RATON — The Raton City Commission ran through the agenda Tuesday evening with little discussion on the agenda items. Thomas Vigil, Colfax County Emergency Manager, introduced himself and offered the county’s services during an emergency, especially since the Red Cross status is in doubt. The emergency manager position was started after the Track Fire and has been there for assistance in emergencies in Cimarron and Springer. The county also has a reverse 911 system in place and is offering that service to the city as well. DJ Bird and Ally Bird of the Raton FFA are asking for the city’s help to rebuild some fence along Gardner Road. The FFA members will do the work if the city can chip in and help get the supplies. City Manager Scott Berry indicated the city would be required to get bids on the fencing material, which is estimated to be 500 fence posts and 5,000 feet of barbed wire. The fence is around the FFA ranch located west of Raton High School. The commissioners approved the contract for Raton Main Street’s Master plan work. The work
on the plan will be covered by a $45,000 grant and will include an updated market analysis. The analysis will include looking at regional influences that impact the downtown, trends, competitive markets, underserved markets and identifying gaps for potential new business. They will also update the Vision and Master plan to work towards partnerships with other organizations. Funding sources were also identifiued which may be helpful with projects that may be identified in the updated plan. The contractor, Sites Southwest, in Albuquerque will present a final draft of the plan by August 10. Commissioners approved the annual Cinco de Mayo event to be held in Ripley Park on May 2nd. The approval includes closing the 100 block of Savage Avenue for pedestrian traffic. The Financial Report is seeing some positive movement despite being 3.01% under budget. Gross receipts saw a better return than expected and the property taxes improved the city’s cash flow position. City Treasurer Michael Anne Antonucci presented the commission with a timeline for important budget dates and indicated that discussion will begin next month with a preliminary budget deadline of May 26. The interim budget will go to DFA June 1st and a final budget should be approved by July 28. First National Bank of New Mexico was chosen to handle the city’s primary banking services. They received a grade of 214 versus a grade of 212 for International Bank as graded by the finance committee. The committee looked at several different criteria. In other business, the commissioners approved the Lodger’s Tax Board recommendations for $3,600 in advertising expenditures by the chamber for upcoming events. They also approved the MOU with Raton Little League once the league has the necessary insurance in place. An agreement was approved that will allow RPS to continue to negotiate with Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company to resolve a claim on the Warzilla generator. The extension will allow negotiations to go into November 2016 if necessary. City Manager Scott Berry informed the commissioners that the floor at the convention center is drying after the new polyurethane job. The deed on the Highlands building should be ready soon as negotiations on that building is almost complete. The education committee has been working on uses for that building as well. Work on the Wells Fargo Building (Art Gallery) will go to bid soon and be presented for commission approval at a later date. Berry also showed photos of work that is being done on some of the old drainage ditches in town that had been filling up with sediment and debris. Commissioners then went into executive session to discuss litigation concerning the landfill filed by Mark Van Buskirk and his wife Lori. The next Raton City Commission meeting will be April 14, at 6 pm pm. That meeting will be broadcast on KRTN Am 1490.