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Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

RCDC hosts community meeting, wages going up

Staff Writer

Getting more involved in the community, providing updates and answering any questions or concerns, is the main goal of a recent community relations board meeting held at the Reeves County Detention Center held Friday at noon.

McDaniel said that the board meetings would be held quarterly to update the community and to answer any questions and concerns.

“We want to have a more open relationship with the community,” he said. The RCDC hosted the luncheon and invited several members in the community to provide more insight into what the facility is currently doing. “We want you to know what’s going on here and want to become more involved in the community,” said RCDC I-II Warden Ed Gonzales.

Gonzales said that prison staff has been busy with fundraisers to provide scholarships for local students, helped with the Katrina Relief Fund, sponsored Little League, Toys for Tots, Santa Workshop, Youth Day and will be helping out at the West of the Pecos Rodeo.

“The average population (at RCDC I and II) is 2,158 and the average stay is 23 months,” said Gonzales.

The average age at the facility is 35.7 and the population is made up of 99.2 Hispanics, .42 blacks, Asian .35 and white .05, according to Gonzales.

“We have a small city within a city,” said Gonzales.

RCDC III Warden Martin McDaniel said that the GEO Group had come in March of 2004 to operate that facility.

“It was great that we got a contract with Arizona and they helped us pull through,” said McDaniel.

McDaniel said that RCDC III will now be contracting to house Bureau of Prisons prisoners, for a 10-year span.

“We have 864 beds with 94 special housing beds (RCDC III),” said McDaniel.

McDaniel said that they had a good relationship with the Arizona group and plan to continue to have one with BOP.

“We want to provide the best service for our customer,” said McDaniel. McDaniel said that the RCDC III contract is for $200 million. “The ramifications are huge. This is something really big for us,” said McDaniel. McDaniel said that the Arizona inmates leave Pecos at the end of this year. “We don’t know the exact date yet, but it will be within the fourth quarter,” said McDaniel.

Construction began Monday for a new building, which will be located outside the main facility.

“This will be for the BOP office staff,” said McDaniel.

Renovations will also be taking place inside the facility to house the extra inmates that will come in through the Bureau of Prisons.

“This is one of the largest BOP facilities in the nation,” he said.

“Right now we have a cross of inmates who have been charged with DUI all the way to murder,” said McDaniel.

McDaniel said that they will be keeping the same employees, but the wages will go up to DOL standards.

McDaniel said that the prison would be at 3,200, with a maximum capacity of 3,266.

“It’s a huge payroll and this will mean a lot to the community,” said McDaniel.

McDaniel said that things are going really well and that they are working hard to please BOP, their client.

“We want to make them happy and let them know we will provide a good service,” said McDaniel.

Golf paying off for local man

Staff Writer

Ruben Baca Jr. loves the game of golf. On May 27th that love became profitable when he sank a 210-yard hole-in-one on the sixth hole at the Pecos Golf Course during the Beau Jack Memorial Golf Tournament.

The prize for that shot was a brand new Buick Lacrosse, although the prize has not been officially confirmed.

Baca has been a golfer since he can remember. Born to Ruben and Gloria Baca he graduated from Pecos High School in 1994. In high school he played football and golf, but golf was were he excelled.

Today the 30-year-old works at La Nortena, helps out with his parent’s business, Nu-Way cleaners, and plays a lot of golf.

Baca’s father first put a club in his hands when we was five years old.

He started golfing with a set of Wilson clubs and early on it became a passion.

“My parents would call me in to supper, thinking I was in the back yard, and find me practicing on the field at Zavala near our home,” Baca said.

The Zavala field was his first golf course where he dug his own holes and played round after round.

Twenty five years later, nothing has changed. Baca still plays golf as often as possible, usually preferring to walk around the course rather than ride a cart.

“I prefer to walk because that is they way I was raised. We usually walked and I prefer it,” he said.

As a single fellow, Baca can play nearly every day, and does.

All that practice is paying off.

In 2001 Baca played his first tournament - an amateur tournament at the Greentree Golf Course in Odessa. It was part of the Nike Pro Tour but he played as an amateur. David Castillo, owner of La Nortena sponsored him in the tournament and he took second place. Baca took second in his next tournament as well - at a Buy.Com tournament.

Since 2001 Baca has participated in numerous tournaments, often doing well.

In a tournament in Alpine he made his first hole-in-one on a 135-foot shot that earned him a DVD player and eventually third place overall.

He has won and placed in tournaments all over West Texas including tournaments in Ft. Stockton, Midland and Monahans.

Locally Baca has played in Reeves County Attorney tournament, the City Championship tournament and the Junior City Championship where he had to face his cousin, Michael Nichols, in the final round.

Baca won them all.

On May 27, he played in the Beau Jack Memorial Tournament sponsored by the Men’s Golf Association.

On the sixth hole he drove the ball with his Titleist driver. Two hundred ten yards later the ball was in the hole.

“At first they told me I had won a trip to Acupulco,” Baca said.

At the end of regulation play Baca was tied with three others for the lead. The tie was broken with a 100-yard chip out with the closest ball to the pin being named the winner. Baca’s ball was closest winning him $50 and the tournament.

A few days later, Starkey Warren, president of the Men’s Association told him that he had actually won the car, not the trip.

“I was really happy when I found out,” he said. “This car will really help out because the eight cylinder car I’m driving now uses way too much gas.”

Baca plans on driving the car to future tournaments and maybe, one day, as a pro. “I have always wanted to go pro,” he said, “but it takes a lot of money.”

Heat may be with us all summer

Staff Writer

Brace yourself; the past week’s record-breaking heat may be the norm for most of the summer.

High temperatures of 110 degrees and more have been reported over the past week, and the National Weather Service is forecasting more of the same for this week through the weekend. The forecast for Pecos includes highs of 109, 109, 107 and 108 degrees, Tuesday through Friday.

Normal high temperatures would be right around the century mark.

Lora Mueller, a meteorologist with the NWS said that the high temperatures are the result of a “persistent high pressure ridge over the area.”

The high pressure prevents weather systems from moving into the area -systems that would bring cooler temps and maybe a little precipitation.

“The high pressure ridge means no moisture and no clouds so the sun just beats down on us,” Mueller said.

In the short term we might see some relief. Mueller said that sometime toward the end of the week we might see some cooling but just when was hard to predict.

“It could come as early as Wednesday, or as late as Sunday,” she said.

Over the long-term, however, abnormally high temperatures may be the norm for the summer.

Mueller said that the current pattern could well be the norm for 30-90 days with temperatures well above average.

So far the heat is not causing too many problems.

Pecos Police Chief Clay McKinney said that his department had not noticed an increase in calls as temperatures nudged the 110 mark.

Neither has Pecos’s volunteer ambulance service.

Ambulance Chief Dennis Thorpe reported that calls are about normal with 50 percent being medical calls and 50 percent trauma.

Public Relations Director for Reeves County Hospital Venetta Seals said that the hospital had not seen an increase in heat-related injuries.

“People here know how to deal with the heat,” she said.

Barbara Contreras, and EMT with the hospital ambulance service and with the volunteer service noted two heat-related calls in the past few weeks and cautioned residents about the dangers of working in extreme heat.

“The key is staying well hydrated,” she said. “Drink plenty of water or tea or Gatorade. Gatorade is best since it replaces electrolytes. Stay away from soft drinks - they dehydrate you. Wearing a hat and light colored clothing helps as well.”

Contreras said everyone should be on the lookout for signs of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

“As long as you are still sweating you are okay,” she said.

Contreras said that if you start feeling light-headed, or just out-of-sorts, it was time to take a break, drink some water and cool off.

If a person keeps working after the warning signs of heat exhaustion become apparent they are at risk of suffering a heat stroke, which can be deadly.

“If a person stops sweating, gets light headed, dizzy or starts acting a little goofy, they may be suffering heat stroke,” she said. “A heat stroke victim will turn very red and then very pale,” she said.

Contreras said to treat a person who may be having a heat stroke by getting them into the shade and giving small amounts of cool or lukewarm water.

“You do not want to cool them too quickly or give them a lot of ice water - it can put them into shock. Don’t let them go to sleep, either,” she said.

In a related matter Dennis Thorpe reported that the Ambulance Service is holding an EMT class this summer and also asked that if anyone with EMT training contact the service if they would be willing to volunteer and help out. Currently the service has ten volunteers with four members on call 24-hours / day.

Orona to become Longhorn mascot

Michael Orona, an undergraduate at the University of Texas at Austin, was just selected to be a part of the 2006-2007 Texas Mascots. Orona will suit up and become the next “Hook ‘Em.”

He will participate in all sporting events, official university events, official university events, and scheduled appearances for the Longhorns. As being selected, he will be able to travel to out of state events, attend bowl games, compete in the Fed Ex Mascot competition, and be awarded a scholarship.

During the selection process, participants were selected after making rounds that included interviews, situational improv scenarios and improv dancing. Selection was also based upon strong leadership qualities, charismatic presences, personality, confidence, independence and enthusiasm.

While at the University of Texas at Austin, Orona is active in Student Government, Party on the Plaza, Liberal Arts Council, the University of Texas Ex’s Student Association Chapter, the Dean’s List and a President’s Achievement Scholar.

He is also a NCAA certified Athletic Recruitment Host for the Texas Football Program.

Orona is also finishing up teaching an Educational Dialogue Psychology class to other UT undergrads. He is employed by Armbrust and Brown LLP as an administrative assistant for the law firm.

He is the son of Sally Orona, and he has two sisters, Erica and Ashley; who will also be joining his brother at the University of Texas at Austin as well.

Police Report

EDITOR’S NOTE: Information contained in the Police Report is obtained from reports filed by the Pecos Police Department, Reeves County Sheriff’s Office, or other officers of those agencies. The serving of warrants by an officer for outstanding fines of either traffic citations, animal control violations or other court costs are considered arrests and will be printed as such unless indicated that the fines were paid. In such instances we will indicate payment and release.

Alfredo Martinez, 45, of 552 Martinez St., was arrested by police on May 30 for operating a motor vehicle on a public roadway without having a valid driver’s license a Class C Misdemeanor. Police said the arrest took place in the 600 Block of East 7th . Martinez was placed under arrest and transported to the Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Rafael Valles Medina, 45, of 2029 Ivey St., was arrested on May 31st for disregarding a red light and failing to maintain financial responsibility. Police said the arrest took place in the 500 Block of East 3rd Street. Medina was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Antonio Rodriguez, 25, of 221 North Cedar St., was arrested on June 1st for public intoxication, failure to identify, and evading arrest or detention. Police said the arrest took place in the 800 Block of South Mesquite St. Rodriguez was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Alain Lopez Guerrero, 19, of 1025 Martinez St., was arrested on June 1st for disorderly conduct (fighting). Police said the arrest took place at1301 E. 3rd St., (Riverside Ballroom). Guerrero was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Eloy Olguin Jimenez, 21, of 310 S. Elm St., was arrested on June 1st for disorderly conduct (fighting). Police said the arrest took place at 1301 E. 3rd St. (Riverside Ballroom). Jimenez was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Irma Olguin Rodrigez, 40, of 110 N. Ash St., was arrested on June 1st for public intoxication. Police said the arrest took place at 1301 E. 3rd St., (Riverside Ballroom). Rodrigez was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Nancy H. Fuentes, 38, of 1120 E. 8th St., was arrested on June 2nd on a Capias Warrant Class C Misdemeanor out of Pecos, following a routine traffic stop. Police said arrest took place in the 200 Block of Oleander St. Fuentes was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Kenneth Lee Terry, 48, of 314 South Orange St., was arrested on June 2nd at his home on warrants for No Drivers License, Open Container and failure to maintain financial responsibility. Terry was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Albert Rubio Corrales, 39, of 302 North Cedar St., was arrested on June 2nd for public intoxication. Police said the arrest took place in 900 Block of South Cedar St. Corrales was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Camilo Martinez Salcido, 62, of 515 South Almond St., was arrested on June 3rd for public intoxication. Police said the arrest took place in the 300 Block of East 7th St. Salcido was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Jaime Lopez Armendarez, 47, of 212 W. 14th St., was arrested on June 3rd for public intoxication. Police said the arrest took place in the 1200 Block of S. Oak St. Armendarez was transported to the Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Ramon Calderon Garcia, 56, of East 25th St. Odessa Tx., was arrested on June 3rd for a warrant out of Ector County Sheriff’s Officeon a grand jury indictment Driving While Intoxicated. Police said the arrest took place at 504 East 4th St. (Del Rio Bar). Garcia was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

Robert G. Smart Jr., 45, of 221 North Cedar St., was arrested on June 6th for Public Intoxication, a Class C Misdemeanor. Police said the arrest took place in the 200 Block of Mesquite St. after they had a call in reference to a man in the grass, possibly something wrong, but was intoxicated to the point were he was a danger to himself and to others. Smart was transported to Pecos Criminal Justice Center.

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York M. "Smokey" Briggs, Publisher
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 432-445-5475, FAX 432-445-4321

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