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Archive 2002

Area Newspapers
Economic Development


Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Monday, July 29, 2002

McCain, TransPecos Foods finalize sale of plant

Staff Writer

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 press release.

"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 productions.

"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 Foods.

"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

Staff Writer

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 fire.

"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

Staff Writer

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 Gail Fritter.

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 Gary Ingram.

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 Park employee.

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

Staff Writer

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 said.

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.



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Pecos Enterprise
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