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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Thursday, April 22, 1999

City OKs adding space for juvenile  cases

By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Staff Writer
Juvenile gang activity has so burdened the probation department, law enforcement and school resources that more office space is needed, Alberto Alvarez told the Pecos City Council this morning.

The council approved use of an office in the Pecos Police Department for a new juvenile probation officer to be hired by Alvarez and paid by the state of Texas.

Referring to the monthly juvenile report that shows 16 referrals during March, Alvarez said, "It has been consistently busy; probably more so this year than in past years."

He said that funds are available to increase staffing and modify the juvenile detention center so that offenders can be housed long-term once again. Now the center is approved only for temporary detention.

Even with the modifications, though, the center does not have adequate space to protect the privacy of juveniles during the interview and intake process, Alvarez said.

"Last week, nine juveniles were referred to us at one time. It was impossible to process them. They could overhear what each other's comments were. You can't isolate them," he said.

"We need a location in the downtown area to work more closely with law enforcement."

Alvarez said he would add a 4 p.m. to midnight shift to allow the probation officer to ride with police and help them identify juvenile probationers. He would also be available to advise officers on legal questions.

Now the officers have to look for someone to open the juvenile detention center when they detain a suspect, then transport him/her there. Having a probation officer on duty would give officers immediate access, Alvarez said.

One juvenile probation officer is stationed at Pecos High School, and another was at the Carver Alternative Education Center. Alvarez said that officer had to give up his space when the center was overwhelmed with problem students.

"With this last incident, Carver is over-populated," Alvarez said. "They will have to take that office back and find a place for him."

Police Chief Clay McKinney said the officer can use a room in the police department that opens onto the classroom.

"It is worth trying to see if it works," he said.

"No action" items on the agenda included sale of city-owned land in the Enterprise Zone south of Winkles Trucks Inc. on Texas Highway 17 for a residence; engineering agreement with Frank X. Spencer, who was unable to be present.

Tri-agency agreement on restoration of the Pecos High School athletic track (committee appointed for further study); policy for sale of tax foreclosed property; proclamation regarding the national letter carriers food drive; sale of a building at 1104 S. Cedar, which they learned was sold in a recent tax sale; and duties of the animal control officer, Tomas Escovedo.

Several of those items were placed on the May 13 agenda for action.

Council allows Mobil exploration plan

By PEGGY McCRACKEN
Staff Writer
PECOS, April 22, 1999 -- Mobil Oil Company will pay the city of Pecos $5,595 for the right to conduct seismic exploration in the city's Ward County water field, Mike Hamlin told the council in their regular meeting his morning.

Hamlin said the company and others are paying up to $7.50 per acre, up from the $5 he originally offered.

"I have not paid anyone else any more," Hamlin said in response to Mayor Dot Stafford's request for $10 per acre.

Hamlin said that Mobil would take precautions not to damage water wells and pipelines in the well field, and would accept liability for anything that is damaged by the vibrator trucks that take seismic readings.

Mobil is planning to explore 60 square miles, Hamlin said. And they are drilling two oil wells in the area, with intentions of purchasing water from the city of Pecos.

"Water seems to be worth more than oil right now," he said.

The council approved use of an abandoned landfill trench to dispose of wood, brick, concrete and dirt from the burned-out West Pecos gymnasium.

Health Inspector Armando Gil said that the Texas Natural Resources Conservation Commission has approved use of the trench for that limited purpose. The city would then backfill the trench with dirt to close it, he said.

Questioned whether the trench could be used as part of the proposed Type IV landfill, Gil said that project is at least a year away and the trench needs to be closed now.

People are dumping refuse in the trench, and city crews have had to clean it out three times, Gil said. Also, if a big rain should fill the trench with water, it would have to be drained.

Gil said that Roy Lindsay Construction had started removing debris from the old gym and disposing of it in a location that was not approved as a landfill. Because the debris contains metal and paper, as well as wood, it must be placed in an approved landfill, he said.

When Gil learned of the improper disposal, Lindsay took the debris back to the gym site, he said. Now he is removing the metal and paper so the other debris can be put in the city's trench.

"Lindsay has been very cooperative. He said he would even spread it out so we can backfill it with dirt," Gil said.

Engineering work on drilling monitoring wells required for a new Type IV landfill has begun, said City Manager Kenneth Neal. Existing wells in the area were not approved for use as monitoring wells by the TNRCC, he said.

The council approved in its last meeting expenditure of up to $9,000 for the monitoring wells.

Following a public hearing on tax abatement, the council approved an agreement with M. Brad Bennett for tax abatement on a new building to house the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

Consultant John Wotjkun said that up to 10 new jobs may be created by the addition of INS staff and an increase in Border Patrol positions. The building would be located next door to the Border Patrol station on the south service road of Interstate 20 near Anchor West Inc.

Longtime Pecos jeweler Fonville dies

PECOS, April 22, 1999 -- Funeral services for longtime Pecos jeweler John Franklin Fonville have been scheduled for Friday, following his death in Denton earlier this week.

Fonville moved to Pecos in 1937 and operated Fonville Jewelers until his retirement. He moved to Denton in 1997 and died there Monday at the age of 90.

While in Pecos, Fonville was active in the Pecos Rotary Club, the Masonic Lodge and First Presbyterian Church. He was one of the faithful members of the coffee group that now meets in the Bill Hubbs office on Cedar Street.

Mr. Fonville was born Dec. 5, 1908 in Bowie. He is survived by his wife, Tene, of Denton, a daughter, Jo Evelyn Cooksey of Pecos; one son, John Charles Fonville of Denton; five grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Mrs. Cooksey and her husband, Bill, continue to operate Fonville Jewelry.

Former FPC pastor, the reverend Bob Sebesta, will preside for services at 10 a.m. Friday in the Pecos Funeral Home Chapel. Burial will be in Evergreen cemetery.

Clark earns second title at Houston show

By ROSIE FLORES
Staff Writer
PECOS, April 22, 1999 -- "You've just got to know how to feed them right and make them grow," said Pecos teen Courtney Clark, following her first place win at the Houston Livestock Show held in March.

Clark is not new in the stock show business, having won the same award last year.

The 15-year-old Pecos girl placed first in Heavy Weight Simmental Steer in the Houston Show after winning Grand Champion Steer in the Reeves-Loving County Stock Show held in Pecos in January with her steer named Flash.

Clark has won Grand Champion for the past three years, and for the past two years, has placed first in Houston.

"We've got the touch, I guess," she said.

Clark, a Reeves-Loving 4-H Club member, has been showing steers for the past six years and said she thoroughly enjoys it.

"It's a lot of hard work, but it's also a lot of fun and very rewarding," said Clark. "Since I placed first, I made the sale and am guaranteed $6,000."

Clark made the same amount last year with her prize-winning steer, Bandit. She also won Steer Showmanship at the San Angelo Stock Show held a week after the Houston show.

She is already planning for next year's steer shows. "I already have babies, that were all born around September and plan to show them next year."

Clark said the steers grow really fast and knowing how to feed them helps in their development. "My Simmentals have gotten to be about 1,330 pounds," she said.

Clark purchases her steers from people who own them when they are babies, nurtures them and feeds them right to show them off in the stock shows. "It's a lot of work, because you have to clean their pens out, feed them and groom them, but it's well worth it," said Clark.

Steers are not the only animals that receive special attention from Clark.

"All my life I've been interested in animals," said Clark, who is a member of the Texas Rodeo Association and has made it to state competition in high school rodeo.

"We go to Abilene in June and compete in the high school rodeo finals," said Clark, who competes in the cutting event at high school rodeos around West Texas "It's so much fun," she said.

Taking care of her prize-winning animals doesn't leave her much time for anything else, but like any normal teenager, she enjoys hanging out with her friends and shopping.

She also enjoys participating in golf. "I usually get out of golf by 5 p.m. or 5:30 p.m. and from then on, my time is spent on the animals," she said.

Clark receives help from both her parents, Gary and Judy Clark, who also have similar backgrounds.

"My parents help me out a lot, especially my mom," Clark said. Her mother used to show steers also, while her father showed lambs.

And it helps to have your animals close by, according to Clark. "We have barns behind the house and that's where I keep my steers," she said. "So it's like a family tradition."

Her younger brother, John Marvin, also shows steers and won Reserve Grand Champion at the Reeves-Loving Livestock Show here in Pecos.

Following high school graduation she plans to attend college and hopefully major in agricultural science. "I don't think I want to be a veterinarian, after I saw them de-horn a bull," said Clark. "But I do want to do something in agricultural field, or work with animals."

Gallego bill would raise highway speeds

From Staff and Wire Reports
Speed limits on Reeves County's two interstate highways would go up by 10 miles per hour if a bill sponsored by Alpine legislator Pete Gallego is approved by the Texas House and Senate.

Gallego, whose district includes counties to the south and west of Pecos, saw his measure to raise speed limits on some rural highways gain tentative approval by the House on Wednesday. A spokesman in Gallego's office this morning said final House approval was expected today, and then it would be up to the Texas Senate to place the bill on its calendar before the end of the legislative session next month.

Gallego's bill would apply to cars, motorcycles and light trucks on state and federal highways outside urban districts that currently have a daytime maximum speed limit of 70 mph.

The Alpine Democrat also sponsored an amendment, which was approved, that would raise the speed limit to 80 mph on interstate highways traveling east to west in counties with populations under 25,000.

In West Texas, that would cover Interstate 20 in Reeves, Ward and Crane counties, along with Martin, Mitchell and Nolan counties between Midland and Abilene. It would also include a 400-mile stretch of Interstate 10, from the U.S. 290 junction in Kimble County north of Kerrville, to the Hudspeth County line near Fort Hancock, east of El Paso.

That stretch includes the section of I-10 that runs through Balmorhea in southern Reeves County.

Gallego cited the long distances and lack of traffic on the two- and four-lane highway in West Texas as his reason for submitting the bill. Even with an 80 mph speed limit, a trip along I-10 between Kimble and Hudspeth counties would still take five hours to drive.

Under Gallego's bill, all changes would be subject to approval by the Texas Department of Transportation.

Rep. Carl Isett, R-Lubbock, also tried to pass an amendment that would equalize speed limits for all vehicles, including heavy trucks. Currently, trucks are limited to a 60 mph speed limit on roads where other vehicles are allowed to drive 70 mph during daylight hours.

"Evidence shows that there are more likely to be wrecks when there is a difference in speed among cars and big trucks," said Isett. "It is safer to equalize the speed limits."

He withdrew his amendment, however, after it incited debate on the floor by members such as Rep. Sherri Greenberg.

"We have laws establishing different speed limits for cars and large trucks because of the time it takes to brake and stop for larger vehicles," the Austin Democrat said.

Speeding bill is HB 3328.

 Tree Board holding Arbor Day ceremony

PECOS, April 22, 1999 -- The Pecos Tree Board and Austin Elementary School are inviting the community to join them for the Pecos Arbor Day Ceremony scheduled for 9 a.m., Friday at Austin Elementary School.

Smokey the Bear will be at the ceremony and events will include an Arbor Day Proclamation by Town of Pecos City Mayor Dot Stafford and a story and poem, which will be read by Austin Elementary school students.

In conjunction with the event, Oscar Mestas, with the Texas Forest Service, will speak to the group about the importance of Arbor Day and care of trees.

The winners of the poster contest will be presented, along with a presentation of Tree City USA 5th Year Award by Mestas to Mayor Stafford.

A fire prevention message will be given by Smokey, and the Pecos Tree Board will plant and dedicate a tree on the school grounds.

Lotto

AUSTIN (AP) Results of the Lotto Texas drawing Wednesday night: Winning numbers drawn: 11-19-27-29-39-47. Estimated jackpot: $4 million. Number matching six of six: 0. Matching five of six: 114. Prize: $910. Matching four of six: 4,349. Prize: $86. Next Lotto Texas game: Saturday night. Estimated jackpot: $7 million.

***

AUSTIN (AP) The winning Pick 3 numbers drawn Wednesday night by the Texas Lottery, in order: 1-6-0 (one, six, zero)

Obituary

John Fonville

John F. Fonville, 90, died Monday, April 19, at the Good Samaritan Village in Denton.

Services will be held at 10 a.m., Friday, April 23, at the Pecos Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Bob Sebesta officiating. Burial will follow at Mt. Evergreen Cemetery.

He was born Dec. 8, 1908, in Bowie, was past owner of Fonville Jewelers and had moved to Pecos in 1937. He was a member of the Presbyterian Church, the Pecos Rotary Club, Masonic Lodge and a past member of the West of the Pecos Museum Board. He and his wife moved to Denton in 1997. He was also a member of the famous Coffee Bunch.

Survivors include his wife, Tene Fonville of Denton; one son, John Charles Fonville of Denton; one daughter, Jo Cooksey of Pecos; five grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Weather

PECOS, April 22, 1999 -- High Wednesday 94. Low last night 64. Tonight, clear. Low in the upper 50s. South wind 5-15 mph. Friday, mostly sunny and breezy. High in the upper 80s. South to southwest wind 15-25 mph and gusty.



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