Page 1

WEEK OF SEPTEMBER 4, 2013 THROUGH SEPTEMBER 10, 2013

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Your Community Newspaper, Serving the Heart of the Rio Grande Valley VOLUME 90 NUMBER 36

Residents Voice Concerns Over Annexation South of the Border Corn Pudding

Residents from the areas being considered for annexation attended this weeks city meeting in record numbers. Photo: Cayetano Garza Jr.

page 2

The City of La Feria City Commission held its regular meeting Tuesday, August 27th at 6:30 pm   to an even larger contingency of residents in attendance. Like the City Commission meeting held on August 13th, the specific agenda items of interest for this particular meeting included public hearings for areas designated for

possible annexation to the city of La Feria. The four areas identified for possible annexation are:

Rabb Road Annexation Approximately 272 acres of land with its north, east and south boundary on the current city limit lines. The west boundary is the drainage ditch west of Rabb Road (AN49), south of Business

La Feria Board to Seek Taxpayers Lions Approval for TRE Election Beat Vela 21-10

page 4

FEATURE

Valley Symphony Announces 61st Concert Season

Same Tax Rate will Generate Additional $2 Million The La Feria Independent School District is proposing a tax rate of $1.299 per $100 valuation, minutely under last year’s rate. However, the School Board is required to call a Tax Ratification Election for November 5 because they are asking to change how the taxes can be spent by moving the percentages held in the Maintenance and Operations Fund M&O (monies used for salaries and day-to-day operations) and in the Debt Service Fund I&S (monies used to finance construction, equipment or both approved by voters as part of a bond package). The district will recognize an additional $2 million to spend in the operating fund if the action is approved by taxpayers. After a public hearing, the board approved a 13 cent increase to the M&O rate from $1.04 to $1.17 and on the ballot the I&S rate will state $0.26 which the board assured would be dropped to $.013 if the TRE is approved by the taxpayers. This would result in basically the same tax rate as last year. The board took this action at a special called meeting held Monday, August 26. “I am proposing a three-tiered plan that will make use of the extra funds if this measure is approved. Number one is we need to give the staff raises for better teacher retention and improvement. This is the number one issue I have identified. Secondly, there are some major repairs needed including some roofs. I would like to also see added safety with cameras on buses and improved security at campus entrances. Another issue we need to address is shoring up technology in the classroom,� commented LFISD Superintendent Rey Villarreal. A 2011 TRE Election failed in La Feria by two votes after some felt like the board at the time was split on the issue and some actually worked against the passage of the TRE. The board unanimously approved the tax rate adjustment last Monday night giving the indication they would all work to encourage residents to approve the election. Below are 2012 rates for local districts: M&O I&S TOTAL HARLINGEN C.I.S.D LA FERIA I.S.D LOS FRESNOS C.I.S.D LYFORD C.I.S.D. POINT ISABEL I.S.D RIO HONDO I.S.D SAN BENITO I.S.D SANTA MARIA I.S.D SANTA ROSA I.S.D

page 8

Classified................ pg. 6 Cricket’s Corner...... pg. 6 Feature Story.......... pg. 8

1.040000 1.040000 1.170000 1.170000 0.981190 1.170000 1.170000 1.040000 1.170000

0.178000 0.260000 0.020000 0.160000 0.100450 0.139100 0.134900 0.240000 0.202200

value of the same residence is $48,768 with taxes around $633 per year at the $1.30 rate. The district will conduct several workshops to explain the TRE election before the November 5 election.

Board Approves $35.9 Million Budget, Health Insurance & Fuel Costs Up

It will cost the school district an additional $549,000 to provide health insurance through the South Texas Health Co-op for district employees for this coming budget year. The coverage will remain about the same, but will add prescription drug coverage. This is an increase from $265 to $346 per month for each of the district’s 565 staff members. The cost will also increase for the employees’ portion when they add their spouse and children to the plan. The board approved the $35.9 million total budget with the insurance cost adjustments, additional bus ($90,000) order and a $500 one-time stipend for employees. “There was a increase in revenues to cover additional increase in expenditures in our health insurance plans for the coming year. We are proposing a budget that is very slim and there is no room for additional expenditures,� added Finance Director Ramon Mendoza at a special meeting of the board Monday, August 26. He added that they are not building any student population growth into the budget since no growth has been seen in a few years. In the past, LFISD always added 20-100 students per year to the rolls. Out of the $27.5 million General Fund, the district receives 85 percent of funding from the State of Texas, 14 percent from local taxes and fees and one percent from the federal government. Eighty-one percent of that funding is spent on payroll. Eighty-one percent of the expenses are spent on payroll. The district currently has an enrollment of 3484 students at seven campuses.

Highway 83, ad the west boundary of Citrus Grove Subdivision, north of Business Highway 83. Kelly Drive Annexation The general boundaries of which are between the south right-of-way line of US Business Highway 83 and the south boundary of Block 6, Beakley Subdivision, from existing city limits on the west (curve in Kelly Drive), to the west ROW line of White Ranch Road. FM 506 Annexation The northern boundary of this area is the south boundary of Citrus Village Subdivision. The eastern boundary is east of FM 506 right-of-way line (current city limits). The west boundary is the west boundary of FM 506 and the south boundary is the line between Blocks 23 and 25 of the Minnesota Texas Land and Irrigation Co. Subdivision. West Business 83 Annexation The northern boundary of this area is the current city limit line. North of Business 83, the west boundary is the eastern right-of-way line of Mile 3 East and Kubiski road. The east boundary is the eastern ROW of FM 2556. South of Business â–ş CONTINUED ON PAGE 7

Betty’s Health Club Opens in La Feria

1.2180 1.3000 1.1900 1.3300 1.0816 1.3091 1.3049 1.2800 1.3722

If voters approve the election and the school board reduces the I&S tax rate by 13 cents the new chart would look like this: Betty’s Health Club held a grand opening and ribbon-cutting on Monday, August 26 at 10:30 a.m. The new fitness club is located at 121 West Commercial Ave in La Feria and Offers Zumba classes on Monday and M&O I&S TOTAL Wednesday, Aerobics on Tuesdays and Thursday and Weight Training on Fridays. Give them a call at 956La Feria ISD 1.17 0.1291 1.2991 975-5450. Shown in the photo are (standing l-r) Olga Oberwetter, Tabitha Outlaw, George Dale, Angelica The Cameron County Appraisal District only noted a Baldivia, John Ftacek, Mayor Pro-Tem Lori Weaver, owner Elisabeth Quiroga and Oscar Quiroga, John two percent increase in taxable property values which Hernandez, Victor Gonzalez, Jr., Paula Rodriguez and Florence Reichle and (kneeling) Lynda Olivarez, will amount to about $50,000 in increased revenues. Nora Reyes, Maribel DeLaCruz, Martha Torres, Marcela, Beba, Esmeraldo Garza and Imelda DeLaCruz. The average market value of a La Feria residence is Photo: MB Wright/LFN Visit our website laferianews.net for more photos $62,836, up $738 from last year. The average taxable

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2 • SEPTEMBER 4, 2013 • LA FERIA NEWS

by Anjali Bhatla

Dear Ms. Etiquette, Now that summer is just about over and the holidays will be here before you know it, I am looking at changes I plan to make. I know most people make resolutions after the New Year to lose weight, quit smoking or quit spending excessively, but why wait, I want to begin now. I think I have pretty good will power to do what I set my mind to, no problem. My question, however is for a friend of mine that is joining me on this quest. She is always fussing about her weight problem. Honestly, I don’t see a problem. Do you think it’s just jealously on my part? I mean she looks really great already. How can I tell if she is overly obsessed with her weight? Is it her or me? – Friend’s Friend Dear Friend, Now don’t go off and get paranoid on me or I will be tempted to say that it is your problem. But here are a few clues on how you can tell if someone has a problem with weight related issues. The constantly dieting friend--better known as your “on-the-side� friend. You know, dressing on the side,

sauce on the side. She never orders anything straight off the menu. Now, not that you’re against diets or anything; you know those weeks when you want to fit into that killer dress and you go on a diet. Well, that’s not what I’m talking about. Her only conversation is about diets, calories, what she will or will not eat today, and on and on and on. She feels like you have an obligation to count calories before ordering or eating and makes a big deal of it in front of her girlfriends. Well boring! Tell her she needs to stop that and no one is obligated to counting calories when socializing with females. Tease her if you have to, or eventually, tell her more firmly to knock it off. If her eating habits are really strange, you may want to talk to her about it more gently. The difference between someone who is merely diet obsessed and someone with an eating disorder is fear. A person with an anorexic spectrum will have very real anxiety about food and it’s usually palpable. The way she looks at food, the way she puts it on her fork in tiny amounts, the way she chews will all tell you that you’re not just dining with a dieter. You must tread very carefully here; eating disorders are complicated and serious. Ask your friend, in private, if everything is okay. Let her know that you’ve noticed she seems uncomfortable around food. If she seems open to the conversation you might offer her your help in the way of research. Maybe she hasn’t known where to get help and you could go online and look for a doctor in your area who deals with adults with eating disorders. You may also discover that she is well aware of her situation and all you’ll be able to do is offer your support. So you are not really off base here. It’s nice she has you as a friend and are so concerned about her. Well done, fabulous friend. Some of the informational content was taken from “The Fabulous Girl’s Guide to Grace under Pressure� by Kim Izzo and Ceri Marsh

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Hey Seniors! Apply for the

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Hey seniors! I know you all must be very excited about senior year. It will definitely be a very exciting and interesting year. While you all are thinking about what colleges you will be applying to and how you will be funding your college education, I wanted to take an opportunity to encourage all of you to apply for the Coca-Cola Scholarship. Every year, the Coca-Cola scholars foundation awards 250 high school seniors with a 10,000 or 20,000 dollar scholarship. It is entirely merit based, and the application asks questions about leadership, community involvement, and academic achievement. However, besides the monetary award that this scholarship offers, it also offers you access to an invaluable community of scholars. Every scholar is flown up to Atlanta for a weekend, where you are given the chance to meet and hear from people who have accomplished amazing things in their life. Not only was it one of the best weekends of my life, but I also left with amazing friends who I still talk to today. The reason I wanted to inform you about this scholarship is because the preliminary application is due October 1st. I cannot stress how easy this application is and how worthwhile it is to fill it out. After the preliminary application they choose approximately 2000 semifinalists who are then given a more detailed application to fill out. I had never even dreamed that I would be one of the people chosen, but I am so glad that I was pushed to apply. Applying can never hurt, and good luck to all of you!

Come see us for your back to school dental checkups and cleanings Dr. Juan D. Villarreal & Associates

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Serving All of Western Cameron County A Community Newspaper Since 1923

mondays

How to reach us: 9 AM - 4 PM â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Monday-Friday

102 S. Main St., La Feria, TX. P. O. Box 999 â&#x20AC;˘ La Feria, Texas 78559 Tel.: (956) 797-9920 Fax: (956) 797-9921 email: laferianews@aol.com For advertising call William R. Keltner, Advertising Consultant

797-9920

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â&#x20AC;&#x153;DetrĂĄs de un gran hombre, siempre hay una gran mujer.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Behind a great man, there is always a great woman.â&#x20AC;?

tuesdays

HOW TO SUBSCRIBE: 1 year subscription delivered by U.S. Postal Serviceâ&#x20AC;Ś$27.95 or can be purchased at several convenient locations throughout the cities of La Feria, Santa Rosa, Santa Maria & Blue Town for 50¢. The La Feria Newsis mailed and delivered Monday, September 2, 2013 and published weekly by Wright Ventures, Inc., President Donald R. Wright, Secretary Mary Elizabeth Wright. Periodical Postage Ratespaid at La Feria, TX., Post Office. Advertising deadline is noon Thursday at the office at 102 S. Main St., La Feria, TX 78559. (POSTMASTER send address changes to La Feria, P.O. Box 999, La Feria, TX 78559.)

Contribuido por: JosĂŠ Castillo de Santa Rosa

If you have a Mexican saying, please send it to: Bill Keltner at 797-9920

thursdays Mon. - Thurs. 8am - 6pm Fri. 8am - 5pm Sat 8am - 12pm

SATURdays

2013

Night Clinic hours will resume in August

September 2, 2013 Labor Day - City Hall Closed all day

September 5, 2013

Provider of Major Medical Insurance Plans

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106 N. Main St La Feria â&#x20AC;˘ 797-2002

LFIDC Meeting

September 10, 2013 Utilities Board Meeting City Commission Meeting


SEPTEMBER 4, 2013 • LA FERIA NEWS • 3

Valley baptist welcomes new orthopedic surgeon Dr. Robert A. Peinert, Jr.

By Pastor Samuel Thomas First Baptist Church, La Feria

Encouragement for the Week Think about this: “The art of being a good guest is knowing when to leave.” “Left your foot rarely be in your neighbor’s house, lest he become weary of you and hate you.”

Dr. Peinert joins Dr. Robert Crous and Dr. Savvas Poulos at Orthopedic Specialty Associates

Proverbs 25:17

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Hours: M-F 8:00 am - 5:30 pm Sat. 8:00 am - 2:30 pm Closed Sundays 501 S. Expressway 83 • Harlingen, Texas (956) 428-8000

Robert A. Peinert, Jr. M.D., Orthopedic Surgeon, has joined the Medical Staff of Valley Baptist Medical Center-Harlingen. In practice for Orthopedic Surgery since 1978, Dr. Peinert is board certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery. He completed residencies at NRMC Philadelphia and the Alfred I. duPont Institute for Crippled Children in Wilmington, Delaware, as well as a Fellowship at Louisiana State University in New Orleans. Dr. Peinert attended medical school at New York Medical College. Dr. Peinert’s office is located in the Valley Baptist Medical Arts Pavilion at 2121 Pease Street, Suite 404. For an appointment, call Orthopedic Specialty Associates at (956) 3894710.

1st United Church of Christ Methodist Church Minister gene head Pastor harold dailey, 797-9890 797-1393 912 n. Parker rd., la feria, 331 s. Main st., la feria, wednesday 6pm Bible study, sunday school 10am, sunday 9:30am Bible study, traditional worship service 9am, 10:30am service, 6pm evening Contemporary service 11am, service los domingos: 12:00 uM youth 5pm Medio dia y 7:00pm los Jueves: 7:00 pm estudio de Biblia International Worship Center Faith Church of Bishop ronaldo ortiz Christian & Mission956-797-1204 ary Alliance Church 116 w. seventh st., la feria Pastor oscar loredo services sunday (english) 9:30am 797-1739 domingo (espanol) 11am, 125 w. first st., la feria,tx Miercoles 7pm Bilingual Ministry sunday 10am interdenominational worship sunday school, 11am worship, extreme youth sat. 6 pm wednesday 7 pm Bible study, friday 7 pm Prayer. First Baptist Church of Santa Rosa Santa Rosa United Pastor harold Parker Methodist Church 956-636-1603 408 Main street (hwy. 107/506) 118 Jesus r. Cruz, santa rosa santa rosa, across from high sunday services 9:30am school sunday Coffee and Bible study, 10:30am Morning fellowship 9:30 aM worship10 worship, aM 7pm wednesday evening (Communion first Sunday) worship. wednesday Prayer service 9:00 aM Apostolic Faith Pastor: Carole lahti Tabernacle (956) 279-3407 Pastor ramon Zarate 357-6384 Casa de 621 south Main, la feria Esperanza Apossunday school 10am tolic Church sunday worship 4pm, wed. 416 w. spruce la feria evening 7:30pm. 965-639-4301 Bilingual services all services are bilingual. sunday at 1:00pm daniel Martinez - Pastor Iglesia Oracion en Su Presencia St. Mary’s Catholic Missionary Church Church,Inc. fr. edouard atangana, Pastors frank & Janie gonzalez 956-636-1211 797-0044 4th street, la feria,tX 101 san antonio ave., santa rosa sunday 10am & 6pm, saturday Mass 5pm Bilingual, Monday 7 pm Prayer service, sunday Mass 8am spanish, wednesday 7 pm, friday 7 pm. 10am english.

September means pencils, books and teacher’s dirty looks for the youngsters, but it also means state fair season. That’s when the world’s largest zucchini squash is at its prime, of course. The farm animals are all shed off and shiny and cute, their horns polished to diamond-like perfection by hard-working and hopeful kids. The state fair is an annual pilgrimage of sorts, the fairgrounds another temporary home. We need to touch base with turkey legs, corn dogs and deep fried everything. We who sport gray in our hair, or no hair at all, can look with relief at that giant slingshot that shoots high school kids into a state fair orbit. It’s a relief because no one expects us to do that. And when we were young enough to actually do that,

First Baptist Church of La Feria Pastor: samuel w. thomas 797-1214 Magnolia & Main st., la feria wednesday 7pm evening Bible study & Prayer service, sunday 9:45am sunday school, 11am Morning worship service, 6 pm evening worship service. St. Albans Episcopal Church reverend scott Brown 956-428-2305, 1417 e. austin, harlingen,tX holy Communion 8am, sunday school 9:15, holy eucharist 10:30am.

thankfully, the diabolical state fair scientists hadn’t invented the darn thing yet. Cruising around, you get to see everyone at their best. Best fair-type clothing. Best behavior. Best smiles. If you scowl at any point during a visit to the state fair, you either aren’t trying very hard or someone ran off with your date. And we make those little secret promises to ourselves, too. You see, we’d love to win a ribbon for making a quilt, or raising an animal, or taking a fabulous photograph or coming up with the best painting in the whole state. But not all of us can do those things. Maybe there should be some other categories for

the rest of us, such as finding a parking spot close to the fairgrounds that doesn’t cost $5. Practical things. Or how about a ribbon for not missing a day’s work all year? Or for being a nice guy and always letting other drivers change lanes in front of you. Somehow, though, we have to be content with just knowing we did those things, so we can feel like a state fair blue-ribbon winner inside. Join the conversation wherever you go. Good hearing keeps you connected with friends and loved ones. Call BELTONE at 1-866-867-8700 to schedule your FREE hearing screening.

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feria, saturday Mass 5:30pm, sunday Mass 8am spanish, 10am english, 11:30pm english. Christ In Our Midst Missionary Church Pastor: rev. daniel Carrizalez 956-200-4504 1 mile n. of fM 506, la feria sunday school - 9:45 a.m., sunday worship - 11:00 a.m., wednesday service - 7:00 p.m., Monday Prayer - 7:00 p.m. 1st Presbyterian Church loris-elaine lindberg Ctl Minister 208 west Central ave, la feria,tX, 797-2280 sunday services 10 am Communion 1st sunday

Hope in the Word Church Pastors Jose & Bertha Belmares Cowboy Church 797-3621, 11235 swift ln. santa rosa, tex. 28354 s. Bixby rd., la feria service at 11:00am sunday services friday 6pm, sunday 6:30pm pm Monday 10am. all services are Bilingual, 956-975-6144 english & spanish. www.westernoutreach.org Primera Iglesia St. Paul Lutheran Bautista Church 956-797-1740 Pastor nathan wendorf 519 n. Main, la feria sundays 8:00aM (traditional) Bilingual services: sunday HC first, third & fi fth 9:45am sunday school, 10:45am 10:30aM (Contemporary) worship service, 5:00pm wMu, HC second, fourth & fi fth 6:00 pm evening worship (956) 423-3924 service, 602 Morgan Blvd. harlingen, tX 78550 Iglesia Generacion church@saintpaulharlingen. En Conquista com Pastor samuel y Magda Cervantes, Phone (956) 536-2215 Templo Getsemani 2803 w. exp. 83 suite a. la feria sunday service 10am Bible Pastor Julio y Claudia Mendoza Phone (956) 589-5016 study, 11am worship service, 11418 fifth st. la feria 7pm wednesday family service. servicios: tuesday & thursday 7pm St. Francis Xavier friday Pray at 7pm Catholic Church sunday Bible study at 10am fr. gabriel i. ezeh & 6pm 797-2666, office: 502 S. Canal church: 500 south Canal st., la

Robert Trent Jones, Sr. Design *Selected Best Course in the Valley* Rolling Fairways and Lakes Terrific Greens and Great Course Condition

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4 • SEPTEMBER 4, 2013 • LA FERIA NEWS

Varsity Lions defeat Edinburg Vela 21-10

meet the

LIONETTES

The La Feria Varsity Lions defeated 30-5A rivals Edinburg Vela Sabercats 21-10 in their second scrimmage game of the season.

3-0 21-10

Visit our website

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PIGLETT is an unusually shaped little man in search of a family of his own. But for now, he is content to curl up with his kennel mate and make friends with as many visitors as possible. Little Piglett has been at HSH for over a month. It’s hard for us to believe no one has fallen in love with this charming baby boy. We were told by the person who left Piglett, that he is a mixed breed that includes some pitbull terrier. Piglett’s personality is gentle, silly, loving and curious. He would be a great pet for any responsible person or family. He currently weighs about twenty pounds and will remain a mid-sized dog. His adoption includes vaccinations, neuter and microchip ID. We know once you meet him, you will love him.

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laferianews.net Employment

City of La Feria Patrolman The City of La Feria is currently accepting applications for the position of Patrolman. Applicant must be U.S. citizen, at least 21 years old or older, have a valid Class “C” driver’s license, high school diploma or GED, Commissioned Peace Officer with the State of Texas, and TCLEOSE certified. Benefits include: retirement program; vacation pay; sick leave pay; health insurance (100% City paid premium); life insurance (100% City paid premium); uniforms provided; bulletproof vest provided; and training provided.

La Feria Independent School District

Back-to-School

Applications can be picked up at La Feria City Hall or Police Department or can be downloaded from the City of La Feria Web Site at: www.cityoflaferia.com For additional information, call (956) 797-3121. The position is open until filled. The City of La Feria has an adopted Section 3 Policy which seeks to ensure that to the greatest extent feasible, training, employment and contracting opportunities created by the City’s receipt of federal housing and community development funds are made available to “Section 3 Residents” and “Section 3 Businesses”. A copy of this policy is available at City Hall during normal business hours. The City of La Feria is an Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer and does not discriminate based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disabilities.

5:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Noemi Dominguez Elementary 600 W. Pancho Maples Dr.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

C.E. Vail Elementary 209 W. Jessamine

Tuesday, September 10, 2013 La Feria High School 901 N. Canal Thursday, September 12, 2013 David G. Sanchez Elementary 1601 S. Main Street Monday, September 16, 2013 La Feria Academy 614 Main Street Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Sam Houston Elementary 500 North Beddoes Street

City of La Feria Shop Mechanic The City of La Feria is currently accepting applications for the position of Shop Mechanic. Applicant must be a U.S. citizen, have a valid Class “C” driver’s license, be bilingual in English and Spanish and have a high school diploma or GED. Experience is required. Benefits include: retirement program; vacation pay; sick leave pay; health insurance (100% City paid premium); life insurance (100% City paid premium); uniforms provided Applications can be picked up at La Feria City Hall or can be downloaded from the City of La Feria Web Site at: www.cityoflaferia.com For additional information, call (956) 797-3121. The position is open until filled. The City of La Feria has an adopted Section 3 Policy which seeks to ensure that to the greatest extent feasible, training, employment and contracting opportunities created by the City’s receipt of federal housing and community development funds are made available to “Section 3 Residents” and “Section 3 Businesses”. A copy of this policy is available at City Hall during normal business hours. The City of La Feria is an Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer and does not discriminate based on race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age or disabilities.


6 • SEPTEMBER 4, 2013 • LA FERIA NEWS

COMBINED NOTICE OF FINDING OF NO SIGNIFICANT IMPACT AND INTENT TO REQUEST RELEASE OF FUNDS - AND FINAL NOTICE AND PUBLIC EXPLANATION OF A PROPOSED ACTIVITY IN A WETLAND September 4, 2013 La Feria, Texas 115 E. Commercial Avenue La Feria, Texas 78559-5002 (956) 797-2261 This Notice shall satisfy the above-cited three separate but related procedural notification requirements. To: All interested Agencies, Groups and Individuals REQUEST FOR RELEASE OF FUNDS On or about September 23, 2013 La Feria will submit a request to the General Land Office for the release of Community Development Block Grant Program for 2008 Supplemental Disaster Recovery Funds under Section 104(f) of Title I of the Housing and Community Development Act of 1974, as amended, to undertake a project known the City of La Feria Flood and Drainage Improvement Projects 1a, Contract No. DRS210089 Work Order No. 21050.1-3; GLO No. 12-211-000-5511funded under the 2008 Texas CDBG Disaster Recovery Program to be paid with a portion of the total grant amount of $18,474,242. The City of La Feria shall construct a new channel (shaping and grading) and perform site work associated with the construction. Work includes the following: a) Excavate a new channel; b) Grade ditches; c) Install storm sewer culverts and casings ranging in size from eighteen-inches to sixty-inches (18” – 60”); d) Install new culverts at roadway crossings (round, box, or arch profiles) with headwalls, wingwalls, concrete canastas, riprap, energy dissipaters, control wier and control gates; e) Remove and replace pavement; f) Install new guard rails, make utility adjustments as needed, perform materials testing, and provide associated appurtenances. Construction shall take place at the following locations: LOCATION:

FROM:

TO:

New Channel Environmental Buffer 2

The proposed outfall approximately 200 ft. south of Arroyo Drive and 1/2 mi. east of White Ranch Road

1/8 mi. north of Trimpe Lane

New Channel Environmental Buffer 2 New Channel Environmental Buffer 2

1/8 mi. north of Trimpe Lane proceeding west parallel to the Wilson Canal 1/3 mi. west of White Ranch Road (Wilson Canal and the Evans Canal crossing) proceeding north between White Ranch Road and Beddoes Road with an alignment approximately 1/8 mi. east of Beddoes Road. crossing Business 83, to Callaway

1/3 mi. west of White Ranch Road (Wilson Canal and the Evans Canal crossing)

New Channel Environmental Buffer 2

Crossing at Callaway Drive heading North

A location approximately 1/8 mi. north of the intersection of Pomelo Rd and County Rd 622

New Channel and Control Structure (gated weir) Environmental Buffer 2

A location approximately 1/8 mi. north of the intersection of Pomelo Rd. and County Rd. 622

Heading North East for approximately 3/8 of a Mile to a location to be specified by US Fish and Wild Life

Crossing at Callaway Drive

A portion of the project is located within approximately 2 acres of designated wetland area PEM1Cd. A minimal impact to wetlands may result from project activities as flood and drainage activities will occur within new channel locations, however, the project area is located where it has been geographically located and operating within the wetland. No adverse environmental impact is anticipated from the project. No alternative is feasible. FINDING OF NO SIGNIFICANT IMPACT The City of La Feria has determined that the project will have no significant impact on the human environment. Therefore, an Environmental Impact Statement under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) is not required. Additional project information is contained in the Environmental Review Record (ERR) on file at the City of La Feria, 115 E. Commercial Ave, La Feria, Texas 78559-5002 (956) 797-2261, Attention: Sunny K. Philip, City Manager and may be examined or copied weekdays Monday through Friday from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. FINAL NOTICE AND PUBLIC EXPLANATION OF PROPOSED ACTIVITY IN A WETLAND This is to give notice that the City of La Feria has conducted an evaluation as required by Executive Order 11990, in accordance with HUD regulations at 24 CFR 55.20 Subpart C Procedures for Making Determinations on Wetland Management, to determine the potential affect that its activity in the wetland will have on the human environment for the City of La Feria Flood and Drainage Improvement Project 1a, Contract No. DRS210089 Work Order No. 21050.1-3; GLO No. 12-211-000-5511 with a portion of the total grant amount of $18,474,242. The City of La Feria shall construct a new channel (shaping and grading) and perform site work associated with the construction. Work includes the following: a) Excavate a new channel; b) Grade ditches; c) Install storm sewer culverts and casings ranging in size from eighteen-inches to sixty-inches (18” – 60”); d) Install new culverts at roadway crossings (round, box, or arch profiles) with headwalls, wingwalls, concrete canastas, riprap, energy dissipaters, control wier and control gates; e) Remove and replace pavement; f) Install new guard rails, make utility adjustments as needed, perform materials testing, and provide associated appurtenances. Construction shall take place at the designated areas as identified in the above chart. A portion of the project is located within approximately 2 acres of designated wetland area PEM1Cd. A minimal impact to wetlands may result from project activities as flood and drainage activities will occur within new channel locations, however, the project area is located where it has been geographically located and operating within the wetland. The proposed flood and drainage improvements will ultimately improve the infrastructure drainage capacity. No adverse environmental impact is anticipated from the project. No alternative is feasible. The City of La Feria has considered the following alternatives and mitigation measures to be taken to minimize adverse impacts and to restore and preserve natural and beneficial values: The City of La Feria has reevaluated the alternatives to building in the wetland and has determined that it has no practicable alternative. Environmental files that document compliance with steps 3 through 6 of Executive Order 11990, are available for public inspection, review and copying upon request at the times and location delineated in the last paragraph of this notice for receipt of comments. This activity will have no significant impact on the environment for the following reasons: The City has considered the “no project” alternative of not pursuing to make the improvements to existing channels (reshaping and regarding) and storm sewer system (s); not perform road reconstruction to install new culverts at roadway crossings; and to not perform site work associated with the construction. However to purse the “no project:” alternative would be to not improve the drainage infrastructure. If the infrastructure drainage capacity is not increased, flooding will continue to occur therefore, pursing the “no action” alternative is not a practical option. An alternative the City did consider to purse was to install a pump station however, should power become lost during a disaster the pump would not be operational, therefore fail to function and leave residents vulnerable. This would leave the drainage system to again fail to function which would threaten resident’s public health and safety. Installing a pump station was not considered a practical or feasible alternative to purse. This alternative is not however practical in withstanding severe floods and/or future storms and promote loss of use of the area. The best available option the City of La Feria has considered pursuing to improve its drainage infrastructure to reduce flooding by making improvements to existing channels (reshaping and regarding) and storm sewer system (s); perform road reconstruction by installing new culverts at roadway crossings and performing site work associated with the construction. The proposed flood and drainage improvements will ultimately improve the infrastructure drainage capacity. There are three primary purposes for this notice. First, people who may be affected by activities in floodplains and those who have an interest in the protection of the natural environment should be given an opportunity to express their concerns and provide information about these areas. Second, an adequate public notice program can be an important public educational tool. The dissemination of information about floodplains can facilitate and enhance Federal efforts to reduce the risks associated with the occupancy and modification of these special areas. Third, as a matter of fairness, when the Federal government determines it will participate in actions taking place in floodplains, it must inform those who may be put at greater or continued risk. PUBLIC COMMENTS Any individual, group, or agency disagreeing with this determination or wishing to comment on the project may submit written comments to the City of La Feria. All comments received by September 19, 2013 will be considered by the City of La Feria prior to authorizing submission of a Request for Release of Funds. Commenters should specify which part of this Notice they are addressing. Comments must be submitted to: City of La Feria, 115 E. Commercial Ave, La Feria, Texas 78559-5002 (956) 797-2261, Attention: Sunny K. Philip, City Manager and may be examined or copied weekdays Monday through Friday from 8:00 A.M. to 5:00 P.M. RELEASE OF FUNDS The City of La Feria certifies to the General Land Office that Sunny K. Philip in his capacity as City Manager consents to accept the jurisdiction of the Federal Courts if an action is brought to enforce responsibilities in relation to the environmental review process and that these responsibilities have been satisfied. The Office’s approval of the certification satisfies its responsibilities under NEPA and related laws and authorities, and allows the City of La Feria to use Program funds. OBJECTIONS TO RELEASE OF FUNDS The General Land Office will consider objections to its release of funds and the City of La Feria’s certification received by October 14, 2013 or a period of fifteen days from its receipt of the request (whichever is later) only if they are on one of the following bases: (a) the certification was not executed by the Certifying Officer of the City of La Feria approved by GLO; (b) the City of La Feria has omitted a step or failed to make a decision or finding required by HUD regulations at 24 CFR Part 58; (c) the grant recipient or other participants in the project have committed funds or incurred costs not authorized by 24 CFR Part 58 before approval of a release of funds by GLO; or (d) another Federal agency acting pursuant to 40 CFR Part 1504 has submitted a written finding that the project is unsatisfactory from the standpoint of environmental quality. Objections must be prepared and submitted in accordance with the required procedures (24 CFR Part 58) and shall be addressed to the Texas General Land Office, Disaster Recovery Division, 3429 Executive Center Drive, Suite 150 Austin, Texas 78731. Potential objectors should contact GLO Disaster Recovery Program to verify the actual last day of the objection period. Sunny K. Philip, City Manager La Feria


SEPTEMBER 4, 2013 • LA FERIA NEWS • 7

Residents Voice Concerns Former LFHS Teacher Surprises Over Annexation 1977 Grads at Luncheon ► CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

City staff offered a powerpoint presentation to explain the proposed annexation 83, the west boundary is the eastern ROW line of FM 2556 and the east boundary is the east boundary of L&D Ranch Subdivision. This particular commission meeting signaled the second round of public hearings for each of the aforementioned areas with the addition of initial public hearings for the land on both sides of Falt Lane, west of Rabb Road located on the northwest part of La Feria and the land from the existing city limits on the west side of the city near Expressway 83, south along Mile 3 East, Kubiski, and Bixby Roads, and the west side of FM 2556, to U.S. Business 83. With Mayor Steve Brewer away on business and not able to attend, the difficult job of maintaining order for the proceedings rested squarely on the shoulders of Mayor ProTem Commissioner Lori Weaver. City Planning

and Community Development Director Irene Szedlmayer would give a brief overview of an area to be annexed, and then Commissioner Weaver would open the public hearing with residents eager to voice their concerns on the proposed annexation. Many of the same concerns raised at the city meeting on the 13th of August were raised again: fears of restrictions on land usage once annexation is in place, dissatisfaction with the level of services offered by the City of La Feria’s law enforcement and fire prevention entities, new taxation as a result of being incorporated into the city, and the inability to continue raising livestock after these areas become part of the city. Though city leaders tried to keep the discussion exclusive to each area being discussed at a given moment but citizens were so eager to voice their opinions and strong disapproval of

the proposed annexation that residents of one area would try to speak during a discussion of a different area. Many times during the proceedings the discussion would be derailed by the intricacies of individual cases as residents used the forum to discuss their personal circumstances and how the annexation would affect them. The commissioners and city staff again tried their best to assuage the public’s fears and outline how the city’s annexation of these areas would benefit residents. Agricultural use of land could continue with the signing of a development agreement with the city. The city would not tax that land for two years. Residents would not be forced to use city’s water, sewage or trash services as long as their existing services meet county regulations. The commission often had to repeat answers to questions that had already been asked and Commissioner Weaver

Members of La Feria High School Class of 1977 recently gathered in Austin for lunch. The group was surprised by a visit from Miss Christine Zwahlen, former LFHS English and Journalism teacher. In the photo are:Seated: Peggy (Wolf) Brinson, Lee Lara, Miss Christine Zwahlen and Bunny (Coleman) BenditzStanding: Pam (Peroni) Meyer, Larry Ball, Becky (Goza) Reeves, Jana Lee (Jones) Gondran and David Fleuriet. Photo: Karen Fleuriet. had to call order several times. During the hearing for the Kelley Drive area one resident insisted on an answer, “Why? Why would the City of La Feria want to annex us?” “There’s one thing for sure, the city is not doing the annexation to collect taxes,” said La Feria City Manager Sunny Philip. “We have never taken for granted what our responsibilities are.” “There has already been an investment made by the community. If the city doesn’t annex the area to properly develop it, it won’t grow very well.” He went on to say that the action the city

is proposing will only increase the value of the properties that will be annexed which will lead to even greater opportunity for the area as   the city continues to grow. He sighted improvements to the Rabb Road area as a result of residents being stuck there during Hurricane Dolly as an example of how the city is making the improvements to the areas they intend to annex. “We want to deliver more than what we promise,” Philip said.  Recommendations by staff on the annexations will be at the September 17 council meeting and the commission will have until December 16 to take action on the matter.

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8 • SEPTEMBER 4, 2013 • LA FERIA NEWS

feature story by Bill Keltner When Maestro Peter Dabrowski proudly described the six concerts that will be performed by the Valley Symphony Orchestra and Chorale during the 2013-2014 concert series, he promised this season to be the finest assemblage of stellar performances the Valley has seen. The VSO’s 61st year is also the 13th year of his tenure as the Conductor and Music Director of the internationally recognized Valley Symphony. The Valley is fortunate to have such a widely respected orchestra conductor. Musical Director Peter Dabrowski is regularly invited to be Guest Conductor of great symphonies in Mexico, Poland, Russia, Hungary, and other countries. The first concert of the season begins at the Renaissance Center on Thursday, September 26, 2013. The September performance will feature music by three of the world’s most famous composers: Beethoven, Chaminade, and Tchaikovsky. Chaminade’s incredibly beautiful Flute Concertino, Opus 107 will serve as a show piece for virtuoso soloist, Dr. Krista Jobson. Dabrowski promised this year’s concert season will be one never to be forgotten.” He added, “The Valley Symphony Orchestra and Chorale’s

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Vision is to improve life in a diverse community through artistic excellence in the performance and preservation of great music. Where else can they hear the classical music of Beethoven, Brahms, and Bach, and others of the 17th through 19th centuries,” he exclaimed. “Those men were musical geniuses. There will never again be musical giants like them. That is why we must keep their genius alive by live performances.” Vivian Vargas, VSO Marketing Director, was

David L. Means, Director of the Valley Symphony Chorale. just as ecstatic about the musical masterpieces that will be performed for Valley music lovers this concert season. The orchestra will perform at the Edinburg Conference Center at Renaissance and the McAllen Civic Center again this year due to the continuing construction of their new fine arts auditorium on the University of Texas Pan American campus. “We are so grateful for their generosity.” Vargas highlighted one more dimension to the rewards that will delight supporters of the treasure we know as the Valley Symphony Orchestra. “It’s this:” she said breathlessly, the audience will be introduced to the Valley Symphony Chorale’s new Choral Conductor during the 3rd concert scheduled for Friday, November 22, 2013. His name is Dr. David Means. We are anxiously awaiting his debut during the A Touch of Frost to Begin the Holiday Season to be performed at the McAllen Civic Center. Doctor Means accepted

the position as Director of Choral Studies at the University of Texas Pan American and has also been named Director of the Valley Symphony Chorale. He comes to the Rio Grande Valley from Austin where he was Head Choral Director at the GRAMMY Award winning Fine Arts Academy of Westwood High School and other credits. Means will add dimension and depth to Valley music appreciation and performances. Doctor already has an international reputation as a featured singer and guest conductor at choral festivals all over the world. He has led concert tours in Japan, Europe, Asia, Germany, Belgium and Mexico. The Doctor also enjoys a worldwide reputation as a respected adjudicator and clinician. “This is going to be a great season,” Vargas assured again. “The Symphony is greatly indebted to the generosity of The Texas Commission for the Arts, Austin; The National Endowment for the Arts, Washington, D.C.; and the cities of McAllen and Edinburg, and sponsors such as: Mercedes-Benz of San Juan, Frost, BBVA Compass, AEP, IBC

Vivian Va rga s , VSO Director of Marketing. Photo: Facebook Bank, Clark Knapp, and too many more to mention them all. For more information about the Valley Symphony Orchestra’s 61st Anniversary season, you are invited to call Vivian Vargas at 6611615. You may also visit www.valleyorchestra.org.

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La Feria News September 4, 2013  
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