Letters to the Editor
‘Thrifty’ celebrates 30 years in town
Tienda de Segunda “Thrifty” is celebrating over 30 years of continuous operation and the week of Dec. 7-9 has been designated as customer and donator appreciation week. Cookies and punch will be provided to those who come in to celebrate with the “Thrifty” volunteers.
Thrifty was opened originally to raise money for construction of Good Sam. Seeing the completion of Good Sam, the original volunteers decided to continue keeping Thrifty open and donate their proceeds to Senior Programs in Socorro County to help make the quality of life more enjoyable for seniors.
Of the original founders, Wanda Ramzel still remains an active member. She can be found at the store at least five days a week along with Lola McWhorter, a super volunteer. Other early founders were: Evelyn Fite, Vicky Moore, Florence Kottlowski, Betty Thompson, Frances Senn, Helen Waggoner, Hazel Martin, Ruby Huebner, Lola Salazar and Dorothy Holmes.
After rent and utilities, all money garnered goes to support seniors. In the years of operation, Thrifty has donated over $200,000. The first year of operation, $939 was donated. In 2009, $33,000 was donated. All the monies generated go to Good Sam, The Village, Vista Montano, all three senior centers in Socorro County, senior pet spaying and neutering and Foster Grandparents Senior Companions.
Julianta Romero loaned a room in her home for the first store. In 1980 it proved to be so successful more volunteers and space were needed. Consequently, Thrifty moved to California Street. It was during this time that Thrifty was incorporated and became Tienda Segunda Ciudadano Majores Socorro.
The store remained on California Street for eight years. It then moved to the Crabtree property on Fisher Avenue. It remained there until August 2009 when it moved to 913 N. California where it is still located. Each move created hours of hard labor. Thanks to the many volunteers it was all completed.
The thrift shop helps Socorro in four distinct ways: People have a venue for recycling castoffs; people have a place to shop economically; through vouchers from churches, clothing is donated to the destitute and homeless; and seniors benefit through proceeds going to help their programs. It helps to pick up the slack when federal, state and local governments are stretched too thin.
There are 24 volunteers plus many people who help just as they are needed. Senior programs are asked to fill out a request for funds when they are in need. The board then decides the merit of the request and issues the funds.
Store hours are noon to 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. The last week of the month is designated 10 cent day. Clothes, shoes, books and purses are only 10 cents.
Thrifty volunteers hope to embark on another successful 30 years with the help of donations from the community and the loyal customers who shop.
Looking back on 70 good years
I am turning 70 on Wednesday, Dec. 8, and I am a resident of Good Samaritan.
The Tripp family moved to Socorro from Ruidoso on Oct. 10, 1963, and we started Tripp Jewelers. My dad, Don Sr., did watch repair, and we had our business open for 45 years.
My brother, Don Tripp, was re-elected as the State Representative (for District 49), and he owns Tripp Inc.
We’ve enjoyed living here very much. All of our customers were so nice.
Co-op not privately owned
We’ve all heard the expression “Cash Cow” many times, but I’ve never considered how thoroughly and frequently said cow could be milked until recent revelations concerning Socorro Electric Cooperative employees.
It is my understanding that working for the SEC is one of the best jobs in town. In addition to a good salary and excellent medical coverage, the fact of simply having a job in these difficult times is a reason for gratitude.
We found out recently that each employee is given $45 credit monthly on their personal electric bill, which comes to a total of $540 per year. I believe there are approximately 36 employees, which share an annual discount of $19,440.
The most recent shocker is finding out that each of the 36 or so employees also gets a $350 Christmas bonus. There went another $12,600 of co-op money, for a grand total of just over $32,000.
Any person working for wages will gladly take any discount or bonus that is offered to them, and this letter is not intended to criticize any employee. The problem is the board.
If a privately-owned company wishes to pay each employee a $1,000 bonus for every day they show up at work, while it may be stupid on the part of the owners, there’s nothing else wrong with it.
The co-op is not privately-owned. Each of us who receive an electricity bill every month is a partial owner. The responsibility of the board is to care for our assets, hold down expenses, and create a financial surplus which can be used for emergencies or other contingencies.
Here’s a contingency: Many accounts are delinquent. Some homes have had their power cut off. Maybe if each employee was given a reasonable Christmas bonus of $100, it wouldn’t break the co-op to give deserving people who can’t pay their bills a one-time discount of $50. That sounds a lot more Christmas-y to me.