Rio Grande Herald (Rio Grande City, Tex.), Vol. 35, No. 71, Ed. 1 Thursday, January 22, 1981 Page: 1 of 10
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FREE AMERICANS — WELCOME HOME
★ * ★ ★ RIO GRANDE * * * *
E R A L
January 22, 1981
Industrial Park Land Acquired
Norma Irene Sanchez,
President's Award Recipient
Dr. Solis Named
At Chamber Banquet
Dr. Rene A. Solis named Outstanding
Citizen at the Chamber of Commerce annual
banquet held Saturday, January 17, at the
Fort Ringgold Motor Inn.
The announcement was made by Noe
Sanchez, following a meal and program
with John A. Pope, III serving as Master of
According to Sanchez, Dr. Solis has been a
practicing physician in Rio Grande City
since 1930. His early education was in the
local parochial and public schools, com-
pleting his studies at St. Edwards High
School in Austin and earning his M.D. at St.
Ix)uis Medical School. He served his in-
ternship in the Alexian Hospital in St. i/ouis.
During World War II, he served in the
Medical Corps and was assigned to the
European Theatre of Operations. The five
bronze stars that form part of his official
military record indicate that he par-
ticipated in five major battles in Europe. As
a doctor, his task was to take care of the
wounded and the sick under fire.
Following the war, he resumed his
practice where he still works long hours
each day. In the late 1940's he became one
of the major leaders of a political group
seeking change to promote needed
economic progress in the community and
country. He became sheriff of Starr County
and served for over twenty-five years in this
Solis is also a rancher and is one of the
original petitioners that helped form the
Starr County Soil and Water Conservation
District. In 1946 he joined the late Dr. M.J.
Rodriguez and R. T. Margo in introducing
the now famous buffel grass into Starr
County. He has been a leader in introducing
conservation methods and techniques on his
farm and ranch.
In conclusion, Sanchez stated that Solis is
worthy of the honor as a professional man a
man of compassion and strong
humanitarianism, as a leader of leaders and
as an enterprising rancher.
The program began with an invocation by
the Rev. Hans Raj, pastor of the St. John
United Methodist Church.
Chamber of Commerce President
Humberto Garcia gave the welcome, and
Pope introduced the guests.
The first award of the evening was
presented by a chamber director, Mandy
Pena. She announced the winner of the
Outstanding Student Award as Roberto
Cantu, son of Mr. and Mrs. Juan Cantu, Jr.
of I,a Grulla. Robert is a seventeen year old
senior at Rio Grande City High School.
Chosen by a committee of teachers, Roberto
was called "very cooperative with teachers
and peers and very well mannered and
mature for his age." An Athlete who has
maintained a high scholastic average,
Robert has also been in U.I.L. Number
Sense competition for the past four years
and is active in senior class activities. He
plans to attend a university and major in
computer programming. Robert received a
revolving plaque, now on display in the high
Garcia presented the President's Award
to Norma Irene Sanchez, who has served as
secretary for the Chamber of Commerce
during his administration. He com-
plimented her for her work and for ac-
complishing so many things and helping the
chamber to achieve many things which he
would not have been able to do without her
assistance, time, and support.
Pope introduced the speaker for the
evening, Bob Murphy of Nacogdoches.
Murphy lent humor to his talk on Chamber
of Commerce work, telling what a chamber
can be if the prople of a community back it
and support it. He urged the local chamber
to continue to work and grow.
The benediction was led bv the Rev. Haas
The vision of developing an Industrial
Park for Starr County is now reality with the
cooperation of private industry and the
Industrial Foundation to obtain a 30 acre
tract for the venture.
Starr County commissioners Jan. 16
approved a plat for the tract four miles east
of Rio Grande City. This action came
subsequent to the announcement that the
Missouri Pacific railroad had decided to
continue rail service to Rio Grande City for
at least one additional year.
Humberto Garcia, outgoing Chamber of
Commerce president called to Mo-Pac
decision a victory, for the Industrial
Foundation but stated that "we will not be
satisfied for just a one year extension. We
will continue to work until we get a five year
extension, or more."
The proposed Industrial Park, to be
named Santa Cruz Industrial Park, abuts
the railroad right of way, with most future
businesses planning to utilize rail service.
Easy access to Mexico is what makes the
Rio Grande City area ideal for the
development of such an industrial park,
according to Sam Vale, president of the
Starr-Camargo Bridge Co Most industries
to be located at the new park will do
business transhipping products into Mexico.
Products that are shipped to Rio Grande
City by train or truck will then be trucked
into Mexico via the Camargo Bridge, with
Monterrey as the destination.
Until last week, there were two rail em-
bargoes in effect, which prevented shipment
of goods and grain into Mexico. One em-
bargo was imposed by American railroad
companies, and it prevented shipment of
any goods into Mexico by rail car unless one
rail car was returned by Mexico for each
car that entered that country. This em-
bargo was imposed because several hun-
dred American railroad cars were being
held in Mexico and none were being
returned. This embargo (or policy) is still
The other critical embargo, was imposed
by Mexico and prohibited the rail shipment
of any American goods whatsoever into
Mexico. This embargo has been partially
lifted to allow the shipment of grain into
Mexico. This is an emergency measure to
assist ranchers in the Coahuila and
Chihuahua area, who have been severely hit
with feed grain shortages and have lost an
estimated 170,000 head of cattle over the last
several months. Thelossextends not only to
the ranchers, but also to all beef related jobs
in the area between Monterrey and Carreon.
The dollar loss to the area has not been
estimated, but the adverse economic impact
was severe enough to take action on the
Vale is of the opinion that this develop-
ment will not adversely affect the plans for
the industrial park He said, "One has to
think in terms of sheer volume. The
volumes we are talking about here are so
oig that shipping this grain cannot be
handled by the rail roads alone, and trucks
must also be used."
In anticipation of this additional volume of
grain, the Starr Gin Co. of Rio Grande City
is doubling its capacity from 40 carloads to
80 carloads immediately.
According to Vale, Joel Guerrero, another
local rancher and real estate broker, is
negotiating with a firm from McCook to
locate another grain elevator in Rio Grande
Precinct 3 Employees
Are Minus Jobs
Friday, Jan. 16 was the last day of work
for 20 county employees who were laid off by
Pet. 3 Co. Commissioner Norberto Mon-
talvo, in order to pay precinct debts and
purchase some equipment.
Texas Rural Legal Aid attorney Carl
Hafner objected to the cutbacks as unfair
because other precincts did not share in the
The vote to lay off the employees was 3-0,
with commissioners Jose Maria Alvarez
and Amando Pena abstaining.
Montalvo claimed the budget left to him
by his predecessor, Hector Lozano, did not
allott enough for capital investments since
most of it went for salaries.
Montalvo said there was a need for two
trucks with an estimated cost of $20,000
each, $18,000 for truck fule, and $16,000 to
retire equipment purchase debts from last
County Judge Bias Chapa explained that
Montalvo's plan was to lay off the 20 em-
ployees and rehire them later as needed.
Chapa cited' >f p? ,* or e'ulpme.v as th
major reason i'or the employee layoff.
According to the judge, 93 percent of the
Pet. 3 budj'et is earmarked for salaries.
Crime Fight Continues
The Starr County Sheriff's department
continued its fight against crime with
several felony arrests in unrelated incidents
last week. Among those arrested is a for-
Rosendo Flores, Homero Munoz and
Ramon Caceres were arrested over a period
of three days and arraigned before J.P.
Flores was arrested and charged Jan. 11
for theft of $3,000. Caceres was charged
Jan. 13 with burglary of a truck at IiOpez
Ready Mix. Munoz was charged with a Jan.
12 burglary. A search warrant was issued
and a subsequent search of Munoz residence
resulted in discovery of marijuana and
cocaine in his possession.
Bond for Flores was set at $25,000. Bond
for Caceres was set at $5,000. At last report,
neither man had been able to post bond and
both were still being detained.
Bond for Munoz was initially set at $50,000
for the burglary charge and $5,000. for each
of the drug possession charges. The bond
for burglary was later reduced to $15,000
upon recommendation of the District At-
torney's office. Munoz posted bond and was
released. Munoz nad formerly taught 6th
grade at La Grulla Jr. High School during
the 1979-80 school year.
Two additional felony arrests were also
made by the Sheriff's department. Johnny
Acevedo was arrested January 10 and
charged with aggravated assault on a police
officer. Sheriff's Deputies were called to a
scene where Acevedo was discharging a rifle
Haffner pointed out that the use of
manpower trainees to replace regular
employees would be a violation of Man-
power program regulations. Haffner asked
that laid off employees be guaranteed that
they would be rehired. According to the
motion by Montalvo, laid off employees
would be given first "consideration" for
The salary budget for Montalvo's precinct
was cut from $184,000 to $99,000 for the year.
In other action, the court approved 1981
salaries at the same rate as last year, but
left open the possibility of raises. There
were no provisions for salary raises in the
1981 budget, although some department
heads had included some monthly raises for
office personnel, in their individual funding
requests. The court decided to take up the
issue at the Monday court meeting.
Another item that was tabled was the
proposed new position as sanitation in-
spector for former road superintendent
Roberto Tena, whose job was eliminated
Other court -ieti in approved a new three
year lease with tf e General Services Ad-
ministration for use of port facilities at the
Roma International Bridge. The
agreement is for a lease increase from
$1,800 to $3,000 per month.
Bid advertisements for paving four blocks
on 4th street in Rio Grande City were ap-
proved. Money will come from a Com-
munity Development grant.
Payment of two invoices were also ap-
proved; $6,779 and $15,386 to Consolidated
Engineers for work on the new port facilities
Vale forsees the development of the Santa
Cruz Industrial Park to be followed and
many problems ironed out, he feels the
endeavor is moving right along.
Another big advantage in this job poor
area will be the creation of jobs. Vale stated
that because of the labor intensive nature of
the park, at least 100 persons will be em-
ployed on a regular basis, with the number
of jobs ballooning to 200 or more during peak
Vale's bridge company has negotiated a
contract to purchase the property, with an
option to assign it to the Industrial Found-
The purchase price of $90,000 will be
financed by capital from private businesses
that are interested in developing the In-
dustrial park. Vale is kicked off the
financing with providing $12,000 to begin
necessary land leveling operations. The
contract gives the bridge company six
months to obtain the balance due. Even-
tually, according to Vale, business will
donate money to the industrial foundation so
the foundation may acquire title to the
property. The foundation will then give first
options to these businesses to lease or
purchase tracts within the park.
Bias Chapa and Glenn Ramey are the
current owners of the property. To forestall
any charges of conflict of interest, the state
attorney general's office has been con-
tacted, and according to Chapa, there is no
apparent conflict with the proposal.
According to Vale, approximately 20
acres of park property lias been spoken for
in solid commitments, with the remaining
acreage subject to verbal agreements.
Firms from Miguel Alernan and Camargo
Mexico are expected to participate in the
park along with firms from McAllen and Rio
Additional local money will also be needed
to match federal grants for paving and
utility development in th< ■ >rk. or. the basi?
of 20 percent local funds to 80 percent
government funds. These funds are ex-
pected to come from private sources if
county monies a^e not forthcoming.
Some local assistance will be received
through El Quiote Construction Co., which
will level the land at cost, and through the
donation of surveying services by Pablo
Pena, a local engineer. According to Vale,
the governor's office has agreed to assist
. ^a! effort with industrial development
bonds for industries locating in Santa Cruz
park, provided the railroad continues its
commitment past the one year exteasion
No Show At Court Meet
Action on several issues facing the Starr
neighborhood. Acevedo resisted arrest Co"nty Commissioners Court will have to
and pointed the rifle at a deputy, resulting in
the felony charge.
Upon arraignment, bond was set at $5,000
for the aggravated assault charge and an
additional $1,000 was set for the resisting
arrest charge. Acevedo was unable to post
wait until the next meeting of the court
because not enough commissioners to
constitute a quorum showed up at Monday's
Judge Bias Chapa and Commissioner
Armando Pena were the only voting
members present at the called meeting to
Ricardo Rodriguez was arrested on the act on an agenda that included discussion of
- - - - a potential new position for former road
felony charge of driving while intoxicated , „ .
on Jan. 17 He was also charged with superintendent Roberto Pena, and raises for
funds to be divided among the tax assessor-
collector's department and the four precinct
The county stands to receive ap-
proximately $154,000, but this figure cannot
be verified until the first payment arrives.
According to County Auditor Jose G.
Villarreal, the first payment was due Jan. 8.
but a computer error in Washington. D.C.
has delayed its disbursement. The money
should arrive within the next few weeks.
Cantu, Guillen To Serve On STED Board
Rodolfo Cantu, president of the First
National Bank of Rio Grande City, was
elected recently as vice-president of the
board for the newly created South Texas
Economic Development Corp.
Luis Guerra, a I^aredo banker, was
chosen as the board's secretary-treasurer
during the STED Corp's first meeting of
Cantu was appointed by the City Of Roma
as its representative on the board. The
Starr County Commissioner's Court
selected Manuel Guillen, senior vice-
president of the First National Bank of Rio
Grande City, as its representative.
The STED Corp. is an organization
created solely to administer the revolving
loan fund program which the South Texas
Development Corporation has established
with money given to them from the
Economic Development Corporation.
The EDA gave STDC $750,000 to start the
new loan program. Since the STDC was not
structured as a lending institution, the
STED Corp. was created.
Under their bylaws, the chairman of the
board of directors must also be the
president of the STDC board. Subsequently,
I-aredo Mayor Aldo Tatangelo serves in
The purpose of STED Corp is to make
money available to individuals, private
businesses and corporations, who need
financing for any new venture or expansion
in their business.
Applicants are not limited to minority
groups, unlike most EDA-backed program.
In order for the program to get officially
underway, the board must chose a loan
packaging agent who assists an applicant
with their proposals.
In other action, the board chose the In-
ternational Bank of Conunerce in I-aredo as
their depository. A letter of credit will be
Set In Roma
The Roma Independent School District
will hold a public hearing on Bilingual
Education Thursday, January 29, at 2:30
p.m. at the school auditorium.
The meeting will deal with proposed Title
VII projects to be submitted to Washington,
D.C. by February 13. A copy of the proposal
held by the bank that will enable them to
draw funds from the EDA through the
If an applicant qualifies for funding, the
amount requested in the loan is given to the
STDC. The agency, inturn, submits a
request to the EDA for that amount. The
EDA then sends the money to IBC where it
is deposited in STED Corp's checking ac-
count. The corporation then makes out a
check for the amount to the applicant.
leaving the scene of an accident.
Other arrests over the past week include:
Ijeonel Garcia arrested Jan. 19 for
disorderly conduct; Yolanda Isabel Cruz,
arrested Jan. 14 for public intoxication and
resisting arrest; Alberto Barrera, arrested
Jan. 18 for disorderly conduct; Jose Isabel
Resendez, arrested Jan. 14 for disorderly
conduct, resisting arrest and public
intoxication; Juan FriasSalas^rrested Jan
16 for public intoxication; Juan Crisoforo
Ix>pez, arrested Jan. 19 for public
Chapa said he would reschedule the
special meeting for later this week.
The court was able to conduct the first of
three required public hearings on use of
federal revenue sharing funds for 1981.
The proposed use hearing mustbe followed
by a budget hearing and a budget vote on
these monies. Chapa said the federal
revenue sharing money will be used in
virtually the same way as last year. This
means it will be used to fund the sheriff's
toxication; Jose Dolores Garcia, arrested department almost entirely, with remaining
Jan. 17 for public intoxication; Luis
Barrera, Jr. arrested Jan. 18 for disorderly
conduct; and Vicente Zurta, charged with
failure to stop while a funeral service was in
R.G. City, Roma Included
In A&I Historical Tour
landmarks in Rio Grande City and Roma
will be available in the superintendent's wfl| i*. included in a one day Rio Grande
office that week. Valley Tour sponsored by Texas A&I's John
The general public is invited to attend in u Connor Museum, Saturday, January 24.
order to discuss and review the proposals -p})e (0ur wjj| emphasize historically
and to recommend opinions and ideas which significant architecture in selected Valley
might be incorporated. towns and cities.
Inside Today's Herald
Farm & liauch
"To read a poet
in January it
as lovely as to 90 for a walk
Abel Porras. Chairman of the Starr
. . . , . County Historical Commission has called a
In Rio Grande City, points of interest are meet,ng 0f the commission this week,
the Hotel Ringgold, which is now being The meeting will be held Friday, Jan. 23
restored, and Fort RinggokL The Pink at 7.30 p m jn y,e County Courthouse.
House in Roma will be visited also. pUblic is invited to attend. All
Abel Porras, president of the Starr Co. merr,ber.s and those who are interested in
Historical Commission will be the joining the commission are especially urged
spokesman for the Starr County portion of t0 be present at thjs meeting
the tour. He will be assisted by Jaime
Others points in the tour include the
Vidaurri Ho"-o San Agustin Church and
Repuunc oi tne Rio Grande Museum in
I-aredo, and the Trevino House in San
Ygnacio. There will also be a stop in IiOS
The Conner Museum has arranged to have
people from each of the tour stops talk about
the area's architecture and history during
the all-day tour.
Junmie Picquet, Conner Museum
director, or Jim Powers, coordinator of
Conner Museum programs, may be con-
tacted at 595-2819 for more information.
The Advisory Committees of the ESAA
Bilingual and Title VII Bilingual Programs
of the Rio Grande City Consolidated In-
dependent School District will hold their
regular monthly meeting on Thursday,
January 29, U*81 at 1:00 P.M., at the Title
VII Billngua. Office.
Ail committee members are urged to
attend und 'he public is invited.
Dr. I.ydiu Aguilur
Through the interest of the Community
Action Council and the concern of local
physicians, a study of diabetes in Starr
County will be jonducted
Conducting the program will be Dr. Lydia
Aguilar from the University of Texas Health
Service Center in Houston.
Offices for the program are located at 115
N. Bntton Avenue in Rio Grande City.
Some citizens will be visited at their
homes by members of the Diabetes Alert
Program and will seek cooperation in this
study of dietary and family factors in this
disease The study will begin Friday,
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Mathis, James V. , Jr. Rio Grande Herald (Rio Grande City, Tex.), Vol. 35, No. 71, Ed. 1 Thursday, January 22, 1981, newspaper, January 22, 1981; Edinburg, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth194803/m1/1/: accessed April 19, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Rio Grande City Public Library.