By Lynn Janes

The town of Bayard held a regular meeting April 22, 2024. Attendance included Mayor John L. Ojinaga, councilors, Frances Gonzales, Eloy Gonzales, and Gilbert Ortiz. Mayor Pro Tem Eloy Medina didn't attend.

The council approved the consent agenda that included meeting minutes, wastewater report and police report. It also included emotional survival for law enforcement training for all officers and weapon system training for two of them.

The council approved the 2023 fiscal audit by Stone McGee and Co. Mike Stone presented the audit to the council. They had received an unmodified opinion, and this was the best they could get. They sent the audit to the New Mexico State Auditor in January 2024, but the deadline had been December 2023. The audit for the housing authority had been late and it had held them up.

The council approved the replacement of the chairman for the planning and zoning committee. Frances Gonzales said he had been rude, and things have been taking too long to obtain approval.

The council approved resolution 7-2024 open meetings act. This addresses the time and place of council meetings. It also addresses the requirement of public notice and where that can be found.

Action for personnel

The council approved a 25-cent increase for Stephen Estrada for passing his wastewater level 1 test.

The council approved the hiring of Martha Salas for city clerk/treasurer at a salary of $85,000 a year.

Mayor and councilor reports

Hector Carrillo, police chief said he had completed and turned in the quarterly report for the grant. They have an opening for animal control officer/code enforcement officer open that will be posted in-house for five days and then posted to the public. Tour of the Gila will be coming through Bayard and some streets will be cut off for that time for thirty minutes. Carrillo said they have been having crimes in Bayard but the people committing them will be held accountable. The officers will be doing the detective work needed and having the people charged with the crimes. The department has received two new police truck units.

Michael Paez, maintenance director, said they have received the annual drinking quality report for 2023 and everything passed. Copies of the report can be obtained at city hall. They will be doing a lead and copper test. Paez had been given a presentation on new water meters. He will be looking into prices and will present to the council.

Robert Terrazas, wastewater director, congratulated Salas on her new position. He said all has been going well at the wastewater treatment plant.

Gilbert Ortiz congratulated Salas on her new position and said, "I am happy on where the city is going."

Frances Gonzales said this will be the 100-year anniversary of the National Wilderness Area, andas the Gila Wilderness was the first one, a lot of events will be going on. The units for the housing authority are being rebuilt and should be done by June. After the inspection of the units, they will be put up for rental. They also received grant money to replace all the of HVAC units in the apartments.

Eloy Gonzales said he had not attended the beautification committee meeting but knew they would be having music in the park on May 10, 2024.

Assistant Fire Chief Gomez said all the volunteers have been receiving a lot of training and have been cross training with Fort Bayard. They will also be building a Facebook page to improve communication with the community.

Ojinaga said that WNMU (Western New Mexico University) will be donating trees to Bayard, and he wanted the council to think about where to place them. "The city will do well with Salas on board," he said.

The next regular meeting will be held May 13, 2024

Meeting adjourned.

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