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JULY-AUGUST 2012 Issue 03

Jardín Vertical diseñado entre 2010 y 2011 en la Plaza del Pericón del Centro Histórico de Málaga, España.

Eco - El Paso

Construction & Beyond Magazine

CB Magazine announces

partnership with UTEP The unstoppable entrepreneur:

Oscar Venegas Se propietario

en EUA

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Eco - El Paso CB Magazine announces

partnership with


The unstoppable entrepreneur:

Oscar Venegas

07 24 28

en EUA

32 36

FASHION & construction


Los colores de México a través de: Mosaico Veneciano


Se propietario

STAFF Executive Director: Monica Saenz Production Director: Alejandro Quevedo Editorial and Commercial Design: Innova Solutions Staff Writter: Saray Argumedo Special Contributors: Angelica Zuñiga Mena Sofia Orrantia Ana Cristina Lujan Enrique Tellez-Girón Paul Meza Photography: Edward Louis Droutsas Marketing Assistant: Angelica Zuñiga Mena For advertising information please e-mail us at: or call: Office: (915) 584-5569 from 9am-1pm Monica Saenz (915) 726-7582 M. Monica Saenz (915) 726-7307 Clothing provided by: HOMMEWORK BOUTIQUE AGUA BOUTIQUE 5857 N. Mesa St. El Paso, Texas 79912

Construction and BEYOND Magazine is published every two months by Innova Solutions. It is a free publication to the general public. If you wish to subscribe to the magazine please call 915-726-7582. The design and content of Construction and BEYOND Magazine are fully protected by copyright and must not be reproduced in any manner without written permission from the editor and publisher. Construction and BEYOND Magazine is not responsible for claims made by advertisers. Query letters may be sent in care of our Executive Director at 105 Borderland Suite C. El Paso, Texas 79932 /cbelpaso

Special thanks to: Hommework 2603 N. Stanton 915-219-9041

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[ EDITORIAL ] Dear Reader,


very season there seems to be a new trend that everyone wants to be a part of. Who of us are guilty of wearing the trucker hat in the early 2000s or perhaps might have been tempted to do Planking in 2011. This issue of CB Magazine we dedicate it to a “trend� that has been going strong for 42 years. In this issue we decided to Go Green by informing our readers the different projects that are going around our city. Most people have no clue that El Paso is making an effort to provide more energy efficient schools, recycle more than cans, and that its own university is implementing energy saving methods. Going Green is a commitment to make our world better for future generations to enjoy. There are many ways to help out, you can start by recycling old bottles, not using plastic grocery bags, or carpool. If you have the time there are different organizations that help in different causes such as saving endangered species and protecting the environment. Whatever you are passionate about there is an activity for it and it can be your own way of helping out. We hope that CB Magazine will inspire you and if you are already among the ones who are doing their part we give you props for not making Going Green a trend but rather a lifestyle.

Monica Saenz


ake a second and picture your city a little greener and its residents a little healthier. Let it become a place where nobody litters, everyone recycles and educates the community on the importance of taking care of Mother Earth. Believe it or not, an environmental seed has been planted in the Sun City, and its roots have expanded throughout the region. From construction companies to academic facilities such as The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) and El Paso Community College (EPCC), have collaborated to take part of the “green movement” in El Paso. “UTEP has been involved in environmental engineering

Green buildings are made for the sole purpose of creating an environment that is energy efficient, reduces water waste, toxic chemicals, and it improves indoor air quality. Construction companies such as Winton Homes and Meda International have incorporated being a little more environmentally friendly when it comes to building new homes. “We think the green movement is a very important part when it comes to construction,” stated Monica Medina owner of Meda International. “We often provide our clients with alternatives on products that help the green movement.” The use of material to build a green home is very important, not only will it


for over 30 years with a focus on wastewater treatment and cleanup of contaminated sites and for about 10 years we have also focused on green building techniques,” stated Dr. Austin Marshall, JD, PE; Professor of Civil Engineering; Director of the Construction Management Program at UTEP.

UTEP currently has projects ranging from a desalination water project to a US Department of Energy Solar Decathlon project. They have also been working closely with EPCC where they are designing and building a home that will not require company power and will only entail the use of solar equipment. 6 l C&B

save you money but it also needs to be a healthier environment for people to live in. Reduce, reuse, and recycle is the motto and the foundation to building a green home. El Paso Construction & Demolition Recycling Plant has been recycling material in the El Paso community for five years now. “We are a full scale construction waste recycling facility and are the only full scale facility in the entire state of Texas,” shared Sean Gillespie the President of El Paso C&D Recycling. “We haul waste and recycle construction waste, we process a lot of it, bundle it, bail it and ship it for reuse.” El Paso C&D Recycling recycles anything from plastic, wood, concrete, gypsum, metal, and cardboard. Gillespie and EP C&D

Written By: Saray Argumedo

Recycling has been working closely with Fort Bliss, he stated that by 2015 Fort Bliss wants to be a zero waste community. El Paso school districts have used material from C&D Recycling for their playgrounds. They ship all over Texas including Colorado, Arizona, New Mexico, China, and India. “We create this neat paving material used all over Texas that is called ground asphalt shingles not only is it approved by Tex Dot but it replaces the use of oil,” stated Gillespie. “It is great! but unfortunately the city of El Paso doesn’t use it, we could benefit from this material because it replaces oil and it has fibers that don’t allow the road to rot when it

seems to be another half of it that hasn’t taken the movement into consideration as Gillespie said. Yet another recycling company such as EP C&D Recycling is Lopez Scrap Metal Inc. They recycle all kinds of metals, cars, and old appliances. “Recycling is slowly growing, everyone’s targeting the future, our goal as a company is to expand recycling just for the simple fact that we can minimize hazardous materials from going to land field,” stated Robert Lopez, owner of Lopez Scrap Mental Inc. Minimizing waste could benefit any city not just El Paso, it not only benefits the Earth but your pocket as well.

EL PASO gets hot, El Paso could save thousands of dollars and the beauty of it is that it is made here.” Some parts of El Paso have taken into consideration the use of recycled materials for example the county, Fort Bliss, and El Paso school districts have used EP C&D’s paving materials for their parking lots, drive ways, and playgrounds. “Unfortunately we have not seen many contractors from El Paso using the material we recycle, the city should be using our recycled playground mulch which is convenient because it is made right here instead they have it shipped from Colorado,” expressed Gillespie. El Paso has slowly seen an increase in companies that are becoming more environmentally friendly but there

Here are a few facts that were given by the interviewees in this article, top 5 reasons why recycling is important: Recycling saves energy The manufacturer doesn’t have to produce something new from raw natural resources. Recycling reduces landfills As Lopez stated, recycling reduces the need for more landfills, nobody wants to live near a dump.

Recycling preserves our resources and protects wildlife Even if we live in a desert we need to be aware that by recycling, we reduce 7 l C&B

the need to destroy habitats for animals around the world. Paper recycling alone saves millions of trees. Recycling is good for the economy As stated before by Gillespie, recycling and purchasing recycled products create a greater demand for more recycled goods. This can also benefit local companies such as EP C&D Recycling and Lopez Scrap Metal Inc. Goods made from recycled materials use less water, less pollution, and uses less energy. Recycling helps our climate Recycling produces considerably less carbon, which reduces the amount of unhealthy greenhouse gas emissions. An environmentally friendly city would be useless if it wasn’t healthier. El Paso has also seen an increase in advertise-

ment to live a healthier life, from using Sun Metro’s public transportation to planting your own vegetables. The Permaculture Group of El Paso has been working on educating the community on the importance of sustainability. One of their ongoing projects is the creation of a community garden. “The city of El Paso least out a ten-thousand feet acre of land to the Houchen Community Center in Segundo Barrio and we were given the opportunity to use the space to create the community garden,” stated Carlos Mendoza, one of the co-founders of El Paso’s Permaculture Group. Mendoza along with Diana Diaz and Roberto Leal have been focusing on involving the community to help El Paso become a healthier city. El Centro De Trabajadores Agrícolas Fronterizos also known as El Paso’s Farmworkers Center, has also taken the initiative to create

a garden in their facility, where they have had the guidance of the farmworkers to help them create a beautiful vegetable garden to share with the community. “The technology is still evolving and needs to become more economical before a large effort will be made towards being completely green in El Paso,” stated Dr. Austin Marshall, “There are a lot of builders and developers who talk green and do some green things but are a long way from net zero energy designs, the customers also need to become more educated on the difference between ‘green’ and net zero construction.” Regardless of how long it has taken us to become a little more environmentally friendly, 2012 seems to be a year of progress in the Sun City. Most importantly there is a drive to unite the community and make El Paso a greener city to live in.

Installation by Border Solar

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GENERAL CONTRACTORS Office • Warehouse • Retail • Medical • Tenant Improvement General Construction • Design/Build • Construction Management

#105 Borderland, Suite C El Paso, Texas. 79932 p. 915-256-4890 - 915 780 8099 f. 915-877-3589 •

Setcon, LLC is a construction company that provides concrete, metal (carports, canopies, and structural steel), and pavement work; as well as general contracting services. Setcon maintains a highly dedicated group of engineers with great skill in construction management that take pride on their quality and profesional work. Setcon achieves this by always keeping its customer’s best interest as its top priority. 16 l C&B

Texas Contractor’s Sales & Use

Tax 101

Determining whether certain services and activities are considered taxable for sales and use tax purposes can be a daunting task. Let us first start out by defining a few concepts. A homebuilder’s sales and use tax obligation depends on the type of contract used.



Real Property Services

are those contracts for which the price is billed as one lump-sum payment. The contract does not specify or separate charges for labor or for materials used. The homebuilder is considered the ultimate consumer and the charge to the customer (homebuyer) is not taxed. The homebuilder does however owe the tax on equipment purchased, job materials, and consumable materials.

are those in which the price is divided into at least two categories. One category for labor and one category for materials used. Under this type of contract a homebuilder is considered a retailer of the materials and must collect the corresponding sales tax from the customer. The homebuilder may provide a resale certificate when purchasing the materials.

are taxable services but not when they are purchased by a homebuilder. Examples of real property services include: • Landscaping • Removal or collection of garbage • Janitorial or ground cleaning • Structural pest control services • Surveying of real property

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Real Property Repair and Remodeling Labor to repair, remodel, or restore residential real property is not taxable. Residential real property includes: • Family dwellings • Apartment complexes • Nursing homes • Condominiums • Retirement Homes The amount charged to remodel, repair, or restore nonresidential real property is taxable. Nonresidential real property includes:

• Hospitals • Office buildings • Refineries • Warehouses • Parking garages • Retail shops • Restaurants • Manufacturing facilities Real Property Repair and Remodeling Contracts with Exempt Organizations Tax is not collected from government agencies at federal state or local government level. Certain nonprofit organizations are also exempt from the tax but must provide an exemption letter.

Maintenance of Real Property The scheduled periodic maintenance of real property is not taxable. However sales tax is paid on all items used to provide the maintenance service. If you have contract for new construction and real property repair on one single charge, and the portion related to remodeling is more than five percent of the total charge, the total charge is deemed taxable. This can be overcome by separately stating the taxable services. To simplify things a bit I use the easy follow chart below.

Texas Sales Tax for Contractors Lump - Sum Contracts



New Construction Do not collect Pay sales tax to supplier Total Invoice   sales tax from customer  •Non - Residential Collect Sales tax Issue resale certificate to Repair & Remodeling from customer supplier  Total Invoice   •Residential Do not collect Pay sales tax to supplier Repair & Remodeling sales tax from customer   Total Invoice   *Your charge for materials must be at least as much as you paid for them. SeparatedContracts* New Construction  Labor

Do not collect sales tax from customer

Materials Collect Sales tax from customer Non - Residential Repair & Remodeling  Labor Collect Sales tax from customer Collect Sales tax from customer  Materials Residential Repair & Remodeling Do not collect sales tax from customer   Labor  Materials

Issue resale certificate to supplier Issue resale certificate to supplier

Issue resale certificate to supplier

Written By:

Paul Meza CPA + 1325 Montana 2nd Floor El Paso, Texas 79902 + Office (915) 544-1040 + Fax (915) 544-1044 + Cel (915) 276-2949 +

Collect Sales tax from customer 13 l C&B

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Written By: Saray Argumedo 16 l C&B

“Therefore, in the Congress, and we hope in the executive branch of the Government, we can speak for all the people, and I think it is most appropriate that we begin this very significant part of our campaign in the State of Texas, and that we come into Texas through El Paso, the pass of the North. This city is also the pass to the South. This happy combination of geography and experience make El Paso an admirable link not only with the western United States but also with the countries to the south of us.” – This speech was given on September 12, 1960 by President John F. Kennedy, after having breakfast at the Hotel Cortez before stepping into office. There are various reasons why downtown El Paso is so beautiful. One of these reasons is the very fact that it

shares the history of two countries. For example; on one side, our buildings have witnessed the Mexican Revolution, on the other hand they have sheltered inspirational and historical figures such as President John F. Kennedy. Hotel Cortez is one of these buildings, its creation can be traced back as early as 1899. In 1899 a pioneer hotel operator and businesswoman by the name of Alzina DeGroff designed and built the original building called, “The Orndorff Hotel.” DeGroff managed the building for about twenty-five years until she decided she wanted to design a new hotel. She hired the renowned Henry C. Trost and his architectural firm Trost & Trost to design a new hotel in 1924. The Hotel Orndorff was demolished and a new Orndorff Hotel was constructed at the same site at a cost of more than 1.4 million dollars. The present building was opened to the public in 1928 and was once again named “The Orndorff Hotel.” A little after its opening the Orndorff Hotel was purchased by Harry L. Hussmann and the Hussmann Hotel Company and was renamed, “The Hussmann Hotel.” According to historical sources the building was operated by Hussmann

until 1936 when it was taken over by the National Hotel Co. A contest was held to select a new name for the hotel and an El Paso lawyer by the name of Thornton Hardie, was named the winner giving it the name of “Hotel Cortez.” The eleven-story building has twelve bays facing Mesa Street and ten facing Mills Avenue. The entrance on Mesa Street has a five-story cast relief portal and ornamented windows on the sixth and seventh levels. The building was known to be one of the biggest hotels between Dallas, Texas and Los Angeles, California. Today, Hotel Cortez is used for local business owners such as the Central Business Association of El Paso. We have seen more and more entrepreneurs moving their businesses downtown. Downtown El Paso, for it is a beautiful tour to the past and a scenery that could never be forgotten.

The building was known to be one of the biggest hotels between Dallas, Texas and Los Angeles, California.


ll buildings have a story to tell, but only a few can be traced back to its creation. As time has gone by many of these historical buildings have either been demolished or departed of its originality. Construction and BEYOND Magazine brings to you our region’s most momentous buildings that still enlighten us today.

John F. Kennedy: “Remarks of Senator John F. Kennedy, Breakfast, Cortez Hotel, El Paso, TX,” September 12, 1960. Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project. http://elpasotimes. Engelbrecht, Lloyd C. and June-Marie F. Henry C. Trost: Architect of the Southwest. El Paso, TX. El Paso Public Library Association: 1981. El Paso Community Foundation. “Downtown Historic Walking Tour: El Paso.” El Paso, TX. El Paso Community Foundation: 2000. Walker, Norman. A Castle of Old Spain on the Plaza of El Paso. El Paso, TX. Hussman Hotel Company: 1926.

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ndiscutiblemente el color de los paisajes Mexicanos es rico en tonalidades y variedad. Kolorines® recoge estas tonalidades tan ricas de los paisajes mexicanos para producir una amplia selección de mosaicos que van desde veteado, iridiscente, esmaltado, traslúcido, opaco, con gránulos de arena suspendidos. Para lograr esto la fábrica combina las fórmulas ancestrales de la elaboración de vidrio colorado con lo último en tecnología para la producción de mosaicos.

Kolorines® se ha convertido en una referencia indiscutible en el ámbito de la decoración en Piscinas y Spa reconocidos por expertos paisajistas alrededor del mundo. Es el producto ideal para recubrir las albercas o para decoración de paredes interiores o exteriores ya que por sus materiales que lo conforman así como su cuerpo a todo color es un producto muy resistente a los rayos del sol producto y a los cambios de temperatura.

El ideal para recubrir las albercas.

Además de su calidad y belleza es un producto que esta comprometido con el desarrollo sustentable utilizando un sistema de mejora LEED avalado por Green Building Council donde se reutiliza el vidrio utilizado en envases, botellas, frascos como ingrediente de fabricación del mosaico y el producto que no pasa los estándares de calidad se vuelve a fundir, adicionalmente, el producto en lugar de venir en malla viene adherido a un papel kraft reciclado.

Kolorines® es la fusión de dos culturas que dan vida al arte de hacer mosaico con una nueva identidad. Una visión de negocio que integra tradición e innovación. El arte del mosaico y la tecnología del vidrio, orientados a interpretar con sensibilidad y riqueza de color. Este producto esta de venta exclusiva y con entrega inmediata en Decasa sucursal El Paso, Texas, ubicada en Lomaland e I-10. 18 l C&B

• Las Cruces, NM

• Lubbock, TX


Homeowners can purchase

synthetic stucco


hile our economy is still healing moving stone from natural rock quarries. The from the wounds of this recession, look and feel is the same without the quilt of we see more and more home-own- pulling from our natural rock quarries.Also, ers taking this time to make improvements labor costs associated with applying cultured to their personal properties and investment stone is less expensive than actual rock. properties to update the look of their properties. One of those upgrades has been resur- Stucco and Stone make a great pair and give facing their old brick or stucco walls with the any building a fresh new look. DWS is one newer synthetic stuccos and cultured stone. of the largest distributors of Stucco FinishIn the past, adding stone to accent your es and Stone Products in West Texas, Pan home or applying synthetic Handle and Southern New stucco instead of convenMexico. Although a large tional cement stucco were percentage of our sales are Stucco and Stone make so expensive it was mainly to the Home Builders and a great pair and give used on extravagant homes Contractors, we encourage or commercial buildings. the home owners to come any building a fresh new and purchase from our selook. DWS is one of the Today, homeowners can lection as well at contraclargest distributors of purchase synthetic stucco tor pricing. Having been a Stucco Finishes and Stone homegrown company, we or hire someone to apply it Products in West Texas, at a much more reasonable understand the effects of price than before. Today’s in- Pan Handle and Southern our harsh desert weather formed consumers and buildon stucco, stone and other New Mexico. ers are more aware of the materials. We pride ouradvantages of the synthetic selves in specializing in the stucco’s of today. They last stucco industry for over 35 longer, they are more water years. resistant and the color stays beautiful for a much longer period of time as oppose to the We also like to support the end-user in anold conventional stucco that was once used swering any questions they might have reby many home builders. The acrylic based garding their stucco. Just as much as we polymer synthetic stucco is now sold more take pride in the care of our biggest assets, in the building industry than the conventional our customers are not different in that restucco or elastomeric. spect. Special care must be provided in seeking the right contractors for the job or Cultured Stone has also become popular the best products for your budget and what with home owners to accentuate their homes you want to achieve in the updates of your with a variety of choices in veneer stone. home. Our representatives are glad to proCultured stone is 75% lighter than actual vide help in finding the right solutions for stone and the cost is significantly less than your next stucco and stone project. 21 l C&B


here are many remodeling stores in El Paso to choose from but there is only one you should choose. Parah Home Renovation Store is the only in El Paso that can renovate your kitchen and bathroom with green products such as concrete and recycled glass countertops.

Come enhance

the beauty of your Home

Now a days is important to be more eco-friendly and we can offer different ways for you to help the environment. Parah Home Renovation Store also offers water saving dual flush toilets, energy efficient windows, tile, faucets, pergolas, patio furniture and much more selection.

Renovate your kitchen and bathroom with green products such as concrete and recycled glass countertops.

We are a locally owned family business who thrives to have the best personal service to give you exactly what your home needs. Come and see we are not your average money sucking giant company.

Parah Home Renovation Store guarantees you will love our products as much as the savings. We wish for your home renovation to be a true work of art!


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“Visit us at 7410 Remcon El Paso, Texas 79912”



he University of Texas at El Paso is pleased to partner with Construction & BEYOND Magazine to share the excitement of all things construction at the University.

UTEP by the Numbers ECONOMIC IMPACT • Operating budget: $404.6 million (FY 11-12) • Contribution to personal income of local individuals: $423 million • University-related local business: $438 million • Number of local jobs attributed to UTEP’s presence: 6,905 • Construction impact: Current building surge will increase business volume in El Paso by $139 million form 2010-13 UTEP’s construction will continue to the Centennial in 2014. 24 l C&B

UTEP is a national model for transformation. Over the last three decades UTEP has made great strides toward becoming the first national research University with a 21st century demographic. Located in one of the largest bi-national communities in the world UTEP is unique among research institutions. A majority of the 22,640 students enrolled are Hispanic. In fact, the University reflects the demographic diversity of its service area in all ethnic groups. What began as a small mining school in 1914 is now a comprehensive institution of higher education offering 75 bachelor’s, 78 master’s and 19 doctoral degrees. UTEP research expenditures nearly exceed $70 million annually. As a result of the quality of research and programs, UTEP is recognized as one of seven emerging research institutions in the state of Texas.

UTEP realizes achieving the goal of becoming the first national research University with a 21st century demographic requires more than a growing enrollment, world-class faculty and rapidly expanding research. Campus facilities must keep pace and anticipate UTEP’s rapid growth. A four-year, $300 million construction program has altered the campus skyline and provides needed capacity for enrollment growth and expansion of academic and research programs. Any visitor to campus will recognize a quality of architecture and construction that reflects a University with great aspirations. In coming issues, magazine readers will learn about the continuing campus transformation, a new master’s degree program in Construction Management and the Solar Decathlon design competition. Articles of research and programs of special interest to the construction community are also planned. Readers will enjoy behind the scenes interviews, invitations to special event and more as UTEP prepare for the Centennial celebration in 2014.

Building Sustainability into New Construction at The University of Texas at El Paso


ew construction on campus is just one dimension of UTEP’s commitment to sustainability. Other facets include energy-saving efforts using alternative energy sources like photovoltaic panels; water conservation through the use of native plants in landscaping and other xeriscape measures; and transportation alternatives including car pooling, collaboration with the City of El Paso on public transportation and biodiesel shuttle operations to name just a few. UTEP actively incorporates sustainability guidelines in new construction and capital improvement projects. As a member of the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), UTEP uses green building standards as established in the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Program for New Construction as part of everyday Planning and Construction procedures. These standards promote a whole-building approach to sustainability by maximizing

operation efficiency and minimizing the environmental impacts. The LEED® for existing buildings program incorporates the LEED® principles for building maintenance. These standards will allow UTEP to ensure all buildings are energy efficient and healthier for faculty, students, and staff.

UTEP currently implements the following practices into the design of new construction projects and renovations: • System-level met ering for all utilities to provide accurate energy use information to support energy management and identify opportunities for additional energy-saving improvements. • Building Automation Systems to support optimization of building energy performance and identify opportunities for additional energy-saving investments. • Ultra-high efficiency/low consumption plumbing fixtures to minimize potable water use Recycled grey water systems for flushing of plumbing fixtures to minimize potable water use. • Roofing materials with a solar reflec-

tance index (SRI) of 78 or greater to reduce heat loads at interior of buildings and reduce energy consumption from HVAC systems. • CO² monitors in all densely occupied spaces to ensure outdoor air ventilation rates per are ASHRAE 62.1-2007 met and support indoor environmental air quality. • Building flush-outs prior to occupancy to reduce/eliminate occupant exposure to volatile organic compounds released from new building materials. • Occupant-controlled lighting systems for at least 50% of individual workstations. • Permanent entryway systems (grate systems) to reduce amount of dirt, dust, pollen, chemical pollutants and other particles entering all public entryways. • Bicycle changing rooms/showers and locker rooms in new facilities to encourage faculty, staff, and students to utilize eco-friendly alternate transportation systems when visiting the campus. Future articles will look at how UTEP has incorporated these and other sustainability features into buildings that have been part of the more than $300 million campus construction boom.

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* ECO-FRIENDLY SOLUTIONS for decorating our homes


here is a greater awareness of our negative impact on the earth. It has become more mainstream to recycle, buy fuel efficient cars, energy saving light bulbs, and purchase organic foods. Few are more fun than building and decorating our homes with methods that show greater responsibility for our earth and less disregard to our health.


co-friendly solutions for decorating our homes are available to us. The eco-friendly paint market has changed and grown considerably, offering high quality products that are budget friendly. Paint is a low cost high impact change to any décor. Inside or outside your home it is the perfect way to show your personality. Perfect colors can blend a room magnificently making the atmosphere warn and inviting or cool and chic. Whether you are a do it yourself-er or hire someone to do it, taking a risk when painting

is fun with no long term commitment or a high price tag. If you are like most people you are likely scared of color, especially dark or very bright ones. Follow your heart! If you love a color, do not be afraid to test it out, if you like it, paint away! I recommend choosing 1 or 2 colors as a base throughout your home; add different accent colors to change the look and feel of each room, keeping the flow and continuity.


etting down to the nitty gritty on “Green Paints,” we should really start with VOC’s. When referring to paint, VOC means Volatile Organic Compounds. It is a class of carbon compounds that evaporate at room temperature, these are known to be hazardous to human health and the environment. VOC’s are responsible for the ozone in the lower layers of the earth’s atmosphere, it is a major concern as it affects the normal

lung function in humans. Paint contains VOC in their odor, chemical, and solvents. Our children and elderly relatives are more sensitive to these compounds and sometimes the quality of air in our homes is pretty polluted.


ince the eco-friendly paint market has grown considerably green paints are now on par or better than regular paint in quality and cost. Eco-friendly paint offers the benefit of not having to air out a room. They can be easily disposed of because they are not considered a hazardous waste. Read the product labels before buying or choosing a brand. These small steps can have a huge impact on the environment, they are made more eco-responsible, offer healthier benefits, and create non-toxic waste. You will be worry free to just paint, decorate, and live it!

6551 Westside Dr. El Paso, TX. 79932 cell. 915.346.4747 fax. 915.585.9034 26 l C&B

Article written by: Sofia Orrantia of Smart Spaces



ore often than not, we are gazed with the story of successful businessmen who from an early age either learn the ropes of their profession, get a lucky break working in the company of their dreams, or simply were born into the family business. Mr. Oscar Venegas is the co-founder of Venegas Engineering Management & Construction Company Inc. (VEMAC) a road he paved thru hard work, failures, dedication, and fear, all these components mixing well to build his success. Venegas is the oldest son to a family of four boys. His mother was from El Paso, Texas and his father from Meoqui, Chihuahua. He grew up as an altar boy in St. Pious Catholic Church where he attended school before becoming a mustang at Burges High School and finishing his academic career with a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering from The University of Texas at El Paso.

Written By: Angelica Zuñiga Mena

The Unstoppable Entrepreneur:

Oscar Venegas Venegas is a P.E., professional engineer, it is the highest title to be held in the industry of engineering.

His first interest was electrical engineering until a friend took him to a civil engineering lab where he found his calling. “Civil engineering is very visual, I remember seeing a piece of steel being stretched back and forth until it failed and made a noise,” said Venegas. “Electrical engineering is for the most part just staring at a computer, it has to do more with theory.” After graduating from UTEP, Venegas first job was with the International Boundary and Water Commission, then he went to work for R.E. McKee Construction Co., and after a few years he decided to venture with his own company. When his solo business venture didn’t work out the way he thought it would, he left to San Antonio where he became the co-owner of Urban General Contractors.


nfortunately, this second business venture did not work out and Venegas returned to his home town of El Paso. In 2003 him and his son David, co-founded VEMAC. “Third time is the charm,” said Mr. Venegas in regards to the success that VEMAC proved to achieve. It was more than just charm that made VEMAC be one of the top best construction companies known both locally and at the national level.

By 2003 Venegas had 30 years of experience in the construction industry, by trial and error he had absorb what it takes to make it in the industry and what kind of tools are necessary to be taken as a serious contractor. “Companies look at what kind of work you have done in the past, if you have built something similar to what they are asking, and most importantly a general contractor must have a surety bond. The key is to have surety bound,” said Venegas. The first step after having a surety bond was to bid as a sub-contractor. This helped him build his company’s resume, get name recognition, and “get a piece of the pie,” as Venegas puts it. After bidding for a while as a sub-contractor VEMAC was ready to take the next leap and start bidding as a general contractor. Through attention to detail, immaculate work, and hiring the best team, VEMAC has won several awards throughout the years. They won the Zero Lost Time Achievement Award seven times; this means that VEMAC has over 487,000 man hours without an accident and they also won the Operation Reward Safety. VEMAC employs the only woman in Texas to hold a certification from the American Concrete Institute as a transportation inspector. VEMAC was the first company

to construct its building out of thin wall, 2 inches of concrete exterior. Another great achievement under their belt is to be part El Paso’s first Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) a construction project for the Socorro Independent School District: Chester E. Jordan Elementary. The school will be a 77,168 square foot facility, built on a 24acre site. It will be considered a “Green School,” which will be the first of its kind in the El Paso area. One of the many features the school will have is a cistern, where it will collect rain and later use it for irrigation. “El Paso would benefit from being a little greener in certain projects such as energy efficient homes,” stated Venegas.

Venegas also serves as advisory director for BBVA Bank and as a board of directors in UTEP’s Department of Engineering. Venegas would like for younger generations to realize that the future holds a tough road but if they are willing to stick with it they will have a good future. The hardship of the road was eased by the love and support of his wife of 37 years, Martha Venegas. “I give a lot of credit to my wife,” expressed Venegas. Starting new businesses was scary; Oscar Venegas always knew he could go back and get a job with a secure income but he wasn’t about to give up on his dream. “Just cut the bridge behind you

Venegas is a P.E., professional engineer, it is the highest title to be held in the industry of engineering. It gives him the authority to put his stamp on a project to be built, with this, company’s see that VEMAC is backed up in any project they bid on and that it meets all the requirements for the project.

In 2012 Mr. Venegas was nominated by the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and won Small Businessman of the Year. In 2008 VEMAC was named one of the top 100 fastest growing companies by Hispanic Business Magazine. “I was surprise when I heard I was nominated.” “I have been blessed and I like to give back to the community whenever I can,” said Venegas. He has supported United Blood Services, YWCA, and of course his alma mater UTEP. VEMAC remodeled the Sun Bowl football locker room at no cost to the school.

and look ahead to the future.” Venegas and his wife have two children Mary, who is in charge of VEMAC PR and David cofounder VEMAC. It is truly an inspirational story of the old cliché, “If at first you don’t succeed try again.” 29 l C&B


With a heritage dating back to 1851, Samuel Northrup Castle and Amos Starr Cooke, began their business partnership operating a general store. Since that time, Castle & Cooke, Inc. has grown to become a worldwide leader in the food, transportation and real estate industries. Presently held by David H. Murdock, the group of private and publicly traded companies ranges from aviation, hotels and resorts , mining, logistics, and real estate development. In 2005, founded on a commitment to service and a dedication to delivering a better mortgage experience, Castle & Cooke Mortgage was conceived. At a time when many organizations in the residential mortgage industry are closing, Castle & Cooke Mortgage has not only survived, but thrived. The result of their commitment was more than 16,000 percent growth in revenue in the first four years of operation. To be precise, “16,133 percent,” says Matthew Pineda, President of Castle & Cooke Mortgage. Pineda goes on to explain “Castle & Cooke Mortgage was created based on a concern for the future of the mortgage market. I have to credit a lot of the companies success to the platform we built it on.” That platform? A 100 percent paperless, technology based infrastructure. The investment in technology has maximized efficiency, and allowed Castle & Cooke Mortgage to do away with the traditional pitfalls in the mortgage process. Documents are no longer stuck in limbo between departments. In fact, they can electronically produce a set of precisely accurate loan documents in less than 30 minutes. Most importantly, the platform allows staff to focus on the philosophy the company was founded on: providing excellent service with a promise to continually go above and beyond.

El Paso Branch Manager Stephen Sepulveda with wife Jackie, David H. Murdock (CEO, Castle & Cooke Inc) and Matthew Pineda (President, Castle & Cooke Mortgage)

Over the past seven years, Castle & Cooke Mortgage has grown from seven offices to over 35 nationwide, with over 300 employees, and not a single lay off since opening their doors in 2005. In 2011, Castle & Cooke Mortgage opened their third Texas branch in El Paso. Managed by Stephen Sepulveda, his humble command ignited a fuse. In a little over a year, Sepulveda and his team have quickly grown into one of Castle & Cooke Mortgage’s top producing branches, all while upholding Castle & Cooke Mortgage’s founding commitment to service. “The most important thing to me is delivering a better mortgage experience,” says Sepulveda. “The feeling people experience when coming to Castle & Cooke Mortgage is one of coming to a friend’s house rather than an experience only about the numbers,” Sepulveda continues. “That is exactly what I strive for and I’m lucky Matthew (Pineda) likes that, because the spirit of camaraderie is in El Paso.”

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• Ready Mix Concrete • Asphalt • Sand • Landscape Stone • Gravel • Boulders • Bagged Cement


• CEMEX Vinton 8611 North Desert Blvd • CEMEX Toro (Westside) 3125 W. Paisano • CEMEX McKelligon Canyon . (Central) 4701 Alabama • CEMEX McCombs (Northeast) 6101 Stan Roberts • CEMEX Section 10 (Eastside) 2050 Cherrington


EMEX is a global building materials company that provides high quality products and reliable service to customers and communities throughout El Paso and the Southern New Mexico region. We produce, distribute, and sell cement, ready-mix concrete, aggregates, and related building materials in more than 50 countries, and we maintain trade relationships in approximately 102 nations.

Our concrete and aggregate products are used in the construction of local roads and bridges, hospitals, schools, hotels and other commercial/retail projects. CEMEX provides the same materials to the local “do it your self” homeowner along with decorative rock for their landscaping projects. CEMEX has several locations throughout the El Paso area as well as Las Cruces, La Luz, and Ruidoso, New Mexico.

Visit a location near you to purchase materials for your next landscaping or remodeling project. • Concrete Orders and Information is at 915 564-1600 • Asphalt, Aggregate and Decorative Stone orders and information is at 915 564-8400 • Business and Main Office is at 915 565-4681 35 l C&B

Escrito por: Angelica Zuñiga Mena

¿Sabia usted que un ciudadano Mexicano puede comprar propiedad en Estados Unidos? Hay varios procesos para comprar una propiedad y cada uno es diferente. Dependiendo de sus circunstancias, presupuestos y gustos, el proceso para comprar propiedad puede tardar aproximadamente seis meses a un año. A continuación le presentamos el procedimiento más básico que se lleve a cabo cuando se desea comprar una propiedad: 36 l C&B

1er paso

Lo primero que tiene que hacer es consultar con una hipotecaria para determinar si califica para comprar una casa. La hipotecaria trabaja con varios bancos y ellos lo pueden asesorar en cuestión de que tipo de prestamos hace cada banco y para cual puede calificar. La hipotecaria hace una corrida, si fue aprobado le informan cuanto es el predial, cuanto pagaría al mes y lo mas importante por cuanto dinero califican. Ya con esto usted tiene una idea de que tipo de casa puede comprar.

2do paso

Ya una vez establecido el monto de dinero a su disposición se le recomienda que vaya con un corredor para que le ayude a conseguir la casa de su gusto al igual, poder encontrar una casa que este dentro de su presupuesto. El corredor hace un análisis, le muestra varias opciones y le explica el por que del precio, ya una vez que usted se decida por una casa, el corredor empieza la negociación con el corredor que esta vendiendo la casa.

3er paso

Cuando los dos corredores se pongan de acuerdo con el precio, se hace un contrato donde se establece la fecha de compra y el monto del enganche entre otros importantes datos. Una vez que se allá redactado el contrato, es firmado por el comprador y el vendedor.

4to paso

reportada a la Hacienda Pública conocida como IRS. +• El comprador NO tiene que pagar honorarios al corredor. +• En Estados Unidos SI hay comunicación entre todos los corredores, todos tiene acceso a la misma información y le puede enseñar cualquier propiedad.

Después de que el contrato este firmado se va a una compañía de títulos. Una compañía de títulos es una parte parcial en este proceso. Ellos investigan que todos los documentos estén en orden, que las escrituras de la casa estén limpias y hacen el registro en el condado. Una compañía de títulos le da seguridad al comprador de que ellos se encargan de cualquier problema que pueda surgir después de la compra. Cuando esta finalizada la investigación, al igual que encuentren que todo esté en orden y la compañía de títulos recibe un giro por medio de la hipotecaria, el comprador y vendedor van en tiempos diferentes a firmar los últimos documentos. Es aquí cuando el corredor entrega las llaves de la nueva casa.

+• Alguna gente piensa que es “más barato” si trata con el dueño de la propiedad directamente, este es un error, si no está bien informado ni conoce el procedimiento, usted puede terminar pagando más por la propiedad, los documentos se pueden llenar mal, el proceso se puede tardar más y le puede ocasionar problemas legales.

Algunos datos que considerar:

Factores importantes que pueda considerar antes de comenzar cualquier trámite:

+ • El predial se paga cada 1ero de enero, el monto depende de la zona en donde este ubicada la casa y existen algunas excepciones especiales para reducir el monto total.

•+ NO se puede comprar una casa en efectivo, esto es debido a la Ley Patriota también conocida como “Patriot Act” que fue establecido octubre 26 del 2001. Cualquier cantidad en efectivo arriba de 100,000 dólares tiene que ser 38 l C&B

+ • Cuando consiga a su corredor pregunte sobre todos los documentos que necesita para que los tenga listos y al corriente. + • Es bueno planear un fin de semana para viajar a la ciudad donde va a comprar la casa para que pueda ver las casas que ya selecciono.

Le recordamos que cada proceso es diferente. Le recomendamos que hable con un corredor para que le explique exactamente los requisitos necesarios que tenga que tomar. Cada persona es diferente.

+• Pregunte a su corredor de gastos adi ciones como gastos de cierre.

Recuerde que un corredor siempre va a tener el mejor interés para su cliente. Por eso se le recomienda que trabaje con uno para que le asesore correctamente y que el proceso sea rápido y sin problemas.

+• Es bueno tener alguna idea en que área de la ciudad desea vivir. +• El área debe ser una en la cual se sienta cómodo y seguro. +• Considere el tiempo que desea vivir en esta casa.

Información provenida por: • Robert Field, Sierra Title Company (915) 584-9451 • Marco A. Sapien, M.A. Sapien Insurance, Financial Services & Real Estate (915)-760-8970 • Gabriela Sapien, Mortgage Professionals a Tri-State Mortgage Company (915)-581-3333


Written By: Angelica Zu単iga Mena

It is common knowledge that math has been one of the most despised subjects in school, so what motivates a person to pursue a career that revolves around numbers? Paul Meza is a Certified Public Accountant, CPA, serving the El Paso community, his experience and most importantly his dedication to his profession intrigued CB Magazine to learn more about the man behind the numbers.

Paul Meza HOMMEWORK Diesel Jeans Paul Black Shirt GStar Belt

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Written By: Angelica Zu単iga Mena

C&B: Can you tell the readers a little bit about yourself? P.M.: I was born and raised in El Paso, Texas my parents are from Cd. Juarez and Chihuahua. I attended Hanks High School then went to UTEP where I received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance in 2001, in 2004 I got my MBA, Master of Business Administration, with a concentration in Finance and finally in 2008 I got my license as a CPA. C&B: Numbers give most people headaches, what made you become an accountant? P.M.: I always had a knack with numbers! I could do calculations in my head, in high school I was placed in the advance courses for math and science. Around my fourth semester at UTEP I was awarded a scholarship for my academic achievements in finance, I was also a member of the National Honor Society. C&B: It is tough getting a business started, did you struggle? P.M.: At first it was just knocking at doors, at a lot of doors, but after a while my own clients were referring me to other businesses so that was real helpful. C&B: Well that certainly paid off you are successful and your day is full of client meetings, what is one way that you give back to the community? P.M.: Well one way I guess I would say is that I like to host free seminars and just talk about different subjects like income taxes, I do this in El Paso, Juarez, and Chihuahua. C&B: That is very nice of you, what do you like most about your job?

P.M.: In my profession the job can be boring or it can be interesting, it depends how you do your job, I am very energetic my profession allows me to meet with different clients; I get a chance to learn about other industries. This allows me to adapt my services to their business needs, be part of their team, and go above and beyond what it is require. C&B: What do you enjoy doing in your free time? P.M.: I like to spend time with my family; my daughter and son are actively involved in sports. My wife is a pretty good cook and now she is studying to be a chef. C&B: So you eat more delicious now? P.M.: Yes! (expressed with a big smile) My wife has always been a great cook but now her food is even better. C&B: Can you tell me about a recent trip where you just relaxed and had fun? P.A.: In early June I went to Dallas to see the soccer game between Mexico and Brazil. It was great! The energy in the stadium was at an all-time high and it was just exiting seeing everyone root for their nation. C&B: Oh wow, I take it you are a big soccer fan? P.M.: Definitely! (said expressing excitement), I enjoy soccer very much I would go to Juarez to see the soccer games. I think that it is a great sport that brings people together. Even when the violence started in Juarez, people will still go to the soccer games, just to relax and have something positive to look forward to. Hopefully in the near future El Paso can have its own professional soccer team.

C&B: Finally, I would like to get your stand on going green since it is what CB Magazine is focusing on for this issue. P.M.: I am all for it, I support the businesses that are making the effort to help out the environment. I believe we all should do our part, from making both our homes and businesses a place that is a little more energy efficient to contributing to the recycling facilities by taking our scrap metals. C&B: Thank you so much for your time. There you have it! The man who is not going to be in negative numbers anytime soon, with his positive attitude and full energy, I am sure in a short time we will see Paul Meza to the 10th power.


ess than 100 years ago women were given the right to vote in the United States. It has been a long struggle for women, especially women of color to be given at least a minimum amount of equality throughout the world. Unfortunately, till this day women still get paid less than a man but that has not stopped them from reaching their goals nor has it burned out that passion to strive for more. Construction and Beyond Magazine had the privilege to interview one of these women, a woman that has fought for a title she never believed obtaining. She truly is a light of hope to our future generations of young women living in the border. Let us introduce you to the owner and general manager of El Paso’s Meda International Llc’s, Monica Medina. C&B: Hello Monica thank you so much for taking the time to sit with us and allow us to interview such an important woman in the construction industry. May I just say, you were quite difficult to find! Monica Medina: (Laughter) No, no, Saray thank you and Construction & Beyond Magazine for this amazing experience and opportunity. There are a couple of women in the industry and I am very thankful you all chose me. C&B: We had to! You are the owner and general manager of a well-known construction company in both El Paso and Ciudad Juarez! How does that feel?

Monica Medina Agua Ali Ro

Written By: Saray Argumedo 40 l C&B

M.M: It feels great! I sometimes have to pause and ask myself, “Is this real?” It’s been challenging but in the end it was all worth it. C&B: I could imagine! Tell us a little about how you tumbled upon the world of construction? Who was Monica Medina before Meda International?

M.M: Well, I am very proud to say I am a graduate from Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Educationthat is based in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico. I received my degree in Accounting and Financing but since I was a little girl I was exposed to construction because of my dad. He owned a construction company and I remember he would always take me to the construction sites. In June 1978, Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education was the first educational institution in Mexico to grant professional diplomasusing the feminine nouns “doctora, maestra,” to female graduates, when before the diplomas would be written with the masculine noun “doctor, maestro,” regardless of their gender. In 2006, the Wall Street Journal ranked The Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education at #7 as one of the best business schools in the world. C&B: That’s amazing! I mean, usually it’s the son who follows dad everywhere and wants to be just like him. Was it weird for your dad to actually see you enjoy going with him to work? M.M: (Laughter) Not at all! I can honestly say those are the best father and daughter memories I have of us, we had so much fun! This man was the one that taught me everything I know about construction, he is a great dad and role model. I look up to him. C&B: He must be so proud of you! Before we start weeping (Laughter) tell us who is and what makes Meda International? M.M: Okay, Meda International happened because our clients in Juarez started to open businesses in El Paso and we were often asked to build them

something here, so I told my dad that we should open a construction company in El Paso, and we did! That’s the story behind our company, and now I’m the one that owns and manages the company. According to a study conducted in 2008 by the Institute for the Study of Labor 5.1% of Mexican American men own businesses and only 2.6% of Mexican American women are business ownersin the United States. C&B: Monica, how has it been to work in an environment that is known to be dominated by males but most importantly has it been difficult to gain respect especially being a woman of Mexican descent? M.M: Good question. Well at first it was hard because of the simple fact that I am a woman and usually the men in this industry don’t take you seriously. Luckily as time went by I gained respect and I even made very good friends. I think that I have tried to maintain a very professional and healthy work relationship, and most of the men that I work with are very respectful and professional as well. Owning a business in El Paso is a PLUS because of the large Mexican American population. It helps a lot to know the culture, the way my clients think and feel also being fortunate enough to communicate with them in their own language. C&B: Would you say this journey has been challenging? M.M: Yes! I think the most challenging obstacle was to earn respect from the workers, but once I started working with them and they got to know me the awkwardness went away. Trust could also be a challenging factor, in this business you never know what might happen.

C&B: So you manage and own Meda International and you are always up and down with clients, do you even have time for yourself? (Laughter) I mean it must be very difficult to be a professional woman, have you missed out on love or even motherhood? M.M: (Laughter) I haven’t missed out on love that’s for sure! I’ve been happily married for two years and I couldn’t have done it without my husband. He is very supportive, always cheering me up and helps me with whatever I need. The fact is that he lets me “be myself” and that’s what I love about him. As for motherhood, I think that will come when God wants it to come, in the meantime I’ll keep working and doing my best. C&B: Congratulations on the two years of marriage! To close this interview I would just like to ask, what advice would you give young women that are afraid of pursuing a career they love because of the male domination? M.M: Thank you Saray! and I would say go for it! It might seem challenging but once you start working you are going to notice that we are not so different after all, I actually think women are better at some things than men, and sometimes combining forces is the best thing you can do. Do not let anything or anyone get in the way of your dreams.

Ă­ndices accionarios de Estados Unidos

Escrito Por: Enrique Tellez-Giron 45 l C&B


ERCADOS: los principales índices accionarios de Estados Unidos cayeron luego de un retroceso en las ventas minoristas por segundo mes consecutivo y un aumento de los rendimientos de la deuda soberana de algunos países de Europa. El S&P 500 bajó 0,70% hasta los 1.315 puntos, el Nasdaq 0,86% hasta los 2.819 puntos, mientras que el Dow Jones 0,62% hasta los 12.496 puntos.

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GOBIERNO: de acuerdo al Bundesbank, en una subasta llevada a cabo durante la jornada, el gobierno alemán logró colocar 4,04 billones de euros en deuda a 10 años de plazo. El costo promedio que deberá pagar se situó ligeramente por encima de la última subasta del 16 de mayo, 1,52% y 1,47% respectivamente. En Italia también se elevó el costo promedio. En una subasta del Tesoro de deuda a 1 año de plazo, el rendimiento a pagar subió de 2,34% a 3,972% con respecto a la subasta anterior del 11 de mayo. Según información de Bloomberg, el líder del partido griego de izquierda Syriza, Alexis Tsipras, dijo que espera que las autoridades de la Unión Europea van a hacer todo lo posible por mantener a su país en la eurozona, incluso si logra ganar las elecciones del próximo domingo y cumple con la promesa de derogar las medidas de austeridad impuestas para poder recibir la ayuda externa.

ECONOMÍA: en Estados Unidos el Departamento de Comercio publicó un informe que señala que las ventas minoristas descendieron 0,2% en mayo, al tiempo que fueron revisadas a la baja las del mes de abril a una caída de igual magnitud, siendo previamente estimado un alza de 0,1%. Como consecuencia, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. y Morgan Stanley recortaron sus proyecciones de crecimiento del PBI del segundo trimestre, de 1,8% a 1,6% y de 2,0% a 1,8% respectivamente. Los analistas especulan que la desaceleración en la creación de empleo y del aumento de los ingresos de las familias han sido unas de las principales causas del retroceso en las ventas al por menor, lo que aumenta la probabilidad de que en la próxima reunión de política monetaria de la Reserva Federal del 19 de junio se anuncien nuevas medidas para estimular la economía. En Europa se publicó un reporte que muestra que la producción industrial de los 17 países que componen la zona del euro bajó 0,8% en abril. A pesar de que la caída fue menor a lo que proyectaban los analistas (1,2%), este ha retrocedido por segundo mes consecutivo.

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Issue 03 July-August 2012  

Magazine theme: Construction going green Interview with Oscar Venegas of VEMAC C&B Magazine announces partnership with The University of Tex...

Issue 03 July-August 2012  

Magazine theme: Construction going green Interview with Oscar Venegas of VEMAC C&B Magazine announces partnership with The University of Tex...