• Sat. May 21st, 2022

Raton Commission Hears Good Audit Report, 13% Increase in GRT Estimate, Request for Pickleball Courts – KRTN Enchanted Air Radio

ByChad J. Johnson

Mar 23, 2022

By Marty Mayfield KRTN Multimedia It was a cold, snowy Tuesday evening when Raton City Commissioners gathered to hear a short presentation on this year’s audit and a longer request for pickleball courts. The commissioners began the meeting by moving the audit report to the start of the meeting where Alan Bower of Carr, Riggs & Ingram, LLC informed the commission that the audit received a very good report without exception. The audits of the three entities, City of Raton, Raton Water Works and Raton Public Service Company were equally clean. The Commissioners then acknowledged receipt of the report. Leslie Fernandez then spoke to the Pickle Ball commissioners. A sport that is rapidly gaining popularity among all ages. She came before the commission explaining the sport and where a group of up to 80 citizens attended recently at the convention center. They were using the high school tennis courts until the weather turned bad and were allowed to go to the convention center. They can get three courts inside the establishment. JP Duran Informs the commissioners that they hope to have eight courts in the area of ​​the aquatic center. To do this, eight courts will fill a space of 160′ x 160′. Concrete for the courts would cost around $69,000 with the actual court surface around $52,000. Fencing and lighting costs have yet to be received by the group who are seeking grants to help pay for the courts. It was also noted that the VA clinic in Raton should be closed. The facility serves approximately 868 veterinarians from a very large area. In order to save the establishment, people are asked to contact our federal elected officials in New Mexico as well as the elected officials of the surrounding states because several veterinarians come from Colorado, Oklahoma and Texas. Commissioners approved tenant tax claims for the Raton Supercross for $2,200 and the advertisement for the World Journal Summer Guide for $1,200. They postponed the request from the Dawson Reunion group until a few concerns could be resolved. Their request includes a few items that the commissioners say may not be covered by regulations governing the uses of tenant tax. Approval of a proposal from Parkhill, formerly Gordon Environmental, for landfill monitoring. The cost of the proposal is $28,990, which City Manager Scott Berry has not increased in the past two years. The commissioners approved the use of the Houston-Galveston Area Council contract for the purchase of a ladder truck and a Type One engine. The city is applying for a loan from the DFA to cover the type one engine and part of the ladder truck. Fire funds will be used to cover this debt service. Due to construction and other delays, the city should see the new trucks in about two years. Alpha Design will be used for professional service to replace the convention center doors at a cost of $6800 plus GRT. Commissioners approved the budget adjustment of $500 for the JJAC grant. He transfers travel expenses to the Youth Sub-Committee to cover committee member allowances. City Treasurer Michael Anne Antonucci reviewed budget preparation rules and guidelines for the FY23 budget cycle. Berry suggested a budget workshop be held in the building this year. from the Airport Armory in late April. The February FY22 financial report was released, noting a 13.18% increase in gross tax revenue over budget. The city has also seen an increase in Small Town Helper funds which Antonucci said will use part of the increase to help cover fuel and other expenses that have increased significantly in recent months. (Link to February FY22 Financial Report) There are several post adjustments in the ninth budget adjustment for FY22. Some of these are intended to cover the increased costs associated with natural gas costs for the aquatic center. Tenant tax money has also been moved as there have not been many requests over the past two years for promotional funds, the city now has a surplus. (Link to FY22 Budget Adjustment #9) City Manager Scott Berry noted in his report that the city has several grant applications in progress that include street improvements and a grant to digitize city documents. Commissioners then met behind closed doors to discuss the City Manager. The commissioners will meet again on April 12, 2022 at 6:00 p.m. in the committee room. Municipal offices will be closed on April 15 for Good Friday.

Leslie Fernandez spoke to the Pickle Ball Commissioners and asked the Commissioners to consider building eight new sports courts here in Raton. She added that she would be more than happy to work on a grant for the courts if the city is willing to accept the funding. She noted that some 80 area residents participate in the sport locally.