Missing Indian head tops oddities

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By David Irvin: CNJ staff writer When a 73-year-old artifact goes missing, someone usually has to take the blame. Former City Manager Ray Mondragon learned that lesson well in 2004 after one of the Indian head artifacts atop Hotel Clovis disappeared in the summer. “Personally, I did not feel that I was deserving (of the […]

City manager known for his communication skills

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Clovis City Manager Ray Mondragon, left, jokes with his secretary Vicki Reyes Thursday in his office at city hall while thanking his employees for their service over the years. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth) By Mike Linn: CNJ news editor On Ray Mondragon’s desk in city hall, phone messages from residents pile up on a note […]

Melrose police chief retiring at end of month

By David Irvin A long-time area law enforcement official has announced his retirement as Melrose’s police chief, effective Dec. 31. Clarence “Gomer” Pyle, 61, who has been with the Melrose department for five years, dedicated 28 years of community service to the area. During his career, he worked with Clovis Police Chief Bill Carey and […]

City manager leaving office

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Ray Mondragon has served as the city manager since 2001 and worked for the city for 30 years. By Ryan Lengerich: CNJ staff writer As a young boy, Ray Mondragon picked onion and cotton fields as a migrant worker’s son. At 16, he took a job as dispatcher with the Clovis Police Department. He worked […]

Applebee’s hoping to get a building permit

by Eric Butler The latest in a recent wave of national chains to take an interest in Clovis appears to be Applebee’s restaurant. Applebee’s officials would not confirm an expansion to Clovis, but Clovis City Manager Ray Mondragon said Applebee’s representatives are hoping to get a building permit this week to build on the north […]

Missing Indian head turns up in Texas

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The Indian bust that was stolen from Hotel Clovis in July of was found Monday night in a ditch near Littlefield, Texas. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth) By David Irvin: CNJ staff writer The Indian chief statue that disappeared in July from atop the Hotel Clovis has been discovered in Texas. The 73-year-old artifact was ditched […]

Gun range tops city’s wish list

By Ryan Lengerich: CNJ staff writer City commissioners have prioritized what they feel are Clovis’ most pressing needs for the upcoming state legislative session. Those priorities include a regional gun range and outdoor recreational facilities. The commission is one of several entities that submits needs to state legislators for consideration. Other area entities, including the […]

City considering police incentive package

By Mike Linn: CNJ news editor City officials are hoping a new incentive package for Clovis police will help hike staffing levels and attract more experienced officers to the force. City Manager Ray Mondragon will present an approximately $80,000 annual incentive package for approval at tonight’s city commission meeting. If approved, the average incentive pay […]

Educators top pay scale

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By Mike Linn: CNJ news editor From the first day of classes to the last day of finals — and the hot summers in between — top-level educators in Curry County are charged with running our schools. They sit atop education’s vast pyramid, and are the highest-paid public servants in Curry County, earning more than […]

Committee formed to address Ned Houk Park concerns

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Joshua Metrejean, 14, of Clovis, crest a hill on his dirt bike as he rides the trails at Ned Houk Park last month. File photo. By Mike Linn Comments from about a dozen people Tuesday night prompted City Manager Ray Mondragon to rescind a recommendation that would restrict the use of all-terrain vehicles and motorcycles […]

Mondragon receives contract renewal

By Mike Linn: CNJ News Editor Clovis Mayor David Lansford feared if every city commissioner commented on how valuable city manager Ray Mondragon is to Clovis, Thursday’s commission meeting would last all night. Blanketed by a flurry of praise on commission row, Mondragon on Thursday accepted a contract renewal as the Clovis city manager. The […]

Hotel Clovis artifact still missing

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Jesus Ramirez, an employee with the City of Clovis’ welding department, watches as a metal beam that connected the Hotel Clovis with an old package store is removed Tuesday for security purposes. CNJ photo by Eric Kluth. By William Thompson New Mexico’s historic preservation division has joined in the search for an Indian bust reported […]

Junior rodeo’s economic impact strong in Clovis

By William Thompson: Freedom Newspapers Success at the High Plains Junior Rodeo Association finals was not limited to the performers. Clovis was a winner as well, City Manager Raymond Mondragon said on Sunday. “Parents and relatives of the participants spent their money here,” he said. “They shopped and ate at restaurants. I would call the […]

Huge stone monument stolen from Hotel Clovis roof

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An Indian chief statue is one of five monuments sat atop the nine-story high Hotel Clovis. CNJ photo by Eric Kluth. By Ryan Lengerich: CNJ staff writer A 350-pound historic monument is missing from atop Hotel Clovis. The 73-year-old stone in the shape of an Indian chief with a war bonnet vanished on Tuesday. City […]

Riders in the storm

By David Arkin: CNJ Correspondent Clovis city officials are considering closing Ned Houk Park to recreational vehicle riders because of safety concerns and rising costs. Clovis City Manager Ray Mondragon said the issue will go before an upcoming Ned Houk Board meeting. The seven-member group, which has not yet scheduled a meeting time, will face […]

City manager making most of summer

Reporter’s Notebook One of eastern New Mexico’s more famous residents spent last weekend roaring around Ute Lake on a Harley. Well, sort of. Clovis City Manager Ray Mondragon was seen zipping around on a Harley-Davidson replica mini scooter. The scooter goes about 25 mph and is powered by a two-cycle lawnmower engine, he said. “It’s […]

Police: Wages not only concern

By Jack King: CNJ staff writer Clovis Police Officers Association officials said Friday they want a conference with City Manager Raymond Mondragon as soon as possible to discuss whether or not some members of the city police department will be left out of a raise given to other city workers. The Clovis Police Officers Association […]

Former fire chief, city settle

By Ryan Lengerich: CNJ STAFF WRITER Former Clovis Fire Chief Sam McCallie has agreed to a $15,000 settlement with the city of Clovis and its city manager after attempting to sue for wrongful termination in January 2003. McCallie’s lawyer, Eric Dixon of Portales, said the city also agreed not to challenge $9,000 in unemployment compensation. […]

Military Digest 4/26

City awarded reserve, guard support award Clovis City Manager Ray Mondragon accepted the “Above and Beyond” award on behalf of the City of Clovis from the Committee for Employer Support of the Guard and Reserve at a recent state meeting of the organization. ESGR is a committee of the Department of Defense that works to […]

Local leadership gets a chance to enhance

By Jack King A visit to Clovis by members of Leadership New Mexico this week offers a chance to showcase the community, City Manager Raymond Mondragon said Thursday. Fifty community leaders from around the state, participating in a conference on education issues here Thursday through Saturday, toured Cannon Air Force Base Thursday afternoon, then attended […]