Hearing on removal of RGC school trustee delayed until October

A hearing scheduled for later this month on the petition to remove a Rio Grande City school board member from his position, was postponed until late October.

A hearing on the possible removal of Daniel J. Garcia from the school board was previously set for the morning of Sept. 20, but in a motion for continuance, his attorneys stated Garcia would be in Dallas from Sept. 20 to 23 to attend a convention held by the Texas Association of School Administrators and the Texas Association of School Boards.

“This is a prepaid conference that he is required to attend,” the motion stated.

Although, the attorneys only requested a one-week continuance, the hearing was rescheduled for Oct. 25.

The parties were notified of the new date Wednesday, according to Starr County Attorney Victor Canales, who is representing the state against Garcia.

The petition was filed in May by Ricardo Lopez, a former employee of the school district, citing a federal indictment filed against Garcia in April as part of the basis for Garcia’s removal from the school board.

The federal indictment is related to an investigation into an alleged bribery scheme surrounding the city of Weslaco’s water treatment facilities.

Garcia pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Lopez also cites allegations that Garcia, an attorney, abused his position on the school board so that he’d be hired for the defense team on a murder case.

However, Garcia has never been charged or arrested on those allegations.

A hearing on the petition was held on July 19 before visiting state District Judge David Stith. However, the case could not move forward that day because Garcia had not yet been properly served.

Garcia was eventually served with a citation on July 24, according to court records.

bereniceg@themonitor.com