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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Archives 1995

Change sought in county extension cuts

Staff Writer
PECOS, Aug. 25, 1995 - "We need to band together and talk to
our respective county commissioners to voice our concern,"
said Reeves County Extension Agent C.W. Roberts Thursday

Roberts was talking about the recent cut at the extension
service that County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo proposed, which
would leave two women without jobs.

An informal meeting to discuss this particular issue was
held at the extension office Thursday evening. A roomful of
concerned individuals were on hand to voice their opinion
and give some input on the situation.

Galindo proposed the cuts in the new 1996 budget in an
effort to reduce a deficit he put at about 51 million. They
include the elimination of salaries for Reeves County Home
Economics Extention Agent Carol Mowery and her secretary,
Regina Armstrong.

"Carol and I met with the county judge to tell him our ideas
and are trying to get on the county agenda," said Roberts.
"To help us out, I would like everyone that can be there (on
Sept. 5) to attend that meeting to help us out."

The group had previously requested to be put on the county
agenda for the regular Commissioners Court meeting set for
this Monday. However, the item is not on the regular agenda
and will not be discussed at the meeting.

"I told them that since that was a budget item, it could be
discussed at the budget hearing set for Sept. 5," said
Galindo. "Just the regular business items are on the agenda
for Monday."

Individuals can voice their opinion and give their input on
this particular issue at the Sept. 5 budget hearing set for
9:30 a.m. on the third floor of the Reeves County Courthouse.

"A 15-day notice needs to be posted in order to have a
public hearing on the 1996 budget," said Galindo. "This is a
budget item and will be discussed during the budget hearing."

"I like my job and I'm hoping the rest of the staff can stay
here also," said Roberts. "If you can talk to your
commissioners and tell them about all the good the program
does, please spread the word."

"When you approach your commissioners you need to let them
know what they do, not just 4-H but a lot of the other
things this program provides," Retta Blount. "Give them
suggestions on what you think can be cut."

"It's real important that we keep these people, they don't
know how much they do," said Barbara Creager.

"This program does a lot of things for a lot of folks
without much revenue," said Alan Zeman.

Others at the meeting suggested that commissioners had cut
$45,000 off extension service to save deputies in Balmorhea.

"They don't think we bring in any money, but they're wrong,"
said another concerned citizen.

"We're funded by the state and federal and all that is spent
right here in Reeves County," said Roberts.

"They're going to be losing that money and they don't
realize that."

Roberts added that extension service workers take a lot out
of their own pockets to provide the services needed.

Robert was asked by Oscar Saenz if he was willing to cut
anything else besides salaries?

"Yes, I told them I was willing to cut anything to have
Regina and Carol keep their jobs. If it comes to that, I'm
willing to add more cuts," Roberts replied.

"We've had this problem before happen in other counties, but
we have always been able to get it cleared up," said
District Extension Agent Mary Jamison. "We believe in
education in the community level."

The county extension office provides youth with 4-H
projects, sewing and clothing projects and several other

There are 254 counties in Texas and all counties are
represented with either or both County Extension Agents/AG
and County Extension Agent/Family and Consumer Sciences.

Texas is divided into 12 districts with Reeves-Loving
Counties in District 6, based in Ft Stockton. District
Extension Directors in Fort Stockton are Mary Jamison for
Family and Consumer Sciences and Charles Neeb for

The total number of 4-H youth members in Reeves County for
the 1994-1995 year was 660 with 60 4-H Volunteer Leaders.
Reeves County's program operates in conjunction with Loving

"We are above the projected statistics for our counties in
reaching the 4-H Youth," said Mowery.

County programs where 4-H members participate include 4-H
Fashion Show, 4-H Food Show, Achievement Banquet, Horse Show
and Reeves-Loving County Junior Livestock Show.

The Reeves-Loving Counties 4-H Youth placed in five of the
six major livestock shows, according to Roberts.

The 1995 4-H Achievement Banquet will be held on Tuesday,
Sept. 19 with 26 members receiving county 4-H medals; 8
seniors receiving new 4-H jackets and four seniors will have
add- do's on their jackets.

Eight juniors will be receiving new 4-H jackets and three
juniors will have add-to's on their jackets. I

For a 4-H'er to receive a new jacket, they must place first,
second or third in a district or state event, or any placing
at a major livestock show.

"1995 will be the first year that 16 new Jackets are being
received by members, this is quite an accomplishment for the
youth," said Roberts.

He noted that Tara Mallett received a 4-H Foundation
Scholarship of $10,000 from the Houston Livestock Show;
Marianne Rives received a 4-H Foundation Scholarship of
$1,000; Lucy Lara received a $300 Family and Consumer
Sciences Scholarship to further her education and 4-H Adult
Leaders Association give a $500 scholarship yearly to the
Gold Star recipient.

Mowery is responsible for numerous programs in Reeves-Loving
Counties, subjects that are taught through the Extension
Office include, consumer skills, job skills, parenting,
clothing construction, for adult and children, nutrition,
quilting, child care, life skills-basic housekeeping and
financial management.

Use of funds by Villalobos investigated

Staff Writer
PECOS, Aug. 25, 1995 - An investigation by the Texas Rangers
into the misuse of county funds by a Ward County
commissioner and one other county employee has been
completed and turned over to the 143rd District Attorney.

Precinct I Ward County Commissioner Ben Villalobos, who
represents Barstow, was investigated after county officials
noticed that auto parts bills submitted by him were becoming
quite costly.

"There were some discrepancies on the bills we pay there.
The auto parts bills were extremely high and have been off
and on," Ward County Commissioner Bill Welch said according
to a story in today's Odessa American.

Welch declined to comment further on the incident this
morning, but ward County Judge Sam Massey confirmed that a
report by Texas Ranger Jerry Villalobos of Fort Stockton,
involving his investigation of county employees, is
scheduled to be heard during a Ward County Commissioner's
Court meeting Monday in Monahans.

The investigation conducted by Villalobos - no relation to
Ben Villalobos - was completed three or four weeks ago and
was turned into 143rd District Attorney John Stickles.

Stickels, said, "I can't really talk about it," during a
court recess in Pecos this morning.

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