EB Council Looks At Drone Use

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Although the Elephant Butte City Council’s January 24 special meeting included several actions, the afternoon’s liveliest discussion focused on the potential introduction of regulations to control operation of drones (“small-unmanned aircraft”), within the city.
Councilors were presented with a proposed ordinance (No.171), which was forwarded from the Planning and Zoning Commission (P&Z) following an extensive review and discussion of the matter.
Board members were told a series of citizen complaints pertaining to suspicious operation of drones prompted the P&Z’s review.
Councilors acknowledged reports of drones flying at low levels around private residences and discussed how they might best address what could potentially be illegal activity.
While expressing sensitivity to privacy concerns, councilor Edna Trager shared her personal interest in drone aircraft. She noted how legal operations might be misinterpreted by individuals unfamiliar with their uses and standard operational methods. She suggested an educational effort might be necessary to clarify issues.

EB Council Approves

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After conducting a second public hearing August 1, Elephant Butte City Council members voted unanimously in support of a motion to approve a revised water and wastewater service fee increase.
With this action, fees and conditions outlined in the ordinance (No. 164) will now go into effect for the city’s utility customers on September 1 of this year. An additional $9 service fee for residential wastewater customers is included and will be implemented on July 1, 2018.
Prior to opening a public hearing on the proposed measure, mayor Eunice Kent provided those in attendance with an overview of the situation city leaders have faced, regarding the development and maintenance of municipal water and wastewater infrastructure.

EB Looks To Revise City Firearm Code

Toby-Boone

Following up on recommendations he forwarded during the Elephant Butte City Council’s June 21 regular meeting, municipal fire chief and code enforcement officer Toby Boone presented the board with three proposed ordinances July 5. The suggested code changes focused on firearm possession and use of weapons within the city, special fireworks permits and minor revisions to the Uniform Fire Code. Councilors ultimately agreed with the proposed revisions and directed staff to begin scheduling necessary public hearings for all three ordinances, which will likely come before the board for final approval in August.
Topping the list of Boone’s proposals was undoubtedly the city’s code relating to the possession of firearms. He previously noted how the city’s current codes prohibit the carrying of concealed firearms on municipal property and stressed this was in violation of federal law. Boone recommended changing regulations to allow for the possession and carrying of concealed firearms on city property and within municipal facilities.

EB Contracts With Sheriff’s Office For Law Enforcement

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Among only a few action items on the Elephant Butte City Council’s March 15 meeting agenda, was a proposed Joint Powers Agreement (JPA) with the Sierra County Sheriff ‘s Department for law enforcement services.
City manager Yovanne Lucero introduced the measure, emphasizing that Sierra County Sheriff Glenn Hamilton was personally involved in drafting the JPA and recently forwarded the document to the council for consideration.
Mayor Eunice Kent said the revised agreement included a $10,000 increase in payment, upping the city’s annual service fee to $30,000,

EB Considering Offer To Save SDR

Sierra Del Rio

Aside from a number of standard business items, the Elephant Butte City Council’s February 15 regular meeting focused on a sole agenda item; an offer to assume ownership of the Sierra del Rio (SDR) golf course and facilities. After hearing from community members and closing the public meeting for an extensive executive session discussion, councilors ultimately opted to postpone consideration of the proposal.

Elephant Butte Talks Of Firehouse Fix-Up

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Elephant Butte Fire Chief Toby Boone provided City Council members with a detailed update on the volunteer fire department’s status during the board’s September 21 regular session.
Boone, who was appointed to his post less than three months ago, outlined a number of deficiencies, but otherwise assured councilors that the department was actively moving toward improvements and full compliance with all established regulations.

E-Leash Backlash In EB

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A strong contingent of community residents turned out for the Elephant Butte City Council’s March 16 regular meeting and several utilized the board’s public comment session to share their concerns about the potential inclusion of electronic dog leashes (E-leashes) in the city’s animal control ordinance. Truth or Consequences (T-or-C) Animal Control Officer Deb Peters confirmed that electronic leashes are primarily being marketed as training tools and said many different varieties are currently available. She told the board that the performance of these devices vary greatly and indicated that effectiveness relied heavily on how the tools were employed and who was utilizing the equipment…

EB Honors LGRF Promise

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The only regular action item on the Elephant Butte City Council’s February 17 agenda was a proposed resolution (15-16-121), which sought a change in the city’s annual application for Local Government Road Fund (LGRF) revenues.
In introducing the measure, City Manager Andrew Finzen explained how the New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) annually provides LGRF funding for road improvements, and noted that the limited pool of revenue is distributed to nearly all municipalities that apply for the assistance…

EB Green Flags Golf Carts

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After conducting a formal public hearing that rendered no major objections from participating community members February 3, the Elephant Butte City Council unanimously approved an ordinance (No. 158) allowing the operation of golf carts on city streets.
The council also fully endorsed a corresponding resolution (15-16-120), which established an annual $25 permit fee for golf carts that meet established requirements and pass municipal inspection. Board members noted that permits would expire one year from the date of purchase and further set a $25 fee for renewals…