Bidegain asks county commissioners to annex land

QCS Staff

Phil Bidegain, whose family owns and operates the T-4 Ranch, is asking Quay County to annex all but 70,000 acres of the 180,000-acre ranch.

The 110,000 acres Bidegain wants annexed are in San Miguel County, Bidegain said. Bidegain said this requires him to drive 100 miles to Las Vegas to conduct ranch business that involves San Miguel County government.

The ranch’s headquarters are in Montoya, about 20 miles west of Tucumcari.

Bidegain said he also needs to consult with San Miguel County officials on the proposed move.

While ceding the land to Quay County would result in a loss of about $40,000 in property taxes to San Miguel County, Bidegain said it contains no roads or other infrastructure.

Commissioner Sue Dowell urged caution in pursuing annexation of the Bidegain property. There may be other state agencies involved, she said, and she wondered whether the same statute that covers an annexation requested by a county government would cover a change in county designation at an individual’s request.

The commission voted Monday to table the measures.

At the same meeting the commission also:

• Heard a resolution from Immanuel Baptist Church, Tucumcari, requesting the county to challenge issuing licenses for same-sex marriages. Moral authority should supersede civil mandates, the resolution said. The commission did not take any action. The county has licensed 15 same-sex marriages, according to the County Clerk’s office, 13 of which were granted to out-of-state couples.

• Authorized the county to apply for about $530,000 from the New Mexico Department of Transportation to improve about 2,300 feet of county roads near the Tucumcari Memorial Park Cemetery.

The amounts include $144,267 for school bus routes to make improvements to Quay Road Ap 0.6 from railroad tracks just off Historic Route 66, Tucumcari, to QR 63, also called the Cemetery Road.

Another $254, 984 in Community Arterial Project funds will finance improvements to QR 63 along the cemetery.

The remaining $129,869, will be used to improve the road between the east side of the cemetery to an irrigation ditch west of the cemetery.

• Authorized the sheriff to apply for $23,600 in state Law Enforcement Protection Fund grants for the purchase of a partition for jail inmate transportation vans. The partition would prevent juvenile inmates from speaking to adult inmates and prevent adult male and female inmates from conversing while in transit.

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