Magdalena Village Hall, 108 N Main St, Magdalena

Mayor looking for community support  

The ongoing effort to raze the dilapidated BIA dormitory complex on Kelly Road is in its third phase. That’s according to Magdalena Mayor Richard Rumpf.

The project, Rumpf said, will entail the removal of asbestos from the buildings by qualified contractors, demolition of the buildings, and then the development of modest housing on the site.

“We’re moving into the third phase of onsite visits with the New Mexico Environmental Department,” Rumpf said. “We’re looking at options and getting precise quotes.”

Rumpf said another meeting is scheduled with the Environmental Department to do another walk-through to evaluate the buildings.

“It is progressing well. We’re going to meet with them at the end of October and come up with a game plan and then publicize what we’re doing,” he said. “They’d wanted to complete it years ago and so this is the next step. However, the state has to release the funding. So we’re going to have to push on the state level.”

In the meantime, Rumpf is soliciting support and comments he feels will help push for funding on the federal level. He is asking residents to submit their comments to [email protected] or mail letters to the Village Hall, PO Box 145, Magdalena, NM 87825.

The complex has been a thorn in the side of the village government since Magdalena took possession of the sprawling property between Eighth and Tenth streets from the Bureau of Indian Affairs in the 1980s.

In other business, the senior center in Magdalena is getting a little help from the village government in the form of a memorandum of understanding with the county.

At the meeting via Zoom, Denise King of the New Mexico Aging and Long-Term Services Department gave an overview of current funding issues and presented data on the state and county programs for Title Ill Services.

She reported the Village of Magdalena’s statistics in the 2020 Census included 684 seniors and that new funding factors and pre-pandemic stats for the 2019 fiscal year showed that meals going to eligible seniors over 60 totaled 3,793 with 995 meals being delivered to 13 homes.

As part of the state funding formula, King added, the local agency, Socorro County, has a matching funds requirement of 25 percent which they cannot meet due to increased costs associated with food, fuel, and staffing.

As such, the county is asking the village for $5,000 to operate the Magdalena Senior Center through December.

Rumpf said that after December 2022, the county can re-evaluate a use agreement and it would have to be negotiated and possibly a private contractor would take over.

The Board of Trustees discussed making the payment annually before approving the MOU.