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Members from LUPEs join Commissioners Court in support of DACA.

Commissioners Court in support of bipartisan solution to DACA

Hidalgo County Commissioners Court is calling for federal leaders to pass legislation allowing DACA recipients to lawfully stay in the country they call home. 

Precinct 4 Commissioner Joseph Palacios introduced the resolution to support the continuing protections afforded under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program and the item was approved by the court. A copy of the resolution will be sent to President Donald J. Trump.

DACA, which stands for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, was an executive action rendered in 2012 by President Barack Obama to protect approximately 800,000 children of immigrants by preventing their deportation and providing them with the right to obtain an education and the right to work in the United States.

"There are four variations bills in Congress in reference to DACA - the RAC Act, Bridge Act, Succeed Act, and DREAM Act," said Commissioner Palacios. "We are concerned about the effect it is going to have on our local families."

As the eighth largest county and the most populated county in the State of Texas bordering Mexico, Hidalgo County has a particularly high number of DACA beneficiaries, many of whom are distinguished community pillars, who bring skills, ingenuity, and resilience that contribute to the growth and competitiveness of our region.

According to recent statistics, DACA recipients are high-achieving Americans who create businesses at twice the rate of the public as a whole and who are employed at a rate of 90 percent. In September of 2017, President Donald J. Trump rescinded DACA and as a result hundreds of thousands of DACA recipients now face the threat of deportation in upcoming months.

Hidalgo County joins the collective voice of the many requests made to Congress to pass bipartisan legislation providing these young Americans the permanent solution they deserve.

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Rosie Martinez
Victim Unit Director Rosie Martinez thanks the court for their continued support of crime victims.
Students from McAllen Memorial high school were joined by LUPE, ARISE and other organizations.
Patricia Rocha
Patricia Rocha, McAllen Memorial Student Council President, read the resolution for Human Trafficking Awareness Month.

Court declares January as Human Trafficking Awareness Month

In an effort to shine a light on the ongoing battle to eradicate Human Trafficking, the District Attorney's office presented a proclamation to Commissioners Court declaring January 2018 as Human Trafficking Awareness Month.

"Yesterday we celebrated Martin Luther King Day. He fought so hard for justice, equality and freedom," said Criminal District Attorney Ricardo Rodriguez, Jr. "And today we find ourselves here, still fighting for freedom, for justice, and for equality when talking about human trafficking."

Rodriguez was joined by staff from the Victims Unit office, Sullivan and Hidalgo Police Departments, LUPE, ARISE, Fuerza Unida, Fuerza del Valle, students from McAllen Memorial High School and students from Lamar.

Throughout the month of January, the Hidalgo County District Attorney’s Office and the Rio Grande Valley Human Trafficking Coalition, which is comprised of Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, victim service agencies, and social service providers, will continue to work together to end human trafficking.

Each year millions of people worldwide are victims of Human Trafficking. The victims are men and women, adults and children; yet, all are denied basic human dignity and freedom. Whether they are trapped in forced sexual or labor exploitation, human trafficking victims cannot walk away but are held in service by force, threats, and fear. 

"This forms of slavery still exist in the modern era," said Rosie Martinez, Victims Unit Director. "We must join together as a community in Hidalgo County to provide a safe haven by protecting victims and prosecuting traffickers."

Fighting human trafficking begins with education by improving victim identification, providing medical and social services, training for first responders, and increasing public awareness. As a community, we can help the men, women, and children who have are suffering overcome the bonds of modern slavery, receive protection and justice, and successfully reclaim their rightful independence.

McAllen Memorial High School's Student Council is hosting the "Mustangs March Against Human Trafficking" 5k/fun run event this Saturday, January 20, 2018. The event begins at 8:30 a.m. at the McAllen Memorial football field. Guest speakers include Rosie Martinez, Hidalgo County Victims Unit Director, John Montemayor, McAllen ISD's Safety Manager, and Tracy Hughes, Founder and Director of Tamar's Tapestry. This event is free and open to the public.

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Human Trafficking resolution
Commissioners Court is joined by Criminal District Attorney Ricardo Rodriguez, Jr., students from McAllen Memorial high school and several local advocacy groups.

San Carlos resident appointed to Area Health Education Center Community Advisory Board

Lydia Maldonado, a longtime resident of San Carlos, was appointed to the Community Advisory Board for Area Health Education Center (AHEC) by Precinct 4 Commissioner Joseph Palacios. The AHEC program is a collaboration between the county and the UTRGV Medical School.

In December, it was announced that the first AHEC would be housed in San Carlos. As part of a grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, AHEC will offer primary healthcare for rural and underserved areas. 

Maldonado joins fellow board members Palacios and Dr. John Ronnau, Senior Associate Dean for UTRGV Medical School.

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Lydia Maldonado
Lydia Maldonado (third from left) appointed by Commissioner Palacios to AHEC community advisory board.

vote here
The Primary Elections will be held on Tuesday, March 6.

Early Voting locations approved

Commissioners Court approved early voting locations for the upcoming Primary Elections in March. Elections Administrator Yvonne Ramon presented the court with a list of 29 early voting locations. Early voting runs from Tuesday, February 20, 2018 through Friday, March 2, 2018, with Election Day being on Tuesday, March 6, 2018. 

Ramon also provided the court with a list of locations for the two early voting mobile units and asked for their input on other locations they would like to add. The last day to register to vote for the primary is Monday, February 5, 2018.

Commissioner Palacios
The town hall meeting with feature updates on current and future Precinct 4 projects.

Precinct 4 to host town hall meeting Jan. 24

Precinct 4 will host a town hall meeting on the UTRGV campus on Wednesday, January 24, 2018. The event will be held at the Student Union Theater from 6 - 8 p.m. 

Commissioner Palacios will discuss current and future projects taking place in Precinct 4. He will also take part in a Q & A session after his presentation.

This event will be free and open to the public.



Did you miss today's meeting? Watch it at 9 p.m. Thursday on KMBH Ch. 10 or on the county's YouTube Channel!

If you missed today's meeting, you can view it on our county website or YouTube Channel by clicking here. You can also watch today's Commissioners Court and Drainage District meetings on KMBH TV, cable channel 10, on Thursday at 9 p.m. Or watch it on Friday morning at 9 a.m. on your local school district channel 17 on cable.

The next regular meeting of Commissioners Court will be held Tuesday, Jan. 23. 

The Drainage District Board of Directors meets at 9 a.m., followed by Commissioners  Court at 9:30 a.m. Meetings are held in the Commissioners Courtroom, located on the first floor of the Courthouse Annex at 100 E. Cano St. in Edinburg.  

View meetings and find other news and events videos on our Hidalgo County YouTube Channel. 
To view a copy of the agenda and related backup documentation for this meeting, visit the county website at

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