The Board of Commissioners of the City of Pharr met for a special meeting on Thursday, May 23, 2019, and considered an agenda that included the following highlights:
May 19-26 Proclaimed as National Public Works Week
The Pharr City Commission approved a proclamation designating the week of May 19-26, 2019, as National Public Works Week. The city recognized the Public Works Department and personnel for their dedication to the community and acknowledged the vital and integral role they play in ensuring that the city and its citizens have a healthy, safe, and clean community to live, work, and play. Public Works Director Ricardo Pedraza and staff accepted the proclamation on behalf of the department. “It’s an honor to work for the city and citizens of Pharr,” said Pedraza while accepting the proclamation.
City Recognizes PSJA ISD Project HEAL Graduates
The Pharr City Commission recognized PSJA ISD graduates who are part of the Project HEAL Pilot Program. Project Health Education and Leadership, a collaborative effort between Region One Education Service Center, Doctor’s Hospital at Renaissance (DHR), South Texas College, PSJA ISD and two neighboring school districts was created to increase the Health-integrated (STEM-design) Nursing competencies of under-represented students, specifically students from minority backgrounds through creativity, innovation, and engagement activities that promote diversity in education by creating a culturally diverse Nursing Workforce pipeline prepared for the 21st century and beyond.
Dr. Eliza Alvarado, Region One Project HEAL 2 Coordinator, introduced future nurses of the region that are part of the PSJA ISD Project HEAL Program. Students recognized will be graduating from PSJA ISD and have already been accepted to nursing programs at UTRGV, Texas A&M, and STC. “I want to emphasize the importance of the partnerships we have with the city, schools, and workforce,” Dr. Alvarado said. “This program has proven successful and we are ecstatic to see our first cohort of students enter college ready to begin the BSN program and the next phase of their nursing careers,” she continued. With the success of this program, Region One has been able to apply for grant funding to expand Project HEAL (now HEAL2) into more school districts throughout the region.
“We are very excited and proud of this initiative that we started with DHR and Region One, especially because we are able to accelerate educational attainment as our students will go directly from high school into nursing programs,” stated Dr. Daniel P. King, Superintendent of Schools at PSJA ISD. “These students have spent the last two summers in the hospital doing rotations, rigorous work, met all the qualifications, and passed their tests to begin nursing programs here in our region,” he added. “We cannot be any prouder of you all, this is a great career and we cannot wait to see the great things you will accomplish with your lives,” echoed Mayor Hernandez.
Evelyn Rocha Signs Letter of Intent to Work for the City of Pharr as a Telecommunications Officer
Pharr Mayor Ambrosio Hernandez, M.D., and City of Pharr Officials held a signing ceremony for Evelyn Rocha, a senior at PSJA North Early College High School. Much like a student signing a letter of intent to attend a university or play for a team, this ceremony signifies Evelyn’s intent to work for the City of Pharr once she becomes eligible to do so in August, upon turning 18 and meeting eligibility requirements required of the position. Rocha intends to balance a career as a Telecommunications Officer with the city’s Public Safety Communications Department and her academic studies as she pursues a college degree. The City of Pharr Public Safety Communications Department has collaborated and partnered with the PSJA North Career and Technical Education (CTE) Telecommunications program for over ten years. Through the partnership, students have the opportunity to learn about careers in Telecommunications as they intern and learn from employees at the City of Pharr Public Safety Communications Department. Evelyn has participated in the program throughout high school and has shown an interest in becoming a Telecommunications Officer.
MADD Recognizes City with Community Partner Award
Chief of Police Jose Luengo announced that Mother’s Against Drunk Driving (MADD) awarded the City of Pharr with the Community Partner Award for their continued commitment to the organization and presented the City Commission with the plaque. The Pharr Police Department and Officers were also recognized at the event. Lieutenant Joel Robles was presented with the Diamond Hero Award and Officer Israel De La Rosa was given the Enforcement Hero Award. “Our Pharr PD really does a great job engaging, educating, and working with our community and we commend them for their outstanding dedication to our city and citizens,” said Commissioner Bobby Carillo.
Pharr City Manager Alex Meade announced to the commission that Pharr ranked No.1 this month compared to 9 other cities in the Valley in sales tax collections– 18.36% compared to last May 2018 collections and also ranked No.1 in collections year-to-date. The city continues to show an increase in sales tax growth- in the amount of $2,099,316 from this point last year, an increase of 17.60%.
Pharr PD to Participate in Click It or Ticket Campaign
Commissioners approved the participation of the Pharr Police Department in the 2019 TxDOT Click It or Ticket Campaign. May is Seat Belt Safety Awareness Month, and law enforcement officers are stepping up their efforts to ticket anyone not wearing a seat belt, especially at night. Wearing a seatbelt can prevent serious injury and death in a crash. The Click It or Ticket enforcement mobilization is taking place all over the state from May 17 through June 5, 2019.