Rice resigns as hospital district chair, remains on board

ALPINE – Robert Rice of Presidio resigned his chairmanship of the Big Bend Regional Hospital District Board last Thursday and was replaced by Esther Howard of Alpine. Rice remains as a board member.

Besides Howard, other new officers were also elected, including Buddy Cavness of Marathon as vice chair and James “Cuatro” White IV as secretary.

Newly appointed trustee Greg Henington of Terlingua was to be sworn in to replace Lisa Taylor but was not present at the meeting. He had a scheduling conflict because he also is on the water board in Terlingua, he later said.

Presidio EMS Director Malynda Richardson, who was late to the meeting, said Henington’s occupation as a paramedic makes him always subject to interruptions.

Richardson experienced the same issues. She was on her way out the door to come to Alpine for the meeting when she got a call and had to take care of that first, she said.

In other action, the board agreed to seek a $10,000 grant for training of two more paramedics for the district.

Rice explained a paramedic should be on all ambulance runs because they are trained to do everything while EMTs have more limited skills.

Sara Stropoli, of the Family Crisis Center of the Big Bend, said the center gets about $1 million in federal funding for its services to Brewster, Presidio, Jeff Davis, Pecos and Terrell Counties but that funding does not include remodeling and repair.

She asked the district to provide $9,161.02 to make repairs to what she called the “respite area” at the Alpine shelter. The board will consider her request at the next regular meeting on October 24 in Presidio.