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Archive 2004

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Weekly Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Monday, June 28, 2004

Increase in fees given council’s final approval

Staff Writer

Town of Pecos City Council members gave final approval to an ordinance raising fees for city utility permits and police department services, while tabling action on an offer to rent a historic downtown building, during their June 24 meeting at City Hall.

The first reading of the ordinance was held in early June, and last Thursday’s vote put the changes in effect, with two alterations to the original fee schedule. Certified copies of police department reports were lowered from $25 to $10, while the cost for copies at the department were increased from 10 to 15 cents per page.

The other fees now in effect for the city Utilities Department set electrical permits at $20, building permits at $15, moving permits at $100, and gas permits at $25. The other new police department fees set the cost of offense reports at $4 each, accident reports at $6, fingerprints at $10, notary fees at $10 and police videotapes at $25.

The offer for the building in the 100 block of East Second Street was from Carol Garduno for a rental cost of $100 per month. However, city fire marshal Jack Brookshire said the building currently is not suitable for occupation.

“I looked at it, and I wouldn’t rent it until the city made major structural changes,” he said. “It could be brought back up to code, but probably for more money than the city wants too spend on it.”

City attorney Scott Johnson suggested to the council they look at selling the building outright, and allow the new owner to do the improvements, while Pecos Main Street Coordinator Tom Rivera said architect Howard Langer with the state’s Main Street program would be in town in two weeks and could take a look at the building, which is one of the last buildings in downtown with its original interior structure.

The building formerly served as a printing shop, and Security State Bank President Bill Oglesby said antique printing equipment belonging to the West of the Pecos Museum was being stored inside the building. He said the items could be relocated, while Johnson said any sale notice could specify that personal property inside the building was not part of the sale,

In other action, the council approved an application by Rivera to the Texas Department of Agriculture’s YES/Hometown Stars Program. The $15,000 grant would be to help with advertising for the 2005 West of the Pecos Rodeo.

Council members also heard from Pecos Economic Development President Gari Ward, who said visitors would be in Pecos on July 14-15 to tour the former Smithers’ Automotive Tire Testing Center 15 miles east of town. Other recent inquiries in the area include two dairy farms and a California saddle maker looking at the Pecos area to raise sheep for wool harvesting.

Man charged with break-ins in Pecos area

A 21-year-old Pecos man has been charged by police and sheriff’s deputies in connection with a series of incidents at four different area locations.

Celofis Baeza, 21, of 1713 W. Fourth St., Apt. C, was arrested by Culberson County officers in Van Horn on June 22 in connection with two incidents reported on June 19. At 3:32 p.m. that day, Panaderia Diana reported that $2,000 in cash had been stolen from the bakery, located in the 700 block of West Third Street.

The second incident was reported to police at 3:45 p.m. on June 19, when Grace Sanchez said that her house, in the 700 block of West Fourth Street, had been broken into. Pecos Police investigator Kelly Davis said checks were taken from the house and at least three were later used by Baeza. “As a result, charges of forergy also have been filed,” Davis said.

“When searching his house, we also found wallets belonging to Francisco Melendez, that had been taken during a car burglary,” Davis said. That break-in was reported to police on June 23, the day after Baeza’s arrest, and reportedly took place in the 600 block of West Third Street.

In addition, Davis said silverware taken from a ranch house located nine miles east of Pecos also were discovered in Baeza’s home. Garland Matthews reported to sheriff’s deputies that the silverware was among the items recovered, and when deputies when to the home of Baeza’s sister, in the 1900 block of South Scott Street, other stolen dining room items were found.

Deputies also recovered two Shop-Vac vacuum cleaners stolen from Matthews’ house. Those were taken by Baeza to a home in the 2300 block of South Eddy Street and stored in an outdoor shed. The homeowner turned the vacuum cleaners over to deputies after being told the items were stolen.

Baeza was taken to Reeves County Jail after initially being brought to the Pecos Criminal Justice Center. He was formally charged before being released on June 23 on a $5,000 bond.

Gas line break forces brief downtown evacuation

Staff Writer

Several blocks of downtown Pecos were evacuated for about 30 minutes Monday morning while emergency crews worked to shut of a gas leak in the 200 block of South Cedar Street.

The leak occurred when a Town of Pecos City work crew using a back hoe broke what was supposed to be an inactive gas line behind the former Pecos Furniture building. The city crew was digging a trench for a sewer tap around 9:30 a.m. when the backhoe hit the line. Water department foreman Ruben Contreras said the line had not been marked by the gas company prior to the work crew’s digging in the area.

A Pecos Volunteer Fire Department truck and EMS personnel were called to the scene after the line was broken, while police and sheriff’s deputies closed off the 200 block of South Oak Street, then evacuated buildings in the 300 block of South Oak and South Cedar streets along with the Reeves County Courthouse, due to winds that were blowing the leaking gas towards the south.

A Texas Gas Service crew arrived at the scene just after 10 a.m., and along with firemen equipped with breathing apparatus, were able to climb down into the hole and shut off the gas line.

Once the line was closed, city workers were allowed to move the backhoe away from the broken line and those in the evacuated area were allowed to return to their businesses.

Reynolds named 2004 Golden Girl

Staff Writer

“Fame” brought one young lady luck Friday evening at the Annual Golden Girl/Little Miss Cantaloupe Pageant.

Amie Reynolds was crowned Golden Girl of the Old West 2004 at the Annual Pageant, held at the Pecos High School Auditorium.

The Little Miss Cantaloupe title went to Kacy Villanueva, the 6-year-old daughter of George and Maria Villanueva. The pageant was also held on Friday in the PHS auditorium

Reynolds performed a dance routine to the song, “Fame” which became in the 1980 movie, “Fame.”

Runner-up was Angelica Prieto who performed a dance routine as part of her talent presentation.

Prietos talent portion consisted of a dance routine.

Other nominees included: Olivia Legarda, Jennifer Montano, Susan Moore and Liza Vejil.

Montano received the scholarship award and Vejil was voted as Miss Congeniality. For their talent part of the program, Montano performed a dance routine; Moore performed a dance routine with several variations, including a rap song and Vejil sang for the audience.

Legarda was lauded with a standing ovation for her rendition of “A Broken Wing,” by Martina McBride.

Villaneuva’s win was the second pageant title in as many year for her family. Her older sister is Maritza Sandoval, the 2003 Golden Girl.

Runner-Up for Little Miss Cantalopue was Alondra Pando, the 6-year-old daughter of Çonnie Carrasco and Cesar Pando.

Other candidates were: Maleke L. Abila, Rayann Box, Miranda K. Contreras, Tiffany Howard, Jordan Kington, Natali Miranda and Claudia Quintela.

The little girls performed a dance routine to the song “Pretty Women” by Wink’s Roy Orbison.

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