Colored Rock Map of Texas at I-20 in Pecos, Click for Travel Guide

Pecos Enterprise

Site Map
Pecos Gab

Pecos Country History
Archive 62
Archive 74
Archive 87
1987 Tornado Photos
Rodeo Photos 88
Archive 95
Archive 96
Archive 97
News Photos 1997
Rodeo Photos 97
Archive 98
News Photos 1998
Rodeo Photos 98
Parade Photos 98
Archive 99
Photos 99
Archive 2000
Archive 2001
Archive 2002
Photos 2000
Photos 2001
Photos 2002
Photos 2003

Archive 2003

Area Newspapers
Economic Development


Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

County's unemployment below 10 percent,

but workforce, jobs both fall in November

Staff Writer

PECOS, Wed., Dec. 24, 2003 -- Reeves County's unemployment rate dropped below 10 percent in November, for the first time in the 18 months since the closing of the Anchor Foods plant in Pecos. But the decline in the jobless rate was due to a drop in the number of people living in the county, according to the Texas Workforce Commission.

The TWC released their jobless numbers last week, which showed there were a total of 5,048 people in the county's workforce last month, and 4,552 jobs, leaving the unemployment rate at 9.8 percent. That's the lowest since April of 2002, when unemployment in the county was at 7.9 percent.

That was also the last month the Anchor Foods plant was in full operation. McCain Foods, which had bought the company nine months earlier, announced in November of 2001 that it would shut the plant and move its onion ring processing operations to Nebraska. A total of 700 people lost their jobs with the closure, and the unemployment rate in the county went as high as 23.1 percent in August of 2002.

Anchor's facility was purchased later in 2002 by TransPecos Foods, which reopened the plant, but with a much lower staffing level than at the time of the McCain closure at the end of May last year.

According to the TWC's numbers, when the jobless rate in April of 2002 was at 7.9 percent, the county's workforce stood at 6,933 people, with 6,388 jobs. In November of 2001, when McCain announced it planned to close the plant, Reeves County had a 7.2 percent jobless rate, with 6,375 people in the labor force and 5,918 with jobs.

The numbers show a two-year drop of 1,340 people in the county's workforce, and a loss of 1,366 jobs during from November of 2001 to November of this year.

The 5,048 people in the county's labor force is the low total for the year, according to the TWC's numbers. The jobless rate was at its highest back in January, at 14.3 percent, when Reeves County had 6,154 workers and 5,276 jobs. The county's largest numbers both in total number of workers and total number of jobs occurred in April, when unemployment was at 11 percent.

Joblessness across the Permian Basin was mostly lower in November, while statewide, the TWC said unemployment held at October's 6.1 percent level, matching the low for all of 2003.

In the area, Pecos County's jobless rate was at 5.1 percent, with 6,438 people in the county's workforce and 6,112 with jobs. Ward County's jobless rate this month was 7.3 percent, with 3,327 people in the local labor force and 3,083 with jobs, while Winkler County rate for November was 6.8 percent, with 2,973 people in the labor force and 2,770 with jobs. Pecos County's jobless rate was up from 4.8 percent in October, while Ward County declined from 7.4 percent and Winkler County also was down from 7.4 percent in October.

For the area's two largest counties, Ector County had a November unemployment rate of 6.1 percent, while Midland County's jobless rate was at 4 percent last month, the TWC said. Both numbers were down slightly from October.

Presidio County continued to have the state's highest unemployment rate, but that total dropped below 20 percent for the first time in six months. The county had a jobless rate of 19.8 percent in October, after hitting a high of 27.2 percent in August. Loving County, the nation's least-populated county, had an 8.9 percent unemployment rate last month. The county reported five people unemployed for the 10th time in the past 11 months, but the number of workers in the county declined from 57 to 56, according to the TWC's numbers.

Offices, businesses prepare to close for Christmas

Staff Writer

PECOS, Wed., Dec. 24, 2003 -- Almost all local businesses, government offices and courthouses will be closed Thursday to observe Christmas Day.

Town of Pecos City will close both tomorrow and Friday and re-open their doors on Monday. Also taking a four-day holiday for Christmas will be federal workers at the Lucius Bunton Federal Courthouse and county workers at the Reeves County Courthouse.

The Pecos Post Office will be closed tomorrow and no mail will be delivered at home or in boxes. Mail delivery will resume Friday and Saturday.

Offices that will remain open include the Reeves County Sheriff's Department office downtown and the Pecos Police Department and Texas Department of Public Safety offices on Raul Florez Boulevard.

Security State Bank closed at noon today, be closed on Christmas and will reopen from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Friday. West Texas National Bank will closed at 12:30 p.m. today and will be closed tomorrow before reopening for regular hours on Friday.

Both local grocery stores, Bob's Thriftway and La Tienda will close at 7 p.m. tonight, and will be closed all Christmas Day.

Local convenience stores, however, will remain open for all or part of Christmas Day. Allsup's will remain open 24 hours, Kwik Stop on Third Street will be open all day tomorrow and Town and Country will be open their regular hours from 6 a.m. until 12 a.m. Uncle's will close this evening at 7 p.m. and will reopen at 12:30 p.m. Christmas Day.

Radio Shack will be open all day Thursday for those last minute "gadgets" and batteries for toys and appliances.

The Pecos Enterprise will close at 4 p.m., today and be closed for Christmas. The Enterprise will publish their next edition on Friday and will again close at 4 p.m.

Christmas dinner will be served at civic center

PECOS, Wed., Dec. 24, 2003 -- In a story in Tuesday's Enterprise, volunteers for the Pecos Christian Home's annual Christmas dinner were incorrectly told to meet at the Christian home to assist with the event. The meal will be served at the Reeves County Civic Center, and that is where any volunteers who would like to help, need to be at 8 a.m. on Thursday.

Methodist Church sets Pecos, Toyah services

PECOS, Wed., Dec. 24, 2003 -- First United Methodist Church will hold Christmas Eve services tonight, with candlelight and communion in Pecos at 7 p.m. and in Toyah at 9 p.m.


PECOS, Wed., Dec. 24, 2003 -- High Tuesday 65. Low this morning 27. Forecast for tonight: Partly cloudy. Lows near 35. South winds 10 to 15 mph. Christmas Day: Partly cloudy. Highs near 75. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph. Thursday night: Partly cloudy. Lows near 40. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph. Friday: Partly cloudy. Highs in the mid 70s. West winds 15 to 25 mph. Friday night: Partly cloudy. Lows near 40. Saturday: Partly cloudy. Windy. Highs in the lower to mid 60s. Saturday night: Partly cloudy. Lows in the lower to mid 30s.


Donny Culwell, Billy Jack Evans and Rosa Arenivas

Search Entire Site:

Pecos Enterprise
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

Associated Press text, photo, graphic, audio and/or video material shall not be published, broadcast, rewritten for broadcast or publication or redistributed directly or indirectly in any medium.

Copyright 2003 by Pecos Enterprise