mph.
Tues. night: Clear. Lows in the upper 60s.
Maria Hernandez, Gregorio Rayos, Jr. and Selestina De La Rosa
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 2003 by Pecos Enterprise