Commissioners approve water tank bid

At a Roosevelt County Commission special meeting Monday:

• Commissioners approved a $91,688 bid for a water tank for Arch Fire Department.

County Manager Charlene Hardin said the department had a $100,000 grant and was providing $20,000 in matching funds. Bids for other work needed to install the tanks, such as well work, are coming in within budget as well, she said.

The two tanks the department has are old and don’t qualify as reliable water sources, Hardin said.

• Rudy Bauer of HDR Engineering Inc. presented a summary of the Joint Land Use Study for Cannon Air Force Base and Melrose Bombing Range. He said public input has been low and he would like more before the final version is approved.

The study aims to help the military installations and area communities live together. It provides information about background and existing conditions, and aims to give local governments a “tool kit” of recommendations from which to draw to mitigate conflict with land use, Bauer said.

The plan itself establishes no rules.

The plan includes areas of concern and recommendations.

For instance, Cannon officials would like to review and comment on the construction of structures over certain height limits – 75 feet in most of the study area, Bauer said. They wouldn’t have the power to approve or disapprove the construction, he said.

Portales real estate agent Charles Bennett said a review requirement could take income from land owners because wind energy developers wouldn’t want to deal with what they thought would be a hassle with the military.

Bauer said planners would try to craft the recommendation to avoid taking income, and the military might not protest new structures but would need to know about them.

Other recommendations included establishing a plan implementation committee — which Bauer said was crucial — developing wind and solar power guidelines and creating a tall-structure ordinance.

• Commissioners Approved a grant agreement with the state Department of Transportation for about $7,300 for the sheriff to combat DWI. Hardin said the grant award is annual.

• Hardin was authorized to submit an application for a loan to bring a new barn from Colorado to the Roosevelt County Fairgrounds. The commission will decide whether to take out a loan after the New Mexico Finance Authority decides whether to approve the application and provides terms.

Commission Chairman David Sanders said the county would take the money out of the general fund if the commission didn’t want to get a loan.

Basic IDIQ Construction Management, the company selected to move the building, is expected to give a final estimate for the move, Hardin said. A previous tentative estimate was $1 million.

The general fund would take a hit if the money came out of it, and the county wouldn’t have the money available for other things, Hardin said. The loan would allow the county to make payments over a period of time.

Commissioner Gene Creighton said after the meeting that the interest the county earned on its reserves last year would pay for the interest on the possible loan.