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Fair, 76 F

Forecast:
Wed - Mostly Sunny. High: 94 Low: 78
Thu - Mostly Sunny. High: 94 Low: 77
Fri - Thunderstorms. High: 89 Low: 71
Sat - Partly Cloudy. High: 86 Low: 66
Sun - Mostly Sunny. High: 88 Low: 71

Full Forecast at Yahoo! Weather

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Bryan Road construction falls behind

20120525-Bryan-Road-Bridge-Demolition-007Since demolition of the Bryan Rd. bridge crossing over Expressway 83 on March 7, motorists have had to detour to either Conway Ave. or Shary Rd. to cross the expressway. Although city officials had hoped the contractor could re-open the intersection to north-south traffic sooner, TxDOT project engineer Oscar Cancino says he expects to see them reach that milestone in mid-July to mid-August.

He says that while the overall project is running behind – with 60 percent of the work completed and 80 percent of the allotted time expired – the Bryan Rd. reconnection appears to be on target within the five months time originally allotted. He added that the contractor is expected to submit an updated work schedule that TxDOT will review and work out an agreement on issues such as number of rain delay days and utility delays allowed.

“Overall we’re a little [behind] with the total working days that they have here versus what they say now. But at any time the contractor can accelerate the work. They can bring in more forces and hit their allotted days,” Cancino said.

Read more: Bryan Road construction falls behind

   

SISD approves additional personnel, superintendent search continues

MISSION – Sharyland School Board approved requests for additional personnel at several schools during this week’s board meeting. Most of the personnel were requested because of increasing enrollment numbers at the high school.

More staffing was also requested to help with new testing practices that will be fully implemented next year. The hiring of three testing strategists, an administrative position, was approved for the high school and both junior highs.

The board also approved hiring a physical therapist. The school district expects to save money by having a therapist on the payroll instead of paying for outside services.

Agriculture Building Update

The board rejected a bid on Package B for the Agriculture Building. The package calls for an addition and small office space with lockers. Original budget for the project was set at $400,000. Bids received were over $700,000.

Read more: SISD approves additional personnel, superintendent search continues

   

FROM VIETNAM SOLDIERS TO VIETNAM TEACHERS

20120518_Doug-with-Market-LadiesLocal veterans return to country for service

Doug Young sat in the St. Peter & St. Paul Episcopal Church’s temporary house of worship, a Mission shopping center, as he listened to his pastor when he realized he had an unfinished personal mission.

It was February 2004, when his pastor spoke about how God guides individuals into helping others. He reached out and wrote “VM,” military lingo for Vietnam, on a sheet of paper.

Read more: FROM VIETNAM SOLDIERS TO VIETNAM TEACHERS

   

Hey, hey, it’s the monkey!

20120518_MonkeyCaptured_LEG7599MISSION — A primate who roamed citrus orchards in the northwestern part of the city was caught on Monday in a trap set up by City Of Mission Health Department workers last week.

City officials credited persistence and knowledge of the African patas monkey’s sweet tooth that brought an end to the monkey’s short lived, yet highly publicized, reign of freedom. Health department superviso Ernie Zapata said advice from Jerry Stones of the Gladys Porter Zoo helped he and his staff set up a trap with an assortment of fruit and sweet bread early Monday morning in hopes of luring the elusive primate into entering the trap and tripping the mechanism that would shut and lock the steel door.

With previous attempts at trapping the monkey with fruit as bait not netting any results, Zapata believes it was the sweet bread that made the difference.

“We got some cinnamon rolls and some banana nut bread because they told me that they really like sweet bread and apparently they do,” he said.

It took approximately six hours for the monkey to take the bait. Zapata said that he set the trap early Monday morning and that there was no change when he checked on it at 2:30 p.m. This reporter came across the trap and found the monkey inside the trap at 4:45 p.m. and alerted authorities.

Read more: Hey, hey, it’s the monkey!

   

O’caña wins in seat Mission, Plata re-elected

20120518_OcanaMaldonado elected to SISD, several MCISD incumbents remain

MISSION — Dr. Armando O’Caña will return as a member of the Mission City Council after residents elected him to the Place 4 seat ousting fellow educator Leo Olivarez in last week’s city election. Place 2 incumbent Ruben Plata will retain his spot.

Meanwhile in the Mission and Sharyland school board elections, several incumbents will keep their seat with one newcomer making up the board.

According to the City of Mission’s unofficial election results, Plata earned 2,372 votes, 56 percent of the vote against his challenger Rene De La Cruz who earned 1,876 votes. O’caña took 60 percent of the votes with 2,485 people electing him to replace Olivarez who received 1,678 votes. Provisional votes are still outstanding, according to City Secretary Anna Carrillo. The city council will canvass the election Monday, May 21.

O’caña previously served on the city council in Place 3.

In the Mission Consolidated Independent School District election with four seats up for election, but one uncontested, many incumbents will return to the board, with one of them taking a new seat.

Place 2 incumbent Dr. Sonia Treviño earned 2,238 votes against challenger Hector Gonzalez’s 1,545 votes.

Read more: O’caña wins in seat Mission, Plata re-elected

   

Texas Primary early voting ends May 25

20120518_HildagoDistricts-1More than 5,000 local Democrats and Republicans participated in the first day of early voting in the Texas primaries. Early voting will continue this weekend and into the week until Friday, May 25.

According to Hidalgo County Elections Department records, in 2008, the last major primary election, close to 6,000 people participated in the first day of early voting.

There are several local contested races in the state primary, which will be held May 29.

Democratic Party

The seat for U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison’s seat has four candidates. They are Paul Sadler, Grady Yarbrough, Sean Hubbard and Addie Dainell Allen.

District 15 U.S. Rep. Ruben Hinojosa is seeking re-election against Democratic candidates Ruben Ramon Ramirez, Johnny “JP” Partain, David Cantu and Jane Cross.

Texas House of Representatives District 35, a newly created House seat has two Democratic candidates, Oscar Longoria and Gus Ruiz.

District judge in the 389th Judicial District candidates are Alma Garza and Letty Lopez.

District judge in the 398 Judicial District candidates are Aida Salinas Flores and Fidencio Guerra Jr.

Read more: Texas Primary early voting ends May 25

   

Mission honors fallen heroes during ceremony

20120518_Mission_Honors_FallenMISSION — The Mission Police Department joined several local law enforcement agencies, Mission Fire Department and Mission Historical Museum to honor those who have fallen during their service.

Mayor Norberto “Beto” Salinas said the city would never forget those that have lost their lives and given their lives to make our community safer.

Salinas said the community has plenty of support from other agencies in the area.

Mission Police Chief Martin Garza said the city takes pride and honor to pay tribute to those that have paid the ultimate sacrifice while working for the police and fire department.

One of the reason’s Mission is a safe place to live is because of the strong relationship police have with the state, federal and local agencies, said Garza.

“The day your loved one joined the force is the same day that you to became a part of the law enforcement community and family,” Garza said to families of officers. “Today is not a sad day. Today is a celebration. A celebration of the lives of our past heroes and our heroes that are present with us today.”

Garza said he is blessed to work and serve with 146 police officers that are committed to service.

Before the ceremony, Garza gave a challenge coin to all of the police officers. He said it was a token of appreciation. It reads four words the department stands for – community, trust, integrity and accountability.

Read more: Mission honors fallen heroes during ceremony

   

Monkey Found

20120518_Cropped-MonkeyAs reports of one or possibly more monkeys on the loose were being circulated in Mission last week, Progress Times reporter/photographer Luciano Guerra began to search for the monkey, even stopping to talk to residents in the area where the monkey had been spotted. As he was searching for the Mission monkey, he was humored when he found this monkey hanging in a tree.


   

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