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Participation in Operation Lone Star 2014 gets county approval

Hidalgo-County-SealHidalgo County Commissioners Court agreed to participate again in Operation Lone Star in August at the request of Eddie Olivarez, director of Hidalgo County Health and Human Services, at a Tuesday meeting

The purpose of the program is public health preparedness and response.

Olivarez said other organizations involved in Operation Lone Star are the Texas Department of Health, the Texas military, and the U.S. National Coast Guard, along with local partners from the University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley, South Texas College and local technical schools.

The program includes two interlocal agreements between Pharr-San Juan-Alamo Independent School District and La Joya ISD. It also includes an agreement between Remote Area Medical Foundation and the County of Hidalgo to provide expanded medical services to residents of Hidalgo County.

Basic services including immunizations and vaccines, wellness check-ups, cardiovascular checks and diabetes screening will be offered at PJSA High School and La Joya High School.

Under the Remote Area Medical Foundation, expanded services, including vision testing and dental care, would be offered at the PSJA location. Olivarez explained that since Operation Lone Star is an ongoing annual event at the two sites, the location of the remote services is switched each year. Because it was at La Joya in 2013, it will be at PSJA in 2014.

Olivarez said the program would bring medical services valued at over $500,000 to county residents at no cost. In 2013, the program served 6,000 people who received approximately 20,500 at the two locations. The event is scheduled for Aug. 4 through 8 of 2014.

Under Urban County Precinct No. 3, the court also approved an amendment to a professional agreement between Hinojosa Engineering Inc. for an increase in funding of $4,974 from Community Development Block Grant FY 2011 Street Improvement project funds.

WIC was granted permission to accept fiscal year 2014 administration grant award in the amount of $5,224,478. There was also a Peer Counselor Award Grant for $342,166. WIC received a registered dietician grant of $30,000, and lactation service grant of $30,000 and a mini obesity grant of $10,000.

A request to make checks for delinquent tax attorney fees to Perdue, Brandon, Fielder, Collins &Mott for the duration of the contract was discussed. According to the terms of the contract, the checks were to be printed with “in association with John David Franz” on them. The two firms have split their association.

County Attorney Steve Crain told the court to continue sending the checks as the contract states so that the county is not liable for cutting one of the firms out of the contract. It would be up to the two firms to decide who received how much payment according to their calculations and the county would not face any liability.

Under business matters, use of co-manager senior underwriter Estrada Hinojosa for refunding outstanding bond projects was approved.

Approval was granted to submit a request for unclaimed capital credits from the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. The amount requested is $163,324.

An interlocal agreement between the cities of San Juan and Palmview to use the county-owned “new” Intoxilyzer 500EN Breath Test Instruments to test individuals suspected of driving under the influence of alcohol, replacing city police department testing units.

A construction change directive approved by Alcocer/Garcia and reviewed by construction manger Alex Palacios will add $77,965 to the Administration Building renovation. The change is related to hardware options for the building.

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CoverageAreaThe Progress Times is the hometown newspaper for the local communities of Mission, Sharyland, Alton, Palmview, La Joya and surrounding areas in Western Hidalgo County. We have a staff of veteran reporters who work diligently every week to bring our readers the latest news as it affects their hometown area and people.

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