Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas
Monday, July 29, 2002
McCain, TransPecos Foods finalize sale of plant
By JENNIFER GALVAN
PECOS, Monday, July 29, 2002 -- After putting its new sign up on Thursday
afternoon, TransPecos Foods announced the completion of the purchase
of the onion rings and frozen appetizer manufacturing facility located
in Pecos from McCain Foods today.
TransPecos Foods and McCain Foods USA jointly announced the finalization
of the sale today, which was first announced on June 5. Under the terms of
the deal stating that ownership of the Pecos plant, plant property and the
plant's current assets will be transferred to TransPecos, which will then
re-open the plant to process food products.
McCain acquired the plant 147-acre facility and campus from Anchor Foods
in September of last year. Two months later, McCain announced it would close
the plant and consolidate all of its onion ring production at a facility
the company already operated in Grand Island, Neb.
McCain said it would invest $1 million to expand the Grand Island plant
and increase its workforce from 350 to 450, while at the same time looking
for a buyer for the Pecos plant. McCain's last day of production at the Pecos
facility was May 31.
In a joint press release sent out by TransPecos and McCain Foods, the
plant will be reopened by TransPecos Foods to continue the production of
its famous onion rings and appetizers.
According to the release the plant management team will continue largely
intact and TransPecos will employ many of the skilled workers with years
of experience making frozen appetizers.
The facility, which employed over 700 workers in Pecos, is expected to
return to full-scale production within the next few weeks, according to the
"We feel like this is a very positive deal for all parties involved,"
Harold Durost, McCain Vice President of Business Development in North and
South America said. "TransPecos gets dedicated and skilled people from Pecos
and West Texas to work in the plant. The Pecos community gets to keep jobs
supplied by the plant, which will play a significant role in stabilizing
the local employment base."
Chairman of TransPecos Foods, Patrick Kennedy, Jr., conveyed his appreciation
and thanks to all involved, including the McCain family of New Brunswick,
Canada and their senior executives.
"We are very pleased to have completed this acquisition and thank the
McCain family, Harold Durost and McCain's other outstanding senior executives
in the United States," Kennedy said. "The transaction means Pecos and West
Texas will continue to have an important local business."
McCain said in its statement that TransPecos' commitment to reopening
the plant and providing a strong employment base for the Pecos community
as being integral to the sale agreement.
According to Kennedy, TransPecos Foods is anxious to get back into full-scale
"Our senior management and marketing staff have been distributing product
samples to customers throughout Texas and beyond," Kennedy said. "We are
very pleased with our production results. The quicker we are able to rebuild
our business, the quicker we'll be able to rebuild our local workforce."
Kennedy is the owner of Security State Bank of Pecos, and acting as financial
advisor, TransPecos Development, a locally based community development corporation
owned by the bank, structured the agreement between McCain Foods and TransPecos
"This community based initiative has made it possible for TransPecos Foods
to take the first steps toward providing new employment for the citizens
of Pecos and keeping an important industry in this community," Kennedy said.
Appleton, Wisc.-based Anchor Foods opened its onion processing plant in
Pecos in 1990 with 200 workers, and added three production lines and 500
employees to its staff over the next 11 years. The 700 workers employed at
Anchor at the time of the closing announcement by McCain represented 10 percent
of Reeves County's workforce, and 13 percent of the workforce in the Town
of Pecos City.
Truck, oil tank fires keep fire department busy
By JENNIFER GALVAN
PECOS, Monday, July 29, 2002 -- Two different fires, one believed to have
been started by Sunday night's lightning storm, and an accident that
had the potential to start a fire had the Pecos Volunteer Fire Department
working hard from yesterday afternoon through the morning hours.
The first call came in at about 5 p.m. yesterday, stating that a 24-foot
utility trailer was on fire out on mile marker 13.
According to Fire Marshal, Jack Brookshire, a truck heading back to New
Mexico was pulling the trailer which had an office built inside of it.
The fire is believed to have started inside the office, but because the
owners were in a hurry to leave, it is not known exactly what caused the
"We would have had to take everything out of it to find out what caused
the fire," Brookshire said.
According to Brookshire, the fire was minor.
The fire department received a second call at about 12:30 a.m. this morning
in reference to an oil storage tank explosion near Interstate 20 at Exit
49 south of Barstow.
The fire department was called out to assist Ward County emergency crews
in containing the blaze.
According to Brookshire, no injuries were reported.
Firemen went to that fire, which was apparently caused by lightning, after
going to assist emergency crews with a diesel oil spill about 11 p.m. on
I-20 at the 39 mile marker, on the southwest side of Pecos. The diesel spilled
from a truck that had gone off the I-20 overpass for Western Avenue and the
Pecos Valley Southern Railroad.
The driver of the truck was not reported to have suffered any serious
injuries in the accident.
Storm brings Pecos rain, causes power, cable outages
By ROSIE FLORES
PECOS, Monday, July 29, 2002 -- Much needed rain fell in the Pecos area just
before midnight on Sunday, though the rain was localized and other
nearby towns were bypassed by the latest round of thunderstorms to
pass through West Texas.
A total of .65 inches of rain fell last evening and early this morning
at the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station seven miles west of town, while
downtown KIUN radio reported just slightly less, with .60 inch of rain during
the storm, which lasted on and off for about two hours.
However, that wasn't as much rain as the Experiment Station received last
Tuesday, when a total of .87 inches of rain fell west of Pecos.
The city itself only received a few drops that night, while the overnight
rain today was the largest within the city limits since July 6, when KIUN
reported .60 inch and the Experiment Station received half an inch of rain.
Last night's rain and lighting caused a few power outages. Streetlights
were knocked out on the south side of Pecos, while cable service was also
cut overnight to Classic Cable customers. Service on several channels, including
the Midland-Odessa network stations, was restored by early this morning and
the others were back on later in the day.
Pecos missed getting much rain the previous night from a storm that passed
through the area, but lightning from that did hit the antenna for KPTX radio,
knocking it off the air for about 24 hours.
Sunday night's rain mainly hit areas just to the north of Interstate 20
in eastern Reeves County.
Coyanosa Co-Op reported that the Coyanosa area received no rain whatsoever.
"We were disappointed, we didn't receive any rain at all last night," said
Toyah didn't see any of the rainfall yesterday either. "Past the 27-mile-marker
there was nothing, Toyah didn't see any of that rain," said Toyah resident
Balmorhea received four tenths of an inch, which is a little bit more
than what they have been receiving lately, according to a Balmorhea State
The thunderstorms arrived as temperatures back into triple digits in the
Trans-Pecos region, after spending most of July in the low and mid-90s. Temperatures
hit 100 at the Texas A&M Experiment Station on Sunday, while Wink reported
the highest temperature in the station, at 106 degrees.
A weak area of low pressure swirling over the Panhandle combined with
the high temperatures kicked up the thunderstorms, and more were expected
to erupt today as it lumbered toward North Texas, forecasters said. The Pecos
area has a 30 percent chance of ,more storms today and 40 percent tonight,
with the chance of showers decreasing on Tuesday and Wednesday.
PHS, Crockett physicals form deadlines near
PECOS, Monday, July 29, 2002 -- Pecos High School students planning to
participate in fall sports for the 2002-2003 school year need to have their
physical forms filled out and returned to their coaches by next Monday, Aug.
5, the first day of practice for most fall activities.
Trainer Joel Birch said along with that deadline for students entering
Grades 9-12, students going into Grades 7-8 at Crockett Middle School have
to have their forms returned by the time practice begins on the opening day
of school, Aug. 19.
The opening scrimmage for Pecos High School volleyball players will be
Friday, Aug., 16, with their season beginning the following Tuesday, Aug.
20, while Pecos' first football scrimmage will be Saturday, Aug. 17, and
regular season play starts on Friday, Sept. 6.
Pumping problem dries up activity at pool
By LEIA HOLLAND
PECOS, Monday, July 29, 2002 -- Local children had to settle with running
through the sprinklers this weekend after a mechanical malfunction
at the Pecos Athletic Pool in Maxey Park occurred on Friday night causing
the staff to shut down the pool.
City Manager Carlos Yerena said that the pool's pump, which circulates
the water, broke down just after a party concluded late Friday night.
City and pool staff took a look at the problem on Friday but could not
determine what had happened.
Yerena said that the equipment has been sent to Monahans for repairs.
"They're checking out the problem as we speak," he said.
Once the cause of the problem is determined, Yerena said that it would
be fixed as quickly as possible in order to get the pool re-opened.
"It's our priority right now," he said.
Yerena said that the city has had problems with the pool's pump before
however, they are unable to purchase replacement equipment because that model
of pump is no longer sold.
"I think last year the pump had some problems but we corrected it," he
Before the pool opened this summer, Yerena said that the city checked
out all the equipment and all was working properly.
Since that model of pump is no longer sold, Yerena said that all the city
could do is keep repairing the current one.
"It it's just buying one we would just buy one but we can't," he said.
Yerena said that the pool would remain closed until further notice.
The pool is normally open while school is out during the summer. This
year, the first day of school is in three weeks, on Aug. 19.
PECOS, Monday, July 29, 2002 -- High Sun. 100. Low this morning 74. Rainfall
last 24 hours at Texas A&M Experiment Station .65 inch. Forecast
for tonight. Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of thunderstorms.
Lows 70 to 75. SE winds 5 to 15 mph. Tues.: Partly cloudy with
a 30 percent chance of thunderstorms. Highs 95 to 100. SE winds 10
to 15 mph. Tues. night: Partly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of
thunderstorms. Lows 70 to 75. Wed.: Partly cloudy with a 20 percent
chance of thunderstorms. Highs 95 to 100. Thurs. : Partly
cloudy with a slight chance of thunderstorms. Lows 70 to 75. Highs near 100.
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 2002 by Pecos Enterprise