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County approves plans for future subdivision

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Chaves County officials have approved the plans of local real estate investors to divide up a large parcel with the intent of allowing for a future subdivision.

The preliminary and final plats for the Aspen Estates Subdivision were passed 5-0 by the Chaves County Board of Commissioners during the group’s Thursday meeting.

A real estate investment partnership, JMCG LLC, has purchased 10.5 acres, located just outside the city limits where 27th Street ends and between West Country Club and West Mescalero roads. The partners intend to divide up the land — what used to be the McKay Estate — into six parcels for single-family homes.

No one spoke against the plan during the Thursday public hearing before the commissioners. County Planning and Zoning staff recommended approval of the plats, saying the intended subdivision would be similar to the other two subdivisions in the area.

One of the partners, Craig Waide, said the intent is to begin selling lots in about six months after city water lines and meters are installed, a road into the area is paved and land on the property is filled in.

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The Roswell City Council and the Roswell-Chaves County Extraterritorial Zoning Commission previously voted to accept the plats.

The commissioners also voted on about 18 other items during the meeting.

The approval of talks with the city about the possibility of forming an Air Center authority was previously reported. Other items approved included numerous lease renewals; contracts for at-risk youth programs; an agreement with Benefit Source to provide dental benefits for employees; the annual membership and $8,000 dues to the Southeastern New Mexico Economic Development District; the sale or disposal of unneeded equipment or furniture; the approval of financial reports, budget adjustments and the 2020-21 final budget; road change requests; and board and commission appointments.

• After holding a June 18 public hearing to allow for comments from residents and after June 23 site visits to all roads in question, the commissioners voted 4-0 to accept seven road maintenance changes, two new roads and five road vacations, or closures. Commissioner Will Cavin recused himself from the vote because he did not attend the site visits.

• The commissioners reappointed Michael Lackey, Rita Kane-Doerhoefer and Royce “Pancho” Maples to one-year terms on the Roswell-Chaves County Extraterritorial Zoning Commission. Earlier in the week, during its Tuesday meeting, the ETZ members had voted to reappoint Neil Roe to the group. The ETZ is made up of representatives appointed by the Roswell City Council and the Chaves County Commissioners, as well as one member chosen by the other representatives.

County Commissioners also approved the reappointment of local lawyer Robert McCrea for a two-year term to the Chaves County JOY Center Board of Directors.

• The final budget includes a carry-over of $3.87 million from the 2019-20 budget, said Chief Financial Officer Joe Sedillo, which he said indicates that the county is “in very good shape.” He said about $3.3 million of the carry-over was due to Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) for federal properties in the county, the largest payment the county has received. The upcoming fiscal year’s budget includes $3.6 million in capital projects. Those include replacement of more than 100 heating, ventilation and air conditioning units in the Chaves County Administrative Center; replacement of two chillers at the Administrative Center and the Chaves County Courthouse; and a new roof for the Administrative Center. County Manager Stanton Riggs said the roofing project will be on hold until later in the fiscal year in case the budget situation changes.

Senior Writer Lisa Dunlap can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 351, or at reporter02@rdrnews.com.