Lina Hidalgo returning to Houston after spending a few weeks away, staff member says – Houston Public Media
The Harris County judge planned to meet with officials in tornado-ravaged Pasadena upon her return Wednesday. Hidalgo visited an ill family member in Colombia and then took a vacation, according to her staff.houstonpublicmedia.org
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo to take personal leave to visit ill grandfather in Colombia – Houston Public Media
Hidalgo is expected to be out of the country for about a week and likely will not participate in next Tuesday's meeting of the Harris County Commissioners Court, according to her deputy chief of staff.houstonpublicmedia.org
Hidalgo’s chief of staff indicted in $11M COVID-19 contract controversy ‘to pursue new opportunity,’ judge says
Judge Lina Hidalgo announced Friday the decision by her chief of staff, Alex Triantaphyllis, to depart from his current role in early 2023 “to pursue a new opportunity.” Hidalgo’s office said Triantaphyllis, who was one of three staffers indicted in March in an $11 million COVID-19 outreach contract investigation, will continue his public service in a new role in the Harris County Office of County Administration.
Dollar General files plans to add Valley stores
HARLINGEN — Dollar General Corp., with more than 90 stores in the Rio Grande Valley, has filed plans to build several more at locations in Cameron and Hidalgo counties. There’s at least one Dollar General in 780 Texas towns and cities. The budget-conscious dollar stores were among of the few businesses to prosper during the pandemic, as shutdowns and long lines elsewhere made these stores more attractive to many shoppers. Analysts say shoppers during the pandemic bought more items at the dollar stores and also bought higher-priced options as well, boosting the bottom line. In its SEC filing of third-quarter results Dec. 1, Dollar General executives reported net sales of $9.5 billion for the quarter, up 11.1 percent.myrgv.com
Hidalgo man indicted for giving drugs, cash to minor for sex
A 26-year-old Hidalgo man pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to accusations that he provide cash and THC cartridges to a 16-year-old girl in exchange for sexual acts. A federal grand jury indicted Rogelio Pruneda III on Nov. 15 on charges of sexual exploitation of children and coercion or enticement of a female. On July 22, authorities allege Pruneda met with the teen at a basketball court where she performed sexual acts on him in his white 2012 Chevrolet Cruze while he recorded. The complaint also said Pruneda met with her on two other occasions at his father’s auto shop and his grandmother’s residence, where more sexual acts occurred. “Defendant is alleged to have provided drugs and money to a minor in exchange for sexual intercourse,” Medrano wrote.myrgv.com
Hidalgo man to be arraigned for the death of his ‘severely beaten’ wife
A grand jury indicted a Hidalgo man for allegedly killing his wife with an unknown object, and he is set to be arraigned Wednesday morning, according to court documents. Earlier this month, a grand jury indicted Luis Antonio Rivera, 46, on a murder charge for the death of Edna Liliana Rivera. Many of the details surrounding her death have not been publicly revealed, including the object Rivera used to strike her or who found her body. But according to an initial news release, Hidalgo police responded to a domestic disturbance at 2308 Monterrey Street at about 12:40 a.m. on Aug. 30. He was arrested the following day in Rio Grande City at about 4:30 p.m.Rivera remained jailed Tuesday at the Hidalgo County Adult Detention Center on a $2 million bond.myrgv.com
More assistance available to homeowners affected by floods
The relief funding may also be used to repay disaster relief loans from the Small Business Administration. “Through the Homeowner Assistance and Reimbursement Programs, the Texas General Land Office will help hundreds of homeowners to rebuild their homes and livelihoods,” he further stated. Meanwhile between 6-10 inches fell over Los Fresnos and Brownsville over a two-day period, according to the National Weather Service. The NWS estimated that more than 18 inches of rain fell in the McAllen/Mission area, while the Mid-Valley and Delta region also endured double-digit rainfall totals. While the window for disaster relief applications was opened Thursday, it’s not the first time the Land Office has tried to connect residents to help.myrgv.com
Letters: Night Out a success
Bright lights shimmered on our national flag as it was hoisted in full patriotic display, setting in the night sky. But best of all was the presence of the various law enforcement individuals who work hard to put this event in place. Thank you, Police Chief Romeo Rodriguez and the supporting agencies of law enforcement, fireman and all who participated in coordinating this special event. What is even funnier is how gullible Republicans keep falling for it. One has to wonder how long it would take for these gullible Republicans to realize what a con artist really looks like.myrgv.com
Six more in RGV die to COVID-19; nearly 500 test positive
This week, county officials reported another six residents died due to COVID-19 while also reporting nearly 500 people tested positive for COVID. Three Hidalgo County residents died due to COVID-19. Hidalgo County reported 371 new cases this week including 99 confirmed cases and 272 probable cases. In Cameron County, three residents died due to COVID-related complications. Cameron County health officials also reported 97 new cases this week including 30 confirmed cases and 67 probable cases.myrgv.com
Republican Alexandra del Moral Mealer concedes, Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo re-elected
Republican challenger Alexandra del Moral Mealer has conceded in the race to become Harris County judge, according to a statement released on her Twitter page. Judge Lina Hidalgo will now serve another term as county judge.
Alexandra del Moral Mealer concedes to Lina Hidalgo in Harris County Judge race – Houston Public Media
Mealer tweeted a concession on Wednesday morning after results from all 782 voting locations were posted by Harris County Elections. Hidalgo won by 15,957 votes, 50.74% - 49.25%.houstonpublicmedia.org
Alexandra Mealer quadruples Lina Hidalgo in fundraising during final month of Harris County judge campaign – Houston Public Media
More than $3.7 million in campaign contributions were made last month for Republican Alexandra del Moral Mealer, whereas incumbent Democrat Lina Hidalgo raised more than $911,000.houstonpublicmedia.org
Photo Gallery: South Texas colonia residents set priorities for next 2 years
Dozens of colonia leaders from Hidalgo, Starr and Cameron counties packed into the La Union del Pueblo Entero, or LUPE, headquarters hall in San Juan to listen to the priorities they will be focusing on for the next two years.myrgv.com
Lina Hidalgo, a rising Democratic star, faces a tough reelection race to lead Harris County – Houston Public Media
The Houston region’s high number of homicides, the state’s new abortion ban and a flood of campaign cash have made for a dramatic race to lead the state’s most populous county.houstonpublicmedia.org
Harris County Republican commissioners continue boycott of court meetings over tax rates – Houston Public Media
Commissioners Jack Cagle and Tom Ramsey had sought a special, discussion-only meeting to hammer out a compromise on taxes and the budget. They got it, but refused to attend, claiming Commissioner Adrian Garcia was negotiating in bad faith.houstonpublicmedia.org
Jack Cagle, Tom Ramsey skip commissioners court for 3rd time as budget impasse continues
The impasse over the Harris County budget continued Tuesday with Republican commissioners skipping a meeting for a third time in a row, blocking the Democratic majority commissioners court from adopting a new proposed tax rate.
Republican Harris County commissioners extend their boycott, blocking action on taxes for a third meeting – Houston Public Media
Judge Lina Hidalgo signaled Commissioner Jack Cagle’s alternative tax proposal offered a way out of the impasse over setting a new tax rate for Fiscal Year 2023, but time for a compromise is running short.houstonpublicmedia.org
Houston bike advocates take issue with Mealer campaign ad, says it minimizes importance of cycling infrastructure – Houston Public Media
A recent campaign ad for Alexandra del Moral Mealer, the Republican trying to unseat Democrat Lina Hidalgo as Harris County Judge, uses the idea of supporting cycling infrastructure as a means of criticizing her opponent.houstonpublicmedia.org
Clock is ticking: Tuesday is the last day to register to vote in the November General Election
With the November General Election less than a month away, there’s still time to register to vote if you haven’t done so already. The last day to register to vote in the Nov. 8 General Election is Tuesday, Oct. 11. Federal races of interest in the Rio Grande Valley are U.S. District 34, U.S. District 15, and state representatives for District 27, District 37, District 20, District 35, District 39, District 41, and District 28. In Hidalgo County, voters will also be selecting a county judge and district attorney. To give all Cameron County residents the chance to register to vote, the elections office has been open during the lunch hour.myrgv.com
Seven more COVID deaths, more than 1,000 new cases reported in RGV this week
This week, county officials in Hidalgo and Cameron counties reported five and two COVID-related deaths, respectively. The deaths of the five Hidalgo County residents raised the total number deaths due to COVID in the county to 4,003. In Hidalgo County, officials reported 851 new cases this week including 242 confirmed and 609 probable cases. As for hospitalizations, there were 47 patients hospitalized throughout Hidalgo County with COVID at the beginning of the week. Cameron County health officials reported 341 new cases this week including 197 confirmed and 144 probable cases.myrgv.com
Texas Master Naturalist classes begin in January
Another round of training to become a Texas Master Naturalist will take place starting in January for residents of Hidalgo, Starr and Cameron counties. The Texas Master Naturalist program is sponsored by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, the Texas Sea Grant Program and the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department. Special field trips will be held in-person following current county and departmental public health guidelines. The master naturalist programs have been especially popular with Winter Texans here in the Valley, exposing them to new flora and fauna, as well as exploring new ecosystems. Class size is limited, and the cost is $150, which includes textbook, fees, T-shirt, name tag and one-year membership to the master naturalist program.myrgv.com
Judge Lina Hidalgo asking county attorney’s office to consider authority to require commissioners to attend court meeting
In an attempt to pass a budget for Harris County, Judge Lina Hidalgo said she is considering “any and all action” that would bring commissioners into Commissioners Court to allow a vote that she said would fund the budget.
WATCH LIVE: Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo to discuss possible impact of an underfunded hospital, health care system
Judge Hidalgo and public health officials are holding a news conference to discuss the possible impact on the health care system, as well as on other county districts, if the county does not make quorum at commissioners court Tuesday.
Three incumbents face challengers on Valley View school board
All three incumbents up for reelection on the Valley View Independent School District Board of Trustees will face a challenger this November. Place 1 incumbent Anthony Pinal, who is an educator from Hidalgo, will run against Elizabeth Bella, an operations work lead from Hidalgo. Place 2 incumbent Efrain Perez, a self-employed Hidalgo resident, will face librarian Raul “Coach” Sanchez, also from Hidalgo. Place 3 incumbent Claudia Coronado, an educator from Hidalgo and the current board president, will defend her seat against Francisco “Frank” Santana, a teacher from Pharr. The largest news out of Valley View during the current board’s tenure was the suspension and subsequent reassignment of then-superintendent Monica Luna, just after a board election in 2020.myrgv.com
11 more died due to COVID in the Rio Grande Valley; meanwhile state hospital data is now only available by request
Hidalgo County reported eight COVID-related deaths this week. The county also reported 1,902 new cases this week including 739 confirmed cases and 1,163 probable cases this week. There have now been a total of 228,937 recorded cases of COVID in the county including 144,919 confirmed, 80,859 probable and 3,159 suspected cases. Cameron County health officials reported three residents died due to COVID including one individual who was fully vaccinated and two who were not. There were also 1,299 new cases of COVID in Cameron County this week including 463 confirmed, 829 probable cases and seven self-reported cases.myrgv.com
Texas officials accuse Harris County of slashing constables’ budgets — but they’re actually going up
Comptroller Glenn Hegar said the state could block the approval of Harris County’s budget because it’s not allowing constables to roll $3 million in unspent funds into next year’s budget — even though the constables’ total funding will go up next year.
Child under 2 years old tests presumptive positive for monkeypox in Harris County, Judge Hidalgo says
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, along with the county and city health departments, and other medical community leaders, will provide a public health update Tuesday on the regional response to monkeypox and current vaccination efforts.
Judge Lina Hidalgo announces multi-million dollar Brighter Futures for Harris County Kids Initiative
On Wednesday, Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, Commissioner Rodney Ellis and members of the U.S. Congress announced a multi-million dollar initiative for Harris County’s youngest residents -- Brighter Futures for Harris County Kids.
Judge Lina Hidalgo announces Harris County Public Health will start distributing vaccine for kids under 5
Judge Hidalgo provided an update Thursday on Harris County’s distribution of the recent FDA-authorized pediatric vaccines with Texas Children’s Hospital and Harris County Public Health Department.
Watch live: Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, Commissioner Rodney Ellis call for special legislative session to address gun violence
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo and Commissioner Rodney Ellis will hold a news conference Tuesday morning calling for a special session to address the ongoing gun violence among children.
$48 million investment in funding for childcare in Harris County approved by commissioners court
Judge Lina Hidalgo will join Commissioner Garcia and community leaders Monday to unveil a proposed pilot program that aims to increase accessibility to high-quality childcare and early childhood development in Harris County.
Judge Hidalgo provides update on county’s preparation for hurricane season, extreme summer weather
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo discussed the county’s extreme heat preparedness following a meeting with officials from the Electric Reliability Council of Texas, the Public Utilities Commission of Texas and Harris County Emergency Management.
‘Steel-caged death match’: Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo says she expects to be indicted in ongoing investigation
In a Wednesday morning tweet posted by Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, the 31-year-old made it clear that she expects to face criminal charges in an ongoing investigation involving the Texas Rangers and the Harris County District Attorney’s Office.
‘Time is running out’: Hidalgo urges child care providers to apply for relief fund program before deadline
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo is urging child care providers across the county to take advantage of millions in federal COVID-19 relief funds before time runs out. Hidalgo is holding the discussion after visiting a child care facility Tuesday afternoon.
3 Hidalgo staffers indicted in $11M COVID-19 outreach contract investigation appear in court
Three senior staffers for Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo made their first court appearance on Tuesday. The trio was indicted in an investigation surrounding an $11,000,000 COVID-19 outreach contract that was previously awarded to Elevate Strategies.
Three of Lina Hidalgo’s aides, including chief of staff, indicted in Harris County contract award scandal
The felony charges are misuse of official information and tampering with a government record. Hidalgo, who oversees Harris County, has the largest constituency of any elected Democratic executive in the state.
Harris County commissioner calls for Judge Lina Hidalgo to have emergency powers revoked
Judge Lina Hidalgo was granted more authority under the state’s disaster declaration back at the state of the pandemic in 2020. Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle’s proposal to strip the judge of her emergency powers failed in a 3-2 vote Tuesday afternoon.
Judge Lina Hidalgo encourages eligible residents to get 2nd booster shot to help make COVID-19 ‘a distant memory’
Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo spoke to the community Tuesday on the county’s efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 and encouraged eligible residents to obtain their second booster as a new omicron variant emerges. Hidalgo was joined by Erica Brown, MD, MBA, FACHE, of Harris County Public Health.
Harris County contract investigation stretches out over 14 months, according to law enforcement
When the Texas Rangers executed search warrants at the offices and residences connected to members of Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo’s inner circle on March 11, the takeaway was clear according to KPRC 2′s Legal Analyst Brian Wice.
Harris County Budget calling for increased funding to fight violent crime, improve jails, criminal justice system passes
Judge Lina Hidalgo and Commissioner Adrian Garcia are holding a news conference Monday to discuss the county administrator’s budget proposal for the short Fiscal Year 2022 and the upcoming full Fiscal Year 2023.
‘Violent crime is a public health crises’: Mayor Turner lays out 17-page initiative to help reduce violent crime
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner is scheduled to join Police Chief Troy Finner and community partners on Wednesday afternoon to make a "major announcement" about a citywide initiative to reduce violent crime.