Counties wait on capital outlay bill

Thomas Garcia

Several area counties are waiting on the signature by Gov. Bill Richardson on Senate Bill 443, which passed with a 65-0 vote Saturday in the House.

The bill will reauthorize and extend the time for several of the counties’ existing capital outlay projects, said Sen. Carlos R. Cisneros, D-Questa.
Officials in Quay County are relieved that the funds have been reauthorized because they have already spent the money, said Quay County Manager Richard Primrose.

“We have already bought the equipment,” Primrose said. “We are waiting for the $300,000 appropriation to replenish the county’s general funds. We had $125,000 and used $300,000 of the county’s funds to purchase the equipment.

Primrose said that $350,000 in capital outlay funds had been appropriated for the construction of a new agricultural building. Instead they had the funds reauthorized to buy a building and use the excess funds for repairs at the Quay County Fair Barn and rodeo grounds.

“The Terry Turner building was purchased by the county and is being used as the agricultural extension offices,” Primrose said.

“We are very thankful and appreciative to the senators and representatives for their hard work in passing this reauthorization of capital outlay funds,” said Franklin McCasland, chairman of the Quay County Commission.

In Curry County, the funds to build a new criminal justice complex have been reauthorized to renovate the Curry County Courthouse and perform a feasibility study for the construction of the complex, said Mark Lansford, Curry County finance director.

“We did not feel that the $300,000 we received three years ago would be enough to build the complex,” Lansford said. “Now we can look into building the complex and perform much needed repairs and renovations to the courthouse.”

Eastern New Mexico University had received funds to build a new agricultural building. But the reauthorization will allow for an existing building to be renovated, said Steven Gamble, ENMU president.

“There was not enough capital outlay funds to construct a new building,” Gamble said. “We also received an extension for the purchase of equipment for ENMU’s Speech and Hearing Rehabilitation Outreach Center.”

Curry County
• Clovis Criminal Justice Complex Development split of $300,000.
• Curry County Courthouse renovations split of $300,000.
• Grady fire truck.

De Baca County
• De Baca County Clerk’s Office Information technology purchase.

Quay County
• Arch Hurley Conservancy District equipment.
• Quay County Extension offices, fair barn and rodeo grounds $350,000.
• Quay County Road Department equipment and rock crusher $450,000.