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Monday, February 12, 2001

Eagles sweep regional swim titles

Staff Writer

PECOS, February 12 - For the first time in the history of Pecos swimming both the boys and girls' Pecos High School Swim Teams won the honor of being regional champions.
Both teams swam away with the honors at Saturday's Region I-4A meet in Lubbock, when the boys easily beat out the competition with 125 points while the girls took their first place trophy with 90 points.
The boys had more than double the point total of second place Andrews (52 points), while Big Spring was third with 44 points. The girls won by 20 points over Pampa High School (70 points), with Abilene Wylie winding up third (50 points).
"I thought we had an extremely good finals on Saturday," said Eagles' Coach Terri Morse, after all of her swimmers in Friday's preliminaries qualified for the finals on Saturday
The girls' 200-yard medley relay team of JoAnn Wein, Rachelle Eisenberg, Rebecca Wein and Sarah Flores started off the final day with a bang when they just out touched top-seeded Pampa to earn the automatic state berth. The team cut three seconds off Friday's prelim time, and senior Tye Edwards said that race set the tone for the rest of the day.
"The girls medley started the whole meet off," he said. "It got everybody fired up and it just went on from there."
Throughout the day the Pecos team was able to break seven records set in last year's first-ever Class 4A regional, and also set two school records, including Edwards amazing win in the 100-yard butterfly.
"The two most inspiring races were the girls' medley and Tye's race," Senior Randall Reynolds said.
Edwards started off that race seeded second behind John Ouimette of Wylie who has beaten Edwards in that race all year.
Edwards and Ouimette were neck and neck throughout the race before Edwards just out-touched his rival, winning with a time of 53.64 seconds, .07 ahead of Ouimette.
That win helped Edwards be named Region 1-4A Male Competitor of the Year, after he also took first in the 100-yard backstroke and set a new region record with a time of 55.83, tying the current school record, according to Morse.
After the girls' 200 medley win the boys' team of Edwards, Jason Lopez, Will Oglesby and Cortney Freeman took their relay with a time of 1:42.36, which also was a new regional record.
After having some trouble in the 100-yard freestyle at the district swim meet, Freeman came back at regionals to take first place in that race with a time of 50.21 ahead of Big Spring's Douglas Willberg's time of 50.93.
Freeman also placed second in the 50-yard freestyle with a time of 22.76 behind Ethan Lewallen of Monahans who finished with a 22.68, and earned an at-large berth at the state meet, one of two on the day for Pecos.
Lopez was sixth in that race before setting a new region record by winning 100-yard breaststroke with a time of 1:03.04.
Grant Holland came up behind Lopez to place second with a time of 1:06.40 while Holland was third in the 200-yard individual medley and K.W. Winkles second in the race. Roberto Gandara of El Paso broke the region record and taking first in that race with a time of 2:07.52. Winkles swam a 2:10.78 and Holland a 2:11 flat, as both just missed state at-large berths.
Winkles also place sixth in the 100-yard freestyle.
Reynolds broke the region record for the 500-yard freestyle with a time of 5:14.56, winning over Pampa's Willie Griffin. Pecos Patrick McChesney was third with a 5:25.64, while Reynolds also placed third in the 200-yard freestyle behind Ouimette and Willberg.

Christmas sales give Pecos slight hike

in rebate check

PECOS, February 12 - Sales tax rebates for the Christmas holiday season were slightly higher in Pecos than in December of 1999, according to figures released on Friday by Texas Comptroller Carole Keeton Rylander's office.
Rylander sent out February's rebate checks to cities and counties across Texas last week, based on sales made during December, and Pecos got back a check for $80,322 up 3.78 percent from the $77,391 the city received a year ago. That comes after a slight drop in January's rebate check for the city, and leaves the two-month total for 2001 virtually unchanged from January and February of 2000.
The check is based on the city's 1½-cent share of the state's 8¼-cent sales tax. One-quarter cent, or $13,387, of December's total goes to the Pecos Economic Development Corporation.
Pecos' increase was smaller than most other cities in the Permian Basin and Trans-Pecos, according to Rylander's office. Almost all of those were up by double-digits, as was the Reeves County Hospital District, which got back $33,046 from its ½-cent sales tax. That was 11.86 percent above last year's $29,540 total. For the first two months of 2001, the hospital has gotten back $50,124 from Austin, 6.18 percent behind last year's total.
Toyah, which saw their rebate checks drop sharply in 2000, after a big rise for most of 1999, got back $779 from the comptroller this month, which was more than 160 percent above the $299 in February of 2000. Balmorhea, meanwhile, joined Fort Stockton as one of the only cities to see their rebate check decline. December sales there produced a check for $1,220, down 9.29 percent from the $1.351 of a year ago.
Monahans' rebate check this month was up 12.8 percent, Odessa was up 14 percent, Andrews show a 21.7 percent increase, Kermit was up 25.7 percent and Crane's rebate check rose 67.9 percent. Midland had the area's biggest rebate check, falling just short of the $2 million mark, at $1.98 million. That was 35.6 percent above last year, but part of that was due to a quarter-cent rise in the city's sales tax compared with a year ago.
Statewide, Pecos' increase was about average, according to the figures from Austin. Rylander's office said checks totaling just under $311 million were sent out last week, up 5.88 from a year ago, when rebates totaled a little under $294 million. Houston received the largest single check, for $39.2 million, which was five percent lower than a year ago, while Dallas had the second largest check, at 25.2 million, which was also down compared with a year ago, by 2.83 percent.

Law enforcement cars, vests get sponsors

Staff Writer

PECOS, February 12 - A change has been made to the Pecos Police Departments' patrol cars _ sponsorships.
As a result of a federal grant and the Invest in a Vest program all the marked patrol cars have sponsorships placed on the back end.
Police Chief Clay McKinney said that the program was started in the early fall of 2000. A similar program is underway involving sponsorship of Reeves County Sheriff's Department vehicles, and deputies there also have recently received funding for new bullet-proof vests.
"This was a program that was completed by our community service officer," McKinney said.
The program allows merchants and businesses in the community donate money to go toward the purchase of a new bulletproof vest for each officer in the department.
McKinney said that after he became Chief he began looking at what was needed in the department.
He said the vests that the department currently has have been used so much and so long that they are "getting relatively close to the warranty date."
He began looking at grants offered by the federal government that could be used to purchase new vests.
"I found a grant that was offered by the Department of Justice," he said.
McKinney applied for that grant and was able to receive it. The grant pays for 50 percent of each vest per officer.
"I was still left with trying to find the remaining 50 percent," he said.
McKinney needed to order 20 vests, one for each officer in the department.
That is when the Invest in a Vest program started.
This program allows the businesses and merchants to donate the remaining money, which is $250 for a vest and in return the name of the business or merchant would be placed on that officer's car.
McKinney said that he was worried about local participation in the program but soon had no doubts about how the community would react.
"We had all the donations in less than a week," he said. "It was just a fantastic turnout."
McKinney said that 14 officers were covered with the Invest in a Vest program leaving six unmarked vehicles that would not use sponsorships.
In able to purchase the remaining vests, McKinney said he would use seized drug money.
"I'll take seized drug money and place it in that fund for the additional 50 percent," he said.
Since the total cost to outfit 20 officers with vests would be approximately $10,000, McKinney said he wanted to make sure they purchased a good quality vest that is comfortable.
"Because selecting the right vest is just as important as obtaining the funds to buy it," he said.
McKinney and the officers reviewed three different companies who sent samples of their vests for the officers to try on and wear for a few days.
After sampling different vests, McKinney said they decided to order the Second Chance vest that is made by a company in Dallas.
That vest is lightweight and a high quality, according to McKinney.
"It's really light and comfortable and the officers really like it," he said.
McKinney said that he is in the process of taking a total of six measurements of each officer to send to the company in order to have each vest custom made.
He also said that a vest would be custom made to fit the department's drug dog, Nouska.
McKinney said that the Invest in a Vest program is "a great great program" that was needed in the department and appreciates all the support from the community.
Donations were made by 14 businesses and merchants including Airlawn Barbershop; Industrial Communications; NAPA Auto Parts; Armstrong Realty; Desert Rentals; Valley Motors; Gas Card Incorporated; Security State Bank; West Texas National Bank; the Pecos Downtown Lion's Club; Colt Chevrolet; Anchor West and Texas New Mexico Power Company.
Texas New Mexico Power made a donation for one officer as well as Nouska.
"This is an extremely important gift that the community could give to a police officer, his wife and children," McKinney said.

Chamber selling Waynay Inka concert tickets

PECOS, February 12 - Tickets are now available for the "Wayanay Inka" concert, scheduled for 6 p.m., Friday, Feb. 23, at the Reeves County Civic Center.
Tickets can be purchased at the Pecos Area Chamber of Commerce office, 110 S. Cedar.
The tickets for the reception and concert are $10 per person. The tickets for the concert only will be $5 per person. The VIP Reception will give anyone interested in attending an opportunity to meet this musical group before the concert.
This is going to be an exciting evening filled with fantastic music for all to enjoy.


Jimmy Vasquez, Bobby Hill, Gregorio Gabaldon, and Yolanda Rodriguez


PECOS, February 12 - High Sunday 63. Low this morning 40. Forecast for tonight: Cloudy with a 30 percent chance of rain. Low in the upper 40s. Southeast wind 10 to 15 mph. Tuesday: Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of showers. High near 70. Southeast wind 10 to 15 mph. Tuesday night: Mostly cloudy with a 30 percent chance of showers. Low in the upper 40s.Wednesday and Thursday: Mostly cloudy with a chance of showers or thunderstorms. Lows in the mid to upper 40s. Highs near 70.

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