bloggin' all things brownsville

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

City Receives $800,000 from Community Development Grant Program

WASHINGTON--Today, U.S. Rep. Solomon P. Ortiz announced more than $800,000 in funding awarded from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to the City of Brownsville from the Community Development Grant Program.

“Through our Community Development Grant Program, we continue to stimulate our economy, while making jobs available for residents of South Texas,” Ortiz said. “These funds can create suitable living environments, provide affordable housing and create economic opportunities in Brownsville.”

The City of Brownsville will receive $881,400, according to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

“Today, I am proud to announce that HUD has moved quickly to obligate more than $10 billion in Recovery Act funds,” said Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan. “Nearly three quarters of our Recovery Act funds are now available to communities across the country and are being put to work creating jobs, making homes more energy efficient, and strengthening neighborhoods.”

Brownsville is one of 500 communities to receive funding totaling $620 million in the Community Development Grant Program.

Under the Recovery Act, recipients apply for funding for priority projects for which contracts can be awarded through a bidding process within 120 days of the grant agreement.

The Recovery Act made available a total of $1 billion through the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) Program. On July 16, HUD announced the first round of grants under this program to nearly 700 communities, totaling $360 million. With today’s announcement, all $1 billion are now in the hands of communities.

For more information about this grant, go to



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Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Report Dissects Money Chase in Guv's Race

A new Texans for Public Justice report, "Senator v. Governor," analyzes the first $29 million raised by GOP gubernatorial candidates Kay Bailey Hutchison and Rick Perry. The report is the most comprehensive look yet at their rival fundraising machines.

"Senator v. Governor" finds evidence of a gender gap, with women supplying 21 percent of Hutchison's funds and 6 percent of Governor Perry's cash. Hutchison also leads Perry in the number of overall contributions--including those from Texans.

The new report allows readers to download the full list of itemized contributions for both candidates.

Check out the report. Click here.

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Saturday, September 12, 2009

Brownsville Appreciation Days at the Gladys Porter Zoo/Oceanarium

The Gladys Porter Zoo is offering an entire weekend of admission discounts and events in appreciation for all residents living inside the Brownsville city limits through Sunday. Residents can visit the Zoo for the special admission price of $2.

Residents will need to show proof of residency. Identification such as a driver’s license, utility receipt or school ID will suffice. At least one family member must show proof of residency at the gate.


Rutledge Still Rocks

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Friday, September 11, 2009

I received this today in my Yahoo e-mail account. Interesting, but considering it's an education-related commercial, can we please use a basic spell/grammar check?

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Tuesday, September 8, 2009

TODAY: Watch President Obama's Live Address to Schools

Whether you like it or not, President Obama IS the leader of this great nation. I don't understand the big deal folks are making about watching his 11 a.m. address to America's students.

His prepared remarks are already posted. Click here.

Here's an excerpt:

I’ve talked a lot about your government’s responsibility for setting high standards, supporting teachers and principals, and turning around schools that aren’t working where students aren’t getting the opportunities they deserve.

But at the end of the day, we can have the most dedicated teachers, the most supportive parents, and the best schools in the world – and none of it will matter unless all of you fulfill your responsibilities. Unless you show up to those schools; pay attention to those teachers; listen to your parents, grandparents and other adults; and put in the hard work it takes to succeed.


Proposed 2010 City of Brownsville Budget

To review the proposed City of Brownsville 2010 budget, click here.

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Monday, September 7, 2009

Brownsville Appreciation Days at Glady Porter Zoo Sept. 11-13

I received a behind-the-scenes tour of our Gladys Porter Zoo last week, and I gained a greater appreciation for everything the zoo offers Brownsville with its limited resources. Many do not know that the Zoo is a city-owned facility that annually draws more than 390,000 visitors.

The Zoo serves as a living classroom with its unique plants and animals, provides habitat for resident and migratory birds and represents an ecotourism site for the Texas birding trail. More than 45 percent of its visitors are non-Brownsville visitors. As compared to other city-owned zoos such as the Dallas Zoo, the Texas Zoo, the Houston Zoo, the El Paso Zoo, etc., the Gladys Porter Zoo's receives the least amount of city funds to supplement its budget.

All residents living inside Brownsville city limits will be able to visit the Zoo Sept. 11-13 for the special admission price of $2. Residents will need to show proof of residency. Identification such as a driver’s license, utility receipt or school ID will suffice. At least one family member must show proof of residency at the gate. For more information, call (956) 546-7187 or visit


Dago: Taxation, No Representation

At last week's City Commission meeting, Brownsville resident Dagoberto Barrera provided us, the City Commission, with homework. A copy of an Aug. 25 Freedom News Service column by Tibor R. Machan, Taxation, No Representation, was distributed to each commissioner. I took a moment to snap a photo. We need more engaged members of this community with as much passion as Dago.

I found an online copy of the column for your review. Click here.

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