Members of the 2014 AA State Baseball Champions from Cobre High School are Cory Roberson, BJ Dominguez, Willie Fletcher, Andy Gomez, Robert Rodriguez, Gabriel Nunez, Ronnie James Pena, Francisco "Chico" Perez, Alejandro Tovar, Cavin Roberson, Nick Salas, Justin Diaz, Jordan Benfield, Claudio Salinas, Luke Montoya, Alex Rodriguez, James Lee, Marcus Sanchez, Alex Sarkissian, and Batboy Gavin Placencio. Not all were present. Head Coach Artie Sanchez has several assistants, including Randy James Dominguez, Scott Roberson, Robert Ortiz, Jason Jimenez, Tom Earlywine, Cruz Salas, Isaac Castillo and George Reyes.
Silver Baseball 2014 AAA State Champions include Derek Salas, Gabe Morales, Carlos Vega, Shakur Martinez, Joe Murillo, Dominic DeMarco, Alex Holguin, Shane Perry, Zach Jasso, Isaac Iniguez, Ryan Parra, Tommy Rueda, Justin Montez, Cristian Metz, Stephen Laramore, Carson Casey, Patrick Casey and Manager Erica Farley. Head Coach is Claudie Thompson and Assistant Coaches are Lee Wilson, Adrian Acosta and Peter Alarid. Not all players and coaches were present.
Silver Softball 2014 AAA State Champions, for the fourth year in a row, are, in attendance, Angie Helton, Ashlyn Carillo, Daviana Montoya, Carolyn Castillo, Maritza Jaquez, Megan Mattie, Asia Morales, Miah McDonald, Sherelle Rodriguez, Zoe Abeyta, and Coach Duane Trewern. Not in attendance were Breanna Lopez, Kaylee Ruebush, Ana Escudero, and Makayla Guerra, as well as coaches Mike Lopez, Larry Polanco, and Larry Bintz.
Photos and article by Mary Alice Murphy
Partway through the meeting, Grant County commissioners recognized the state champion Cobre baseball team, Silver baseball team and Silver softball team at their regular meeting Thursday, June 12, 2014.
Commissioner Gabriel Ramos said: "It is so awesome to see all these state champions." Commissioner Ron Hall echoed the comment by saying" Each of you has represented Grant County well."
Commission Chairman Brett Kasten said for the youth of Grant County, the sports of baseball and softball have the support of the school administrations and the community.
Cobre baseball coach Artie Sanchez thanked the commissioners "for honoring these young men for their accomplishments. It's not just one year of work, it's peewee league, Little League and the coaches who make the difference."
Silver baseball coach Claudie Thompson thanked the commissioners "for honoring these young men, who excel not only on the field but in the classroom With all three, it's a credit to the community, the coaches and the high school programs. It's not always all three being at state and playing with class."
Silver softball coach Duane Trewern said: "Thanks for recognizing not only the girls, but the boys' teams. Thanks go also to the community and to the businesses who support us. Our administration here in Silver also supports us and makes sports an extension of the classroom."
Three public hearings were held at the beginning of the session. None of the three elicited any discussion and all were approved.
The first adopted an ordinance: Viva Santa Rita Subdivision Community Area Improvement District Assessment Levy Ordinance, which allows the county to improve roads in the subdivision, with the property owners paying the costs.
The second adopted an ordinance dedicating, in quarterly installments, an amount equal to a gross receipts tax of one-twelfth (1/12) of 1 percent applied to the taxable gross receipts reported during the prior fiscal year to the newly created Safety Net Care Pool Fund. At this year's legislative session, lawmakers approved this fund to replace the former Sole Community Provider Fund, which helped hospitals receive some reimbursement for uncompensated care. The new fund has the counties footing the bill.
The third hearing proclaimed extreme or severe drought conditions and imposed fireworks restrictions.
Linda Vasquez, county financial officer, gave the expenditure report and the monthly cash flow report. Details were given at the work session, the report of which can be accessed at http://www.grantcountybeat.com/index.php/news/news-articles/16287-grant-county-commission-canvasses-election-results
During public input, Gila National Forest Supervisor, Kelly Russell, notified the commissioners that a decision on the Travel Management Plan for the forest, which has been under study for the past eight years, came out this week.
"I want to reassure everyone, they will be able to recreate, use motorized vehicles, gather firewood and Christmas trees," Russell said. "The implementation of the plan will not happen before next spring. We will be educating the public about what has changed. A map will be published and copies will be given free to the public next spring."
Kasten said the commissioners would need some time to decide what they will do. "Would you be willing to be part of a public meeting, where we three can discuss with you the changes and ask questions? The meeting will be open to the public, but they will not necessarily be able to participate. We want some time with you, but we can only meet publicly."
"Sure, but right now, we're in the appeal process," Russell said.
Ramos said he appreciated all the hard work that had gone into the plan, "but I'm disappointed we never got to meet and discuss why some roads were cut. Now we have to appeal if we want any changes."
"We've had a variety of conversations, and we ask people to look at the plan carefully," Russell said. "It is not totally set in stone, and we can make some changes if necessary or if there are errors."
Ramos also congratulated Silver City District Ranger, Russell Ward on his upcoming retirement. "He's the face of the forest for many of the residents."
Southwest New Mexico Council of Governments Executive Director Priscilla Lucero said she came with good news. "I would like to congratulate you on your Colonias Infrastructure Fund award. About $3.5 million came to the county, with an additional $1 million to municipalities."
Silver City-Grant County Chamber of Commerce President Scott Terry gave an update, saying the chamber sends out 60-65 packets of tourist and relocation information a month. "Today I got an email from England, from people wanting to visit because of the mines. We keep adding memberships, and the new website will be completed by the end of the month."
He said the chamber hosted a "great" customer service workshop last week with 34 participants. "We're still trying to bring in some more businesses and maybe build some townhomes. We are continuing to try to increase the job market."
Ramos said he had heard a rumor that Terry is kin to someone in Duck Dynasty. "One wife is my cousin," Terry said. "What you see is what they are—a bunch of Louisiana rednecks."
A resident of Viva Santa Rita Subdivision thanked, on behalf of the residents, the commissioners for their support of the assessment district to improve their roads. "I especially want to thank (Ordinance Officer) Dori (Dominguez) for all her work."
Commissioners also approved:
• The Airport Emergency Plan;
• Liens on property for the owners of delinquent solid waste accounts;
• The annual DWI Grant contract;
• A second amendment to a joint-powers agreement with the city of Bayard for the county to provide chip-sealing;
• An agreement for chip-sealing between Grant county and the town of Hurley;
• An agreement for professional services with Hughes Law LLC for $25,000 for hold harmless gross receipts tax and gross receipts revenue bonds; and
• A one-year extension of agreement with the High Desert Humane Society.
Commissioners approved three cooperative agreements with the New Mexico Department of Transportation, two of which are under the Co-op Projects to patch roadway where needed and to install a low water crossing with footing and drainage improvement on Arena Road. The third cooperative agreement was under the School Bus Routes program to patch roadway where needed.
A resolution of a notice of intent to adopt a county gross receipts tax ordinance, which was approved, triggers public hearings to adopt the 3/8 of 1 percent gross receipts tax, Kasten explained. Interim County Manager Abigail Robinson said the ordinance will be published for two weeks and a copy can also be read in the Clerk's Office.
Commissioners approved removing the light duty policy from the Grant County Detention Center, with the recommendation of the Administrator Mike Carrillo, as the policy is cost prohibitive.
Also approved were a resolution authorizing and approving submission of a completed application for financial assistance and project approval to the New Mexico Finance Authority for the Viva Santa Rita Subdivision Community Area Improvement District Assessment; and budget adjustments to reflect grant completions and regular end-of-year transfers into various departments.
Commissioners moved to disapprove the voluntary recognition of a petitioning bargaining unit for non-probationary bus drivers employed under Grant County under Corre Caminos. The disapproval allows the drivers to hold an election to determine whether to form the bargaining unit.
During county reports, Sheriff Raul Villanueva recognized Hidalgo Medical Services and all the organizations that took part in Jump Into Summer last weekend. "Youth are our future." He also thanked voters for coming out to vote. "I encourage voters to voice their opinions through the ballot box."
Alfred Sedillo, deputy treasurer, said property owners would now be able to pay their solid waste bills with credit cards. "We have also slightly changed the fees."
Deputy Assessor Eric Morales apologized for Assessor Mary Guthrie's absence, as she was certifying values.
Ramos yielded his commissioner comment time to Congressman Steve Pearce's representative, Kenny Rogers. "We will be engaged in the Travel Management Plan discussion," Rogers said. "We would like to participate if you hold a public meeting."
Ramos suggested the commissioners prepare a list of questions to ask the Forest Service. "There can be other questions, too."
Hall said he would like to thank the community for the love and consideration given to him after his wife's passing. "The memorial service will be at 11 a.m. Thursday, July 3, at the First Methodist Church."
Kasten said he felt disappointed that the Travel Management Plan did not include about 1,200 miles of road. "Every road should have stayed or gone on its merits. I feel the Forest Service should have coordinated with the counties, and I feel they did not."
The commissioners, who adjourned from the executive session, discussed three personnel matters—the county manager; a Sheriff's Office employee and the Public Works director. The fourth item of discussion was pending litigation regarding a 2013 incident in the Sheriff's Office.