We hope you and your family had a wonderful Thanksgiving.
A few days ago, we mentioned an organization called Scotty’s Pantry, who received a large donation of food from Albertsons during their closure. Since then, we’ve had several people ask us for more information. Scotty’s Pantry was created in memory of Scotty Caddell, a Mosaic employee who died in 2016. His wife, Wanda, and Pastor Roosevelt Armendariz, started the program to honor Scotty for all his charitable efforts.
Scotty’s Pantry is affiliated with Cross Church International, Pastor Roosevelt and Roosevelt’s sister, Lisa. Wanda says Jennifer Dolan and Sara Wright are among the key volunteers who have helped the program grow. The United Way of Eddy County has also provided a great deal of support.
Scotty’s Pantry provided more than 100 families with turkey baskets this year. They also provide gift cards for food throughout the year. They hold an annual bike run as a fundraiser and hold smaller fundraisers throughout the year.
Scotty’s Pantry got to work after Albertsons contacted them about donating perishable food last week. The charity quickly set up a drive thru system at Cross Church International and handled the distribution. Thanks again to Wanda and everyone with Scotty’s Pantry for doing so much for Carlsbad. Another wonderful Carlsbad organization, Operation Hope, also deserves a ton of credit for helping feed families. Thank you to Terri Judah for all of her hard work.
In state news, a seven-hour special session met and concluded on Nov. 24. According to blogger Joe Monahan, during the June special session, the state originally put a large chunk of its federal COVID relief money into the general fund, but then decided to use more of that for virus relief during the November Special Session.
The bill that passed appropriated $319 million from allocation of federal CARES funds to support New Mexicans impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic and associated public health orders. The bill also appropriated $10.2 million to support the Department of Health and the Administrative Office of the Courts.
CARES Act appropriations included a one-time $1,200 benefit to New Mexicans who are currently on an unemployment benefit program, who have recently exhausted unemployment benefits, or who will enroll in a program within seven days. Money has also been set aside through the New Mexico Finance Authority to provide grants to businesses with less than 100 employees, with priority given to hospitality and leisure businesses and businesses who have experienced severe economic impact. Funds were also designated to assist low-income residents, emergency food bank services and provide homeless assistance.
Criticisms of the bill have been that there were no provisions to give aid to overworked essential workers and that all of the federal CARES appropriation should have gone back to the public.
We will provide information about accessing these CARES funds as they become available to ensure that our local residents have all of the necessary information they need.
Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway