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November 11, 1997

Commissioners approve rec facilities proposal

Enterprise Editor

PECOS, November 11, 1997 - Reeves County Commissioners, meeting
in regular session Monday, approved an interlocal agreement
proposal to develop a recreation program for use by citizens of
the county in cooperation with the schools, city and hospital

The proposal did not specify dollar amounts but Reeves County
Judge Jimmy Galindo said he hopes that each entity can contribute
$20,000 annually to help hire staff to coordinate recreational
activities and a "wellness program" using facilities that exist at
Pecos High School.

"These are some of the finest facilities in the area," Galindo
noted, "and our number one priority will be for public access to
the facilities." Galindo also said he has visited with Pecos High
School Principal Danny Rodriguez, who is also Mayor pro-tem of the
Town of Pecos City, who is excited about the proposal.

Galindo said he has also talked with several members of the
school board, as well as city council members, to enlist their
support for the proposal.

Commissioners anticipate that the county can use money from its
self-funded insurance to fund programs for the wellness of county
employees, something that the other taxing entities should also be
involved in and have expressed their support for, Galindo said.

He also said that these funds are not available for tax reduction
or employee pay raises as they are expressly marked for employee

"This is a win-win situation," Galindo noted.

Commissioner Dr. W.J. Bang added he believes it is a good idea to
fully utilize the facilities the community already has.

Some of the proposed funds could be used to build two racket ball
courts at the old high school gym, Galindo said, as well as
refurbish the gym. Construction of the courts would cost about
$30,000 each, he said.

Commissioners have been discussing for some time the construction
of recreation facilities for the community but have decided that
it would be too expensive to build all new facilities when many of
the needed facilities are already in place and under utilized.

Commissioners mentioned that a number of people travel regularly
now to Monahans to use their school facilities for exercise.
Galindo also said that insurance programs encourage exercise and
wellness programs for good health of employees.

The interlocal agreement will possibly be presented to other
local governmental bodies later this week and next week.

Later on the commissioners' agenda was an item concerning an
agreement between the county and schools to develop facilities for
a girls softball program at Martinez Field. Galindo proposed, and
commissioners approved, making this part of the proposed
interlocal agreement for recreational facilities.

In other action, commissioners approved two contracts under the
Older Americans Act Program for operation of senior citizen
centers in Pecos and Balmorhea. This had been considered in two
previous meetings but there were concerns over a rewording of the
contract that made the county responsible for the centers rather
than the center operators. Commissioners approved the contract
with the stipulation that they could then subcontract with the
centers to fulfill requirements.

The firm of Card, Graham & Co., was selected to be the outside
auditor for the county for the next two years with a firm from
Waco also being considered. A price is to be negotiated and
reported back to the commissioners at their next meeting.

Also approved were the constitutional election results from last
week, an addendum to the juvenile detention contract between
Reeves County and the Rio Grande Council of Governments setting
forth record keeping requirements and a juvenile detention
contract with Upshur County at $70 per-day per-juvenile.

A Reeves County Detention Center correction officer of the month
and year incentive program was approved in addition to the
employee of the month and year. Under this recognition program,
those honored monthly will receive on extra day of vacation and
the one picked for the yearly award will get three extra days of

Under reports from various departments, Commissioner Bernardo
Martinez noted he had contacted a firm in Waco that recommended
Christmas lights costing $1 per foot. He said he had measured the
courthouse and it is about 333 feet around. Placing lights at
three levels would cost about $1,000.

Galindo said his staff had found lighting that would cost only
about $359 for the three levels. Texas-New Mexico is working with
his staff to make sure power requirements are right, Galindo said.

Martinez also pointed out there was not a report from the
veterans' service office (Tom Rivera) and Galindo said there
hasn't been one in a year and he has been attempting the get the
names of the 1,100 veterans in the county.

Rivera later noted that he was not aware of the need for a report
nor the request for names of veterans.

Also under department reports, Commissioner Herman Tarin praised
county road crews for work in seal coating a number of roads in
his precinct (3).

In a discussion over replacing broken windows at a building
repossessed by taxing entities at 231 S. Oak, it was decided to
check on using a material other than glass. The 4-H Club had
proposed adopting the building and painting murals on the glass.
County Auditor Lynn Owens mentioned that the building is needed
for county record storage and commissioners proposed the
possibility of using some other permanent material to reface the
building and then letting the 4-H adopt the building. Before the
building can be used by the county, other taxing entities have to
give their permission.

It was also noted the RCDC is in dire need of record storage

Tabled was an item to approve a new soda machine contract as
several commissioners, including Felipe Arredondo, said it might
be less expensive for the county to buy and operate their own
machine. It was also decided to stay with the same county
retirement program as in the past with the county contributing
seven percent of an employee's salary along with the employee
kicking in seven percent.

Under budget consideration, Owens reported that funds for the 911
program have been used up and that the city may have received
funds that the county could use to keep three employees working on
mapping county addresses under the 911 program.

Owens also said that the Pecos Ambulance Service has increased
its prices from $125 for a basic life service call to $300 and
from $175 to $400 for a advanced life service call. This could be
a major expense for the jail and Owens suggested that a meeting
with ambulance personnel might be necessary to work out a price
schedule. The prices were increased in September.

It was also suggested by several commissioners that the county
might need to have its own ambulance.

The commissioners also awarded insurance bids for the lowest
bidder in several categories. Those were:

-General Liability, Texas Association of Counties, $15,514.

-Auto Liability/Physical Damage Insurance, Gilliland/Rigg
Insurance Agency, Odessa, $18,558..

-Real/Personal Property & Heavy Equipment Insurance, Gillilan/Rigg
Insurance, $44,895.

-Law Enforcement Liability & Public Officials Liability Insurance,
Pecos Insurance, $112,415.

Pecos sales tax rebates increase, Toyah's decrease

Staff Writer

PECOS, November 11, 1997 - Of 16 area cities only Toyah reported a
decrease in sales tax revenue received this month compared to
November 1996.

Sales tax rebates delivered to Toyah this month decreased by more
than 24 percent from $568 for the period last year to $429 this
month. Total sales tax revenue delivered by the state to Toyah for
the year is down by more than 40 percent.

Meanwhile, sales tax rebates to Pecos increased by almost 11
percent for the month, from $56,217 in November 1996 to $62,125
this month. Pecos sales tax revenue for the year is ahead by a
little more than one percent compared to this time last year. As
of November 1996 Pecos had received $669,199 in rebates compared
to $676,509 year-to-date this year.

According to the State Comptroller's monthly sales tax rebate
report, average Texas sales tax payments increased by more than
seven percent in November compared to November last year.

This month State Comptroller John Sharp delivered $230.6 million
in monthly sales tax payments to 1,087 Texas cities and 117

"Consumer spending shows confidence in the continued growth of the
Texas economy, and sales tax rebates are a healthy 7.1 percent
ahead of those through November of last year," Sharp said.

Sharp delivered monthly sales tax rebates to Texas cities totaling
$212.4 million, 11.4 percent higher than last November's payments
of $190.5 million. Rebates of $18.2 million to Texas counties were
15.7 percent higher than allocations of $15.7 million in November
1996. Another $6 million went to 26 special purpose districts
around the state.

This month's payments include local sales taxes collected by
monthly filers on September sales, and by quarterly filers on
July, August and September sales, and reported to the
comptroller's office in October.

November sales tax rebates to Monahans totaled 69,698, almost a 19
percent increase from November last year ($58,584). Year-to-date
rebate totals for Monahans are more than 25 percent greater than
the same period last year ($602,534 and $479,175).

Odessa sales tax revenue increased by 12 percent for the month
compared to November last year, gaining from $934,721 to
$1,047,405. Odessa is 6.42% ahead of last year's year-to-date
total of $8,697,918 at $9,257,080 this year.

Sales tax rebates to Midland for the month increased more than 16
percent from $1,139,111 to $1,323,519 from November last year.
Year-to-date rebates to Midland are almost 11 percent greater than
last year at this time ($11,853,354 from $10,687,764).

El Paso's sales tax rebate of $3.6 million was 2.5 percent below
the $3.7 million payment delivered in November 1996, resulting in
local sales tax payments year-to-date virtually the same as last

The San Antonio allocation for November totaled $10.5 million, 6.4
percent above the $9.9 million payment for November 1996.
Year-to-date, San Antonio's sales tax rebates are up by 5.7

The Austin sales tax allocation for November was $8.4 million,
12.6 percent higher than the November 1996 payment of $7.5
million. Year-to-date, Austin has experienced a 4.9 percent
increase in local sales tax payments.

Fort Worth's $6.3 million sales tax allocation was 6.2 percent
more than the rebate of $5.9 million for November of last year.
Year-to-date rebates to Fort Worth show an increase of 6.1 percent
more than those through November 1996. The city of Arlington's
$6.6 million allocation was 9.6 percent above the $6 million
delivered in November 1996, placing year-to-date rebates 5.7
percent ahead of 1996.

The city of Houston's payment has exceeded $30 million three times
in the past, however, this is the first time it has happened
before Christmas. The November $30.3 million local sales tax
allocation to Houston reflects a 13.1 percent increase from the
$26.8 million sales tax rebate for the same month last year.
Year-to-date payments to Houston are running 6.4 percent ahead of
those through November 1996.

The city of Dallas received a sales tax rebate of $18.9 million in
November, 5.8 percent higher than last year's $17.9 million
payment for the same month. Year-to-date payments to the city of
Dallas are up by 3.7 percent.

November sales tax rebates to some other Texas cities were:
Amarillo, with a rebate of $3.7 million, for a 3.7 percent
increase year-to-date; Mesquite, with an allocation of $2.6
million, up 4.5 percent year-to-date; McAllen, with a $2.1 million
payment, a 6.6 percent increase over 1996 year-to-date; Waco, with
a rebate of $2.1 million, for a year-to-date increase of 3.2
percent; and Longview, with a $1.8 million rebate, a year-to-date
increase of 4.4 percent.

The monthly rebate to the El Paso City Transit Department was $1.8
million, down 2 percent from November 1996. The Laredo City
Transit Department sales tax rebate for November was $295,719, for
a 14.4 percent increase from the allocation of last year.

Garage sale benefits needy

Staff Writer

PECOS, November 11, 1997 - A big garage sale is planned for this
weekend to help raise funds for a worthy cause.

The Catholic Daughters of the Americas garage sale will be from 8
a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 15, at St. Catherine Church Parish
Hall at the corner of Plum and Walthall.

"We are in the court of the Blessed Trinity, and we are a
city-wide organization," said Ester Villarreal.

The Motto of the group is charity and unity.

"Proceeds from the garage sale are to buy blankets for the needy,"
said Villarreal.

The Catholic Daughters will be working in conjunction with the
Knights of Columbus, this year in providing items for needy
families in the community.

"This year, the blankets will go in a food basket that the Knights
will be making," said Villarreal.

Each year, the Knights of Columbus provide food baskets to needy
families in the community during the Christmas season.

The Catholic group also donates scholarships. This year the group
donated a seminary scholarship to Sam Anchondo, provided Our Lady
of Guadalupe in Saragosa school supplies for their Catechism class
and also donated to the CCD class at St. Catherine.

Items at the garage sale include clothes, jewelry, furniture, warm
jackets, baby items and toys.

"Our prices will be very reasonable," said Yvonne Martin.

The group is also accepting donations of good, clean blankets and
anyone wishing to donate a blanket or to help out can call Martin
at 447-3600 or Villarreal at 445-4373.

"We also invite other women to join our organization," said

The next meeting of the Catholic Daughters is Dec. 4 at the Parish
Hall, at St. Catherine Church.

"This is a city-wide organization for all the community, not just
St. Catherine," said Villarreal.

Many families in the community will benefit from this project,
according to Martin.

Water board holds out for more survey money

Staff Writer

PECOS, November 11, 1997 - Given a 'take it or leave it offer' on
a price to allow seismograph crews to conduct geophysical work on
district land in Reeves and Loving counties, the Red Bluff Water
and Power Control Board recommended General Manager Jim Ed Miller
'leave it' during their monthly meeting in Pecos yesterday.

The board told Miller they were in favor of turning down the $7.50
per acre offer from Geco-Prakla to do geophysical work on the
surface of 1,326.34 acres on two sections of land in Loving County
and two sections in Reeves County. The offer was 50 cents higher
than the initial offer presented to the district earlier this
year, but only half that offered to others in the area, board
members said.

"On the University (state) lands they're paying up to $15 per
acre," said board president Randall Hartman, while board member
Jay Lee said fees in the Imperial area were about $12.50 per acre.

Miller said Geco-Prakla officials were threatening to "go around"
the Red Bluff land with their surveys if the district didn't
accept the $7.50 offer, though Hartman said they may be bluffing
in trying to hold the fee down. "I've dealt with the seismograph
people, and they're not a real honorable bunch," he said.

The decision was one of items during the general discussion
section of the meeting. Board members were also updated on the
status of the Malaga Bend desalination project, in conjunction
with Albert Wagner of Sun West Salt Company of Loving, N.M.

Miller said Wagner has gotten an agreement with the Carlsbad City
Council for rights to pump salt water across city-owned land to
three pits that will hold the water. Red Bluff will have a 10-year
deal for right of way with option for renewal, and is awaiting
final adjustment of the water compact agreement with New Mexico.

"As soon as we get this tied down we can begin to get permits to
drill," Hartman said.

The well will pump as much as 400 gallons of water per minute out
of the salt spring. Drilling costs to the district were estimated
at between $40,000 and $80,000 by Hartman and board member Lloyd

Goodrich said the well would be drilled to about a 375 foot depth,
and that past pumping in the area showed that 50 horsepower
turbine engines were better than submergible motors in the pumping

Miller also told the board, water to the irrigation districts
would be cut off as of Nov. 14, and that an additional 300
acre-feet of water would be given to Ward County Irrigation
District #1, to fulfill its requirements to Barstow-area farmers.

"We used to have 50 percent water loss, now they're taking a 60
percent loss," said board member Manuel Lujan, referring to the
amount of water lost on its way from the Pecos River through the
canals to Barstow. "Now, we only get 40 percent and they (WCID#1)
still can't make it."

Miller said part of the problem is many area farmers have other
jobs and can irrigate only on weekends, resulting in a large
amount of water use at one time. Lujan said that grass within the
irrigation canals also cuts down on the water flow, and board
member Charlotte Wilcox said Ward County Irrigation District #2 is
using algae-killing chemicals in the Grandfalls area canals to try
and control that problem.

Overall water in Red Bluff Lake was put at a little more than
60,000 acre feet, due to extra water releases during the past
month from New Mexico. Goodrich said may western state reservoir
managers have been dumping water to lower lake levels in
preparation for possible heavy winter rains and snows from 'El

Earlier in the meeting, the board agreed to accept a letter of
engagement from Card, Graham & Co., to conduct the district's

The board also approved merit bonuses ranging between $215 and
$800 for Red Bluff District employees. The bonuses, equal to 40
percent of one month's pay, were formally Christmas bonuses,
before that practice was ruled illegal.

"We got it restyled, so it's legal now," Hartman said, and board
member Dick Slack explained "If we put it (the bonus money) in
ahead of time, working it into the salary and describing it, it's

Annual payments of $821,877 were also made to Red Bluff and the
other water districts from the State of Texas. Red Bluff received
$273,932 from Austin, while the other payouts were $16,986 to
Loving County Irrigation District #1; $48,219 to Reeves County
Irrigation District #2; $45,479 to Ward County Irrigation District
#3; $129,863 to WCID#1; $150684 to WCID#2; $83,835 to Pecos County
Irrigation District #2 and $72,877 to PCID#3.

The board also approved the monthly disbursements and accounts
payable reports. Bills included $1,250 for the purchase of five
recording gauges to measure outflow from the Pecos River to the
various water districts. Miller said the gauges were bought to
replace ones that are vandalized, which he said happens about
twice a year.

Crockett middle school honors veterans

Staff Writer

PECOS, November 11, 1997 - A Veteran's Day memorial has been
erected in the lobby of Crockett Middle School.

Several students and teachers worked under the supervision of
teacher's aide Israel Matta to construct the memorial. Mac Arthur
Pineda, Veteran's Administration Public Relations Representative
from Big Spring, donated materials to the school for the project.

Matta, himself a 10-year veteran, said that paying tribute to such
a worthy cause meant a lot to him and "especially to those who
lost loved ones in battle, those who were injured and those who
never made it back to their mother land.

"I am proud of those veterans and I take my hat off to them,
because they stand up and are counted as true Americans," he said.

Students involved in the project include: Edgar Morales, Stephanie
Garcia, Mayte Rodriguez, Joanna Melendez, Eric Estorga, Angie
Rayos, Laura Kratzmeyer, Julio Sanchez, Christina Tarango, Jose
Garcia, Omar Muniz, and Adam Salgado.

Several teachers also were instrumental in creating the memorial,
including: Jose Paz, Belinda Morin, Sylvia Miranda, Kim Calhoun,
Deborah Clary, Laverne Williams, Emma Aguilar and Peter Allen.

Matta offered a special thanks to Juanita Davila, for allowing the
memorial to be put in place, and Teresa Prieto. Matta said it was
Prieto whose "ideas and dedication helped (him) fulfill this

"I wish that our country shall never be invaded by hostile
nations, that our children and children's children shall forever
be safe from the horror, and that there shall be peace in our
community, country, and abroad," Matta concluded.


PECOS, November 11, 1997 - Marriages for September, as reported by
the Reeves County Clerk's Office.

John Roberts and Rona Adelle Davis

Neponuceno Tarin Hidalgo and Sally Martinez Minjarez

Edward Hernandez Villalobos and Mary Juana Gonzalez

Juan Alfaro Samaguey and Martina Gonzalez Samaguey

Felix Hernandez Leyva and Jesus Gonzalez

Gabriel Orona and Tammy Glea Metzker

Robert Espinosa Mendoza and Eva Montez Zapata

Rogelio Anchondo and Saturina Patino Munoz

Timothy James Parks and Ashleigh Shea Foster

Donald Paul Putnam and Lynell Metcalf

Allen Dale Spivey and Deanne Irene Jasso


PECOS, November 11, 1997 - Divorces for September, as reported
by the Reeves County Clerk's Office.

Elva C. Rodriguez and Hector G. Rodriguez


PECOS, November 11, 1997 - High Monday, 51, low this morning, 32.
It will be rainy and cool across all of Texas tonight and
Wednesday. There is also a slight chance of some sleet or snow in
extreme northern portions of the Panhandle tonight. Cold weather
will continue across the Panhandle where Amarillo set a record for
the coldest high temperature reading ever recorded on Nov. 10. The
warmest reading was 31. It broke a record set in 1979 when the
high was only 35. West Texas will have mostly cloudy skies through
tonight with a chance of rain over most areas. Lows tonight will
be in the 20 and 30s in northern areas of West Texas. Highs
Wednesday will be in the 40s and 50s in northern areas and in the
40s and 50s elsewhere in West Texas. Temperatures fell to near or
slightly below freezing across western portions of North Texas
before dawn today. Abilene dipped to 28.

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