Chaves County will hold its annual public hearing about road requests April 18, county staff announced during the Board of Commissioners meeting Thursday.
This year, the county will consider 20 road status change requests, having rejected six of the applications for various reasons.
Of the 20 applications to be considered, four are asking for a change in whether the county maintains the road or not, three are asking the county to assume ownership of a private road and 13 are asking for the county to vacate, or give up ownership, of roads. Of the 13 vacation requests, 12 were made by the county road department, while one involving a portion of Miller Road between Caddo and Ojibwa roads came from individuals living in the county.
Three appointed freeholders have visited the roads and reviewed the application and submitted a report recommending approval of all requests, except for one. They suggested that commissioners deny a request to begin maintaining a portion of Chicory Road, which is about 55 miles from Roswell.
After the April 18 public hearing to receive comments, commissioners will visit the roads before voting on the applications.
In addition to accepting an amended disaster declaration, as covered in a prior story, the commissioners also acted on the following items.
• The board accepted a $238,528.04 grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Community Development Block Grant program to help pay for the construction of an elevator at the downtown Chaves County Courthouse. The other money for the project, expected to cost about $490,000, is coming from a state appropriation.
• Commissioners approved a special use permit for a property on Fisk Road in Dexter for a wireless communication tower that will be used for AT&T and for FirstNet, which provides emergency communication services.
* Commissioners agreed to accept $39,200 from the Law Enforcement Protection Fund for the purchase of equipment and for training of personnel for the sheriff’s office.
• Commissioners approved releasing $25,000 in state Local Economic Development Agency funds to USA Beef Packing so that it could hire additional employees that will allow it to meet business and LEDA objectives.
• The board voted to recommend Timothy Z. Jennings to the New Mexico Governor’s Office to serve as Chaves County flood commissioner. The prior commissioner, Morgan Nelson, passed away recently. The commissioner serves on a volunteer basis and is called on when needed to assist or consult with Chaves County Flood Superintendent Dick Smith.