City of Carlsbad update: Supporting our local food pantry organizations, projects

Sep 30, 2020 9:53 AM

Dale Janway, Carlsbad Current Argus l September 30, 2020

The United Way of Eddy County has received a $10,000 grant from Concho Resources Inc. to assist with the Project Feeding Families monthly Roadrunner Food Distribution.

Thank you to Concho for this very generous donation, and we know that Roadrunner and other food distribution services have been providing critical assistance to many families in need throughout the year.

Additionally, the Con Alma Foundation has approved a $15,000 grant to the United Way to assist with Mental Health Support Programs in Eddy County. These programs will be facilitated in both English and Spanish and are intended to assist families in dealing with depression, anxiety, and other issues related to social isolation. This is a greatly needed service. We will provide additional information about this program as it becomes available.

On a similar note - please continue to inform us about local acts of generosity and community support. So many of our residents love hearing these stories.

COVID-update. We were saddened to hear the announcement of two additional COVID-related deaths in Eddy County on Tuesday, as well as two COVID-related deaths in Eddy County, announced on Monday. Three of these four deaths were residents of a local nursing home, according to the New Mexico Department of Health. Carlsbad is a very close community, and we offer our condolences to the friends and family members of our community members during this time of shared grief. Please continue to pray for our nursing home facilities, health care professionals, and first responders.

Additionally, Carlsbad Municipal Schools has notified us of an additional staff member who tested positive for COVID-19. This staff member is asymptomatic and has been placed under quarantine, as has another employee who was in close contact. The state is expected to release its updated “two-week count” by Oct. 1. However, numbers for Eddy County have remained high and the school district does not anticipate a status change.

We received some interesting data from the Permian Strategic Partnership this week. Despite the recent economic downturn, the Permian Basin is averaging 4.6 million barrels of oil and 16.4 million cubic feet of natural gas in 2020. The region still holds 92.3 billion barrels of recoverable oil and 299.7 trillion cubic feet of recoverable natural gas.

The PSP noted that the Permian Basin employs 22,000 oil and gas industry jobs and provided $1.52 billion in tax royalty revenues toward state education funds in 2019. These jobs are a reason why the average income for Eddy and Lea County residents is about 14% higher when compared to the rest of the state. Despite this year’s setbacks, we are still accounting for a large percentage of the New Mexico General Fund and the New Mexico GDP.

On Tuesday, we enjoyed getting to meet with Emily Wirth and Karla Niemeier from the Center of Excellence for Hazardous Materials Management (CEHMM). CEHMM is a nonprofit corporation that handles conservation and environmental services projects in our area. CEHMM has an excellent credibility and a long history of working with both environmental groups and oil and gas groups. Please give them a call at 575-885-3500.