EPCOG still without director

By Kevin Wilson: CNJ staff writer

Six months after the dismissal of its director, there doesn’t seem to be much of a hurry to find a new executive director for the Eastern Plains Council of Governments.

“As of this point, we haven’t even advertised,” said Richard Arguello of Clayton, EPCOG chairman and acting executive director.

EPCOG is a consortium of seven counties in eastern New Mexico and helps local governments with infrastructure planning and economic development.

Funding is drawn from a combination of membership dues paid by local governments and state and federal appropriations, officials have said.

Counties included in EPCOG are Union, Harding, Quay, Guadalupe, De Baca, Curry, and Roosevelt.

Nick Brady was dismissed from the executive director position a year after he took over for the retired Lee Tillman.

Former Clovis City Commissioner Isidro Garcia, who was on EPCOG’s executive board as part of his commission duties, said as long as Arguello could handle the duties, it was in the entities’ financial interest to keep the status quo.

“The director’s position was around $75,000,” Garcia said. “We’re paying our chairman about half of that just to manage things. Everything’s working pretty smooth.”

Arguello hasn’t, however, decided if he wants to apply for the position and remove the interim label.

“That,” Arguello said, “isn’t something I have even considered.”