La Joya approves ordinance regulating political signs

Ahead of the November city elections, the La Joya city commissioners approved an ordinance regulating political signs. The new regulations are meant to “alleviate traffic control and maintain an undisruptive election environment at city hall,” according to the ordinance which was approved during a special meeting Tuesday afternoon. Addressing the commissioners, City Administrator Jacqueline Bazan referred to the provision in the Texas Election Code which prohibits electioneering within 100 feet of the entrance to a polling location. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Hearing delayed in case about threat to fed official

A judge granted a request to delay a detention hearing for a former U.S. Border Patrol agent accused of threatening a federal agent during a court hearing earlier this month. Daniel Polanco stood before U.S. Magistrate Juan F. Alanis on Tuesday afternoon for a detention hearing related to a recently filed federal charge accusing the former Border Patrol agent of gesturing and threatening a U.S. Department of Homeland Security Investigations agent earlier his month. Polanco’s attorney, Marco De Luna, asked the court to allow Polanco to have his detention hearing in Houston, where he faces the possibility of having his current release in a drug conspiracy case revoked due to the current charge he faces. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Lower bond sought on ex-agent’s pending charges

A former Border Patrol agent accused of holding his 1-year-old child while shooting his girlfriend may seek to have his $1.05 million bond reduced. Ricardo Cepeda Jr., 33, is charged with aggravated assault against a family member, attempted murder, abandoning a child without intent to return and abandoning or endangering child with criminal negligence. Edinburg police arrested Cepeda on March 3 after responding to reports that Edinburg resident Brenda Hernandez, 34, had been found inside a vehicle with gunshot wounds to her back and upper torso outside a residence at 3322 Zoe St. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Texas House Speaker Bonnen bashes cities, counties in secret recording released Tuesday

As the 2017 and 2019 Texas State Legislatures were in session, McAllen Mayor Jim Darling called both an “assault on cities.” Former Mission Mayor Norbeto “Beto” Salinas asked why state leaders were “making life so difficult for us?” On Tuesday, those concerns were bluntly confirmed in secretly recorded audio released by hardline conservative activist Michael Quinn Sullivan, who met with Texas House Speaker Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, in June at the state capitol. “Let me tell you something,” Bonnen said, according to the audio. “In this office, and in the conference room on that end, any mayor or county judge who’s dumbass enough to come meet with me, I told them with great clarity, my goal is for this to be the worst session in the history of the legislature for cities and counties.” Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Jack Ingram, Charley Crockett to headline Pharr’s Christmas Posada

The city of Pharr has announced the entertainment for this year’s annual Christmas Posada. The Christmas Posada is scheduled from 6 to 11 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, in downtown Pharr. Headlining the event will be acclaimed country singer Jack Ingram, whose career spans over 20 years. He is known for such songs as “Wherever You Are,” “Lips of an Angel,” “Maybe She’ll Get Lonely,” and “Barefoot and Crazy,” among others. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

First responders fighting fire at Alamo flea market

Fire fighters and first responders are currently battling a fire at the flea market located off the expressway in Alamo. For the full story, visit themonitor.com.

McAllen hotelier remains out on bond

McALLEN — McAllen hotelier Sunil Wadhwani remains out on bond after an arraignment here in federal court Tuesday. Wadhwani appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge J. Scott Hacker to be arraigned on two felony counts related to a hotel development bribery scheme that has since been tied to an ongoing federal bribery case against several former public officials from Weslaco and Rio Grande City. As he did during an initial appearance last Wednesday, Wadhwani pleaded not guilty to the two charges against him: conspiracy to commit honest services wire fraud, and wire fraud. After the judge asked if he understood the nature of the charges against him and their potential penalties, Wadhwani waived a reading of the indictment in open court. The judge accepted his plea before releasing him from court. Wadhwani remains free on a $50,000 unsecured bond. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Cotton exporter, NAFTA’s future in South Texas among senator’s focus

Fielding requests for assistance from international trade officials in the Rio Grande Valley on Monday, U.S. Sen. John Cornyn toured a large cotton exporter in Weslaco on Monday and hoped for an upcoming Congressional vote on the revised North American Free Trade Agreement. “Here in the Valley, as much as you’re growing, as much as you’re creating new jobs, USMCA is absolutely critical to get done,” Cornyn told a room full of trade stakeholders from across Hidalgo County at Commodities Integrated Logistics of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, as the new NAFTA deal has been called.  “And in a strange way, the hyper-partisanship may incentivize the speaker to take this up and pass it just to demonstrate that she can get that done,” Cornyn added. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Sen. Cornyn gets first-hand look at RGV’s flood control efforts

Sen. John Cornyn spent the first leg of his Rio Grande Valley trip on Monday touring regional flood control projects that are currently under construction but still need funding to complete. Dozens of elected officials and stakeholders from across the Valley joined him on a caravan tour — which included three stops along busy construction sites near Edinburg and La Villa — and then spoke to him directly during a roundtable discussion in Weslaco. This in hopes the Texas Senator can intercede for South Texas and draw down federal funding for ongoing flood mitigation projects during the next legislative session. Cornyn, who is up for re-election in 2020 and has visited the Valley seven times this year, took in as much information as possible as he walked through the mouth of what will one day be the Raymondville Drain near Edinburg Lake, the existing Panchita Structure near La Villa and the nearby Delta Water Reclamation project site. Read the full story at themonitor.com.

Child porn suspect turns himself in at Roma port

After nearly six months on the run from law enforcement, a Roma man turned himself in Monday morning on charges related to child pornography. Apolonio Garcia IV, 20, turned himself in at the Roma Port of Entry around 11 a.m. Monday, after which he was turned over to the Starr County Special Crimes Unit, according to Brenda Lee, law enforcement liaison for the Starr County Attorney’s Office. Garcia is charged with two counts of possession or promotion of child pornography. Read more at The Monitor.com.