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Monday, September 30, 1996

Raise requests focus

of county budget hearing

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Staff Writer

Raises were on the mind of most department heads at a public hearing on
Reeves County's 1997 fiscal year budget, held this morning at the county

Reeves County Commissioners listened to several department heads and
their requests for raises for their employees, during this morning's
session. Commissioners will reconvene at 1 p.m. to discuss and take
action on setting the 1997 Fiscal Year budget and tax rate.

Reeves County District Court Clerk Juana Jaquez requested a raise for
her department employees and for all employees paid out of the general

"For the last year and a half, it seems that priority has been with the
RCDC, sheriff's department and road and bridges, we're the last to be
considered, we're the last men on the totem pole," said Jaquez.

Jaquez stated that it seems like the employees at the courthouse get
left out of everything, including raises.

"There's a rumor that a new position is going to be created, a personnel
manager's position, at a very high salary, and what I want to know, is
do we really need this person and where is the money going to come
from," said Jaquez.

She asked the court to consider giving each employee a $1,000 a year
raise and requested that $2,000 more be allotted to her deputy clerk,
Connie Lozano, who has been at the same pay scale for several years.

"She's an excellent employee who has been here for 10 years," said

Jaquez said that she feels she can bring in more revenue, adding that
she is now charging for duties she previously had not.

"The morale of the county is at its lowest right now, the LEC (RCDC)
gets raises left and right, the sheriff's department received raises and
I think it's high time you did something about the morale around here,"
said Jaquez.

Jaquez pointed out that Reeves County Judge Jimmy B. Galindo is always
concerned about the veteran core at the detention center.

"Well, you have a veteran core here, and you need to take care of it,"
Jaquez said.

Jaquez explained that the employees at the courthouse are loyal and have
been employed at their positions for numerous years.

"There was an article in the San Angelo Standard Times, where the county (Tom Green County) had to raise taxes in order to give raises," said Commissioner Precinct 3 Herman Tarin. "We don't want to do that."

"The program we had been working on didn't involve raising taxes," said

"I really believe employees under the general fund have been treated
unfairly," said Jaquez.

"You feel that this court has been treated unfairly, but the economy
hasn't been good," said Galindo.

He cited the fact that Reeves County had lost about $40 million in oil
and gas valuations in recent years, but that now the county is doing a
lot better due in part to curbing spending and cutting down on expenses.

"We're doing better now, but it's because we have cut spending
considerably," he said.

After a lengthy discussion on policy and step-raises, Reeves County
Attorney Bill Weinacht proposed that the court make up a new policy and
procedures for step-raises and raises in general, including entry-level

He also praised Galindo and stated that the county was doing better
because of his excellent way of handling finances.

"Lynn Owens (county auditor) said we couldn't do the budget last year
without raises taxes and through the judge's leadership we've been able
to do it," said Weinacht.

Tax-assessor collector Elfida Zuniga requested a raise for her office
staff and stated that she too, had heard the rumor about the new
position being created at a high salary.

"I'm proposing a raise for my employees and a step-raise and I'm willing
to share the money I have in the budget with the other employees," said

The money in Zuniga's budget comes from a vacant position that was never
filled in her department.

"I don't know if it's just a rumor about the new position, but if that's
the case, it's not good for the morale," said Zuniga.

"I too, have started charging for things that I never had before and
have been bringing in more money," said Zuniga.

Tax collection is up in her office and revenue is increasing, according
to Zuniga.

County clerk Dianne Florez requested raises for her office staff, but
commended the judge on the raises which were given to RCDC employees

"I know how hard it is to work out there, never knowing what's going to
happen and those employees really deserve it," said Florez.

Florez said that she would really appreciate raises for her staff if at
all possible and stated that she understood that the county was not
completely out of the hole yet.

"I know we're just getting out of the hole, but if it's possible I would
like a raise for my girls," said Florez, who praised the commissioners
court and the judge and the hard work they are all doing in keeping with
the budget.

Library staff were also on hand requesting a raise and a small increase
in their budget.

Reeves County Librarian Nancy Bentley also expressed her concern over
the amount in repairs, stating that they have been having problems with
the air conditioning unit.

Commissioners assured her that the amount for a new unit would come out
of the general fund's major repairs and not her budget.

Reeves County Extension Agent Carol I. Mowery, asked for an increase for
her secretary, claiming even a 3 percent raise would help.

She also asked the court to consider allowing her a little bit more for
telephone services, bringing it up to $1,500, as it was in last year's

Galindo praised all departments for their help in cutting spending and
said the county has almost come out of the hole thanks to the teamwork

"We all have endured a very difficult period, but when I first spoke to
county auditor Lynn Owens, in reviewing the budget, he told me it
couldn't be done without raises taxes, but we did it," said Galindo.

"We did this as a team, cut spending, and we can find a good solution to
our problem, as long as we have mutual respect," he said.

"We can reduce spending and still provide the same services," said

Trial against county opens

after gun, drug pleas taken

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By Mari Maldonado
Staff Writer

A trial over allegations of discrimination at Reeves County Jail began
in U.S. District Court just before lunch today, after guilty pleas were
taken from two men on weapons and cocaine possession charges.

Pecos resident Jeffrey Allen Lindsey, 38, pled guilty before Judge
Lucius Bunton on a weapons charge, stemming from an incident in
Culberson County earlier this year. He was accompanied by his attorney,
Sib Abraham.

Judge Bunton explained to Lindsey the rights he will be waiving and said
he will be facing up to five years imprisonment, a fine up to $250,000,
a supervised release term of up to three years and a special assessment
of $100 for the Crime Victims Fund. A parole release will not be viable
under these conditions.

Lindsey's, "conditional plea," will allow him the ability to appeal his
case to the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans.

Lindsey's plea was for the second count on his indictment, "during and
in relation to a drug trafficking crime," assessed on May 5 when he was
discovered by a United States Border Patrol agent with a quantity of
marijuana, south of Van Horn.

The indictment charged that Lindsey "knowingly and intentionally
(carried) a Ruger 22 and .22 caliber pistol."

Numerous other weapons and ammunition were discovered in Lindsay's

The sentence date was set for December 9.

Also facing a sentence of up to five years, up to four years of a
supervised release, a fine of up to $2 million and the $100 special
assessment for the crime fund following his guilty plea was Corey Tyrell
Garfield, 21, who was facing a possession of cocaine with intent to
distribute charge.

One kilogram of the illegal substance, and marijuana, were discovered in
two cases in Garfield's possession on July 10 during a checkpoint stop
at the U.S. Border Patrol Checkpoint at Sierra Blanca.

Garfield told the court that the drugs belonged to somebody else and his
attorney, John Calhoun, told Judge Bunton that his client will be vying
for boot camp term.

After those pleas were taken, seven-man jury, which was selected in late
Spring of 1996, filed in to hear opening statements by attorneys for
Joshua Edigen, et al versus Reeves County, et al.

Edigen, along with co-plaintiff, Olu Akhigbe, are alleging that
administrative personnel of the Reeves County Detention Center, then the
Reeves County Law Enforcement Center (LEC) were indifferent to their
reports of harassment by Hispanic inmates.

Also listed as defendants are RCDC Warden Joe Trujillo, who was then the
director, RCLEC Captain Vaughn Garnto and then-Associate Director of
Operations J.J. Garcia, who now works for the Reeves County Sheriff's

Trujillo and Garnto sat at the defendants table during this morning's

Attorney for the Reeves County and its employees, Anthony Nelson, told
the court that Garcia will be present for the trial and that his current
position currently has him away on business.

Akhigbe was the first witness called to the stand. He drew a diagram of
the facility for the court, and said that on more than one occasion
Hispanic inmates who worked for the cafeteria threatened to poison black

He also described incidents of pushing and murder threats.

On each of the occasion, Akhigbe said he reported them to authorities,
but was not aware of any action taken against the instigators.

Fair's cookoff entries up over last year

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Entries are running ahead of a year ago for the 24th Annual World
Championship Barbecue Beef Cook-off, which takes place this Friday and
Saturday at the Reeves County Sheriff's Posse Arena.

The cookoff is the opening event for the 52nd annual Reeves County Fall
Fair and Livestock Show, which runs through Oct. 12 at the Reeves County
Civic Center and West of the Pecos Rodeo Arena complex.

"We've got 26 right now, and four came in this morning," said Chamber of
Commerce Secretary Karen Capers. "If it goes in typical fashion we
should have a few more this year, because at this point last year we had
about 15 and we ended up with 65."

Capers said that some individuals wait until the last day to sign up and
more entries are expected. "They have a deadline of 5 p.m. on Friday,
but I strongly recommend they do it before 5, because they can begin
setting up their camps starting at noon on Friday."

Entries are $80 per team, with a capacity limit of 85 teams. Divisions
are open to Pro, Amateur and Club Groups.

The briskets will be handed out about 8 p.m. on Friday, following the
cooks' meeting at the Sheriff's Posse Arena. Judging should begin about
3 p.m. Saturday, with the winners announced 90 minutes to two hours

Grand prize is $500 and a sliver plate; first prize in each division is
$300 and a trophy; second prize in each division is $200 and a trophy;
third prize in each division is $100 and a trophy. Awards will also be
presented for Worst Barbecue (a prize sometimes unclaimed) and Best Camp.

For more information contact the Pecos Chamber of Commerce at 445-2406.

About the time the cookoff is winding down on Saturday, the 1996 Reeves
County Fall Fair Concert will be held.

Headlining this year's concert will be Tejano and Country Western Music
Star Emilio Navaira. Along with Navaira, Bobby Pulido, Stephanie Lynn,
Los Jinetes and the Roman Brothers will be performing.

Gates will open at 5 p.m. with the concert kicking off at 6 p.m. and
concluding at 1 a.m. Tickets are $15 in advance and $18 at the gate.

The Best Western Swiss Clock Inn will be offering a special overnight
package for those wishing to stay the night.

Local ticket outlets include Airlawn Furniture, Dan's Music and Video,
Socorro's Cocina Mexicana, Lucky Partners and the chamber office.

Out-of-town outlets for the sixth annual concert are:

- Fort Stockton, Western Outfitters;

- Monahans, Leal's Restaurant;

- Odessa, Lechugas Video and Woods Boots;

- Midland, Al's Grocery;

- Balmorhea, Carrasco's Mercantile;

- Fort Davis, Baeza's Grocery;

- Alpine, Baeza's Grocery;

- Carlsbad, N.M., Lucy's Restaurant;

- Hobbs, N.M. Casa Madril.

The concert is being sponsored in part by, KIUN/KTPX, KMRK "Tejano 96",
NewsWest 9, the Pecos Enterprise, «MDUL»«MDNM»Rio Pecos Sales, Valley
Distributors and the Swiss Clock Inn.

The other events that are part of 52nd Annual Fall Fair and Livestock
Show are scheduled for the following weekend inside the Reeves County
Civic Center, while the annual Mother Goose Parade will be held on
Wednesday, Oct. 9 in downtown Pecos.

This year's theme is "A Salute to Patriotism." Culinary and art
contests, along with and novelty booths, a pet show and school exhibits
will be housed inside the building.

The Pecos Art Association will be having their Annual Art Show during
the fair.

Beautiful paintings by art club members will be on display and for sale,
for anyone wishing to buy them.

In addition, individuals will have an opportunity to view the art
association student art show paintings on display. The art work features
the talent of local students.

The Pecos Art Association invites any student, kindergarten through 12th
grade in participating in their art show. Individuals should bring their
art work to the civic center on Oct. 9, between 4-6 p.m.

Art work can be of any media, matted or glued to a posterboard or framed
with a hook or hanger to hang. The art work will be on display through
Oct. 12, at which the time the student needs to pick it up between the
hours of 5-8 p.m. For more information contact Dorinda Venegas at

For more information regarding the the livestock show, contact C.W.
Roberts or Regina Armstrong at 447-9041.

Heart Walk is scheduled for Saturday

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The Reeves County division of the American Heart Association will be
holding it's third annual `Healthy Choice Heart Walk' on Saturday,
beginning at 9 a.m. from the parking lot of the Reeves County Hospital.

This year's route will be two miles in length, beginning at Reeves
County Hospital, traveling north on Texas Street to Jackson Boulevard,
around one block of the residential neighborhood, south to Jefferson
Street, one block on east on Jefferson to Texas, and south returning to
the hospital. (the route will be clearly marked).

This change of route will allow the participants to avoid heavily
traveled streets and eliminate the need for transportation back to their
vehicles, according to organizers of the event.

There will also be a `Heart Walk' on Oct. 5, in Balmorhea. Last year was
the first time Balmorhea participated as part of the Reeves County
division and their support and participation in this major function, and
several other important activities of the Heart Association is important
and appreciated.

"It is important that all of Reeves County participate in this annual
event for two reasons," said AHA Division President David Lovett.

First, Lovett stated, all of Reeves County will benefit from the funds
raised for the American Heart Association, directly or indirectly. The
AHA is currently distributing heart power programs to the schools for
grades pre-K through eighth grade, promoting healthy lifestyles, good
eating, and exercising habits.

Also, almost every major advancement in the treatment of heart disease
and stroke in the past 60 years has been funded, at least in part by the

"Therefore, if you have a `heart', you are affected by the American
Heart Association," said Lovett.

The second reason Lovett cited for supporting he heart walk is, because
the Reeves County division has made a friendly wager with the Pecos
County division (Fort Stockton) that we can raise more money for the AHA
than they.

The president of the losing division will have to kiss a goat at the
winning division's awards party following the `Heart Walk'.

"Even though there are probably plenty of people in Reeves County who
wouldn't mind seeing me kiss a goat, I sincerely hope there are more who
would rather see Pecos and Reeves County beat Fort Stockton and Pecos
County," he said.
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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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