Author Archives: VBR

McAllen Small Business Grant

grant money

The City of McAllen and the McAllen Chamber of Commerce are currently on the second round of funding in its $1.5 million COVID-19 Small Business Grant program. McAllen small businesses have until July 31 to submit their applications. Small businesses with revenues less than $2 million may receive grants for up to $5,000 each. The program helps fund businesses or programs that creatively address a need to create, enhance, restore…

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Pharr Selects Andy Harvey as Chief of Police

Andrew "Andy" Harvey Jr.

Andrew “Andy” Harvey Jr. is the City of Pharr’s new chief of police. Harvey was appointed by interim City Manager Ed Wylie and then confirmed by the Pharr City Commission. He was sworn into office at a Pharr City Commission meeting by Hidalgo County District Attorney Ricardo Rodriguez. “Having the opportunity to return to the Valley in a fast-growing, dynamic city and region is incredible,” said Harvey.  “I look forward…

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McAllen Passport Facility Opens

passport

The City of McAllen Passport Division Facility is once again accepting U.S. Passport applications in person.  Walk-ins are on a first-come first-serve basis, Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. The division is also open every second and fourth Saturday of the month. The next Saturday the facility is open is July 25. Those preferring an appointment may schedule one by calling 956-681-1450. City of McAllen Passport Acceptance Facility is…

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STC Fall Semester Includes Hybrid Learning

South Texas College will continue to make extensive use of technology this fall while preserving in-person required activities. (photo STC)

South Texas College’s fall 2020 offerings beginning Aug. 24 will include about 20 percent in an in-person/hybrid format. The rest of its 4,500 courses will be available in online format with instructional plans being modifiable in the event of ever changing state or federal guidelines. With the in-person/hybrid model, courses requiring hands-on activities will be split into 50 percent classroom instruction and 50 percent online instruction. Programs requiring hands-on learning include Nursing…

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TSC Extends Remote Learning Through Fall 

Texas Southmost College will extend remote learning using various online technologies and alternate operations through the fall 2020 semester. The announcement comes at an unanimous agreement by the college’s board of trustees. “With a robust on-campus student population and hundreds of employees each fall, we strongly believe it is in the community’s best interest to take this measure to help slow the spread of the coronavirus,” said TSC Board Chair…

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Lineworker Finds New Adventure as Instructor

TSTC lineworker

After spending 22 years with the Brownsville Public Utilities Board as a certified lineworker, Candelario Deanda is ready to climb to new heights. His new role is an Electrical Lineworker Technology instructor when Texas State Technical College introduces the program at its Harlingen campus this fall. “We are still in the process of getting everything ready,” Deanda said. “I will be an instructor for courses in obtaining the certificate, as…

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UTRGV Expands Autism Program Across the Valley

UTRGV’s College of Education and P-16 Integration will be able to continue its parent-directed treatment program for children with autism spectrum for another two years. The program began in 2018 and previously served only the lower Cameron County area. It will now expand across the entire Rio Grande Valley. A nearly $500,000 continuation grant by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board funds the program. Dr. Hsuying Ward, a UTRGV associate professor with Human…

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U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement Enters Into Force

USMCA

On July 1, the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement entered into force, officially replacing the North American Free Trade Agreement. USMCA is the first trade agreement ever to include a full chapter dedicated to small business interests. The modernization of trade with Mexico and Canada under USMCA is designed to benefit U.S. small businesses. It will also ensure more balanced trade. U.S. companies with fewer than 500 employees comprise 65 to 70 percent…

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Back to Work: TWC Provides Acceptable Reasons for Refusal

The Texas Workforce Commission recently took action to provide guidance on eligibility for unemployment insurance benefits due to refusal to suitable work. Evaluations of each UI benefits case is currently on an individual basis. However, because of COVID-19, the following are reasons benefits would continue if an individual refuses work. Reason for refusal: People 65 years or older and/or people with medical issues. These include heart disease, diabetes, cancer or a…

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