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Brian McIntyre and Oscar Garcia.

New county courthouse nears completion of design and development

Jacobs Project Managers Brian McIntyre and Oscar Garcia updated the court on the status of the new Hidalgo County Courthouse.

During the presentation, McIntyre went through a timeline of completed and upcoming steps in the project's progress. Among the items discussed was the project's design development phase.

"We're near completion on the design and development phase and have got a lot done," said McIntyre. "We revised a courtroom mock-up that will be ready for viewing by the end of July."

Garcia said the Board of Judges unanimously approved the design of the revised courtroom. Plans for parking during the construction phase are expected to be presented to Commissioners Court at the July 31 meeting, which will allow the county a full month to publicize the parking plan to the community. 

"We are in the final stages of the parking initiative and will be ready to send out a completed plan to the public a month before we break ground," McIntyre said.

Groundbreaking for the project is expected to take place in early October.

For courthouse updates click here.

Human Trafficking
Commissioners Court unanimously proclaimed July 30 as World Day Against Trafficking in Persons.  The RGV Anti-Human Trafficking Taskforce is lead under the administration of Ricardo Rodriguez Jr. HC DA. This taskforce is only open to law enforcement officers, prosecutors and direct victim service providers in Hidalgo, Cameron, Willacy, Starr and Brooks Counties.
DA Ricardo Rodriguez Jr.

Anti-Human Trafficking Taskforce educates public on the dangers of human trafficking

At Tuesday's meeting, Commissioners Court unanimously approved a proclamation in favor of education efforts that aid in the prevention of human trafficking, proclaiming July 30 as World Day Against Trafficking In Persons.

Accepting the resolution was Hidalgo County Criminal District Attorney Ricardo Rodriguez Jr. 

"We're here to spread awareness on the dangers of human trafficking," said Rodriguez.  "We've come together as an Anti-Human Trafficking Taskforce with dignified members of my staff, the Office of the Governor of Texas, Homeland Security, and others to inform the public on what is human trafficking."   

World Day Against Trafficking In Persons provides an opportunity for Hidalgo County to renew its commitment in combating human trafficking in all its forms.

Human trafficking is a global tragedy. Combating it requires international, national, state, and local action. There are an estimated 40.3 million victims of human trafficking worldwide.

Among those present and part of the taskforce are Chief Salazar with the U.S. Border Patrol, Chief Briones with Alton P.D., Chief Deputy Mario Lopez with Hidalgo County Sherrif's Office, Commander Sinfuentes with H.I.D.T.A, Chief Hope Palacios with Special Crimes, Chief Maxine Longoria with the Civil Division, Chief O.J. Esquivel with the Felony Division, Chief Eric Schrieber with the Hot Checks Division, Constable Pct. 3, Pharr Police Department, Fuerza del Valle, and the DA's Victims Unit staff.

A news conference and informational fair will take place on Thursday, July 26 at the Pharr Events Center to educate the community on human trafficking prevention. The press conference will begin at 4 p.m. and will include guest speakers from federal, state, and local stakeholders. The informational fair will be held from 4 - 8 p.m. It is free and open to the public.

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budget officer
HC Budget Officer Sergio Cruz.

Hidalgo County 2019 budget process underway

Hidalgo County Budget Officer Sergio Cruz briefed the court with an overview of the 2019 budget process.

"The development of the 2019 budget is underway," said Cruz. "We plan to meet with each department and recommend a budget for their review."

Development criteria for the 2019 Budget includes, but is not limited to, maintaining the current operating budget, terminating grant funded positions when grants expire, and adding no new projects unless funding is coming from new sources of revenue and one hundred percent of the cost is identified.

A calendar consisting of presentations, hearings, and deliberations that will lead to the county's adopted budget on Sept. 25 is available for viewing on the county's website. Click here to view the 2019 Budget Process Calendar.

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walk across texas
L-R: Health and Human Services Administrative Officer Eduardo “Eddie” Olivarez, Health and Human Services Coordinator Rick Salinas, Operations Manager Jaime Salazar, Accounts Payable Specialist III Maria A. Perez , Commissioners Court, Safety Officer II Esteban Mata, Administrative Assistant IV Esther Mireles, and Accounts Payable Specialist III Rosa Arce.

Drainage District team "The Walkaholics" win Walk Across Texas Challenge

Congratulations to Drainage District #1 staff on winning the Walk Across Texas Challenge. The "Walkaholics," logged a total of 4,560 miles in an 8 week period.

As a county, a total of 30,066 miles were walked by all participants.

"This is a fun way to stay fit and to motivate employees to engage in more physical activity," said Health and Human Services Coordinator Rick Salinas.  "As a county, we were in 16th place out of 20 in the State of Texas."

The WAT challenge is part of the HidalGO FIT Wellness program implemented by the Hidalgo Health and Human Services. The comprehensive wellness program focuses on preventive health and lifestyle modifications and encourages employees to focus on key health behaviors such as increasing physical activity.

“The idea behind this wellness program is that encouraging healthy habits now can prevent or lower the risk of serious health conditions later in life," said Health and Human Services Administrative Officer Eduardo "Eddie" Olivarez.

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The Courthouse was built in 1954 for five courts serving a rural community with a population of 168,000. 

County orders environmental cleaning in courthouse following two-day rain event

Commissioners Court Executive Officer Valde Guerra reported that repairs have been made to the Hidalgo County Courthouse in lieu of water intrusion following the two-day June severe weather event. 

"There was work done over the weekend to the third floor of the courthouse," said Guerra. "Water intrusion caused some areas of high humidity on the third floor inside County Courts 1, 2, and 4, and the Probate Court.  

Guerra reported that an environmental cleaning of the third floor was completed and all humidity levels are well within the respective range now.  

"Facilities management did an inspection of all air handlers and coils, they installed a bypass valve and the coil is now receiving chilled water," Guerra said.

Guerra also reported that Facilities Management is currently working with an authorized third-party vendor to address the roof situation where the water entered the third floor of the courthouse.

"We will continue to monitor the situation, but for now it's as good as it can be," Guerra said.

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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 missetoday's meeting, you can view it on our county website or YouTube Channel by clicking hereYou 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.

The next regular meeting of Commissioners Court  will be on Tuesday, July 31, 2018. 
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 III 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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