Commission approves land for housing

By Tony Parra

County commissioners approved a preliminary plat of territorial estates for the development of a housing development in the southeast part of Portales.
The proposed development will be located on the eastern side of Kilgore Avenue alongside East University Drive, according to Chad Lydick, surveyor for Lydick Engineers and Surveyors of Clovis.
Lydick said the 33-acre land will be used to develop one-acre lots for each house. Lydick said there will be 25 one-acre lots devoted for houses. Sam Rigsby, owner of the land, said he plans to develop two- and three-bedroom houses for sale.
“We are trying to fulfill the need of housing in Portales,” Rigsby said. “The houses are for first-time buyers.”
Lydick said he must go before the city’s zoning and planning commission and the city council for approval also, because the land is alongside city limits. Rigsby said once plans are approved, they can break ground on the property. Rigsby said he would like to begin building houses by the middle of summer.
Rigsby said Master Realty representatives of Portales will handle the home sales.
In other business at the meeting:
— Matt Chandler, Ninth Judicial District Attorney, updated the commissioners on a few of the activities from the district attorney’s office. Chandler was sworn in during late November. Chandler spoke about a victim’s advocate who will serve Roosevelt County and about having an investigator for the county by July 1.
Chandler also discussed the Meth Watch program. The Meth Watch program which alerts store retailers to consumers purchasing or stealing suspicious amounts of products used in the illicit making of the highly addictive stimulant. For example, if five boxes of Sudafed, which is used in the meth-making process, are purchased, store owners can alert law enforcement to the suspicious activity, according to Chandler.
“We’re really excited about that program,” Chandler said. “We’ve been getting good feedback from merchants. Red flags go up when someone is purchasing five boxes of Sudafed, for instance.”
Chandler also said there will be an investigator assigned to Roosevelt County on July 1, when the position is funded.
— Commissioner Paul Grider asked to have a topic regarding County Administrator Charlene Hardin’s authority and specifically how county officials advertise the bid process for services for the county.
Commissioner Tom Clark said he found out about a request for a proposal for work on county roads through the newspaper. Clark said Hardin should have come before the commissioners before going out for bids.
Hardin said she had been coming to the commissioners in previous meetings with request for proposals (RFPs), but said commissioners told her it was not necessary. Hardin said she has no problem in bringing RFPs before the commissioners before advertising them.
“It’s better practice to come to the commission to bid,” Randy Knudson, county attorney, said. “The problem we have in Roosevelt County is that there are no specific guidelines for the administrator. The power of the county manager has never been defined.”
Knudson said it was a delegation issue and that Hardin was trying to do the best she can.
“It’s a terrible process,” Clark said.
Commissioners requested to have the item of clarifying the administrator’s authority and guidelines for the next county meeting on March 15.