Daily Newspaper for Reeves County, Trans Pecos, Big Bend, Far West Texas

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Tuesday, November 5, 1996

Morning turnout low at local polling sites

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Balloting in today's general election opened slowly this morning in
Pecos, with only a handful of people turning out at the voting boxes
involved in the county's only contested race.

Few voters showed up at either Bessie Haynes or Pecos Elementary, two of
the polling sites for the Precinct 1 commissioner's race. Incumbent Lupe
Garcia is seeking a second four-year term in office, and is being
challenged by former commissioner Felipe Arredondo and Mickey Vasquez.

Both are running as write-in candidates. Vasquez had tried to run in
last March's Democratic primary, but an error in the filing of his
petition kept him off the primary ballot.

Voting this morning at the Reeves County Library in Precinct 2 was also
slow, with just 35 ballots cast as of late this morning.

Also running as a write-in candidate is Walter Holcombe. But he is
unopposed in his race for Reeves County Attorney, after no candidates
filed to run in the March primary election.

Other uncontested races include Reeves County Sheriff (Andy Gomez),
Precinct 3 commissioner (Herman Tarin) and Reeves County Tax
Assessor-Collector (Elfida Zuniga).

All 12 polling sites in Reeves County, along with those in Barstow (Ward
County) and Mentone (Loving County) will be open until 7 p.m. tonight
for voting.

Voting sites in Reeves County are as follows:

Box #1 - Pecos Community Center;
Box #2 - Pecos Elementary;
Box #3 - Pecos High School (new gym);
Box #4 - Toyah City Hall;
Box #5 - Balmorhea Senior Citizen Center;
Box #6 - Saragosa Multi Purpose Center;
Box #7 - Reeves County Library;
Box #8 - Lamar Middle School Sixth Grade, Room 1;
Box #9 - Orla/Red Bluff Office;
Box #10 - Reeves County Annex Building, north wing;
Box #11 - Bessie Haynes Elementary;
Box #12 - Texas-New Mexico Power Co. building, on Stafford Boulevard.

Barstow voters can cast their ballots from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the
Barstow Community Center, while all Loving County voting precincts are
voting at the Loving County Courthouse in Mentone.

Early voting in Reeves County brought in over 1,700 ballots, about 22
percent of the county's 7,.623 registered voters. Turnout was expected
to be lighter than in the March primary election, where most of the
contested local races were held and about 50 percent of eligible voters
cast ballots.

While voters outside Precinct 1 in Reeves County have no contested local
races on their ballot, they can still make a different in what is
expected to be a close race in Texas for president between Bill Clinton
and Bob Dole.

President Clinton, Dole, Ross Perot and several other minor party
candidates are on today's presidential ballot. Also up for election is
the Senate seat held by Phil Gramm. The two-term Republican is seeking
re-election against Democrat Victor Morales, while two-term GOP
Congressman Henry Bonilla is seeking re-election against Democratic
challenger Charles P. Jones.

Voters in Ward and Loving counties, as well as those voting at Box 9 in
Reeves County will also be casting ballots in an open election for the
District 28 seat in the Texas Senate. Four Republicans and three
Democrats are seeking that post, and a runoff election is possible next

Tax abatement committee

holds first meeting tonight

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Staff Writer

After more than two months in the planning stage, a Pecos Tax Abatement
Committee will gather for its first meeting tonight.

Pecos Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Tom Rivera said the first
meeting will take place at the Reeves County Civic Center at 6 p.m.

He explained that the essential purpose of the committee is to
establish procedural tactics for a tax incentive program that fits Pecos
and Reeves County.

Rivera also said the committee will consist strictly of private
citizens appointed by elected officials from each of the city and county
taxing entities.

There are about 20 persons on the committee, said Rivera.

The chamber director said that group will be presented with outlines of
other tax abatement programs from other communities to use as guidelines
for establishing a local approach.

"Once the committee has established a policy," said Rivera, "it will be
presented to each of the taxing entities."

Officers will also be appointed at tonight's meeting, he said.

PHS grad Pena earns

national engineer award

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Maribel Pena Chavez has added another honor to a long list of
achievements since her graduation from Pecos High School in 1978.

She received the award for professional achievement in government at the
1996 Hispanic Engineer National Achievement Awards Conference in Houston
earlier this month.

Chavez became the first female resident engineer in the history of the
Texas Department of Transportation in 1989 when she headed up the Pecos
residency, and then became the first female TxDOT district engineer in

On Thursday, the Texas Transportation Commission added its
congratulations at the monthly meeting in Austin.

"Anyone who knows Maribel Chavez was not surprised by this award," said
Bill Burnett, TxDOT executive director and another former Pecos
engineer. "She is in every sense an exemplary district engineer. It's
good to see our opinion of her echoed by a national organization."

Chavez's parents, Andres and Maria Pena, have moved to Monahans, where
her brother, Alfredo Pena, also lives.

Pecos High School honored her last May when she was the keynote speaker
at the senior class graduation exercises.

She joined TxDOT in 1983 as an engineering assistant with the Pecos
residency. She worked as design engineer and assistant field operations
engineer in the Odessa district office before taking the resident
engineer post in Pecos.

She is a member of the Leadership Texas Alumni Association and has
served as chairman of the board of directors of the Texas Alliance for
Minorities in Engineering.

As head of the Abilene district, she oversees work in 13 counties with
3,633 centerline miles of roadway and 350 district employees.

Geron hopes induction day gets complicated

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Staff Writer

Pecos Eagles' volleyball coach Nora Geron is hoping her travel schedule
gets complicated this weekend. Because if it is, that means her team
will still be in the Class 4A state playoffs.

The Eagles, who won their opening round playoff match Thursday night in
Van Horn over El Paso Burges, take on Lamesa tonight at 7:30 p.m. in
Crane in the area round of the Class 4A playoffs. The winner will go on
to face either the San Angelo Lake View Maidens or the Dumas Demons in
the regional quarterfinals this Saturday.

But that's also the day Geron is scheduled to be one of four alumni
inducted into the Hall of Honor at Sul Ross State University in Alpine.

Geron, State Rep. Pete Gallego, Herbert Biederman of Wall and Jerry
Hudgins of Kingwood are scheduled to be inducted into the Hall of Honor
during homecoming induction ceremonies, at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in
Mountainside Dining Room. So a victory tonight over the Golden Tornadoes
will make this weekend a hectic one for the Eagles' longtime coach.

"Carol Lewis over in Alpine has lined up an airplane just in case,"
Geron said. "If we win and play Lake View it won't be that bad, because
we can play in Midland. But if it's Dumas, we're looking at the Lubbock

However, there wouldn't be any guarantee it would actually be in
Lubbock. The Eagles and Tors tried to play tonight's contest in the
Midland-Odessa area, but all those gyms are booked for pre-season
basketball scrimmages, and with the season starting next week, most
schools also have scrimmages planned for this Saturday.

"Wherever we play, it will have to have an airport," Geron said. "I
always swore I would never get into a little plane, but whatever I have
to do I'll do it. The important thing is to keep the girls winning."

Saturday's honor is the first of two this month for Geron. She and the
members of Pecos' 1987 state championship team will be honored the
weekend of Nov. 22-23 at Burger Center in Austin, during this year's UIL
State Volleyball Tournament.

The `87 squad won Pecos' only state championship in any team sport, and
their 34-0 record was the last undefeated mark for any Class 4A
volleyball team.

This year's Eagles team is the 11th to reach the playoffs since Geron
took over the program in 1980, after coaching for 15 years in Fabens.
The Eagles won 76 straight district matches between 1985-91, won
district championships from 1986-90 and in 1992, and were Region I-4A
finalists in 1982, 1986, 1988 and 1989. Last Thursday's playoff win over
Burges was her 618th career victory.

While Geron was at Fabens, the Wildcats won eight other district titles,
and reached the Class 2A (now 3A) state finals once. Prior to that, she
coached in Florida, earning a state basketball championship there with
another undefeated squad.

An Alpine native and Alpine High School grad, Geron continued her
education at Sul Ross, graduating with her bachelor of science degree in
1958. In high school athletics, Geron was named All-District in
volleyball, basketball and tennis.

Geron's career at Sul Ross came during an era when there were no
intercollegiate athletic programs for women. She competed in club
sports, and her teams played other college teams, including Texas Tech
University and San Angelo Junior College.

After college graduation, Geron began a distinguished coaching career
that has seen her teams in two states achieve championship status.

She has also coached seven district and bi-district championship teams
in basketball and has coached two state all-star teams. Geron has served
13 years on the Board of Directors of the Texas Girls Volleyball


Florence T. Haley

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Florence T. Haley, 89, of Kermit died Sunday, Nov. 3, 1996. Services
will be at 10 a.m. Thursday at the Haley Ranch west of Kermit, with
burial in the Haley Ranch Cemetery.

She was born March 21, 1907 in Monahans, was a homemaker and a member
of the World War I Ladies Auxiliary.

Survivors include two sons, Gene Haley and John A. Haley of Kermit; nine
grandchildren, eight great-grandchildren and two great-great


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High Monday 71, low last night 36. Tonight, increasing clouds, becoming
mostly cloudy late. Low in the lower 50s. South wind 10-15 mph.
Wednesday, mostly cloudy. A 20 percent chance of showers late. High in
the mid 70s. South wind 10-20 mph, shifting to north late afternoon.

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Copyright 1996 by Pecos Enterprise
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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