County expects standing room only

By Jack King

Curry County commissioners are expecting a large turnout for today’s discussion of plans for a county special events center — so large, they’ve moved part of the meeting from the commission chamber to the courtroom of District Judge Teddy L. Hartley on the second floor of the Curry County Courthouse.
The commission will begin its regular meeting at 9 a.m. today in the commission chamber, County Manager Geneva Cooper said. But commissioners will break at 10:35 a.m., then reconvene at 1:30 p.m. in Hartley’s chambers to discuss the special events center.
Cooper said the discussion will center on whether the center should be of conventional construction or an “air-formed-monolithic-domed-concrete-shell structure.”
Architects from firms proposing the two different designs will be at the meeting to present their plans, she said.
During the commission’s 9 a.m. meeting Commission Chairman Tim Ashley will ask the commission to consider increasing by 1 percent the raise proposed for county employees in the fiscal year 2003-2004 budget.
The raise now in the proposed budget is 3 percent. Ashley proposes raising it to 4 percent, he said.
“There’s been a request that we consider this from County Clerk Mario Trujillo. He said because of the rise in healthcare, even with the proposed raise, lower echelon employees aren’t seeing an increase in take home pay. I believe after looking at the budget, there are some line item transfers we could do that would facilitate a 1 percent increase, but would have no effect on expenditures,” he said.