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20130315 Palmhurst HEB Ground Breaking AF  5298PALMHURST—City officials gathered with representatives from H-E-B to celebrate not only the ground breaking of a new H-E-B store in Palmhurst, but also the 85th anniversary of the chain servicing the Rio Grande Valley.

“The Valley represents the time the company started gaining some traction, so we are thankful for the support that all of you have given H-E-B over the years,” Director of Retail Operations Tony Gonzalez said. “The store will be 96,000 square feet…it is going to be a pretty large store.”

Gonzalez added that the new store will be unique to the area, and he hopes it will meet the needs of the community. He said the store would be a different type of model with a larger bakery, guacamole station, a party center, and will offer a larger variety of fully cooked products and quesos frescos.

Special Guest State Representative Bobby Guerra said he was very proud of the community because of the change and growth in the area. He added the H-E-B family has always been deeply involved with education.

“The H-E-B family has been on the forefront of education… their commitment to education and higher education is absolutely phenomenal,” Guerra said. “They invest millions and millions of dollars so that your kids can have a better education and go on to contribute to our society.”

Guerra said in the Texas House of Representatives, there is a lot of cooperation that is going to help Texas. He added every member is working together to make the state the best in the union.

“One of the things I’m especially proud of in Palmhurst… I’m proud to say that I have a city in my district that does not have property tax,” he said. “And they (other legislators) are absolutely blown away with that….What a wonderful council you have and a wonderful community.”

Mayor Ramiro J. Rodriguez Jr. said Palmhurst leads the Valley because of the work put in by the commission and those who have served in the past.

“In 2003, we generated $87,000 in sales tax and in 2013 we anticipate to generate $1.2 million in sales tax,” Rodriguez said. “Currently, we have 70 retail stores in Palmhurst, which occupy a total of 500,000 square feet. H-E-B will be instrumental in the creation of an extra 200 jobs.”

H-E-B Public Affairs Director Linda Tovar said the project is predicted to be complete in late fall, 2013. She added they are extremely excited to service the Palmhurst community, and there will be more H-E-B store openings for the Rio Grande Valley region in the near future.

Currently, H-E-B operates more than 350 stores in Texas and Mexico and has sales of more that $19.4 billion; the company celebrated its 105th anniversary in 2010.

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