By Marty Mayfield
Raton City Commissioners spent the better part of their regular meeting Tuesday evening hearing from Retha Shiplet and the city’s department heads about the strategic plan for the city that was developed over the last few months.
Billy Donati with the Shuler Restoration Committee reported to the commission that after a couple of minor bugs that things at the Shuler are going quite well with the new digital film equipment. According to Kerry Medina with the El Raton Theater they have seen an increase of 40% in movie going attendance. The purpose for the digital equipment was to help the El Raton compete for first run movies by providing them with a second screen.
City Manager Scott Berry then introduced the commission to the 2018 City of Raton Strategic Action Plan that began in March of 2017. The plan outlines seven focus areas for the city which include 1. Strong and Effective Strategic Partnerships. The other focus points are 2. Youth Development, Entrepreneurship, New Generation, 3. Family Friendly Community 4. Enhance Economic Vitality with Innovative Approaches, 5. Ensure Vital Resources, Safe and Attractive Neighborhoods, 6. Position the City for the Future and 7. Operational Excellence.
The plan outlines processes and goals to accomplish these seven focus points. The report then goes on to outline what the different departments goals are and how they intend to accomplish those goals. Commissioners then adopted the plan and will be looking forward to hearing how the different departments achieve their goals.
Commissioners approved the agreement between Engineering Analytics and the city for engineering services. Karen Sterns told commissioners that most all the work they have done for the city was done out of the Raton office on the various projects around town. Some geophysical work was done out of the Ft Collins office where they have that expertise.
Commissioners approved a resolution supporting the Raton Chamber’s efforts to collect signatures on petitions for keeping the local K-Mart open. The chamber plans to present Sears Holding with the petition and many letters of support in an effort to change their minds about closing the local store.
Commissioners approved the extension of the contract with the Raton Country Club to manage the city’s liquor license for special events.
The Lodger’s Tax Board recommended that the commission approve $878.39 for the Chamber to send the tourism coordinator to the 2018 Trends NMHA Conference in Santa Fe January 29th and 30th. $215 for the Chamber to purchase literature bags for tourist who come into the visitor’s center. They also recommended that a full-page ad be purchased in the New Mexico Vacation Directory for $2920. Commissioners approved all three recommendations with Mayor Pro-Tem Neal Segotta recommending that since the requestors were on hand that the lodger’s tax board should have a representative present to answer any questions the commissioners might have regarding their recommendations.
Commissioners approved a budget adjustment for the Juvenile Justice grant from the girl’s fund to the boy’s fund after seeing a 30% increase in referrals to the boy’s program.
Commissioners approved the second quarter financial report hearing that once again the gross receipts are about 5.2% above budget. Michael Anne Antonucci will be getting with K-Mart in the near future to try and come up with a figure on how badly the store closing will affect gross receipts income. The city’s budget could take a big hit late in the fiscal year and will have a big impact on next year’s budget. The store is scheduled to close near the end of the fiscal year about the time the city begins working on the next year’s budget. (Link to FY18 2nd Qtr Financial Report)
Scott Berry had a short report noting that he and several others made it to Santa Fe January 18 where they met with legislators concerning the capital improvements plan as well as the Lake Maloya Dam projects.
Commissioners then went into executive session to discuss collective bargaining between the city and the AFSCME Local 1601.
The Raton City Commission will meet in a special meeting on January 30 at 5:00 p.m. Then on February 13 for their next regular meeting.