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Raton City Commission and Water Board approves water agreement

by Marty Mayfield KRTN Multi-Media

Attorney John Utton went over the Capulin Water Basin agreement in a joint meeting with the Raton Water Board and the Raton City Commission. Photo by Marty Mayfield

RATON — Raton City Commissioners met in a joint session with the Raton Water Board to discuss a water rights issue in the Capulin water basin that has been in negotiations for the last couple of years, before their regular meeting.

The City of Raton bought water rights in the Capulin Water Basin several years ago and there have been issues that have come up in years past that have required Raton to protect their water rights. Several ranches have requested or have wanted to increase their water usage for irrigation, as a result there have been disagreements that have been negotiated and worked out. The joint meeting went over the agreement with both boards approving it.

Following the joint meeting, Raton city commissioners met in their regular meeting to handle a short agenda which included setting the final capital outlay priorities to present to the state legislature in January. The first priority is to replace some public works equipment that has exceeded its normal life. Other items on the request include city street improvements, drainage system improvements and the transfer station and recycling center funding.

Budget adjustments included the sale of a surplus ambulance and other line item changes. Commissioners then approved the disposal of surplus equipment, a landfill compactor. It is hoped the compactor which has over 6,300 hours of operation will bring at least $75,000 or as much as $130,000.

Commissioners approved the final loan agreement with the New Mexico Environment Department for initial work on the transfer station. The principal is $25,000 with an interest rate of 2.375%. The first payment is due in November 2018 and commissioners will discuss whether to pay it off completely during budget discussions next year.

City manager Scott Berry noted the work on the airport taxiways is complete with the exception of some signage and taxiway striping. Berry attended a meeting concerning city branding with the state Mainstreet organization and Raton Mainstreet.

Berry told commissioners that Carol Baca was able to secure a $53,634 grant to upgrade the Raton PD Dispatch center and due to her hard work the upgrades will begin in January. Berry also noted that one enterprise is using the community kitchen to make candy but not all the equipment has been installed yet.

The Raton City Commission will meet again January 9, 2018 for their next regular meeting.

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