Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
February 17, 1999
Sadler becomes first local entry in May elections
A former Pecos-Barstow-Toyah school board members has become the first
person to file to run in the May 1 school board election.
Billie Sadler has filed as a prospective candidate in the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah
ISD board elections, which will be held on May 1, along with the Balmorhea
ISD election and those for city positions in Pecos, Balmorhea, Toyah and
Barstow. Two seats on the Reeves County Hospital District board will also
be up for election at that time.
Sadler served on the school board in the early 1990s, before resigning
to avoid a conflict of interest when her son Mike was named Zavala Middle
School principal in 1995. She'll be seeking one of the two available seats
on the P-B-T board, currently held by trustees Daisy Roquemore and Alfred
Alvarez, whose three-year terms expire in May.
There have been no filings reported since Monday, the first day to do
so, in the Town of Pecos election.
Voters will select three city councilmen for two-year terms, with the
seats held by Gerald Tellez Jr., Johnny Terrazas and Randy Graham coming
up for election.
In the Reeves County Hospital District' race, the seats of board president,
Jeannette Alligood, in Precinct 4 term and Precinct 2 representative Marcella
Lovett are expiring.
Prospective candidates may pick up forms for the city election from
Geneva Martinez, city secretary, at City Hall; from secretary Jo Allgood
at the school administration office; and from administrative assistant
Nadine Smith at Reeves County Hospital.
Allgood will also hand the Barstow City Council election, while candidates
in Balmorhea can pick up forms for the school race at the Balmorhea ISD
office and at Balmorhea City Hall for the council election.
Martinez said that March 17 is the last day to file for the election.
Debbie Thomas, elections administrator, will handle early voting for
all three entities within Pecos.
Pot seized, four jailed after Tuesday drug raid
By ROSIE FLORES
Four people were arrested Tuesday night after a search warrant executed
by the Reeves County Sheriff's Department and Pecos Police Department Multi-Agency
S.W.A.T. Team resulted in the seizure of marijuana and drug paraphernalia
from an Eddy Street residence.
Police Pecos Police Investigator Ernest Lazcano said the search was
conducted at 9:30 p.m. on a warrant issued by Municipal Court Judge Phyllis
Salyer for the residence, located at 407 S. Eddy St.
"Found in the residence was one big plastic baggy containing about one
quarter of a pound of marijuana, one medium size bag containing marijuana,
and a metal canister containing drug paraphernalia," said Lazcano.
Arrested at the residence and charged with possession of marijuana under
five pounds and over four ounces in a drug free zone (within 1,000 feet
of the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD bus yard), a third degree felony, were Julie
Deandra Lara Urquidez, 20; Amy Diane Daniels, 23 and Jerry Herrron, 20,
according to Police Reports.
Arrested for possession of an alcoholic beverage and drug paraphernalia
both Class C misdemeanors was Clifton Ikeler, 18. Ikeler was charged with
Minor in Possession.
All four were transported to Reeves County Jail are currently awaiting
Customs agents kept busy by marijuana discoveries
U.S. Customs Service agents reported making 19 drug seizures along the
Rio Grande border between El Paso and Presidio during the past six days,
including a 318-pound marijuana bust at the Presidio port-of-entry on Monday.
According to Customs officials, the marijuana was found in a hidden
compartment within the I-beams of a trailer at the U.S. 67 checkpoint on
Monday. Arrested was the driver of the vehicle, Roberto Alonso Moreno-Gutierrez,
37, of Cuahtemoc, Chih., Mexico, in connection with the smuggling attempt.
Customs said the other large seizure over the holiday weekend involved
358.7 pounds of marijuana hidden in the walls of a van that attempted to
pass through the Ysleta checkpoint in El Paso last Thursday. Agents arrested
18-year-old Jose Alonso Rodriguez-Urbina in connection with the failed
Agents also reported seizing $40,000 in unreported currency, 75 Cuban
cigars and undeclared prescription medications as the result of searches
at the border during the period from last Thursday through Tuesday.
Group seeks to stir interest in Fair
By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Gardners, plant your seed now for a fall harvest to display at the
Reeves County Fall Fair Oct. 3-4.
Locally-grown produce is one of the many ideas thrown out Tuesday at
the first meeting of the fall fair committee, chaired by Barbara Creager
Creager said that last year's fair had all the attraction of a morgue,
with few booths and most of those unmanned. She proposed putting some life
into the annual event by adding activities to attract children.
Other ideas, some in response to a survey mailed out by the Reeves-Loving
County Extension staff, include a fall fair walk of fame, with pictures
and ribbons of past winners; merging Tejano and Country music in the concert;
a jumping balloon booth, photo booth with character cutouts; woodworking
Each food vendor would be given a guarantee that no other booth would
be allowed to sell that particular item, whether it be barbecue sandwiches,
candy apples, beef burgers, pancakes, popcorn or cotton candy.
Marilyn Oden said that the Pecos Art Association would sponsor the children's
art booth, as they have for 32 years. She proposed setting the deadline
for entries 10 days in advance to give them time to label all the pictures
and place ribbons on them before the fair opens on Friday.
She suggested signs at the entrance to the display rooms so fairgoers
will know what to expect.
Roy Prewit volunteered to be in charge of the quilting display, and
the Pecos Senior Citizen's Center will work on a quilt during the fair.
Creager said the quilts, and photography could be displayed in the center
of the front room of the civic center on forms placed in an octagonal shape.
"That would take up a massive part of that one room," she said.
Children's activities could include finger painting, crafts or cookie
decoration, with a small charge of 5 to 10 cents being made for each item.
Linda Gholson said that a talent show has increased attendance in the
past, and the pet show was popular when the fair opened on Thursday night.
She suggested the pet show be moved to Saturday afternoon after the livestock
Reminiscing about successful fairs in the past, the group remembered
health care booths, furniture and automobile displays, cake walk, turkey
shoot, ribbon roping, bingo, electricity arching show and firemen's display.
With early planning, the group hopes to attract some of those and more
to revive the fall fair.
Board set to review computer, budget troubles
By ROSIE FLORES
A Y2K overview will be heard and solutions for financial situation
for 1999-2000 school year due to decline in oil/gas revenues discussed
during the regular meeting of the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD board meeting
scheduled for 6 p.m., Thursday.
The school board will meet in the board room, 1304 S. Park to hear about
any pending problems and potential solutions involving the Y2K computer
problem within the school district, while the financial situation will
deal with the estimated loss of over $700,000 in oil and gas valuations
as the result of declining prices during the past year.
A list sent out by State Comptroller Carole Keeton Rylander's office
last week showed P-B-T will be among the 20 hardest hit school districts
in Texas by the oil price decline. Other school districts, including Iraan-Sheffield
and Andrews, face multi-million dollar valuation losses as they prepare
their budgets for FY 2000.
Board members will also discuss several other items, including a contract
and agreement between Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD and Reeves County for GED
testing at the Juvenile Detention Center; a report on TEA monitoring team
for Carver Alternative Education Center; discuss/approve instructional
policies (local), revising local policy DB (employees must reside within
district), revise policy EIE and delete policy EMC and discuss a technology
Other items for discussion and approval include:
* Order school trustee election and appoint early voting clerk.
* Selection of election judges, alternate judges, early voting ballot
board judge and alternate and central counting officials.
* Election calendar.
* Budget calendar.
* Request by U.S.A. Volleyball representatives to use the old gym for
volleyball during February, March and April and waive fees.
* Changing date for March board meeting
Under old business the group will discuss selection for Texas registered
engineer/architect for design and construction of administrative services
for roof replacement for Pecos High School Building A.
School board members will recognize the swim team and state qualifiers
in Business Professionals of America, state qualifiers in Distributive
Education Clubs of America and Judy Holland as Teacher of the Year for
Texas Business Technology Teachers.
Other items to be discussed include discussing the 1998-99 budget amendments,
attendance report, tax report, depository securities report, cafeteria
report, commodities received report, current bills and financial report,
investment transaction report and the reconciled bank balance report.
The group will also meet behind closed doors in executive session to
discuss personnel, including the administrators' contracts: administrative
assistant/personnel director, business manager, career and technology director,
special education director, principals, assistant principal, food services
director, tax collector, AEP manager, maintenance director and athletic
Gramm aide visiting Pecos on Thursday
An aide to Texas Senator Phil Gramm will be in Pecos at 7:30 a.m. at the
Swiss Clock Inn to discuss issues related to agriculture within the Trans-Pecos
Everyone is invited to attend the Dutch Treat breakfast meeting.
N.M. buys water rights to fulfill compact
CARLSBAD, N.M. (AP) — Some $6.3 million worth of newly purchased Pecos
River water rights will allow New Mexico to send the water downstream to
It's by far the largest water purchase by the Interstate Stream Commission
and is meant to help address New Mexico's difficulty in delivering Texas'
share of the river water.
Interstate Stream Commission chief engineer Norman Gaume called the
deal, reached last week with the city of Carlsbad, "a major accomplishment."
The purchase of Carlsbad water is expected to yield about 3,600 acre-feet
at the state line, about one-third the amount New Mexico was short-changing
Texas before the U.S. Supreme Court stepped in a decade ago. The purchase
also doubles the amount of permanent water rights the state has for its
obligation to Texas.
Included in the price of staying out of water trouble with Texas is
about $10 million in annual water leases.
Those leases are expected to continue, especially since the state is
having trouble finding enough water to buy.
"It's getting more difficult," Gaume acknowledged.
Under a 1988 Supreme Court order, New Mexico is not allowed to fall
short on its deliveries of Pecos River water to Texas. The state is required
to send Texas about half the water available in the river each year.
To keep from falling short, New Mexico has spent about $26 million since
1991 to shop for permanent water rights and, as a stopgap, to lease water
on an annual basis.
State officials have warned that without those measures, they could
be forced to shut down wells, perhaps even those used by the cities of
Roswell, Artesia and Carlsbad.
Shutting wells could cause $200 million in economic damage to the state
in the first year alone, according to a study paid for by the Interstate
Stream Commission, which negotiates and administers compacts that govern
water in streams that cross state borders.
The Pecos River problem is more complex because the state can't simply
take the water from the newest water rights owners, leaving the older rights
alone. On the Pecos, newest water rights are for wells, but the state needs
surface water to be able to deliver water quickly.
Heavy snows in New Mexico in early winter last year allowed the state
to meet its committments without any difficulties. Red Bluff Lake, just
south of the state line, had a water level of nearly 100,000 acre/feet
last winter, but was holding 30 percent less water as of the end of January.
The purchase deal was originally to be a three-party agreement that
would have yielded more than twice as much water to deliver to Texas. But
IMC Kalium, a potash mining company, pulled out after it became clear it
would have difficulty replacing the water it planned to sell.
The company had expected to replace the water with wells drilled into
an aquifer that extends under Lea County. But Lea County farmers, worried
that increased pumping would dry up their wells, were willing to fight
"The Lea County water users could block them indefinitely with appeals
and protests," Gaume said.
Lillian Birkla, 87, died Tuesday, Feb. 16, 1999 at Reeves County Hospital.
Graveside services will be held at 2 p.m., Thursday at Mount Evergreen
Cemetery with Rev. Billy Foster officiating.
She was born Jan. 4, 1912 in Perry County Ind. and was a housewife.
Survivors include three sons, George Birkla of Pecos, Clyde Birkla of
Silver City, N.M. and Paul Birkla of Wink; two daughters, Barbara Blevins
of Hobbs, N.M. and Juanita Hill of Conroe, Tx.; 21 grandchildren and 28
Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
Goldia McNeill Mask, 84, died Monday, Feb. 15, 1999 in Odessa.
Services will be held at 3 p.m., Thursday, at First Methodist Church
in Balmorhea with Rev. Jim Miles assisted by Rev. Ernie Vineyard officiating.
Burial will be in Balmorhea Cemetery.
She was born May 23, 1914 in Fort Stockton, was a past owner/operator
of a restaurant and a member of the First Presbyterian Church. She was
very active in the senior citizens center and the Well-Kept Community Club
both in Balmorhea.
She was preceded in death by a brother, Carl R. Unkefer in 1980; a husband,
A.H. McNeill in 1985; a second husband, J. Leland Mask in 1993 and a great-granddaughter,
Savanna Harbour in 1986.
Survivors include one daughter, Janice Harbour of Fort Stockton; four
grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren.
Fort Stockton Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.
High Tuesday 63. Low this morning 31. Forecast for tonight: Partly cloudy.
Low around 40. West wind 10-20 mph. Thursday, partly cloudy. High around
70. Northwest wind 10-20 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