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Thursday, April 19, 2018

Notes on Presidio County Commissioners Court Meeting Wednesday March 21st, 10:00 AM, Presidio

Here are my notes on this meeting held down in Presidio at the acounty Annex building.

Presidio County Commissioners Court Meeting Wed March 21st, 2018, Presidio County Annex, Presidio, 10:00 AM

Commissioners present: Brenda Bentley, Loretta Vasquez, Eloy Aranda, Judge Cinderela Guevara

Meeting convened at 10:12 AM

Public Comments: Tricia Runyon presents on behalf of the Historic commission. Asking county to approve payment of survey for Ruidosa church property. Survey complete, lines are a little different than believed. Slight encroachment problem with highway and Angell property. Bill is in Treasurer's office. 
Mike Green, architect, has moved to Seattle but will still be involved in this project.

Ramon Carrasco gives update on Candelaria water system project. Bids due last week, but two contractors requested for two week extension. TDA agreed, bids will now be due Wed. Three contractors will be bidding. Bids will go to OMB office of County.

Announcements: judge says she attended RGCOG. Agenda included US Border Master Plan. TXDOT was there. Got a tour of Fort Bliss, second largest base in the nation. 
Judge received letter from Armando Carrasco resigning from the Water district Redford water supply board. Says he is not eligible due to bylaws of board. 
Judge says she will have to see about bylaws and how a replacement president can be appointed. 
Barbara Baskin says that they have been trying to change bylaws for years. She disagrees with his assessment, but says he needed to get out of that position. Aranda says that Redford folks need to have control over their own bylaws, can change them if they want. Ramon Carrasco says he has a copy of those somewhere. 

Commissioners announcements: none

Skip to approval of payroll: 
Judge asks Frances Garcia about any anomalies in payroll. Frances says none. A few questions about comp time earned and Election overtime hours. 
New Deputy hired in Marfa. John Clark, formerly of Sul Ross PD.
Aranda moves to approve. Second by Bentley. Judge has question about bill for work done on elevator Telephone work. Nectar computing bill, Sam Cobos does not want to pay it. Frances Garcia will include it on the next bill. Tax office phone bill was $1500 plus, some other depts bills very high. Contract will ATT is up, charging us more for basic usage. Judge would like to see itemized bills when they are this high. 
Unanimously approved to approve payroll and bills.

Item 1- appoint Vicky Carrasco and Trey Gerfers to Underground Water District members

Judge introduces Trey Gerfers and Vicky Carrasco. Replacing James R. Mustard and Carlos Nieto. Board was having trouble getting a quorum. Both terms had expired. Candidates came to judge to solicit for appointment. 
Barbara Baskin wants to know what the qualifications are. Trey says none specified, and that having worked with other water districts, most of the time experts are hired. Says there is a a lot of work to be done in Presidio County. Says that with him on it, communication will improve, more data will be required to be gathered. 
Taxing water districts have monitoring wells. Monitoring wells must be in good condition but no water can be drawn from them. Goes on to reflect the research he has done on this. Much information from Mr Gerfers. Will report often to commissioners court, and will be suing for more money. Judge says last year budget was $18,000. General manager needs to be hired. Two candidates are willing and would not be relying on this for sole source of income. Need to hire an attorney to get rules up to date. Training for board members needed as well. 
TWDB has State divided into sectors. We are in Sector four. Have not been attending meetings of State Board. Need to begin attending so that concerns and need can be addressed. 
Judge asks Trey to explain what almost happened to Middle Pecks Water District in last Legislative Session. Clayton Williams group got San Antonio rep Lyle Larson to file a bill to disband or reorganize district because they have had a long disagreement about selling water. Million dollar budget, as a taxing entity. Eleven members who are elected serve on that board. City of Ft Stockton and Pecos County represented. 
Williams Co wanted to export water by pipeline. Have a permit for a historic use of 48,000 acre feet annually. Permitted for agricultural use. Williams wanted to sell water to city of Odessa. Legal fight. Larson bill asked State Sunset Commission to abolish district. Bill did not make it, but existence of bill poses a threat to future water district powers. 
Says board has a lot of work ahead of them; he is willing to do it. 
Aranda asks about future budgeting and trying to get the cities of Presidio and Marfa to assist in funding. Trey says he does not know, but wants to get regional cooperation from stakeholders. 
Midland exemption from Chapter 36 applies to cities of Presidio and Marfa.
Beebe says that City of Marfa had agreed, after disagreeing about cooperating with district, to cooperate and have a James R Mustard serve on board as a rep for the city. Unsure as to whether that vote that was taken back 5-6 years ago needs to be renewed or is still valid. 
Barbara Baskin asks when the city of Presidio became subject to groundwater controls. Trey says unknown, Sentinel had an article back in 2013 referencing it but unsure. 
Trey says the whole thing is a regional water issue and much work need to be done insofar as communication and trying to build a coalition. 
Tricia Runyon says she is grateful to hear the explanation from mr Gerfers. Thank him for the work he has done and plans to do.
Says he is happy to help inform people via an email list of people are interested.
Judge thanks him for being here.
Judge motions to appoint Vicky Carrasco and Trey Gerfers. Unanimous.

Budget amendments: none
Line item transfers: Marsha Nickell presents for auditor. District court supplies. VA officer to by some flags in preparation for Memorial Day. 

Aranda motions to approve. Second by Vasquez. Unanimous.

OMB dept: projects and property transfers. Katie Sanchez says that contracts are mostly gathered and will need to be approved by Court before budget time. Several missing from airports (old contracts) and one from PISD. 
County owned property: been researching, lots of discrepancies, but gathering data. Titles may be in County's name, but multiple tax entities will get distributions. Title work will be costly, but Jeannie Hall is educated on this stuff, having worked for abstract company, and will save the County a lot of money. There are firms that, once properties are properly categorized and titled will sell them off. Might be best option.
Some properties we are already utilizing for County have title and boundary issues as well. 
Goal is to dispose and get them back on tax rolls. Inventory on County's books is misstated due to unknown properties. Large job, going to be a long haul, but will get it done.
192 properties possibly. Some are duplicates, some are misstated as far as size, etc. 
Judge Guevara has a meeting with a company referred by Perdue to help with disposing of properties. Much like a real estate marketer.
Aranda is interested in making this happen. 
Katie says most properties are in South County.
Lori Walmart from Perdue is assisting. Used to work for abstract company as well. 
Valuations of properties are also way off. PCAD will assist with reappraising.
Vasquez is interested in the fee amounts this company will charge. Bentley says it's a percentage of a sale amount, to the best of her recollection. Judge invites Vasquez to the meeting she is having with the firm.
Sanchez says that PCADs records are not complete, as per what they submitted to the County. Courthouse is not even included as titled to County. 

Budgets for departments will start going out soon for dept heads to review. 

Adjourn at 11:13 AM







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