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Meetings roundup: Aztec school board discusses graduation plans, county discusses railroad

Hannah Grover
Farmington Daily Times
Aztec High School graduates toss their caps into the air in this file photo.

AZTEC — The Aztec Municipal School District Board of Education is considering various options to celebrate the Class of 2020 graduation this year in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

These options will be discussed during a special meeting at 6 p.m. on May 4.

There are three proposals for Vista Nueva High School’s graduation and Aztec High School’s graduation.

Those proposals are:

  1. A broadcast or streamed digital service on May 22 for Aztec High School and June 19 for Vista Nueva High School. The May 22 service would allow all Aztec High School seniors to receive a cover for their diplomas. The seniors will have until June 19 to complete their graduation requirements. The diplomas will then be mailed to the seniors.
  2. Have a broadcast or streamed digital graduation ceremony for Vista Nueva High School students on May 20 and another one on May 22 for Aztec High School graduates. This ceremony would be solely for the students who have met the graduation requirements. Not all the graduates would be able to participate because some of them will not have completed requirements by those dates.
  3. Hold a larger, traditional graduation ceremony at a future date when larger crowds are permitted to gather and celebrate the Class of 2020.

According to a Facebook post, the virtual meeting can be accessed via aztecschools.com or on the Aztec Schools Facebook page.

County may apply for grant to plan, design railroad

San Juan County may apply for a grant that will help pay for designs and plans for a railroad spur connecting McKinley and San Juan counties.

A railroad would help diversify the economy in San Juan County by making it easier to ship goods out of the region. County leaders hope a petrochemical manufacturing industry could utilize the railroad and provide new jobs.

The railroad could also assist farms like Navajo Agricultural Products Industry in shipping products.

The County Commission will discuss applying for federal BUILD transportation grant. The deadline for submitting a grant application is May 18. The U.S. Department of Transportation intends to give at least 50% of the $1 billion in grant funding to projects in rural parts of the country. The maximum award a single entity can receive is $25 million and no state can receive more than $100 million.

The County Commission meets at 4 p.m. May 5. The meeting can be viewed using a link available at sjcounty.net/watch. People can also call in to the meeting by calling 1-408-418-9388, using access Code 962 502 485, or watch it on YouTube.

Other agenda topics include ratifying a grant application for an initiative aimed at helping former inmates reenter society.

The county may also approve a contract with Taos County for housing youth in the San Juan County Juvenile Detention Center.

Prior to the meeting, the County Commission will have a special work session to discuss the fiscal year 2021 budget. This work session will start at noon and can also be viewed online.

Other meetings

The New Mexico Public Regulation Commission meets at 9:30 a.m. May 6 via Zoom. Agenda topics include the impact of the coronavirus on utility finances, allowing water and electric utilities additional time to file their 2019 annual reports and the Energy Transition Act. Instructions on how to attend the Zoom meeting can be found at nmprc.state.nm.us.

Hannah Grover covers government for The Daily Times. She can be reached at 505-564-4652 or via email at hgrover@daily-times.com.

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