Serving the High Plains

Articles from the February 8, 2023 edition


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  • Pack of dogs kills Tucumcari man

    Ron Warnick, QCS Senior Writer|Feb 8, 2023

    A pack of roaming dogs attacked and killed a Tucumcari man as he was walking near Mesalands Community College on Wednesday night, state police said. Five mixed-breed dogs attacked Stanley Hartt, 64, as he was walking down 11th Street near Gamble Avenue, according to a news release from New Mexico State Police, which is investigating. Hartt died at the scene of his injuries and was pronounced dead by the Office of Medical Examiner. NMSP will give its final report to the district attorney's...

  • Cuts in salaries, programs part of MCC insolvency plan

    staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    The Mesalands Community College board of trustees during a special meeting Thursday night approved an insolvency plan that imposes progressively deeper pay cuts for higher-earning employees and cuts some programs for the financially distressed college. The board also approved a request of $4.7 million in state emergency funding to carry Mesalands through the end of the fiscal year in June after officials recently learned the college had only enough money to cover one more payroll period. The insolvency plan initially proposed a 2% pay cut for...

  • Two residents charged in fatal dog attack

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    Two Tucumcari people have been criminally charged in the death of another resident who was attacked and killed last week by a pack of dogs and face a court date Friday. Mary Montoya, 50, and Kristopher Morris, 27, both of the 400 block of West High Street, each was charged with involuntary manslaughter and a dangerous dog (death of a person). They were booked into the Quay County Detention Center on Wednesday. They are scheduled to appear in magistrate court at 1 p.m. Friday. The dangerous-dog charge is a third-degree felony that can lead up...

  • Shots-fired calls prompt Rattler Gym lockdown

    staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    Four reports of shots-fired incidents in Tucumcari on Tuesday night led to a brief lockdown of Rattler Gymnasium after a boys basketball game and officers searching to find the suspects. Interim Tucumcari Police Chief Patricia Lopez said Wednesday that police had identified two possible suspects in shots-fired incidents, but no arrests had been made. Tucumcari Police still were investigating. Lopez said the shots-fired calls came from throughout the city. She said no injuries or property damage had been reported. One of the shots-fired calls...

  • President given no confidence vote at MCC

    Ron Warnick, QCS Senior Writer|Feb 8, 2023

    Executive staff of Mesalands Community College on Sunday unanimously passed a vote of no confidence against President Gregg Busch, according to a news release from the college, amid reports of overspending and alleged threats of firing employees if details of the college being placed under state fiscal oversight were revealed. Josh McVey, Mesalands' chief communications officer, issued a news release Monday morning about the no-confidence vote, along with a copy of a Jan. 18 letter from the New...

  • Rattler Gym hosts teen's funeral

    Ron Warnick, QCS Senior Writer|Feb 8, 2023

    Coaches, family members and a classmate bared emotions, told stories and even shared a few laughs about a Tucumcari teenager during his funeral Saturday morning at Rattler Gymnasium. Jayden Gloms, 15, died in a one-vehicle accident on Jan. 24 on a shooting range at Five Mile Park on Tucumcari's west side. The Tucumcari Police Department, which is investigating, apparently had not finished its report on the accident. The Quay County Sun filed an open-records request for the report last week. A TP...

  • City commission appointee to step down after lawsuit

    Ron Warnick, QCS Senior Writer|Feb 8, 2023

    Matt Bednorz, who the Tucumcari City Commission appointed to fill the term of recently retired District 3 Commissioner Ruth Ann Litchfield, said Friday he would step down after District 4 Commissioner Chris Arias filed a lawsuit to block the appointment because Bednorz doesn't live in the district. Reached Friday afternoon by phone after the Quay County Sun received a copy of Arias' lawsuit, Bednorz said he would resign his appointment from the commission. "I'm done, I'm done," he said. "I'm not...

  • Calendar - Feb. 8

    Feb 8, 2023

    • Saturday — Valentine’s Shrimp Boil. This feast from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Logan Civic Center benefits the Friends of Ute Lake State Park. Tickets are limited. For more information, call (575) 487-2284. • Saturday — Diamondback STEM Paint Night & Cornhole tournament. The Tucumcari Elks Lodge is hosting a fundraiser for Tucumcari’s Diamondback STEM team from 4 to 8 p.m. The paint event is $25 per person with three designs from which to choose. The tourney is $40 per team with a 50% payout. Contact [email protected] or through Facebook at @Diamond...

  • Pages past - Feb. 8

    Feb 8, 2023

    On the shelves ... 1973: Members of the Tucumcari/Quay County Chamber of Commerce had an unusual incentive to sell tickets to the chamber’s Feb. 20 banquet. Two teams of ticket-sellers chaired by Gene Klaverweiden and Arnett Hooser have been divvied up to sell the tickets. The team with the most tickets sold will be served a steak dinner at the banquet, while the losing team will be served beans. “Both teams will be out for blood,” the newspaper reported. • Pharmacist Bob McClelland received the most votes during a Tucumcari Board of Education...

  • Menus - Feb. 8

    Feb 8, 2023

    Tucumcari schools Wednesday — Breakfast: Sausage breakfast pizza, assorted cereal, graham crackers, red grapes, apple juice, skim, 1% or strawberry milk; Lunch: Turkey and cheese sandwich, hamburger steak with gravy, mashed potatoes, breadstick, fresh broccoli, baby carrots, ranch dressing, fresh banana, skim, chocolate skim, 1% or strawberry milk. Thursday — Breakfast: Egg, cheese and potato breakfast burrito, salsa, assorted cereal, graham crackers, apple, orange juice, skim, 1% or strawberry milk; Lunch: Ham and egg chef salad, cheese piz...

  • Say same things that Jesus says

    Gordon Runyan, Religion columnist|Feb 8, 2023

    Jesus said in Matthew 10:32, “Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.” This seems like a pretty big deal. If you want Jesus to confess you, you need to confess him. Of course, that’s from a translation that was completed in 1611, so it’s not surprising that the key word there, “confess,” may not mean to our ears what it meant to theirs. We tend to think of admitting to our sins, when we talk about confession. That’s certainly what it means legally and in major religious tra...

  • No hard feelings by fired TPD chief

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    Former Tucumcari police chief Pete Rivera says he holds no hard feelings from his firing last month. Rivera said in a phone interview last week he was relieved to no longer be in law enforcement. “Out of the 35 years in that work, it’s time for me to relax,” he said. Rivera said the city did not provide a reason for his termination on Jan. 26. He said he was still on his six-month probationary period in his employment as police chief. As a result, the city was not required to give a reason for his firing. “Everything’s good; I’m happy,” Rivera...

  • San Jon man jailed on vehicular homicide warrant

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    A San Jon man wanted in a Bernalillo County vehicular homicide case was apprehended during a recent Curry County traffic stop. Curry County Adult Detention Center Administrator Mark Gallegos said Robert John Archuleta, 67, was brought to the Clovis jail on Jan. 27 on an outstanding warrant by a New Mexico State Police officer after the stop. Archuleta faces charges of homicide by vehicle and driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs in the death of Alejandro de la Cruz Perez in July 2022 at the Sandia Resort & Casino north of...

  • 2 people in cab won't improve railroad safety

    InsideSources.com, Syndicated content|Feb 8, 2023

    A strike that would have recently broken the supply chain, shaken an already shaky economy at a cost of nearly $2 billion a day, and damaged the rail industry was fortunately avoided. But the track ahead is far from clear for the railroads. The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) is considering a rule change that could make the industry less competitive. And, as was the case with the labor unrest, unions are again in the middle of it all. In July, the FRA proposed a rule requiring at least two crewmembers to be in the train’s cab for most ...

  • Tyranny 'for own good' still tyranny

    Kent McManigal, Local columnist|Feb 8, 2023

    Almost all of us want the same thing: to live in peace with what we need to survive and enjoy life, free to follow our interests. Problems arise when some of us think we can get there through socialism or legislation. I believe liberty is the only way to get there. Thomas Jefferson seemed to have been hinting at the same thing when he wrote: “Rightful liberty is unobstructed action according to our will within limits drawn around us by the equal rights of others.” That sounds peaceful and civilized. He went on to say, “I do not add ‘with...

  • New tax rule only hurts little people

    Michael Reagan, Syndicated content|Feb 8, 2023

    The IRS is so kind. Our most beloved federal agency has delayed until next year a new income-reporting law it has carefully designed to squeeze the last drops of tax revenue out of many of us. The new IRS rule is aimed at millions of self-employed people and small business people who sell goods or services on places like eBay, drive part-time for Uber or earn income through social media companies like Airbnb. Right now, the requirement for having to report this kind of side-hustle income to the taxman are transactions where payments exceed...

  • COVID spread risk drops after one-week spike

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    Confirmed COVID-19 cases in Quay County remained stable for a third straight week, and a website that tracks community spread of the virus reported the region’s risk had declined. The county’s number of cases last week was six, compared to eight the previous week. According to the COVID Act Now website, the county’s rate of new cases rose dropped by almost half — 48.5 cases per 100,000 people last week, compared to 90.9 the previous week. COVID Act Now on Friday also dropped Quay County’s risk of community spread of the disease from “high” to...

  • Odeon's co-owner wants city to buy it

    Ron Warnick, QCS Senior Writer|Feb 8, 2023

    The co-owner of the Odeon Theater on Thursday told a gathering of people interested in renovating and reopening the Princess Theatre she wanted the City of Tucumcari to buy her venue, operate it and use the proceeds to revive the long-closed Princess. Christy Dominguez, co-owner of the Odeon with her husband Robert Lopez since 2013, said the Odeon is profitable enough with its food license that "it does pay for itself" and that the city could use the Odeon's revenue for the Princess. "There's a...

  • Lodgers board suggests changes to aid application

    Ron Warnick, QCS Senior Writer|Feb 8, 2023

    The Tucumcari Lodgers Tax Advisory Board approved a suggestion of several changes to its application form for requesting funds, including requiring a final report within 90 days after a tax-supported event ends. If an organizer does not give a final report in front of the board within the 90 days of the event’s completion, it may result in the board denying the reimbursement of funds. Board Chairman Matt Bednorz initially suggested an organizer give a final report to the board within 30 days. Tucumcari MainStreet director Connie Loveland s...

  • Rattlers win first district mat title in 30+ years

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    The Tucumcari boys wrestling team captured its first district championship in more than 30 years after dispatching of Del Norte and Valley last week during the District 6 championship duals meet Thursday. The Rattlers finished in a three-way tie for first place with Valley and Ruidoso in head-to-head competition during the regular season. The tiebreaker, which used a points system of combined margin of victory or loss against those foes, gave Tucumcari the district championship. Tucumcari coach...

  • THS girl wrestlers qualify for state

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    Two Tucumcari High School girls wrestlers qualified for the state tournament — including one who medaled — during Saturday’s Region 2 tournament at Del Norte in Albuquerque. MiKayla Klinger (11-9), a sophomore at the 152-pound weight class, won three matches at the sprawling 30-team event and lost only to Makenzie Kormendy of Goddard by a 3-0 decision in the finals. Klinger didn’t go home empty-handed; she earned a second-place medal for her efforts. “She had a great day, even in the championship round,” Tucumcari coach Tim Clark said. “It w...

  • Lady Coyotes blazed a trail

    Ron Warnick, QCS Senior Writer|Feb 8, 2023

    SAN JON - Fifty years ago this month, San Jon High School won the first New Mexico Activities Association championship in girls basketball, despite being one of the smallest school districts. The Lady Coyotes' state title in 1973 came before the tournament was divided into enrollment classes, so the team typically faced bigger schools. San Jon beat them all en route to a 17-0 season and became trailblazers in the Title IX era that prohibited sex discrimination and opened more opportunities for g...

  • Lady Rattlers blast NMMI in district opener

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    The Tucumcari girls basketball team opened district play Thursday with a resounding 59-13 victory over New Mexico Military Institute at Roswell. The Lady Rattlers stormed to leads of 7-0 and 21-2 in the first half. NMMI made only one field goal during much of the half due to Tucumcari’s smothering defense. Tucumcari scored 25 unanswered points to start the third quarter for a 51-9 lead. After that, coach Patrick Benavidez began emptying the benches amid a running clock because of the 35-point mercy rule. “They played a great game and all con...

  • Dry spells lead to Rattlers loss at NMMI

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    A sluggish offense at the beginning and the end proved decisive for the Tucumcari boys basketball team in its 37-35 district-opening loss Thursday against New Mexico Military Institute at Roswell. The Rattlers fell behind by a double-digit margin in the first quarter, forcing them to play catch-up for much of the game. Tucumcari rallied to a 33-29 lead early in the fourth quarter, then scored just one field goal the rest of the way as the Colts came back to take a 37-35 lead with two minutes left. Two Tucumcari traveling violations and other...

  • Logan comeback bid at Melrose falls short

    Staff report|Feb 8, 2023

    The Logan boys basketball team fell short in its comeback bid with a 50-48 district loss Thursday at Melrose. The Longhorns fell behind by as many as 15 points in the third quarter and still were trailing by nine midway through the fourth. “We struggled to score in the first half,” Logan coach Kyle Griffiths said, “but in the second half got things going a little bit. Boys really locked in defensively the entire game.” Christian Kotara made two free throws with 1:36 left to bring Logan to within 49-48. During the final 38 seconds, Kotara...

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