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Archive for: May 2015

Planned Power Outage at 5 PM Tuesday to Switch Back to Tri-State

UPDATE at 4:00 PM Tuesday:  RPS has alerted KRTN that at 5PM today there will be a planned power outage to switch power back to Tri-State. The switch could be instantaneous or last up to 30 minutes according to officials at RPS.

Update from RPS (Raton Utilities) as of Tuesday, May 26th at 9:30 am:  

Please conserve electrical use for now to help avoid possible rolling blackouts. Unplug as many appliances as possible, postpone doing laundry and using electric dishwashers, etc. until power can be switched back to Tri-State, the official provider.

power outageThe Raton area is temporarily receiving energy from Springer Electric Cooperative, and our power usage is holding for now. Tri-State (Raton’s provider) is checking the lightning arrester & transformer at Burro Canyon, and their crews will make the necessary repairs.

Local RPS Superintendent, Dave Piancino, will notify Raton Fire Department, Police Dispatch and KRTN as soon as he hears about switching back to Tri-State.*

In Loving Memory of Louise Kern

Louise Kern age 88, of Raton, NM passed away Friday May 22, 2015 in Raton.
 
She was born June 10, 1926 in Brilliant, New Mexico the Daughter of Onorio Antonucci and Mary (Chicarelli) Antonucci.
 
Louise is preceeded in death by her Parents, Husbands John C Marchet Sr and Charlie Kern, Sisters Rose Gigante and Mary Rea and Brother Frank Antonucci She is survived by two brothers Onorio Antonucci of Maxwell, NM, and Mark Antonucci of San Jose, CA. two sons, John C. Marchet Jr. and wife Marilyn of Colorado Springs, Co, Dennis Marchet and wife Kim of Raton, NM and one daughter Mary Lou Kern and Spouse Michelle Mortimer of Maxwell, NM. Four Grandchildren, eight Great grandchildren and one great great grandchild.
 
Visitation will be Tuesday May 26, 2015 from 5:00 until 6:00 P.M. at the Yaksich-Long Funeral Home Chapel. Funeral services will be Wednesday May 27, 2015, with a recital of the most holy rosary at 10:30 A.M. Funeral Mass immediately following at 11:00 A.M. at the St Patrick/St Joseph’s catholic church in Raton, NM. Burial will be in the Fairmont Cemetery in Raton
 
Arrangements and celebration of love for Louise Kern are under the direction of the Yaksich-Long Funeral home of Raton.

In Loving Memory of Mrs. Vernette Baxter

Mrs. Vernette Baxter, was born in Beaumont, Texas, on December 23, 1912. She moved to Raton, New Mexico, with her parents (William B. Brooks & Jessie O. Brooks (Graves)) at the age of 5 and entered into the Raton Public School system. She was one of 4 children (Ali Mae (Johnson – Monrovia, CA), Willie (Hall – Denver, CO), Helen (Sutton – Denver, CO/Marshall, TX) being the others) born to her parents.

Mrs. Baxter graduated in the top 4 of a very small class at Raton High School. She studied music (vocal and piano) and got so good that she was asked often to play and/or sing for many town and church functions. She took in helping neighbors with their sewing and gave music lessons on the piano to kids and adults in and around Raton. She was mostly self-taught in music after the music teacher left Raton in her 9th year of school.

Later she took on working for the Government developing programs to help the youth, young adults, the handicapped and the disabled kids. She was also asked to teach and assist in the Raton Public Schools with their handicapped and disabled student programs. She implemented many programs which are still used today. She met Mahalia Jackson in late 1940 in Chicago, and they were an instant match for singing Gospel music. From 1941-1952 she had the opportunity several times to travel with, and open some shows for Mrs. Jackson. And in some smaller venues, she either played background piano, and on occasions she actually sang duets with Mahalia Jackson.

During her traveling back and forth to Denver she joined Zion in 1935 and was a very active member. She played the piano on several occasions under Pastor Rev. Wendell T. Liggins (deceased), sang with the choir, taught Bible school and was on the Deaconess Committee until she went home. She would help with contacting Zion’s sick and shut-in, calling prayer members, visiting by phone many members in care facilities around the greater Denver area, also wrote letters and cards to them.

Known as “Mrs. Baxter”, “Mom Baxter” or “Mother Baxter”, she was awarded the Centenarian Award in 2012 for being a faithful member of Zion Baptist Church for 77 years, at the time of award, under Rev. Frank M. Davis; she was also their oldest living member (80 Blessed years) until her passing on the morning of 5/10/2015 at 4:45AM.

“Mom Baxter” officially moved to Denver, Colorado, in 1973 with her mother, after her husband and father had both passed away in 1968, to be near me. In 1974, her mother passed and that left just her, her son (Arthur) and two of her sisters (Helen and Willie). “Mom Baxter” was very good friends with “Daddy Bruce” Randolph, who for many years helped organize delivery of meals for the homeless, sick-and-shut-in, those less fortunate, or just anyone who was hungry and “Mom Baxter” was a Blessing to him and his ministry. “Mom Baxter” help the Salvation Army organize and implement several of their programs still in use today.

The “Wish Of A Lifetime” foundation granted “Mom Baxter” her wish to go to Las Vegas to celebrate her 100th birthday, with all expenses paid for 3 days round trip. She loved it there and was so excited just to pull the lever on the first slot machine she saw at the airport for the very first time; and she actually won a little.

Mrs. Vernette Baxter was Blessed to have had so many family members, relatives, and friends with her throughout her 102+ years on this Earth. She leaves behind her son, Arthur R. Baxter Jr. (Denver), many nephews and nieces across North America and several other countries who fondly refer to her as “Aunt BoBo”. There are many grandchildren, great grandchildren, and even great-great-grandchildren who refer to her as “Grandma BoBo” or “Grandma Baxter”. And, there are also the many of whom she took into her arms and heart as if they were her own family from whom she was lovingly called “Mom”, “Mama” or “Mom Baxter”.

Beautiful, Grand, Godly Lady, “Ms. Queen”… You are, and will be, greatly missed by all.

A Celebration of Life will be held Tuesday May 26, 2015 at 11:00 a.m. at the Alderette-Pomeroy Funeral Home Chapel with interment to follow at Fairmont Cemetery. Funeral arrangements for Mrs. Vernette Baxter are under the direction of the Alderette-Pomeroy Funeral Home of Raton.

The RHS Class of 2015 Graduates

By Marty Mayfield

KRTN Multi-Media

 

Once again weather moved the Raton High graduation ceremony inside to Tiger Gym Friday evening (May 22). Graduation ceremonies have been scheduled for Tiger Stadium but the last time graduation was held outside was in 2012.

Kristina Jansen this year’s class valedictorian gave a short speech noting that next year they won’t be doing the same routine. They will miss the City of Bethlehem, the parades, the fire trucks collecting money for the 4th of July and the big ice cream cone at Dairy Queen. 

This year the Class of 2015 said farewell with far fewer numbers than classes in the past with only 49 seniors making the walk across the stage to receive their diplomas. 38 students received a total of 132 scholarships amounting to $763,582 this year. Students with cords were then honored by Collette Village-Center, and then Hunter Schoonover honored the faculty and staff for their contributions to the class. Dante Mileta thanked the parents for being there and the help they gave to the students. Class President Cheyann Duran then passed on the key to the school to junior class president Jamie Lopez. 

Diplomas were handed out once the class was seated again they moved their tassels and the party began. Ethan Washburn had the honor of giving the farewell speech as the Class of 2015 said goodbye. 

Kristina Jansen Valedictorian and Ethan Washburn Salutatorian await the presentation of their special honors at the Raton High Graduation ceremony Friday evening in Tiger Gym.

Kristina Jansen, Valedictorian and Ethan Washburn, Salutatorian await the presentation of their special honors at the Raton High Graduation ceremony Friday evening in Tiger Gym.

 

Natalie Castelini gave the welcome address at Friday night's RHS graduation

Natale Castelini gave the welcome address at Friday night’s RHS graduation

 

Valedictorian Kristina Jansen gave the keynote address during graduation Friday evening.

Valedictorian Kristina Jansen gave the keynote address during graduation Friday evening.

 

2015 Class President Cheyenne Duran passed on the key to the school to Junior Class President Jamie Lopez

2015 Class President Cheyann Duran passed on the key to the school to Junior Class President Jamie Lopez

 

Valedictorian Kristina Jansen was handed her diploma by her mother Stephanie Jansen a former school board member.

Valedictorian Kristina Jansen was handed her diploma by her mother Stephanie Jansen a former school board member.

 

RHS Principal Duncan Ware presented his eldest Connell Ware his diploma Friday evening.

RHS Principal Duncan Ware presented his eldest son,  Connell Ware, his diploma Friday evening.

 

The silly string flies as the graduates move to the middle of the floor after their official sign of graduation, the turning of the tassel, was performed

The silly string flies as the graduates move to the middle of the floor after their official sign of graduation, the turning of the tassel, was performed

RHS Graduation 5-22-15_2371

The throwing of the caps by the Class of 2015

The throwing of the caps by the Class of 2015

 

Salutatorian Ethan Washburn closed Friday night's graduation ceremony with his farewell speech to the Class of 2015.

Salutatorian Ethan Washburn closed Friday night’s graduation ceremony with his farewell speech to the Class of 2015.

 To see more graduation photos   http://www.martymayfieldphoto.com/Raton-High-Events-2014-2015/Raton-High-Graduation-5-22-2015/

In Loving Memory of George William Evans

George William Evans age 57, of Raton, NM, passed away Monday May 18, 2015 in Pueblo, CO.

Services are pending and will be announced by the Yaksich-Long Funeral Home of Raton.

In Loving Memory of Paul J. Sandoval

Paul J. Sandoval age 53, of Raton, NM passed away on Friday May 15, 2015 in Raton.
 
He was born August 31, 1961 in Taos, NM. The son of John A. and Francis (Blea) Sandoval.
 
Paul is preceded in death by his parents.
 
He is survived by one daughter Pauletta Marshall, Sister Rita Gonzalez and husband Frank of Maxwell, NM Three brothers, John Sandoval and wife Alice of Cuba, NM, Alex Sandoval of Albuquerque, Chris Sandoval and wife Isabel of Albuquerque , One uncle Jimmy “Tito” Blea and wife Sally. Two grand children and many friends and family.
 
A Rosary/Mass will take place on Wednesday May 20, 2015 at 1:00 P.M. at the St. Patrick/St Joseph Catholic Church in Raton, NM.
 
Arrangements for Paul J. Sandoval are under the direction of the Yaksich-Long Funeral home of Raton.

In Loving Memory of Robert Alvin Doak, Jr

Robert Alvin Doak, Jr. was born on February 5, 1928 in Canyon, Texas to Robert and Thelma Doak.

He spent his youth in Trinidad, Colo., and then moved to Eugene, Ore., where he graduated from Eugene High School in 1946. After graduation , he entered the Army and served his country from 1946-1948. He served in the 55th Battalion Battery ‘B’, achieved the rank of Sargent while leading a Unit of Honor that recognized the ultimate sacrifices made by servicemen for the nation. After his enlistment ended, Robert entered the University of Oregon on the GI Bill where he earned both his Bachelors of Science and Master’s degrees in geology. 

Throughout a long and successful career in the petroleum industry, Robert traveled the world extensively and made numerous oil and gas discoveries that have been the basis for the economic expansion and success in the American economy. He was known as a visionary leader, and expert consultant, pioneering new prospects internationally, as well as reopening the Southern Colorado coal and gas prospects that have been so important in the regional economy over the past twenty years. 

In 1950 he married Elizabeth Pearson and together they raised four children. Elizabeth and Robert divorced in 1971.

On July 5, 1972 he married Frances L. Paradiso, and together they raised a combined family that grew to thirteen children. Robert and Frances lived in New Mexico and in the Trinidad, Colo. area throughout their marriage. 

Robert is survived by his beloved spouse Frances and grandsons Nicholas and Joshua Paradiso of Trinidad, nine surviving children, and numerous grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

He is preceded in death by his parents his brother Donn, two sons and one grandson. 

Robert passed away peaceably at home in Trinidad on May 16, 2015 after suffering through a long illness.

A private memorial service will be held to remember his accomplishments and to honor his leadership over the combined family he so lovingly supported throughout his life. 

Arrangements made under the direction of the Comi Funeral Home.

Raton School Board Hears School Consolidation Progress

By Marty Mayfield

KRTN Multi-Media

 

The Raton school board of education met Monday evening where they heard about the consolidation progress and other items including a report on solar for the Raton Middle School by a group of middle school students.

The students presented a report on funding and benefits of how solar could cut utility costs for the school. The drawback to the project is with Raton Public Service losing that revenue and/or purchasing the excess power from the school. According to the student report RPS is unable to benefit from subsidies that coops or public utilities have access to.

The NEA of Raton members are asking the school board to be recognized so that they can begin collective bargaining again. Melissa Medina told the board that eight of 10 teachers were in favor of collective bargaining.

Board member Art Armijo had asked that the consolidation issue be placed on the agenda as an action item instead of an informational item. There was some disagreement about the request by Armijo and Superintendent Dr. Neal Terhune. Board president Ted Kamp put the question to the board but it was defeated as most of the board agreed this has been discussed and voted on already.

The board then heard from Dr. Terhune on a couple of buildings that the school could acquire. One was Lark’s In and Out Lube to be used as a auto mechanic classroom and save the school money on oil changes and other maintenance to school vehicles. The other building next to the downtown car wash on Second Street will be torn down by the students to learn the proper procedures for tearing down an old building.

The process of packing and moving has begun with the libraries and as noted that many boxes were already moved into the library at the high school. Maintenance supervisor Ben Munden informed the board that he had received bids for fencing and playground relocation. The bids had ranged from a low of $4,000 for material and another $4,000 for labor for the fence work to as much as $14,000 to $23,000 for material and labor.

The bids to relocate the playground equipment from Hansen and Prozano Company, the original playground equipment vendor, are as high as $47,108 from Columbian to RMS and the bid for the Kearny playground equipment is $31,526 this doesn’t include the wood chips or rubber chips for cushioning. The district is looking into having a local contractor do the work provided it wont be a liability issue.

The other big issue is with moving a portable building over to Longfellow School for ancillary personnel. The costs vary greatly depending on the size of the portable. One estimate is for $47,113. This includes foundation and utility hookups. But doesn’t include other items such as fire alarm hookup and renovations required by Construction Industries Department.

The board then heard from the principals on their plans to house students at the various schools and the work being done there to accommodate changes in schedules and class sizes.

Lita Sanchez gave the board a review of the preliminary budget that will be sent to the Public Education Department for their approval. (15-16 Raton School Budget) The budget is only a small part of the complete package that the district has to send to the PED. The complete packet which includes teacher and student numbers and estimated counts is close to half an inch thick. A couple of the board members weren’t happy with the school calendar feeling it went too far into the spring and needed some time-off trimmed to allow students to get out earlier in the spring.  

Daily schedule for Raton Schools including mandatory number of hours per grade.

Daily schedule for Raton Schools including mandatory number of hours per grade.

The board then talked about staff policies before going into an executive session to discuss selected personnel matters which included secretary and staff positions and Superintendent and board member conduct.

Donovan Mendez, Melissa Sanchez, and Kylie Maes spoke to the board about a solar system for the Raton Middle School

Donovan Mendez, Melissa Sanchez, and Kylie Maes spoke to the board about a solar system for the Raton Middle School

 

Funding sources for the Raton Middle School solar proposal as presented by the students at Raton Middle School

Funding sources for the Raton Middle School solar proposal as presented by the students at Raton Middle School

Maintenance Supervisor Ben Munden spoke to the board about the costs to move playground equipment, putting up fence and moving a portable building.

Maintenance Supervisor Ben Munden spoke to the board about the costs to move playground equipment, putting up fence and moving a portable building.

 

Raton High School upper floor student classroom assignments

Raton High School upper floor student classroom assignments

 

Raton High School main floor student classroom assignments

Raton High School main floor student classroom assignments

 

Raton Intermediate School student classroom assignments on the first floor of the school

Raton Intermediate School student classroom assignments on the first floor of the school

 

Raton Intermediate School student classroom assignments on the second floor of the school

Raton Intermediate School student classroom assignments on the second floor of the school

 

Classroom assignments for Longfellow School

Classroom assignments for Longfellow School

 

 

Dirty water in Cuchara

WJ  250x55by Caitlin Dunn
CUCHARA — The purification process at the Cuchara water plant is taking longer than usual because the river water is so dirty lately, according to General Manager Bob Northup in his report to the board of Cucharas Sanitation and Water District at its May 8 meeting.  
The state health department visited CSWD on April 29 to evaluate the water plant’s chlorine contact time.  “Hopefully we won’t have to do any measure modifications. We monitor the chlorine constantly,” Northup said.  The waste water plant (WWP) is being evaluated for a mixing zone study to see how the effluent mixes with the creek.  
On the water plant project, all that needs to be done is seeding, and gravel will be placed in front of the plant to reduce erosion. “It’s been a quagmire all winter,” Northup said.  Reportedly the road compaction test passed with flying colors, and the road will be graded.  “As far as our part, we’re done,” he said. 
Northup reported for the Pond Owner Committee.  The district’s water lawyer has developed various scenarios for the board to discuss.  Jeris Danielson is working on setting an evaporation rate for the valley’s ponds and is “on board” with the pond owners.  CSWD has until June 2016 to come up with a permanent augmentation plan, and it may take a few years to get through water court.  “That’s where we’re working right now.  Our people are moving on it,” Northup said.  Board chairman Art Pierce expressed his concern over lack of involvement from the pond owners themselves. 
Regarding the potential South Baker Creek reservoir, the acquisition of property is at a standstill.  According to treasurer Jim Berg, the project could go through the Arkansas Basin Roundtable.  He and board member Gerald Van Nort attended a meeting on April 20, during which storage projects for the Cucharas basin were discussed. “The only way we’re going to get help is by collaboration,” Berg said.  
At that meeting, a Cucharas Storage Collaborative was formed, which will study potential reservoir projects on the Cucharas River.  There are currently many reservoirs in the basin that need to be evaluated, and Berg said, “It’s a sad state of affairs for them.”  There is reportedly a reservoir in Huerfano County with a state breach order, and Northup suggested the possibility of buying its storage rights if they come up for sale.  Pierce agreed, and suggested the district could work with La Veta or Walsenburg to get storage rights.  “It’s just a matter of making it all work together,” Pierce said.  
The board voted to formally join the Cucharas River Storage Collaborative and announce its intent to make a one-time $5,000 donation to a storage study, although official budget action will have to wait until December. 
The board members are going to get more involved in specific activities in the district.  A workshop may be held or members might simply choose areas to focus on.  “It’s critical that we have established responsibilities,” said Berg.  He said board members “need to stay engaged.”  
Pierce discussed the need for repairs in the district’s office building and the WWP building, including both roofs and the office windows.  Administrative assistant Jennette Coe got quotes for the windows last year and budgeted for office building repairs.  “There’s hidden damage going on that’s going to bite us one of these days,” Northup said.

Walsenburg commits to collaborative water storage

WJ  250x55by Eric Mullens
WALSENBURG —  At their most recent meeting, the Walsenburg City Council voted to write a letter of intent to the Huerfano County Water Conservancy District (HCWCD) indicating their agreement to join the Cucharas River Storage Collaborative.
The initial meeting of the collaborative was held April 20, and their future plans, according to HCWCD President Michael ‘Sandy’ White, is to develop a grant application, to be submitted in late May, for funding of a basin-wide storage needs assessment and a study to determine the most effective way to meet those storage needs.
“The idea would be to provide a storage vessel large enough to meet all users’ water storage needs,” said city administrator David Johnston.  The thought is to develop the water storage upstream far enough to offset evaporation and serve all users, Johnston said.  
Mayor Jim Eccher said collaborative storage would benefit every dam owner in Huerfano County.  City officials hope it could prevent millions of dollars in future expenditures on city water storage vessels.  Johnston and Eccher said, if the project was funded, the city’s water storage lakes could take on new roles for additional storage and recreational use.  “Anyone who has a storage vessel or water right in Huerfano County could benefit, especially those with junior water rights,” said Eccher.
The action carried a promise to consider a 2016 calendar year budget line item of $5,000 earmarked for participation in the collaborative.