Home News Local News Rezoning request tabled for Hagerman apartment project

Rezoning request tabled for Hagerman apartment project

Hagerman Police Chief Rachelle Bateman talks at the Wednesday meeting of the Chaves County Board of Commissioners about the request for a permit to an erect an emergency communications tower in the town. The commissioners approved the application. (Lisa Dunlap Photo)

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A rezoning request for a potential apartment project in Hagerman was tabled by the Chaves County Board of Commissioners Wednesday when they heard that the project developers had not made a decision about whether to proceed with their plans.

“Right now the project is at a stand-still because of one or two issues,” said Ernest Williams of Elgin, Texas after the meeting, which neither he nor his family members attended. “There are some issues with neighbors and with water.”

Ernest and Eric Williams had appeared at an Aug. 7 meeting to talk about an application to rezone two five-acre lots from residential to multi-family so that the brothers and other family members can build two apartment buildings of four units each. But, after presenting their plans to the Chaves County Planning and Zoning Commission at that meeting and receiving the group’s recommendation for approval, the county was notified that the family was debating whether to proceed.

At the Planning and Zoning meeting, the brothers were told to investigate whether they could drill domestic wells at a low enough cost and obtain enough water to make the project feasible. A neighboring property owner also expressed concerns not only about the water available in the area but also about the dust that would result from the construction and the increased traffic on the lots.

Marlin Johnson, Chaves County Planning and Zoning Director, said at the Wednesday meeting with the Board of Commissioners that he had concerns about whether the Williams had been provided accurate information about the artesian aquifer in the area. Johnson said that he had heard that the Williams had been told inaccurately that there was no access to the aquifer within seven miles of their property.

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“I want to make sure he (Ernest Williams) knows there is probably, at least according to Andy Morley, water, if you want to spend the cost of an artesian well to get it, which might be worth it for your apartment. That’s his choice.”

Morley is an Office of State Engineer district supervisor and a member of the Planning and Zoning commission.

After some discussion, the commissioners agreed unanimously to table the rezoning matter to give the WIlliams family time to decide how to proceed.

The commissioners also voted on several other matters.

• They approved the special use permit that will allow the town of Hagerman to erect an emergency communications tower on 43 acres on Shoshoni Road, and they voted for a rezoning permit for a Hagerman property to allow a trucking business to move to 7924 Bronzite Road.

• Commissioners voted to approve leases at two county properties for the Southeastern New Mexico Economic Development District offices and the Roswell Refuge Thrift Store.

• The board decided to continue its annual practice of suspending the $5 minimum penalty for late or delinquent property tax payments, given that the county collects more than 99 percent of taxes due.

• They approved the reappointment of elder lawyer Robert McCrea to the board of directors of the Chaves County JOY Centers, which provides services to senior citizens. He will serve an additional two years.

• They officially accepted $205,512 in state appropriations through the New Mexico Department of Transportation for Hobson Road improvements.

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