Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Wednesday, January 27, 1999
PHA studies ways to use $1.3 million grant
By ROSIE FLORES
Landscaping, fencing and new bathrooms in an around apartments were
the topic of discussion at a special meeting of the Pecos Housing Authority
Board members held Tuesday evening.
"I just wanted to update the board on what we'll be doing with the grant
fund money we have received," said PHA Executive Director Nellie Gomez.
Board president Frank Perea said money came from a 1998 CIAP grant the
PHA was awarded, and was in the amount of $1.3 million.
"We're very proud of Nellie and her staff in procuring these funds for
us," said Perea. "This will boost our local economy by providing opportunities
for contractors and sub-contractors to do the work that will be needed.
"Since Nellie came on board she has procured several CIAP awards. We're
just very happy with the work she is doing," said Perea.
He said renovating the apartments is a continuing effort of the board
and the PHA staff, and it helps the local economy by providing jobs.
Gomez was also successful in procuring $99,000 to make apartments designated
for the elderly easier for them to use. "This is a disability act (Section
504) that makes apartments and bathrooms meet the standards," said Perea.
Gomez told the board that the update reviewed what would be prioritized.
"This is to let you know what we want to start working on first, what
we really want to do with the funds," she said, and architect Ed Vaughn
Jr. of Fort Worth was on hand to offer suggestions and receive input from
board members on the various projects planned.
Vaughn and Gomez will be going through the housing division today to
see what areas will be targeted first.
"Most of the work we've been doing with the funds has been inside and
now Nellie wants to prioritize landscaping," said Perea. "I think it would
be nice to have all the apartments on the outside looking as great as they
do on the inside."
Fences were another item discussed. "The elderly apartments really need
fencing, especially the ones by the railroad tracks," said Gomez.
She also would like to see all the apartments located on the West Second
Street site have bathrooms that are 504 accessible. "A lot of our tenants
are not in wheelchairs or anything, but it would be helpful to them if
we made them that way, since some are elderly individuals," she said.
Gomez stated that she would also like to try to get bathrooms in the
apartments completely redone. "Even if we can only do 50 of them, have
them done completely, instead of just partially working in each one," she
The maintenance building, one block east of the current PHA office on
Meadowbrook Drive, also needs to be completed, according to Gomez. "We
will eventually move our offices over there and the meetings will also
be held there," she said.
"I want to get some designs and prices for you on fences and we'll take
it from there," said Vaughn.
According to Vaughn funds can be moved around to fit the needs. "They'll
let you allocate the funds where you want them, but we'll have to ask them
about some things," he said.
Repair funds or day care still needed
By ROSIE FLORES
The Pecos Housing Authority is seeking funds to renovate the Pecos
Day Care Center, but so far, no money has been made available for the project,
according to board president Frank Perea.
"However, we might apply for some emergency funds to renovate that building,"
said Perea. The PHA owns the East 10th St. facility, which was shut down
Perea stated that the Pecos Housing Authority was recently granted a
CIAP 1998 award in the amount of $1.3 million. "They let us shift money
around and they might let us apportion some to fix the daycare, which is
in terrible disrepair," he said.
The daycare facility has been a pet project of the PHA Executive Director
Nellie Gomez. "We'll also have to apply for certification license through
the housing authority, so that it can be used as a daycare facility again,"
The daycare would primarily be for tenants of the Pecos Housing Authority,
according to Perea. "We want to use it as an incentive for those living
at the apartments to go out and seek employment," he said.
Perea explained that many of the individuals who live at the apartments
don't work, because of the high-cost of daycare.
"If they had a daycare that they could take their children to, that
would be less expensive, they might want to try to go out and seek employment,"
he said. "The daycare would be primarily for them, but if there was room
for more children, those would be accepted also."
The daycare idea is a long-term project that Gomez and the board will
be looking at. "It's not in the works yet, the building needs a lot of
repairs and the first thing is to find funds to fix it up," said Perea.
He said Ed Vaughn Jr., the architect for the PHA, told board members
that a new roof would need to be placed at the facility and numerous other
items taken care of before the doors would be open again.
"Right now it doesn't really serve any purpose except for the Meals
on Wheels program," he said.
"If we can't get any funding for the facility maybe we can get permission
to shift some of the funds PHA has procured through CIAP to renovate that
building," he said. "You never know: HUD might say, `yes, you can use some
of the funds,' if they know we want to open the daycare up again."
Expansion underway at bicycle warehouse
By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Bicycles are flowing out of Ojinaga, Mex. at the rate of 40,000 to
50,000 per month, and a second manufacturing plant goes on line today.
That's why space in the Brunswick warehouse at Balmorhea is being doubled,
said Armando Mondragon, warehouse manager.
Mondragon said the warehouse receives materials for the bicycles, then
ships them to the Ojinaga plants. Once they are assembled, the bicycles
are shipped back to Balmorhea, then distributed to outlets around the nation.
The original 62,000-sq. ft. warehouse was completed in February, 1997
by the Roadmaster Corporation, who sold out to Brunswick, a company better
known for its bowling and billiards equipment.
Nineteen employees operate the Balmorhea warehouse, and Mondragon is
hiring additional forklift operators and laborers with plans to increase
the number to 25 immediately and 30 eventually.
"I am doing training right now," Mondragon said, noting that he expects
traffic to get pretty heavy in about two months with the new plant operating
at full capacity.
Reeves County's location is ideal for warehousing products manufactured
in Mexico, because two interstate highways cross the county, Mondragon
"A lot of trucks come in on I-20 and down Texas 17, and some come on
I-10," he said.
Mondragon, a Saragosa native, said his employees come from Balmorhea,
Saragosa, Pecos and other nearby towns.
"Overall, surrounding towns have been real helpful and real good to
us," he said. "The people are working together."
This week, Mondragon is busy crossing equipment for the new plant into
"All the machinery is coming down to the warehouse, and I am responsible
for crossing it into Mexico. We are about finished. There are only two
trailers left. Then there will be a lot of small items that need to cross,"
He has to deal with U.S. Customs and Mexican Customs to identify the
country of origin for the equipment, its costs, permits, and other details.
"It is real tedious, but it has to be accurate," he said. "The good
thing is, we have a good crew here that knows what they need to do, and
they do it. I am real proud how they have come along."
Mondragon said that business is "looking pretty good," and he hopes
it keeps growing.
"It is something different from the basic farming economy," he said.
"I am happy to see something else come in and provide more business."
TxDOT asks city for land near airport
By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Pecos City Council in their Thursday meeting will consider selling
15 acres of land at the Pecos Municipal Airport area to the Texas Department
of Transportation and a resulting utility easement.
City Attorney Scott Johnson said that TxDOT proposes to construct a
shop building on the land near the intersection of the I-20 service road
and Texas Highway 17, west of Colt Chevrolet-Buick.
The council will hear the annual Pecos Housing Authority report from
Nellie Gomez, executive director; consider pursuing an EDAP grant; consider
a contract with wrecker services; consider a request to grant easement
to Dr. David Lovett and Dr. W.J. Bang at the medical office building on
Texas Street; and consider grant wirters.
Recommendations for a Type IV landfill will be considered, along with
a report on street signs; bids for police department vehicles, hiring a
firm for records management and the position of shop foreman.
Shop Foreman Doug Cox is retiring as of Friday.
Regular council meetings are at 7:30 a.m. in the council chambers at
City Hall. All but the executive session to discuss the shop foreman is
open to the public.
Truck driver hurt in crash out of hospital
By PEGGY McCRACKEN
The driver of a truck that overturned on I-20 east of Pecos Tuesday
morning was treated at Reeves County Hospital for contusions and abrasions
Cade Wash Jr., 52, of Tucson, Ariz., was driving the 1999 Volvo east
on I-20 .7 miles east of Pecos at 7 a.m. when the truck drifted off the
roadway, said Department of Public Safety Trooper Richard Jacobs.
When the load of lettuce in the trailer shifted on the steep embankment,
the truck and trailer overturned on their sides.
Relief driver Dominic R. Rucker, 22, of Victorville, Calif., was partially
ejected from the sleeper compartment and was crushed under the truck. Precinct
1 Justice of the Peace Amonario Ramon pronounced him dead at 8:04 a.m.,
and the body was transported to Pecos Funeral Home.
Health inspector Armando Gil said the truck's semi trailer held 880
cases of Dandy lettuce, and that 95 percent of it is salvagable.
PECOS, Jan. 27, 1999 - High Tuesday 81; low last night 35. Tonight, becoming
mostly cloudy. Low around 40. North to northeast wind 5-15 mph. Thursday,
cloudy and colder. A 20 percent chance of showers. High 50 to 55, temperatures
dropping during the afternoon. North wind 15-25 mph and gusty.
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 1999 by Pecos Enterprise