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Daily Newspaper and Travel Guide
for Pecos Country of West Texas

Top Stories

Monday, March 1, 1999

Stores fined for alcohol sale violations

Staff Writer
PECOS, March 1, 1999 -- A "minors sting" proved to be successful for the Texas Alcohol and Beverage Commission and costly to the shop owners of the facility.

"We came in here as a response from the local agency," said John Dearing, an agent with TABC, referring to an operation which targeted stores in Reeves County just prior to Christmas.

Dearing said that the "sting" was done in as many places as possible in Pecos that sell alcohol, off-premises, and he added, "In most of the places we went to, the minor was sold alcohol."

Reeves County Attorney Walter Holcombe said that TABC had used a minor to make their purchases on Dec. 14, 1998 in an effort to target stores that sell liquor to minors.

"Basically, they took a 17-year-old, underage, dressed him up as a regular teenager and took him to different stores in Pecos to see if they would sell him alcohol," said Holcombe.

He added that in each instance the minor would "purchase" liquor or beer. "He was briefed on what he was supposed to do, such as if they ask for an I.D. don't lie just hand it to them," said Holcombe.

Eight of these places didn't card him, which means he purchased the alcohol easily. "He was wearing both a microscopic recorder and a video tape was made, so they had both video and audio of the sales," said Holcombe.

"We come in and do minor stings like these when we are asked to, in an effort to lower the number of minors buying liquor," said Dearing.

Holcombe said stores that sold the minor alcohol include Raul's Easy Stop, Amigos, La Vina Liquor Store, Cedar Street Allsup's No. 266, Balmorhea Grocery in Balmorhea, West Texas Gas Inc., (Uncles), 201 E. Third Street, Dan's Music and Video and Cedar Street Town and Country Store.

Holcombe said that most of the sales ere not done maliciously. "It's not like these people at the stores were out to be mean, or they were being greedy, but they were simply very busy and not noticing what they were doing," said Holcombe.

Holcombe said that the sales were made during the holidays when employees are the busiest and don't pay as much attention to the clientele.

"They were busy and didn't pay attention or bother to ask for I.D., but it's not because they were being malicious," he said.

Both the stores and the employees charged in the offense are fined for the TABC violation.

"I'm sure that they'll pay more attention now, since both the store and the employee is charged with a fine," said Holcombe.

Former commissioner Faulkner dies

Staff Writer
PECOS, March 1, 1999 -- Wendell Dugger Faulkner, Sr., a longtime Reeves County Commissioner, died Friday after an extended illness. Services were set for 2 p.m. today in St. Mark's Episcopal Church.

Faulkner was elected Precinct 2 county commissioner in 1962, a position he held for 20 years. He served on the board of directors of the Security State Bank for over 30 years and as an advisory director until his death.

From 1984 until 1989, Faulkner served as a board member of the Texas Rehabilitation Commission and in 1986, he was honored as Disabled Texan of the Year by the Governor's Committee for Persons with Disabilities. He was a Licensed Professional Engineer.

With his wife, Janet, Faulkner moved to Barstow in 1948 and on to Pecos in 1950 where he expanded his surveying business by opening Faulkner Construction Company.

His general contracting firm operated throughout West Texas and built many buildings in Pecos, including St. Mark's Episcopal Church. Others are St. Catherine's Catholic Church and recreation hall, First Baptist Church, Security State Bank and the Pecos High School and the old PHS gymnasium.

During World War II, Faulkner was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross with one oak leaf cluster, an Air Medal with three oak leaf clusters, and the European Campaign Ribbon with two bronze stars for his service in the United States Army Air Corp.

Stationed in Old Buckingham, England, with the 453rd Bombardment Group, Captain Faulkner flew 32 missions as a lead B-24 pilot. Upon his return home, he enrolled in the College of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin.

Faulkner was born December 13, 1922 in Edna, Texas to Bertha Dugger and Wendell Davis Faulkner. On June 9, 1945, he married Janet Muckleroy of Austin.

Survivors include his wife, Janet, of Pecos; four sons, Wendell Faulkner, Jr. of Odessa, Bruce Faulkner of Tyler, Carroll Faulkner of Austin, and Doug Faulkner of Cadillac, Mich.; his mother, Bertha Arthur of Beeville; two brothers, Royce Faulkner of Austin and Gene Faulkner of Bedford; and seven grandchildren. He was proceeded in death by his brother, Joe Carroll.

Services were set for 2 p.m. today in St. Marks Episcopal Church with the Rev. C.E. McIntyre officiating. Burial was to be in Mt. Evergreen Cemetery, directed by the Pecos Funeral Home.

The family requests that memorials be made to the Multiple Sclerosis Society of West Texas, 2303 West Wall Street, Suite 210, Midland, Texas 79701, or charity of choice.

Unemployment for area soared during January

Staff Writer
PECOS, March 1, 1999 -- Unemployment in the Permian Basin jumped sharply in January, as continuing oil prices declines combined with post-Christmas retail job layoffs sent rates up by three percent or more in some areas.

Reeves County's unemployment rate jumped from 11.5 percent in December to 14.4 percent in January, according to figures released today by the Texas Workforce Commission. The county's labor force fell by over 450 in January, but the number of jobs within the county declined by 10 percent, to 5,298, leaving 888 people out of work.

TWC said that number is down from the 5,884 who had jobs in December in the county, with 767 out of work.

Pecos' jobless rate was even higher, at 16.3 percent. TWC said there were 795 people unemployed in January out of a labor force of 4,883 in the city.

Reeves County and Pecos weren't alone in reporting double-digit unemployment rates. Ward County's rate also climbed by 2.9 percent in January, to 12.9 percent Andrews County was up three percent, to 12.8 percent, Pecos County saw its rate climb from 7.8 to 10-1 percent, and Winkler County's jobless numbers shot up from 11.4 percent in December to 17.8 percent in January.

Ector County also saw it's unemployment rate reach double digits due to the oil slump. The county's rate hit 11.6 percent, up 3.3 percent from December, with 2,250 more people out of work there then prior to the Christmas holidays. Midland's unemployment rate also rose, from 4.6 to 6.4 percent, as 1,100 more people were without jobs in January.

The Permian Basin's jobless trend was not felt by the rest of Texas, according to the TWC. Unemployment statewide dropped from 4.8 to 4.7 percent, with just over 9 million people employed in Texas.

Bryan-College Station had the state's lowest unemployment rate at 1.8 percent, while the border areas continue to have the highest jobless numbers, with McAllen-Edinberg-Mission's rate at 19.6 percent.

Temperatures high, ground dry in February

Staff Writer
PECOS, March 1, 1999 -- February never was a rainy month in Pecos, but this year was one of the driest. No rain, not even a trace. Fog on Feb. 25 was the only hint of moisture.

Over the past 30 years, only two totally dry Februaries were recorded by the National Weather Service: 1971 and 1974. In second place is 1996, when a trace was recorded.

Along with the lack of rain came unusually warm temperatures. Ten days had high of 80 and above. While none went above 90, Feb. 10 was a hot 89. A cold front dropped the next day's high to 56, the lowest high temperature for the month.

High winds have created dust storms throughout the month, further drying out the powder-dry soil and dead vegetation.
Despite those conditions, wildfires were minimal for February, reports the Texas Forest Service.

"People are really becoming conscious of the drought situation and are showing more caution using fire as a tool," said Jan Davis, TFS information officer.

Citizens are practicing more care when welding and burning trash. Landowners are building better fuel breaks when performing controlled burns, he said.

Eighteen counties in central-west Texas have declared burning bans, said Davis. Reeves County has no burn ban at the present time.

"Before lighting a fire outdoors, check first with fire or sheriff departments. Outdoor burning during a fire ban is dangerous and a punishable offense," he said.

Davis recommends those living in rural areas keep debris and tall, dry vegetation at least 30 feet from structures.

"This may keep a fire from burning close to your home and provide operating room for fire fighting personnel should a wildfire occur," Davis said.

For more information on wildfire prevention, contact the Abilene Fire Prevention Team at 915-672-2768 or 915-676-5827.


Juana Chabarria

Juana Lara Chabarria, 85, died Friday, Feb. 26, 1999, at Medical Center Hospital in Odessa.

Mass was held at 10 a.m., today, at Santa Rosa Catholic Church with burial in Petrol Cemetery.

She was born May 6, 1913, in Pecos, was a homemaker, a lifelong Pecos resident and a Catholic.

Survivors include four sons, Manuel Chabarria of Fort Worth, Domingo Chabarria of Pecos, Jose Chabarria of Wylie, Tx. and Jesus Chabarria of Gonzales, La.; four daughters, Guadalupe Villela of Pecos, Leonarda Dominguez of Irving, Modesta Munoz and Anna Gifford of Odessa; two brothers, Geronimo O. Lara of Pecos, Samuel Lara of Austin; three sisters, Jenara Ramirez, Eustolia Ramirez and Sara Jaramillo of Pecos; 24 grandchildren and 16 great-grandchildren.

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Juan Silvas

Juan B. Silvas, 54, died Friday, Feb. 26, 1999, in Lubbock Methodist Hospital in Lubbock.

Services will be held at 1 p.m., today, at Harkey Funeral Home, with Father John Lucido officiating. Burial will be in Monahans Memorial Cemetery.

He was born June 17, 1945, in Ojinaga, Mexico, was a Champion Chemical truck driver, had lived in Monahans since 1980 and was a Catholic.

Survivors include his wife, Elia N. Silvas of Monahans; one daughter, Eliza Silvas of Phoenix, Ariz.; his mother, Cruz Silvas of Odessa; three sons, Vivian Silvas of Odessa, Juan Silvas of Monahans, Artemio Silvas of Monahans; five sisters, Maria Gonzales of Denver City, Tx., Lupe Flores of San Antonio, Senaida Chavez of Muleshoe, Tx., Susan Zamarron of San Angelo and Juanita Berzosa of Odessa and four grandchildren.

Harkey Funeral Home of Monahans is in charge of arrangements.


PECOS, March 1, 1999 -- High Sunday 85; low last night 47. Tonight, clear. Low near 40. Southwest wind 5-15 mph. Tuesday, mostly sunny and not as warm. High in the mid 70s. North wind 10-20 mph.

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Pecos Enterprise
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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