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Chamber promotes positive business climate

20121016-Mission-C-of-C-Awards-042Incoming Mission Chamber of Commerce Chairwoman Sandra Vecchio presents a plaque to outgoing Chairman George Myers in appreciation of his service to the chamber. Progress Times photo by Doug YoungMISSION—The aggressive support of local business opportunities and developing strategies to boost sales and profits are new goals set for the Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce. The chamber’s 2012-2013 Chairwoman Sandra Vecchio believes the hard work of the community, as one, will prove a positive outcome.

Vecchio was named the new chairwoman of the board at the Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce 2012 Annual Banquet on Oct. 16 at Mario’s Banquet and Conference Center.

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HIGH EXPECTATIONS - New Shary superintendent raises the bar

20121001-Sharyland-ISD-Dr-Virgina-Richter-001Dr. Virginia RichterDr. Virginia Richter has some lofty goals for the Sharyland ISD. As the new superintendent, she wants to build on what the district is known for – things like academic achievement, sports and UIL – while growing the number of students taking AP exams and dual enrollment courses.

“My goal is to take and capitalize on what Sharyland does very well, but then take it to the next level,” she said.

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Mission publisher launches Sharyland Times

Jim Brunson, publisher of the Progress Times and Winter Texan Times, today announced the launch of a new publication, the Sharyland Times. The new weekly newspaper will serve local residents of Mission and McAllen with a special emphasis on news affecting residents of the Sharyland area.

As of today, the first edition of the Sharyland Times newspaper is now circulated at over 100 newsstand locations set up at local businesses in addition to several thousand delivered directly to homes in the Sharyland area.

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Secretary of State visits Progress Times

20121002 Texas Secretary of State Esperanza- Andrade Visit 0004Texas Secretary of State Hope Andrade with Progress Times Publisher Jim Brunson. Progress Times photo by Sean DowneyTexas Secretary of State Hope Andrade stopped for a deskside visit with Progress Times Publisher Jim Brunson Tuesday morning. Andrade was making a trip through the Rio Grande Valley this week to encourage people to get out and vote.

She wanted to remind local residents that the deadline to register to vote in the upcoming general election is Tuesday, Oct. 9.

For people who are not sure if they are registered, she offered a helpful solution.

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SISD school bus accident

A Sharyland Independent School District school bus was involved in a minor accident this afternoon. 

The bus was at 495 between Shary and Taylor Rd. when a car ran into the right front passenger side of the bus. Police and EMS were called and each child on the bus was examined for injuries. No injuries were reported.

Students were transferred to another bus and transported home.

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New Team RGV Flash to Debut New Season Starting November 2012

RGV Flash Cardinals webHIDALGO, TX—The State Farm Arena today announced the newest member to it’s family of professional sports teams, the Professional Arena Soccer League’s Rio Grande Valley Flash. The announcement of the Flash completes an expansion for the PASL that has seen the league's ranks swell from 12 to 19 teams as it heads into its fifth season of play.

The Flash will be operated by Monterrey Flash owner Gerardo Guerra Lozano. The Monterrey Flash are founding members and subsequent champions of the Liga Mexicana de Futbol Rapido. The Flash and the PASL's San Diego Sockers faced each other in last year's FIFRA Club Championships, with the Sockers winning by a narrow margin.

"We welcome the opportunity to be a part of the fastest growing futbol rapido (arena soccer) league in the US," said Lozano. "State Farm Arena will be a great venue to showcase PASL arena soccer."

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Chamber of Commerce presents South Texas Outdoor Life Festival

MISSION – The Greater Mission Chamber of Commerce (GMCC) is organizing the first South Texas Outdoor Life Festival to be held on Saturday, Oct. 27, from 7 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. at Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park/World Birding Center.

This new all-day event will offer the community and visitors the opportunity to participate in a variety of outdoor activities from a 5K run, 1K Family Fun Run, 35-mile bike race, kayak race, community bike ride, and a 9.19-mile mountain bike race, all in one location and in one day. Each race will conclude with an awards ceremony for each of the divisions.

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LJISD could lose $100M in free lunch funding

20120411-LJISD-Healthy-School-Lunch-Program-004LJISD could lose close to $100 million for their free lunch program if “over-claims” in the school district are not controlled before the next audit in December. A fourth grade student at LJISD’s Jose Escandon Elementary School selects from a wide variety of healthy food during the lunch break in April. Progress Times photo by Doug YoungLA JOYA – La Joya Independent School District is trying to rectify problems found during state audits  of the district’s free school lunch program.  Two previous audits by the Texas Department of Agriculture—one in December and one in March—found thousands of over claim meals. If the school district fails the next audit slated for December, they could lose reimbursements for the free lunch program for five years.

According to LJISD Superintendent Alda T. Benavides, there were two different types of findings in the school lunch program audits that could affect their eligibility for the free lunch program.

The PS1 finding, which is counting and claiming, has to do with counting of meals served. If records show a district served a certain number of meals and that district submits a claim for more meals than actually served, that would be a PS1 finding.

A PS2 finding, food production records, has to do with menu planning, menu records, nutrient analysis and the supporting document that goes with it. If there is a finding with a particular menu item as to the amount served, that could cause a PS2 finding, said Benavides. The Texas Department of Agriculture can disallow all meals either at the campus or district-wide for the meals containing that particular menu item.

In either case, she said, it would cause an “over claim.”

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