By Marty Mayfield
Raton city commissioners welcomed Shawn Lerch CEO at MCMC and Danielle Esparza the JJAC coordinator for reports on their respective organizations.
Lerch told the commissioners about the projects that are ongoing at MCMC including the new rural clinic that is in the process of being built and the behavioral health facility that is in the early stages of the building stages. Lerch also informed the commission about the programs and expansions that are being planned to aid miners in not only New Mexico but to expand out of state.
Danielle Esparza informed the commissioners about the JJAC program that aids teens and is designed to help prevent at risk students from dropping out of school. The city administers the grant that supports this program currently at no cost to the program. With a tightening budget some costs in administering the grant may have to be recovered in some way. Esparza noted that the program did help approximately 80 students this past year.
Michael Ann Antonucci informed commissioners that the Gross Receipts were down about $8800 last month and with the completion of the I-25 project she is expecting to see that increase a bit. Commissioners approved the October financial report with Commissioner Chavez giving kudos to Michael Ann for the work she is accomplishing and being able to explain it to him.
William H Serazio Construction was the low bidder ($18,619) to fill in the trenches at the multimodal site. The trenches were dug as part of the historical site research. The other two bidders were Farmers and Ranchers Welding and Randy Sena Construction.
City Manager Scott Berry discussed the Capitol Outlay projects list with the commission with the solid waste facility as the number one request followed by the dam restoration project at Lake Maloya coming in second. Street projects and a new ambulance followed in that order. Commissioners approved the list and instructed Berry to submit it to the legislature.
In the city manager report Berry noted that he will meet with Lt governor John Sanchez December 10 to discuss airport improvements. He also noted that there would be a public meeting on December 17 at 6:00 p.m. with District Attorney Donald Gallegos in the Colfax County meeting room at the county building. This meeting is in response to crime issues in the county and Raton.
Berry also noted that the bid for the south interchange came in above the engineers estimate and the DOT realized that rebidding would be no better so they will acquire more money for the project which will begin in the spring.
With that the commission heard from Berry about the executive session and agreed to enter executive session to discuss the Highlands building. The main reason for the executive session was that the Highlands board met behind close doors with Berry and John Davidson, Jeanine Peak and Paul Jenkins to discuss the building and Berry felt that since that meeting was behind closed doors that the commission meeting should respect that and go into executive session. This explanation was the result of an email from a Raton resident that indicated the explanation of the executive session was to vague to allow the executive session thus the further explanation before the closed session.
Commissioners then adjourned the meeting after the executive session and will meet again on December 8, 2014 at 6:00 p.m. and that meeting will be heard on KRTN 1490 AM.