Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Tuesday, December 30, 2003
County OKs RCDC payments, new bid process
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Tues., Dec. 30, 2003 -- Reeves County Commissioners approved a
payment to GEO Group Inc., made a liability insurance payment to the
prison management company and agreed to change the bid process on items
for the Reeves County Detention Center to a monthly basis, during a
special Commissioners Court meeting Monday morning.
Commissioners approved the November payment for RCDC management and
professional services in the amount of $62,500 to GEO, the former
Wackenhut Corrections Corporation, with whom the county contracted last
month to operate the financially troubled Reeves County Detention
"This payment is in accordance with the revised agreement we have
with them, that until the population at the prison reaches 2,000 or
whatever that was," said county auditor Lynn Owens.
Owens told the group that the liability insurance payment was also
due to them at this time, which was 1/12th of the annual amount. "That
would be $27,083 and is for $325,000 annually," said Owens.
He told the group that all the correspondence had the name GEO Group
Inc., because Wackenhut had changed their name as of the first of
"I also want to make sure our county employees will be covered by
this policy," said Owens.
In other action, commissioners approved bids for inmate
clothing/linen supply and inmate food and kitchen supplies after being
tabled at the last two commissioners court meetings.
Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo said that he had discussed the
bids with Don Houston, vice-president of GEO Group Inc. before any
action was taken.
"We wanted to look at their particular method of awarding this on a
monthly basis," said Galindo.
He said that they wanted to award all the contracts on a monthly
basis to allow the jail staff to get a business manager to make sure
they were compatible.
"The only problem is that the vendors might object to three months,"
Owens said that he could go ahead and ask if it was all right with
the vendors to go on a three-month basis.
"If they object we can re-bid them again," he said.
Owens said that there were only two bidders for the inmate
clothing/linen supply, and the lowest bidder was Leslie Scott.
Commissioners agreed to award the bid to Leslie Scott for one-month
basis. "This will end on March 31 and I'll advise them of this and they
object I'll bring it back to the court," said Owens.
The group further stated that they would give Owens the authority,
that if the vendor rejected the terms, they would allow him to re-bid
The inmate food and kitchen supplies bid was awarded to various
vendors. "I'll contacted all current vendors and vendors we've done
business with and advise them if they want to do it on purchase basis
only," said Owens.
Owens said that there was only one vendor that didn't object to this
method. "No one else wanted to do it this way," he said.
Owens said that some of the vendors said that they needed more
advance notice because they got special pricing on this.
"GEO said that they bid on a monthly basis, except meat and
vegetables, they do that on a weekly basis," said Galindo.
Commissioners approved a resolution allowing them to waive the
bidding process and allow them to make purchases on a weekly or monthly
"We probably should specify which categories will be on 30-days and
which will be on a seven-day option," said Owens.
The group outlined which purchases would be made on a monthly basis
and which would be made weekly.
Commissioners approved a contract with the transportation director
for the Reeves County Detention Center.
Transportation Director Tommy Duncan was on hand to talk to the
"My last contact with BOP was very positive and it has been
approved," said Duncan. "There will be some additional bus runs."
"This is the proposed and revised contract," said Galindo. "The
mileage payment will be $4.18 a mile, with a guarantee of 11,000 miles
per month," he said.
"We actually estimated that it will be a total of 200,000 miles,"
said Duncan. "We'll probably have a signed contract within two weeks,"
Duncan said that they had been getting a lot of cooperation and that
BOP was very pleased with their service.
"Normally during this period transportation dips, has that happened
recently," said Galindo.
"No, it hasn't, last week we ran three days and this week three days
and two crews are out today," said Duncan. "We'll see it slow down in
June and July."
"How many employees are in transportation?" asked Precinct 3
Commissioner Herman Tarin.
"We have 12 employees at this time, if additional runs open, we'll
need to bring in another crew," said Duncan. "Our goal is to be
available at all times."
"Transportation has been moved to the general fund, so what will
happen if we don't get a signed contract?" asked Tarin. "With those 12
additional employees and the problems we're having in the general fund
it will be a disaster."
Duncan told the group that the department was in good shape and the
employees could get paid out of the current contract.
"Now we have to look at the transportation department differently,"
said Galindo. "It will just break even," he said.
"There's also one other problem, because of the way we bill, we'll
bill for January in February and get the check in March," said Owens.
"The November services were billed in December and we won't get the
check until January," said Owens.
Galindo said that he would talk to region about this problem and
hopefully get the December payment quicker and in advance.
Year In Review
Work began during February on housing, hospital projects
EDITOR'S NOTE: This is the second in a series of stories
recapping major news events in the Pecos area during 2003. Today's
story covers the month of February.
PECOS, Tue., Feb. 4, 2003 - Construction has been underway for the past
three weeks for the development of the new Housing Infrastructure
According to City Manager, Carlos Yerena, the contractor, Reece
Albert Construction of Midland has already installed the water and
sewer lines and the fire hydrants that are designed to serve up to 20
new homes that will be built on the site in the 800 and 900 blocks of
West Washington Street, in the Airlawn section of town.
"Later this week or early next week the contractors will be
installing the sidewalks and streets," Yerena said.
PECOS, Thur., Feb. 6, 2003 - Balmorhea students are enjoying a long
holiday, but some students may be just too sick to really have fun
during these unexpected days off.
"We had about 75 percent of our students attending school on Tuesday
and that's when we decided we had to do something," said Balmorhea
Superintendent Elizabeth Saenz.
Saenz said that the school officials decided to close the campus for
three days to allow students to regain their health and really sanitize
the school. Classes were out on Wednesday and will remain out today and
PECOS, Fri., Feb. 7, 2003 - Several awards went out last evening to
outstanding individuals in the community, including the Citizen of the
Year Award, which went out to someone who came to Pecos 10 years ago
and made it his home.
Paul Hinojos was named Citizen of the Year, by the Pecos Area
Chamber of Commerce, during their annual awards banquet held last
evening at the Reeves County Civic Center.
Earlier in the evening, Phillip Salcido, a senior at Pecos High
School, was named Student of the Year by the Pecos Area Chamber of
Commerce. Hugh Box received the Ruiz Profile of Courage/Hidden Hero
award during the annual banquet. Also receiving an award on Thursday
was Reeves County Sheriff's Deputy Israel Campos, who was named Officer
of the Year for 2002.
PECOS, Feb. 11, 2003 - Reeves County Commissioners discussed several
change orders involving final work at the Reeves County Detention
Center III project, and discussed delays involving two of the
contractors during their regular meeting Monday in the third floor
courtroom of the Reeves County Courthouse to.
According to Gerald Tally with Carothers Construction Co., the main
contractor on the project, the companies requesting change orders have
met the definition of completion that would allow the county to occupy
and use the facilities as intended.
However, Tally added that there were two additional companies that
did not meet with definition of completion.
PECOS, Feb. 12, 2003 - The Town of Pecos City will be looking for a new
finance director to replace current finance director, George Bejarano.
Bejarano said that he had submitted his resignation as the Town of
Pecos City's Finance Director on Monday, with Friday, Feb. 21, being
his final day on the job.
PECOS, Feb. 13, 2003 - The Reeves County Detention Center's new
addition failed to pass a recent inspection by the Texas Commission on
Jail Standards, but officials said the failure was due only to minor
problems that can easily be corrected.
TCJS inspectors visited the new 960-bed facility, RCDC-III, recently
and found it came up short of the requirements for certification. "They
cited some minor problems that are in the process of being corrected,"
said County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo.
PECOS, Feb. 14, 2003 - Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD Board members once again
discussed the possibility of closing two campuses as an effort to save
money, but took no final action during the regular board meeting held
"We have touched on this before," said PBT-ISD Superintendent Don
Love of the plan to close the two oldest remaining campuses in the
district, Zavala and Lamar elementary schools. Under the plan, the
board would move sixth grade classes from Lamar to nearby Bessie Haynes
Elementary, which currently has all fourth and fifth graders, while
DAEP/AEP would move to Pecos High School from the north side Lamar
PECOS, Feb. 14, 2003 - Removal of salt from the Pecos River at Malaga
Bend is awaiting final action by the U.S. Geological Survey, Red Bluff
Water Power Control Board members were told on Tuesday during their
regular monthly meeting in Pecos.
Work was completed last month on the new well at Malaga Bend, about
70 miles north of Pecos, which will be used to pump water from the salt
spring away from the Pecos River and into man-made ponds built by Sun
West Salt Co., which will then evaporate the water and mine out the
PECOS, Mon., Feb. 17, 2003 The Pecos Eagle boys swimming team won only
one medal at the Class 4A State Swimming and Diving Championships in
Austin on Saturday, but scored enough points overall to place fifth in
the final team standings.
Junior Will Oglesby had the only medal of the day for Pecos, taking
third in the finals of the 100-yard butterfly, but the Eagles were able
to place enough individuals in the finals, along with all three relays,
to claim fifth place in the final standings, with 144 points, just one
behind fourth place Highland Park and within striking distance of third
place Conroe Oak Ridge, which ended up with 156 points.
PECOS, Wed., Feb. 19, 2003 The Town of Pecos City's current and former
police chiefs have been subpoenaed in connection with allegations of
prior offenses surround a former Pecos police officer who was recently
terminated as a junior high school guard in Midland following his
arrest on child pornography charges.
According to a story in today's Midland Reporter-Telegram, federal
prosecutors said John Peter Marquez, 41, who was arrested on Feb. 11 on
a charge of sexual exploitation of a minor, had previously been forced
to resign his position with the Pecos Police Department amid
allegations he molested two junior high boys.
PECOS, Thurs., Feb. 20, 2003 The Pecos Police Department responded to
an anonymous Crime Stoppers tip Wednesday afternoon at Lamar AEP
campus, which resulted in the arrest of one male juvenile on a gun
Investigator/Gang Officer Armando Granado said that he had been
dispatched to Lamar AEP yesterday at about 1:36 p.m. on a tip about a
student with a gun at the school.
PECOS, Fri., Feb. 21, 2003 Puppies being kept in a trailer located
northwest of Pecos were killed early this morning when a fire broke out
inside, destroying the moble home.
The Pecos Volunteer Fire Department responded to the fire call at
2:18 a.m. out on Country Road 406, located off the Duval Road.
Though no one lived in the trailer, Fire Marshall Jack Brookshire
said that the owner of the trailer was housing his dog and her new
puppies in the trailer with a heat lamp.
PECOS, Mon., Feb. 24, 2003 Bill, Malone, the longtime owner of the
Dairy Mart Drive-In at Third and Eddy Streets, died Sunday at the
Reeves County Hospital at the age of 72.
Malone, who had run the restaurant for over a quarter-century, is
remembered by an employee as a very good man who always thought of
others before himself.
"He was a sweet person," Ernie M. Flores said. "Bill was just Bill.
We are all going to miss him."
PECOS, Tues., Feb. 25, 2003 Temperatures in the low 20s greeted Pecos
residents this morning, but the weather here was better than conditions
both to the south and east of town, as icing was reported on Interstate
20 east of Midland and caused the closing of Interstate 10 east of the
More bad weather was expected to arrive in the area tonight, and the
National Weather Service was predicting a chance of freezing rain in
the Pecos area through Wednesday morning, with a greater chance for
rain or snow around Guadalupe Pass and in the Carlsbad, N.M. area.
PECOS, Wed., Feb. 26, 2003 The Reeves County Hospital Board accepted a
bid for nearly $8 million from Cooper Construction Inc., of Odessa for
expansion and renovation of the hospital's facilities, during the
regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday night at the hospital.
Hospital administrator Robert Vernor recommended Cooper to the board
over four other companies that submitted bids for the project. Cooper
Construction was in charge of the recent work done at Odessa Medical
PECOS, Thurs., Feb. 27, 2003 - For the second time this year cocaine
was found in the engine block of a vehicle stopped for traffic
violations in Reeves County.
At about 10:53 a.m., Wednesday, Trans Pecos Drug Task Force officer
Joe Gonzales stopped the 1997 red Jeep Cherokee at mile marker 33 on
Interstate 20, about seven miles west of Pecos and discovered 11.6
pounds of cocaine, hidden inside a metal box. The cocaine has a street
value of $473,550.
The driver of the Cherokee was identified as Alzono Olivas, 29, of
Fabens, who was charged with possession of a controlled substance, a
PECOS, Fri., Feb. 28, 2003 It was a momentous occasion this morning
when community leaders and members had the opportunity to participate
in the Groundbreaking ceremonies for Reeves County Hospital's $8
million expansion project.
Hospital Administrator Robert Vernor welcomed everyone and talked
about the $8 million project that will begin March 11 on the northwest
corner of the hospital grounds in the 2300 block of Texas Street. The
expansion will consist of a new emergency room, specialty clinics,
expanded space for the rural health clinic and physical therapy, along
with a new dialysis center.
Commissioner seat hopefuls still on rise as deadline nears
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Tues., Dec. 30, 2003 -- Time is running out to file for the
March 9 primary elections and an eighth possible candidate has taken a
step towards running for the open Reeves County Commissioner position
for Precinct 3.
James Molinar Gallegos was the latest individual to file his
treasurer's designation as the first step in seeking election as
commissioner for Precinct 3. Gallegos named Linda G. Briceno as his
Filing with Reeves County Clerk Diane Florez is only one of two
steps required to run in the March primary. In order to officially
enter the race, the candidates must file with the county party chairmen
by this Friday, Jan. 2. All local candidates who have officially filed
so far have done so on the Democratic Party line.
Gallegos' action comes after Joseph "Peter" Rodriguez and Saul
Herrera filed their treasuer's designation for Precinct 3 Commissioner
following the Christmas holiday. Rodriguez named Nancy Ontiveros as
treasurer and Herrera named himself as treasurer.
Current Precinct 3 Commissioner Herman Tarin announced last week he
would not seek a fourth term in office, after originally deciding to
enter his name into the March Democratic primary election race. His
withdrawal was announced on Dec. 23 by Reeves County Democratic Party
chairman Robert C. Dean.
As of Monday afternoon, only Lisa Lopez Boicourt, Rosendo C.
Galindo, and Bailey Wheeless, have officially filed with Dean to run
for the four-term term as Precinct 3 commissioner. The other candidate
to file a treasuer's designation is Manuel "Manny" D. Lopez, while the
eighth possible candidate, Joel Madrid, said last Friday he planned to
enter the race before the deadline a week from today, but was in
California for the Christmas holiday.
The field is a little less crowded in the Precinct 1 race, but
incumbent Felipe Arredondo will face challengers in his bid for a
fourth term in office.
Arredondo and Robert C. Natividad were the first to file with Dean
to officially enter in the race. The others are Armando "Mondie"
Granado and Elizer "Chel" Flores and Rojelio "Roy" V. Alvarado.
The heavy interest in the two commissioners court races comes after
six months of publicity about financial problems surrounding the $40
million Reeves County Detention Center III project. However, outside of
those races, only incumbents have filed for the other Reeves County
primary election races.
In the other local races, the incumbents who have officially filed
with Dean include: for Reeves County Sheriff, Arnulfo "Andy" Gomez; Tax
Assessor-Collector, Elfida Zuniga; for constable, precinct #2 Jerry
Matta and for constable, precinct #3, Tomas "Tommy" Martinez.
One other incumbent, Heriberto "Eddy" Rodriguez has filed his
campaign treasurer's designation to retain the Precinct 4 constable's
Along with the county positions, other local offices that will be up
for election on March 9, are Reeves County Attorney; 143rd District
Attorney and 143rd District Court Judge.
Judge Bob Parks filed in Austin to retain his position as 143rd
District Court Judge, while former 143rd District Attorney Hal Upchurch
announced in November he planned to run for that seat again, after a
12-year absence. Pecos attorney Randall W. Reynolds currently holds the
position, and was first elected too office in 1996.
Upchurch has already filed in Austin for the District Attorney's
position. He had stated that he would keep his office in Monahans if
elected to the post.
The District Attorney and District Judge positions cover Reeves,
Ward and Loving Counties.
Both the District Attorney and the District Judge candidates will
file their petitions or pay a filing fee in Austin.
Filing for the Reeves County primary elections in March began on
Dec. 3 and will continue through Friday.
Parents invited to view classes at PHS Fridays
PECOS, Tues., Dec. 30, 2003 -- Parent Day is sponsored by Pecos High
School every Friday.
Parents are invited to come and visit the classrooms on that day.
If any parent or guardian would like to eat lunch with their
student, they need to call the appropriate campus before 9 a.m. on that
PECOS, Tues., Dec. 30, 2003 -- High Monday 54. Low this morning 21.
Forecast for tonight: Mostly cloudy. Lows near 30. South winds 10 to 15
mph. Wednesday: Mostly cloudy. Highs near 65. South winds 10 to 15 mph.
Wednesday night: Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of rain. Lows
near 40. South winds 10 to 15 mph. New years day: Mostly cloudy with a
30 percent chance of rain. Highs near 70. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph.
Thursday night: Partly cloudy. Lows in the lower to mid 40s. Friday:
Partly cloudy. Highs in the lower to mid 70s. Friday night: Partly
cloudy. Lows in the mid 30s to the lower 40s.
Jesus Adame and Hipolito Vasquez
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 2003 by Pecos Enterprise