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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

January 12, 1999

Gallego's steer earns Balmorhea buckle

By ROSIE FLORES
Staff Writer
JoGina Gallegos had a good day Saturday, adding a belt buckle to her collection after judging at this year's Balmorhea Livestock Show.

Gallegos showed the Grand Champion Steer with Jamie Gallegos winning reserve Grand Champion Steer.

Belt buckles were presented for Grand Champion animals, trophies for reserve grand champion animals and plaques for showmanship. Ribbons and cash were awarded for class placings.

Grand Champion hog was shown by Amber Cook along with the reserve Grand Champion hog.

Adriel Roman had the Grand Champion Goat and Benjamin Chavira won reserve Grand Champion Goat.

Roman also won for his Grand Champion Lamb and Jennifer Ward showed off the reserve Grand Champion Lamb.

In the swine classes, duroc breed, first place went to Chris Cook; second place, Amber Cook; third place went to Vanessa Baeza and fourth place was Liberty Wofford.

Breed champion went to Chris Cook and reserve breed champion was Amber Cook.

In the swine division, York breed, first place went to Amber Cook; second place, Liberty Wofford; third place, Chris Cook; fourth place Russell Garlick and fifth place, Jourmain Matta.

Breed champion was Amber Cook and reserve breed champion Liberty Wofford.

In the hamp breed, swine division, lightweight class, Amber Cook took first place; Daniela Dutchover, second; Trena Jurado, third and Tobi Gomez placed fourth.

In the Hamp Medium weight division, Savannah Matta placed first; Daniela Dutchover, second; Trena Jurado, third; Brenda Dutchover, fourth and Valerie Garcia, fifth.

In the Hamp light-heavy weight swine division, Amber Cook, first; Oran Jones, second; Ryan Woodruff, third and Levon Barragan, fourth.

Hamp heavy-weight winners were first through sixth, respectively, Logan Humphries, Amber Cook, Chris Cook, Jessica Woodruff, Robert Vasquez and Chris Barragan.

Breed champion went to Amber Cook and Reserve Breed Champion was Logan Humphries.

Crossbred, lightweight winners were AJ Lozano, Savannah Matta, Valerie Garcia, Levon Barragan and Brenda Dutchover.

Crossbred, heavy weight winners included Chris Cook, Julia Garlick, Jay Sanchez, Amber Cook and Liberty Wofford.

Breed champion in this division was Chris Cook and reserve winner was Julia Garlick.

Junior Showmanship Hog winner was Jourmain Matta and Senior Showmanship Hog winner was Liberty Wofford.

In the goats, lightweight class, Orlando Sanchez took first; Amanda Orozco, second; Russell Garlick, third and Amanda Orozco, fourth.

The goats medium weight winner was Benjamin Orozco; second place, Julia Garlick; third place, Jose Rodriguez and fourth place, Benjamin Orozco.

Goats heavyweight winner was Adriel Roman; second place, Benjamin Chavira; third place, Julia Garlick and fourth place, Russell Garlick.

Junior Showmanship goats winner was Orlando Sanchez with the Senior Showmanship award going to Adriel Roman.

In the Lambs Division, finewool class, first place went to Orlando Sanchez; second, Adriel Roman; third, Benjamin Chavira nad fourth, Jennifer Ward.

Breed champion in the lamb division, fine wool was Orlando Sanchez and reserve champion, Adriel Roman.

Crossbred lamb winners were Adriel Roman, James Tarin and Jennifer Ward.

Breed champion in the lamb division was Adriel Roman and reserve champion, James Tarin.

Lambs medium wool, lightweight winners were Jennifer Ward, Benjamin Chavira, Adriel Roman and Jennifer Ward, first through fourth respectively.

In the medium weight, Lamb Division, first place went to Jennifer Ward; second place went to Jamie Gallego; third place, Amber Briceno and fourth place, Jamie Gallego.

Heavyweight lamb winners were Adriel Roman, Benjamin Chavira, Lane Meredith and JoGina Gallego.

Breed champion was Adriel Roman and reserve, Jennifer Ward.

Roman also showed the Grand Champion Lamb and Ward the Reserve Grand Champion Lamb.

Junior Showmanship Award went to James Tarin and the Senior Showmanship Award was netted by Jennifer Ward.

In the Steers Division, JoGina Gallegos placed first; Jamie Gallego, second and Levon Barragan took third.

Steer Showmanship winner was Jamie Gallego.

A barbecue lunch was held during the stock show and the Balmorhea winners will be at this weekend's Reeves County Livestock Show at the Reeves County Civic Center.

Commissioners given positive financial report

By ROSIE FLORES
Staff Writer
Reeves County had a very successful year financially, county auditor Lynn Owens told Reeves County Commissioners Court during their regular meeting Monday.

The court met for the first time with new members Gilberto "Hivi" Rayos and David Castillo, and discussed several items, along with hearing Owens financial review.

All departments stayed within their allocated budget and $191,000 was added to the general fund, according to Owens.

"This is what we had at the end of 1998," said Owens, who told commissioners he provides the court with an expenditure over revenue report every month.

Along with the addition to the general fund, the Reeves County Detention Center added $180,000 to their ending balance.

"We did really well this year and I'm proud of all the departments," said Owens.

There were more expenses than revenue in the Road and Bridges Department, but as far as operating-type funds go, they did a real good job, according to Owens. "I highly commend, Russ Salcido and his crew, they were just $4,000 over," he said.

"I'd also like to thank the Reeves County jail and staff in diligently keeping federal prisoners and keeping within their budget," said Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo. "It's up to the departments to provide excellent services and do everything we can to provide them without unnecessary expenditures."

Bond and oath of offices were approved for elected officials and non-elected appointees, including those of Castillo, representing Precinct 2, and Rayos, who represents Precinct 4.

Commissioners approved hiring a new Reeves County Sheriff deputy, Luis Fernando Valenzuela and a new sheriff's reserve deputy, Julian Lopez Gomez.

Employee uniform bids went to the lowest bidder, Martens Uniforms of San Antonio.

Twenty names were selected for the Salary Grievance Committee. "We select 20 names, but start calling the first nine, if they agree to serve we don't have to call the rest of the them," said county clerk Dianne Florez.

She explained that sometimes individuals don't want to serve, which is the reason that so many names are selected. The selections are drawn from the grand jury pool of names.

Budget amendments and line-item transfers were also approved, along with minutes from previous meetings and semi-monthly bills.

Commissioner Castillo abstained from voting on the semi-monthly bills item, because some of the bills from his company, La Nortena Tortilla Factory, were included.

Midland decides to join Permian Basin task force

By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Staff Writer
Monday's 3-1 vote by Midland County Commissioners to allow their sheriff's office to join the drug task force being put together by Reeves County adds strength to the eight-member group.

Pecos Police Chief Clay McKinney said this morning that he will meet with Midland Sheriff Gary Painter Wednesday to prepare documents adding Midland SO to the grant application awaiting approval in Austin.

"It won't slow down the grant," said McKinney. "We are allowed four amendments per year. We are sitting on the edge of our chairs, expecting it just any day."

The amendment would add funding to the grant for the task force to add personnel from the Midland sheriff's office to the staff, McKinney said.

"We don't know who the commander will be," McKinney said.

McKinney, Reeves County Sheriff Andy Gomez and District Attorney Randy Reynolds talked with the deputy director in Austin about the commander position.

"He told us he would announce the position to all task forces within the state and there is a good chance we will get a qualified person to come in and run it for us," McKinney said.

Retaining the name of the defunct Permian Basin Drug Task Force, the entity headed by Sheriff Gomez will be staffed by participating agencies, but will work with any agency that requests help, Gomez said.

The West Texas Narcotics Task Force began operations in mid-October, headed by Lt. David Bradshaw of the Department of Public Safety.

Midland commissioners indicated late last year it wanted to align the county with the West Texas Narcotics Task Force, which is why Midland was not included in the original Permian Basin Drug Task Force grant application. Ector County, which served as host to the old PBDTF, voted to join the DPS-supervised force during their county commissioners' meeting on Monday.

Pecos' tax rebate slips, others plunge

By JON FULBRIGHT
Staff Writer
There's very little oil and very few oil-related businesses in the mountains of West Texas, which may be why the cities there were about the only ones in the area not to see a decline in their January sales tax checks.

New state comptroller Carole Keeton Rylander said checks sent out as part of the local share of Texas' state sales tax were up overall by 5.1 percent over January of 1998. But almost every city within the Permian Basin saw their checks plunge compared to a year ago, when oil prices were about 50 percent higher than their current levels.

That's led to oil industry cutbacks in West Texas, and while Rylander said "consumers continue to show their confidence in the growing Texas economy," that didn't hold true for area towns.

Pecos, just on the edge of the oil patch, got off easier than most. The city's $48,202 check, based on it's 1.5 cent share of the sales tax, was just a 4.45 percent drop from last year, when it got $50,448 back from Austin. Balmorhea's sales tax check also declined, while Toyah's was up by more than 60 percent, though part of that was due to a 1/2-cent hike in the city's sales tax since last year.

A quarter-cent rise in its sales tax allowed Odessa to report a rise in its rebate check over last year, but Midland was down by 12 percent, Monahans by 13 percent, Andrews by 22 percent, Fort Stockton by 25 percent and Crane saw it's check fall by 36 percent. Kermit was the only town to escape the decline, as it got back a check that was a few dollars higher than 1998.

Down in the mountains, the rebate checks more reflected the overall state trend. Alpine saw it's January tax rebate check increase 25 percent, to $58,922, while Van Horn's $17,055 check was up 22 1/2 percent and Presidio reported a 5 7/2 percent rise, to $13,556. Marfa was the only city going the other way it's $3,582 check was 24 percent below last January.

Reeves County Hospital District also was one of the few net gainers over a year ago. It's $19,780 rebate check from Rylander's office was about $1,000 more than last year, a 5.7 percent gain.

Rylander said the $19.8 million check sent to Texas' biggest city, Houston, was also 5.7 percent higher than 1998. Dallas got back $12.1 million, 6.7 percent above last year's figure, and San Antonio received an $8.5 million tax rebate check, 7.9 percent more than last year.

Overall, Rylander's office sent out $163.8 million in sales tax payments to the 1,096 cities and 118 counties that collect sales taxes in Texas.

Burkholder suing Phillips over broken oil contract

By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Staff Writer
U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks of Austin began a week of trials in the Pecos Division Monday with a civil action filed by Terry Burkholder against Phillips Petroleum over mineral leases.

Burkholder had a contract to obtain leases for Phillips in the early 1980s, when the oil bust hit the Permian Basin. Because of the poor economy, Phillips stopped leasing for several years, Burkholder testified Monday.

But when they resumed leasing, they used another broker, which Burkholder said violates his contract and cost him up to $1.1 million in fees.

"That's what I would have made if I had been doing the leasing and paid those amounts Phillips paid," said Burkholder.

After hearing testimony from Thomas J. Atkins, Mike Harrison, William Arthur Chalfant, Phillip Kent Crawford and Paul Ireland, Judge Sparks ruled that this was at best a poor contract and urged the parties to try to settle.

If no settlement is reached, Judge Parks will rule after receiving letter briefs regarding the issue that termination of the contract carried a reasonable time limit.

In the afternoon, a jury began hearing testimony in a marijuana possession trial of March Anthony Davis of Macon, Ga.

Davis was arrested Oct. 17, 1998 after Border Patrol agents took luggage containing marijuana off the bus Davis was riding when it was searched in Van Horn.

The luggage belonged to his traveling companion, Augusta Thomas, Davis testified. He said he didn't tell agents the luggage belonged to Thomas because, "I was forced to be quiet."

Alpine attorney Mike Barclay represents Davis, while J. Miller is prosecuting for the government.

Testimony was completed this morning, and a third trial is set to begin at 9 a.m. Wednesday.

Miller and Fred Brigman will team up to prosecute Stephanie Ann Carrasco, 32, of Amarillo, on charges of importing and possessing 91.84 pounds marijuana for distribution on Nov. 2, 1998.

Thursday's trial charges Emma Torres-Sandoval, 35, of Carlsbad, N.M., with importing and possessing for distribution 143.8 pounds of marijuana on Nov. 8, 1998.

Federal prisoner escapes from Presidio County Jail

By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Staff Writer
Points south are the focus of a search today for a federal prisoner who escaped from the Presidio County Jail in Marfa late Monday.

Reymundo Calderon-Gaitan, 33, a Mexican citizen charged with illegal entry, cut himself while climbing over a fence topped with concertina wire sometime between 4 p.m. and 9 p.m. Monday, according to a broadcast alert posted by Chief Jailer Bob Cook.

Calderon is 6-foot-3, weighs 175 pounds, has short black hair and brown eyes. He was last seen wearing sweats and tennis shoes, the alert notes.

"We are actively involved in pursuing him right now," said Cook this morning.

Deputy U.S. Marshal Paul Evans of Alpine is among area law enforcement officers joining in the search.

Weather

High Monday 78; low last night 41. Tonight, becoming mostly cloudy, windy and colder. Low in the mid 30s. Northwest wind 10-20 mph becoming northeast 20-30 mph and gusty in the evening, decreasing late. Wednesday, becoming partly cloudy. High in the upper 40s. Northeast wind 10-15 mph becoming southeast in the afternoon.



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Pecos Enterprise
York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
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