Daily Newspaper for Reeves County, Trans Pecos, Big Bend, Far West Texas

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City wakes up to morning shower

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Staff Writer

PECOS, July 25, 1996 - Pecos got the lion's share of rainfall this
morning when a storm moved through from the north about 6 a.m., dumping
1.53 inch on the city before 8 a.m.

James Calloway of Orla said the rains began there about 4:30 a.m.,
leaving .55 inch in his National Weather Service gauge to add to the 2.6
inches recorded Monday.
Lightning was visible all around the area, but Calloway said it
appeared to be clearing toward the north.

This morning's rainfall brought the year-to-date total for Pecos to
5.37 inches. All but .75 inches of that has fallen since June 16 and has
provided some relief to the area's ongoing drought.

While the National Weather Service showed clouds all the way from
Midland to Dell City, the heaviest rain apparently was right around

Coyanosa received little rain, as did cantaloupe and onion fields to
the south around Barilla. Mentone got .20 inch, the Texas A&M Research
Station six miles west of Pecos recorded 1.1 inch, while Toyah, 14 miles
further west, got none.

Gary Ingram said he ran into the rain just west of the research station
as he traveled from Toyah to Pecos around 8 a.m. today.

The rains were triggered by a front that moved into Texas from
Oklahoma, dumping 5.55 inches on Childress near the Oklahoma border.

Moisture from the Gulf of Mexico is causing rains in coastal states,
the NWS reported this morning.

They forecast more rains for this area tonight.

Tax office pay hike vote is voided, Galindo says

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Staff Writer

PECOS, July 25, 1996 - Monday's 3-1 vote by the Reeves County
Commissioners Court in favor of county personnel changes - which
included $11,000 worth of pay raises to employees of the Reeves County
Tax Assessor/Collector's office - has been voided.

The vote was declared moot due to a lack of advance public notice about
the nature of the discussion, according to a letter given to Reeves
County Tax Assessor/Collector Elfida Zuniga by County Judge Jimmy
Galindo on Wednesday. The personnel changes will be scheduled for review
during the next regular meeting of the commissioners' court.

After a heated discussion Monday morning, Reeves County Commissioners
for Precinct 3, Herman Tarin, and Precinct 2, W.J. Bang, voted along
with Galindo in favor of Zuniga's proposal to give her office workers
pay raises.

Reeves County Precinct 1 Commissioner Lupe Garcia was not present for
the meeting.

Chief deputy Jeannette Herrera was given a $3,500 pay increase, while
Deputy Sylvia Garcia received a $2,500 raise, Deputy Tax Collector
Rosemary Chabarria a $3,000 raise and Deputy Vicki Hannsz a $2,000 pay
hike. The raises came in lieu of hiring another deputy.

"...I would like to propose some restructuring in my department," Zuniga
said in a letter to commissioners. "At present, I have an opening for a
deputy and instead of filling the position, I would like to redistribute
the salary monies of $12,000 among the present employees," she continued.

Herrera has 12 years of service behind her with Reeves County, while
Chabarria has been at the tax office for four years, Garcia two years
and Hannsz two weeks. Hannsz length of employment was not indicated in
Zuniga's proposal, but it was noted that she was experienced in the
motor vehicle department.

The request came after Zuniga told commissioners at their Aug. 11, 1995
meeting that if she was not allowed to hire a fifth staff member for her
office, following a recent resignation, she was going to have to open
later and close earlier. She argued that the court had already cut her
staff from seven deputies down to five and working with four deputies
has been difficult.

She defended her actions at that time, after Reeves County Commissioner
Precinct 4 Bernardo Martinez introduced a motion to cut the tax office
workforce due to a fiscal 1996 deficit and the budget cuts and
restructuring needs within county departments it created.

On Monday, Martinez again voiced opposition to Zuniga's proposal, and
cast the dissenting vote.

"This is going to cause friction among county employees," Martinez told
the court.

County Treasurer Linda Clark, when asked by Tarin for her view of
Zuniga's request, said, "I think it's great that she has the opportunity
to do it (give raises)," but added, "it's going to cause chaos (among
courthouse employees)."

Clark said there were other county employees who had worked for the
county longer than some of Zuniga's employees had who had not seen a
raise in years.

Galindo defended Zuniga's request by contending that no adjustments were
needed for what she was planning. "She's doing what we've asked, (of all
county offices) do more with less," he said.

However, on Wednesday, Galindo gave Zuniga a letter, dated July 23,
stating that, "the notice given was not adequate to inform the public of
the nature of the action to be considered with regard to your

According to Galindo, action for this will be taken under Section
551.042(b) of the Government Code, which states, "decision about the
subject of inquiry shall be limited to a proposal to place the subject
on the agenda for a subsequent meeting."

"Additionally, Commissioner Martinez alleged that he did not have
sufficient notice on the agenda of the subject matter prior to the
meeting," Galindo said in the letter, adding that this was a legitimate
point. He did note, however, that Martinez picked up his meeting packet
just prior to Monday's session.

The tax office proposal was presented under the agenda item Personnel
and Salary Changes, and was dated July 22.

Galindo's letter also said that Bang asked Tarin to rescind his motion
to approve personnel and salary changes because he was not aware of the
circumstances involving the operations and personnel in the tax office.
Tarin made the first motion to accept personnel and salary changes as

Zuniga was contacted for comment on the matter, but did not return the
phone call.

Smaller summer jobs program ending for 47

students in Pecos, Balmorhea

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Staff Writer

PECOS, July 25, 1996 - After much Congressional debate, and although its
funds were cut by 20 percent, the Summer Youth Employment and Training
Program survived after being almost completely eliminated, according to
the local program coordinator.

Field Office Manager Elva Arreguy a total of $38,052 were released for
the program locally. The cut in funds meant the number of worksites had
to be trimmed to only 15, and just 47 youths were placed in jobs.

The SYETP began on June 10 and ran for six weeks, ending Friday, with
participants being paid the prevailing minimum wage.

Local worksites provided an opportunity for the youth to learn a variety
of skills ranging from groundskeeper helpers to office helpers, said

Five youths worked as indoor custodian and sales helpers at the West of
the Pecos Museum, while approximately 14 others helped out with the
groundskeeping and custodial duties at local schools, parks and

Those working for the Town of Pecos City were involved in painting park
equipment, planting trees, and helped build two wood benches at Maxey
Park Zoo for spectators to sit and watch the bear and monkeys, Arreguy
said. SYETP employees also participated in Clean-up Week, following
Fourth of July festivities.

Many of the youth were involved in active, hands-on activities, while
working with computers, typewriters, and dictaphone at the Mental Health
Clinic, Reeves County Clerk's Office and Juvenile Detention Center.

"These agency supervisors did a superb job of providing guidance, in
which participants learned a variety of Basic (Scans) Skills and key
elements of work," Arreguy said.

Several of the youths involved in clerical jobs learned filing systems,
operating typewriters, telephones and copy machines, she added.

"Our county library is another worksite that provides good supervision
for our youth and teaches many skills that the youth will long remember
and benefit from as they continue in their school years," Arreguy said.

She said Rebecca Paz, summer school instructor for Pecos Kindergarten,
"did a great job of teaching SYETP youth (tutors) to work with and teach
children, while at the same time they themselves learned basic skills."

The participants worked in conjunction with the Pecos-Barstow-Toyah ISD.

Five SYETP participants learned much about caring for children and the
different types of activities that take place in a child care learning
center during their placement at a local day care center.

Eight Balmorhea students were placed at the Balmorhea State Park, where
they became involved in number of duties, and two others worked for the
City of Balmorhea.

The park employees helped keep the entire park area clean and mowed, the
cabins tidy and aided with the park's office duties, while working with
the public.

Freddie Shrier, Balmorhea City Water Superintendent provided outstanding
supervision, according to Arreguy. He has participated in the summer
program for several years, said Arreguy, "and has very good projects for
our youth to get involved in."

The two youths working for the city helped build a crosswalk for
children to get over the downtown canal to and from school, and were
also involved with groundskeeping, along with line repairs.

"We were very fortunate to have these boys," said Shrier, of Debiasie
Mendoza and Kevin Castillo. "With the city funds being limited, the
summer program is very beneficial to us."

Shrier added that his temporary helpers managed to get some knowledge of
how a city water system operates and about safety in the community.

The SYETP participants were provided with Labor Market Orientations
during the six-week program.

The intent of these sessions was to inform the youth about the real
world of work; what an employer expects from an employee; how an
applicant/employee should conduct themselves at interviews and jobs and
how to complete an application and prepare a resume. Guest speakers
spoke to the youth about their education and their different
professions, focusing on education and pursuing a career.

Nora Geron, SYETP Summer Counselor, visited with worksite supervisors
and program enrollees to provide assistance and counseling as needed and
ensure that everything was in compliance with program regulations. The
SYETP was monitored the last week of the program and received a good
report on this year's summer program.

This year we had a really good group of participants, said Arreguy. "The
majority of the youth had a great attitude and seemed motivated to be at
work everyday and perform well."

As a result, she said, attendance was better than it had been in the
last couple of years. "Of course, this one of our program's objectives.
We always try to instill in our youth the importance of attitude,
attendance and punctuality."

Dean indicted for records tampering

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Staff Writer

PECOS, July 25, 1996 - Reeves County grand jurors this morning indicted
Robert Camp Dean, the county's Democratic Party chairman, on two counts
of tampering with government records, enhanced by one prior felony

Others indicted this morning were Evigael Juarez Navarette, 37,
possession of cocaine more than one gram but less than four grams on
March 14; Moses Carrasco Arenivas, delivery of heroin on March 8; and
Lee Elmer Sanders, 56, theft by check.

Dean, 56, allegedly altered two documents filed with the Democratic
county chairman by Mickey Ray Vasquez in the Precinct 1 Commissioner
race for Reeves County.

Both false entries were made on Jan. 2, the indictment alleges. One was
a notary signature on Vasquez's application for a place on the ballot,
attesting to the candidate's signature. However, the application in
question has no signature.

The second count alleges Dean altered the date on a petition for
Vasquez, scratching out the date 12-19-95 and inserting 1-2-96 on the

Dean offered his resignation as Democratic county chairman after a
previous grand jury considered the charges for which he was indicted
today. However, he attempted to withdraw that resignation and continued
to act as county chairman.

Count 3 of today's indictment alleges that Dean was convicted of a
felony - failure to stop and render aid - on Oct. 14, 1976.

Court records show that Dean pleaded no contest to the charge and was
placed on probation.

District Judge Larry Fuller discharged Dean from probation on Oct. 24,

Because the order reads in part ..."and his plea of guilty in this cause
is hereby ordered withdrawn, and the indictment is ordered dismissed. It
is the further order of this Court that the defendant Robert Camp Dean
is hereby discharged from the terms, penalties and disabilities of the
said offense for which he was convicted."

Dean has interpreted that to mean the felony conviction was not final,
thus allowing him to serve as Democratic county chairman.

However, District Attorney John Stickels maintains the conviction was
final and remains on Dean's criminal record.

That conviction followed the death of a transient male who was struck by
a car as he walked along U.S. Highway 285 just north of Holiday Inn
around midnight, Aug. 30, 1976.

Dean said the man was walking in the middle of the highway, and that
lights of an oncoming truck blinded him. After hitting the man, Dean
continued on his way to the Matador Club at the Holiday Inn, where he
had one drink and left, stipulated testimony in the court record shows.

The next day he took his car to Valley Radiator to have the windshield
replaced, claiming he had hit a pigeon.

Valley Radiator owner Wayne Davis said he found human hair on the broken
windshield and notified Pecos Police Chief Charles Smith.

Truck rollover closes I-20's eastbound lanes

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Staff Writer

PECOS, July 25, 1996 - The eastbound lanes of Interstate 20 were closed
for about five hours Wednesday night between Pecos and Barstow,
following a truck-tractor rollover that sent two Iowa men to Reeves
County Hospital.

Department of Public Safety trooper Richard Jacobs said the truck
belonged to Austin Carriers, Inc., of Sioux Falls, S.D. It was
transporting a load of books eastbound on I-20 near mile marker 45,
about two miles east of Pecos, when the driver, identified as Daniel
Meyer, 24, of Des Moines, Ia., lost control of the vehicle.

Meyer's truck overturned one time, Jacobs said, and landed on its right
side, lying across both eastbound lanes of traffic. Both the driver and
his passenger, 27-year-old Chad Meyer, also of Des Moines, were taken by
ambulance to Reeves County Hospital, where they were treated for their
injuries and then released.

Jacobs said Chad Meyer was in the rear sleeping compartment of the
vehicle when it overturned, at about 7:15 p.m.

Pecos volunteer firemen were also called to the scene as a
precautionary measure, while Texas Department of Transportation workers
detoured eastbound traffic off I-20 and onto Collie Road and Business
I-20 until about midnight, when the truck was removed from the site by
B&B Wrecker, Jacobs said.

The trooper did not say if any citations had been issued in the

Tax hike stalled for Monahans, Winkler


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MONAHANS, July 25, 1996 - A proposition to increase the sales tax by one
cent in both Monahans and Winkler County has been put on hold for the
moment after both groups were told by Texas Comptroller's Office that
part of the incrase was invalid due to overlapping property.

On Nov. 7, 1995, a city-wide election was held in Monahans with a
proposition to increase the local sales tax one cent on the ballot. This
increase, approved by voters, would raise the sales tax from 7.25
percent to 8.25 percent.

The one cent increase proposal was divided, with ½-cent going to
Economic Development purposes and ½-cent for ad valorem property tax
reduction inside the city.

The additional tax would generate about $190,000 annually for economic
development purposes and about $190,000 annually for property tax
reduction, city officials said. Collection of the ½-cent for economic
development began in April, while the ½-cent for property tax reduction
was scheduled to begin collection on Oct. 1.

However, on July 14, officials with Texas Comptroller John Sharp's
Office in Austin notified the city that the ½-cent for property
reduction could not be imposed. The comptroller's office said on the
same day Monahans voters approved their sales tax increase, Winkler
County had also called a county wide vote to increase their sales tax by
one cent. Their proposal also included ½-cent for property reduction and
½-cent for medical usage.

A ½-cent rise was also imposed in Winkler County in April and other ½
for property tax reduction was to be imposed in both jurisdictions in

In reviewing that information, the comptrollers office learned that the
City of Monahans had annexed several thousand acres of land encompassing
the city's Municipal Water Field in the late 1950s and about 5,000 acres
of that annexation was in Winkler County. The comptroller's office has
concluded that under tax law, that this was not a limited purpose
annexation and therefore with the ½-cent rise imposed in each
jurisdiction in April, the 8.25 percent maximum had been reached.

Subsequently the other ½-cent for property tax reduction could not be
collected in either Monahans or Winkler County due to overlapping

Monahans City Council is in discussions State Senator John Montford,
State Representative Bob Turner, the Texas Municipal League, the State
Comptroller's Office from Winkler County, in an effort to resolve the
problem, which may require action by the next session of the Texas

Legislators may have to pass of a bill that would make an exception in
the Tax Code for this particular area. If it is required, then the
property tax reduction tax could not take effect until October of 1997
at the earliest.


Geneva Stutts

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Geneva Stutts, 91, died Tuesday, July 23 at Ward County Memorial
Hospital in Monahans.

Services are scheduled for Friday, at 10 a.m. at St. Catherine's
Catholic Church with burial at Fairview Cemetery.

She was born Feb. 15, 1905 in Lagro, Ind., was a retired teacher and a

Survivors include one son, Robert Meredith Martin of Lubbock; one
daughter, Roberta Martin Clemons of Odessa; six grandchildren and six

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.


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PECOS, July 25, 1996 - High Wednesday 95, low last night 64. Rainfall
1.53 inches. July rainfall 2.03 inches. Year-to-date 5.37 inches.
Tonight, partly to mostly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of
thunderstorms. Low around 70. Southeast wind 5-15 mph. Friday, partly
cloudy with a 20 percent chance of thunderstorms. High 95-100. South
wind 10-20 mph.

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Copyright 1996 by Pecos Enterprise
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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