Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Thursday, January 18, 2001
Rare snowman's life brief
Kayla and Nathan Martinez admire the snowman they built Thursday morning after an inch of snow accumulated on their lawn. Snowfall petered out about noon, and most of the accumulation had melted by Friday morning, leaving only icy sidewalks.
Snow, ice cause series of I-10 accidents
By LEIA HOLLAND
PECOS, January 18, 2001 - The sudden arrival of cold weather caused
problems on area roadways to the west of Pecos Wednesday night, causing
several accidents and one fatality.
Justice of the Peace Ismael Villalobos pronounced Charles Fanara, 76,
of San Jose, Calif., dead at Culberson County Hospital in Van Horn following
the accident, which occurred about eight miles west of Kent on Interstate
According to the Department of Public Safety, Fanara was traveling east
on I-10 in a 2000 Dodge Durango with two other people when the driver hit
a patch of ice and lost control of the vehicle.
The Department of Public Safety in Pecos reported that the vehicle started
to skid and turned over in the center median at mile marker 169, about
29 miles east of Van Horn.
The accident occurred at 10:15 p.m., and Fanara was ejected from the
Highway Patrolman Andre Matta from Van Horn is investigating the accident.
Several other accidents occurred on I-10 overnight, including a three-
to four-vehicle accident at mile marker 186 near the Interstate 10 and
Interstate 20 split near the Jeff Davis and Reeves County lines. Reportedly
a pickup went out of control on I-10 just west of the Reeves County line,
rolled over and landed on its roof in the traffic lanes. Several other
vehicles, including a truck-tractor rig, then struck the pickup.
Ambulance personnel from Culberson and Reeves Counties were called for
assistance in that accident at about 10:11 p.m., last night. The jaws of
life were also requested from Balmorhea to remove one person from a vehicle,
and officials blocked traffic on the highway while the injuries were being
attended to, but none of the injuries at this accident were reported to
Snow fell briefly Wednesday night in Pecos, but accumulations didn't
begin until the next round of flurries began around sunrise today. However,
conditions to the west and south deteriorated after sunset on Wednesday.
Foggy weather and high humidity near the I-10/I-20 junction and around
Kent caused moisture on overpasses and roads, and the higher elevations
near Gomez Peak caused the surfaces there to freeze before others in the
area. Ambulance attendants were sent to another accident this morning at
mile marker 172 on I-10, near Kent, though no further information was available.
Road conditions in Pecos and the surrounding areas continue to worsen
as snow continues to fall and temperatures stay low. Texas Department of
Transportation crews were out sanding roads and bridges on both interstates
in Reeves County this morning, along with Highway 17 and farm-to-market
roads in Reeves and Ward counties.
For a report on road conditions in Texas call 1-800452-9292. Road condition
reports also are available through the TxDOT website, at http://www.dot.state.tx.us/hcr/main.htm
City, county unemployment declined again in December
By JON FULBRIGHT
PECOS, January 18, 2001 - Unemployment in the Permian Basin continued
to decline in December, with Pecos' jobless rate dropping below nine percent
for the first time since the early 1990s.
According to figures released today by the Texas Workforce Commission
the city's unemployment rate fell by four-tenths of a percent last month,
from 9.3 to 8.9 percent. The city lost 50 people from its labor force,
but that was offset by a decline in the number of jobless in December,
from 473 to 451.
Compared with the same time period a year ago, the number of workers
in the local labor force is down by 180 workers, from 5,222 in December
1999 to 5,042 last month. But the total number of jobs in the city is up
by 48, from 4,543 to 4,591, which allowed local unemployment to drop from
the 13 percent level it was at 12 months ago.
Continued improvement in the energy section of the Permian Basin, along
with extra hiring by businesses during the Christmas sales period, accounted
in part for a decline in unemployment and an increase in the number of
jobs across the region.
Reeves County's jobless rate dropped by two-tenths of a percent last
month, from 8.0 to 7.8 percent, the TWC said. The local labor force dropped
by 61 workers, but the number of people without jobs also fell, from 528
in November to 504 last month.
Reeves County's labor force is down by nearly 200 from December of 1999,
the TWC said, while the number of jobs within the county is up, from 5,888
to 5,950. Unemployment within the county stood at 11.4 percent a year ago.
Local unemployment remains above that of the Permian Basin overall.
The TWC said the area jobless rate fell from 4.5 to 3.7 percent last month,
and statewide unemployment declined from 4 percent in November to 3.4 percent
Ector County saw a 1 percent drop it its jobless rate, from 5.2 to 4.2
percent, as it also added jobs while seeing its labor force decline. The
same held true in Midland County, where unemployment dropped from 3.8 to
Ward County saw its total number of jobs slip slightly in December,
but it was less than the total decline in the labor force, and allowed
the county's jobless rate to drop from 6.4 to 5.9 percent. Pecos County
saw a .4 percent drop in its rate despite an increase of 70 people in its
workforce, as the county added 90 new jobs compared with November.
The TWC said Bryan-College Station continued to have the lowest unemployment
rate of any major metropolitan area in Texas, at 1.3 percent. McAllen-Edinberg
and Mission remains the highest, at 12.1 percent, while Presidio County
continues to have the region's worst rate, at 21.7 percent. However, that's
down from 23 percent in November and from 27.2 percent a year ago.
Rotary Club hears district leader speak
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, January 18, 2001 - Pecos Rotary Club members heard from their
district governor last week, during at the group's regular meeting at the
Pecos Valley Country Club.
R.C. Paulette, Governor District 5730, and a member of the Odessa Rotary
Club since 1976, was in Pecos as guest speaker, along with his wife of
46 years, Irene.
"It's great to be in Pecos," said Paulette, who had had perfect attendance
at his Odessa club's meetings for 15 years.
Paulette said that there are currently 130 new members in the District
this year, with nine Districts in Texas. "This is the largest district
in West Texas," said Paulette.
"Every club makes a difference," said Paulette. "We have people enthused
about what it means to be in Rotary, ask them to come."
Paulette spoke about the many projects that the Rotary participates
in, including the student exchange program and the Diabetic Camp, held
in June for boys and girls afflicted with the disease.
"We need to get younger people in here, people under 40 years old that
can come in and work in all the projects we have," said Paulette. "Ask
people if they want to join, tell them more about Rotarians," he said.
"Rotarians never say no to a hungry or thirsty child," said Paullette,
after speaking about the Rotarians project to provide clean water around
the country and food to hungry children.
Paulette and his wife were born in Midland, but they have lived in Odessa
most of their lives. They are both graduates of Odessa High School and
The University of Texas System.
R.C. earned his degree in mechanical engineering from The University
of Texas at Austin in 1958. He has been a registered professional engineer
in the state of Texas since 1964. Irene earned both a bachelor and masters
degree from The University of Texas of the Permian Basin. She taught school
at the junior high level for many years. R.C. was employed in the engineering
and consulting field until 1981 when he became self-employed in the insurance
and risk-management business. Since that time, the Paulettes have worked
together in their family business.
R.C. has been a member of the Odessa Rotary Club since 1976 and has
15 years of perfect attendance. He has served his club on many boards and
committees and was club president in 1995-1996. That year, the Odessa Rotary
Club was selected as, "Club of the Year" in District 5730. R.C. and Irene
are both Paul Harris Fellows and Benefactors.
The Paulettes are active in local civic activities including the Odessa-Midland
Coalition for Immunization, Permian Basin Historical Society, The Presidential
Museum, Friendsd of Ector County Library, and The Ellen Noel Art Museum.
The couple have two grown children and seven grandchildren. They belong
to a Bible Study Class and R.C. is a deacon in their church.
During the regular Rotary meeting two new members were inducted. Angela
Romero and Kella Taylor were both inducted into the club and both are employees
of Texas-New Mexico Power Company.
Member Dot Stafford was presented with a pin for brining in new members
and Harold Elder gave a brief history on Rotary.
Stress management workshop planned
PECOS, January 18, 2001 - Desert Springs Medical Center is presenting a
stress management workshop at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 5:30 p.m., next Wednesday
in the Reeves County Hospital classroom.
In the workshop, learn to identify good stress and bad stress, learn
stress management techniques and learn how different personalities handle
To register call 447-3551, ext. 350. Walk-ins welcome and admission
PECOS, January 18, 2001 - High Wednesday 43. Low this morning 32. Forecast
for tonight: Decreasing cloudiness. Low in the lower 20s. Northwest wind
5 to 15 mph. Friday: Partly cloudy. High in the mid 40s. Light northwest
wind. Friday night: Partly cloudy. Low in the mid 20s. Saturday and Sunday:
Partly cloudy. Lows 25 to 35. Highs from the mid 50s to the lower 60s.
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 2000 by Pecos Enterprise