Local leaders making plans for bond money

Argen Duncan

In the wake of Tuesday’s bond elections, local leaders are making plans to spend the money earmarked for their entities or do without.

Voters passed Bonds A, B and C, which provide money to senior centers, libraries and public school, respectively.

Bond D, which would have provided money for universities and colleges, failed.

Grady Senior Center will get $5,200 to buy and install meals equipment from Bond A.

Eastern New Mexico University President Steven Gamble was hoping the school would receive $7 million for improvements in the campus hot water piping system, heating and ventilation and roads from Bond D.

Without the money, Gamble said university planners would have to prioritize.

They would try to get projects that didn’t need immediate work on the 2012 General Obligation Bond, he said. If a project couldn’t wait, Gamble said they would try to pull money from the university’s reserves.

The underground piping, which leaks 1,500 gallons per day, will have to wait until 2012. Of the failed bond money earmarked for ENMU, $5 million would have gone to that project.

“We don’t have that kind of money to proceed ourselves,” Gamble said.

Bond D would have provided $1 million for Clovis Community College to renovate the nursing and radiation technology wing to have modern classrooms with computer capabilities.

CCC President John Neibling said students and instructors would continue to use the classrooms, just without upgrades.

“So it’s just a lost opportunity for us to create some great learning spaces, so we’ll just wait,” Neibling said.

The college might be able to make small improvements, he said, but for a comprehensive renovation, leaders will have to wait until the next bond election.

The passage of Bond B is projected to provide $19,818 for Portales Public Library, $76,129 for ENMU’s Golden Library, $16,778 for Portales Municipal Schools libraries and $14,500 for Dora, Elida and Floyd schools to divide, said Portales Public Library Director Denise Burnett.

In Curry County, Clovis-Carver Public Library is projected to receive $42,375, Clovis school libraries $40,155 and Grady, Melrose and Texico school libraries are to receive between $6,000 and $7,000 each, according to the New Mexico Library Association website.

“I’m very excited,” Burnett said. “I’m very proud of our county for supporting the library.”

She plans to buy eight new computers with the Portales library’s share of the money.

Burnett said the bond wouldn’t be sold until next year, and the money would be available sometime from June to September. Burnett plans to be ready to buy when the money is available.

“No more waiting in line for a computer, I hope,” she said.

Clovis-Carver Public Library secretary Melody Cone said the new director would decide how to use their money when she started work Nov. 15.

At Portales Municipal Schools, Superintendent Randy Fowler said he hadn’t been notified of the amount the district would receive, but he was happy to have an allocation.

“That’ll be great,” he said.