Board to support local boxing events

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The Socorro County Commission heard from a man who wants to bring boxing back to Socorro during its regular meeting Tuesday night.

Russell Moses, owner of Boot Camp Boxing Gym, began by thanking the county for helping him with the building. He announced the boxing club has its first event at 3 p.m. this Saturday at the middle school, and the club is looking for donations. Moses said the event will cost the boxing club over $2,000. He said the club will give out belts to the young boxers and T-shirts to boxers and coaches, and sell some shirts to the public for $5. He said the club has at least 20 fights lined up with boxers from Arizona, Texas and New Mexico.

Moses introduced some youth from the boxing club, ages 8 to 13, who came along with him to the commission meeting and will compete at Saturday’s event. He added more boxing students who were not at the meeting will compete as well.

Moses asked the county to donate some funds to help the boxing club.

Adren Nance, legal counsel for the county, said state statute precludes the county from making donations to a private entity.

“I hate to be the bad guy in something like this,” Nance said.

Chairman and District 4 Commissioner Daniel Monette asked if the county could mark it down as advertising. Nance said it could count as advertising if the money came from certain funds, like the lodger’s tax fund.

County manager Delilah Walsh said for lodger’s tax funds, the county has to go through the lodger’s tax committee so it’s not something the commission can direct.

“I think if it’s advertising, isn’t that a different story?” Walsh asked.

Nance said if the county can articulate the benefit it is receiving, then they can do it.

“Well, it’s going to help our lodger’s tax,” Monette said.

“That’s a benefit,” Walsh said. “You could do it as advertising if you’re trying to invite people into the community.”

Walsh said the county doesn’t budget for advertising very much, but she could easily find $500 in the county’s budget for it. However, she said $1,000 or more would be difficult to come up with.

Moses said anything would help the boxing club.

The commission unanimously passed a motion to spend $500 on advertising.

District 2 Commissioner Rumaldo Griego indicated a specific audience member at the meeting and said she would donate to the club. He added he would also make a personal donation in honor of his parents.

Moses thanked Griego and the County Commission, and invited everyone to come to the event.

“Socorro used to be in boxing pretty big, from what I understand,” Moses said, “and I’m bringing it back, and I’m bringing it back in a positive way.”