By Marty Mayfield
Raton City Commissioners at the Tuesday, April 25th regular meeting, spent about an hour listening to information and discussing the location of a solid waste convenience center for the City of Raton, before deciding on the location north of Grant Ave, just northwest of the City Shops, and just south of the Raton Fire and Emergency Services Training Center.
Commissioners heard from City Manager Scott Berry and Jason Phillips about the different possibilities of the location for a convenience center.
The current location of the Raton Transfer Station on Armstrong Lane lacks three-phase power, water and is located a distance from town. The distance from town is one reason Berry feels there is so much illegal dumping inside the city limits. A location on Hereford Ave was also considered, but once again was felt to be inconvenient for city residents.
The location near the city shop would create better efficiency when it comes to working on equipment and is on city owned property and power and water utilities are located there as well. According to the state environment department, a radius of 250 feet separation is required for this type of center while this location offers over a 500-foot separation from adjacent residences. The location is in the center of town and hopefully this will help reduce the illegal dumping that takes place in town. As for concerns about the odors, the facility is completely enclosed and trash will be hauled out daily Monday thru Friday. The building will be approximately 120 ft by 120 ft with three bays for the Wilkins trailers plenty of room for expansion if the city grows. (Link to Solid Waste Information)
Commissioners gave their approval to move forward with the design phase with Berry noting that there will be places along the way for commissioners to change their mind and move the facility somewhere else if desired. The urgency to move forward on the project quickly stems from the need to spend the grant money before the state comes in and takes it away.
Commissioners approved three recommendations from the Lodger’s Tax Advisory Board. One for $3,395 to create a mobile app featuring events and tours of downtown Raton. The second in the amount of $12,500 to the Raton Rodeo Association. Of that amount, $2,500 going to promotion and the remainder to help pay for the livestock contractor. Commissioners requested a complete accounting of monies and Association President Beaver Segotta promised survey results as to heads in beds for commissioners to approve the amount. Commissioners also approved $800 for the Raton Chamber to have their new director attend a tourism conference in Albuquerque.
Commissioners then approved MOUs with the Raton Little League and Adult Softball group. Commissioners did stipulate that the Adult Softball organization is required to obtain insurance in order to use the city facilities.
Commissioners approved the agreement for Vector Control Services with Colfax County in the amount of $3000. The city does request that bee keepers call and notify them of their bees location so mosquito spraying can be kept away.
They then approved the dispatch agreement with the Village of Cimarron .
The Commission heard from City Treasurer MichaelAnne Antonucci, that the city continues to see a 5.6% increase in gross receipts taxes. City crews are also operating below budget at about 4.5% currently. The budget adjustment moved money from the gas tax to a construction fund to purchase asphalt for street repairs and drainage on Price St. (Link to 3rd Qtr Financial Report FY2017) (Link to Budget Adjustment #11007)
Commissioners approved the disposal of five surplus Raton Public Service vehicles. The vehicles will be sold at auction on an auction web site.
They approved the reappointment of Kathy Harris to the financial board.
During the City Manager’s report, Scott Berry reported on the airport projects for taxiway A and the lead abatement going on at the National Guard Armory (Doss Aviation), should be wrapped up soon.
The city will also get millings from the I-25 construction project that is now going on south of Raton. The reclamation program is moving forward on the landfill with the use of wood chips from the transfer station location.
The next city commission meeting has been moved to Wednesday May 10 at 6:00 p.m. due to commissioners attending a EPA meeting on Tuesday. The meeting will be broadcast on KRTN AM-1490.