From the daily archives: Monday, December 14, 2009

The street was aglow on Friday night in the city of Imperial as they celebrated the season with a display of creative and amusing vehicles covered with thousands of Christmas Lights to delight all of the children that were out to get a glimpse at Santa



Brawley Welcomes New Mayor and Council Members at Ceremony.


By Chris Furguson


Mayor KelleyAt a ceremony held at the Brawley Elks Lodge on December 11, 2009, the Brawley City Council said goodbye to two long-time members while welcoming two new members and a new Mayor.


Esteban “Steve” Vasquez, the former mayor of Brawley, along with councilmember John Benson, left the council while new members Sam Couchman and Miguel C. Miranda were sworn in and appointed as members of the council.


Benson leaves after his second stint of twelve years on the Brawley City Council, the first from 1968 until 1980 and the second one from 1997 until 2009.  In between stints on the City Council, Benson also served on the IID Board of Directors.


Vasquez leaves after sixteen years of service to the Council.  Vasquez also served on the Brawley Planning Commission for five years prior to his election to the higher office.


In his final remarks as Mayor, Vasquez thanked City staff for their help during his tenure on the council.  “We [the Council] provide direction, but you make the city run,” said Vasquez.


At that point, Couchman and Miranda were sworn in as council members by City Clerk Alma Benavides.  This led to the election of Ryan Kelley, whose grandfather had been mayor of Brawley over 50 years ago, as Mayor of Brawley.


Don Campbell was chosen as Mayor Pro Tem on the very next vote.


Kelley, Couchman and Miranda were then given an opportunity to speak about their new positions in City government.


Awards were later presented to the Benson and Vasquez for their service to the community, including plaques from the city and a proclamation from Assemblyman Manuel Perez and a scrapbook of events the Mayor attended throughout his term as Mayor.


wrestling 2Brawley High Holds First Home Wrestling Meet of 09-10 Season


On December 9, 2009, the Brawley Union High School Wildcats held their first meet of the Winter season.


The meet was a three-team affair that included the home Brawley Wildcats, the Steel Canyon Cougars and the Cibola Raiders of Yuma.


The first match began with Brawley wrestling against Steel Canyon with Alonzo Osuna winning the 103 lbs division by walkover.  Brawley’s Arthur Carmona, at 112, won the next match against Cougar Jesse Cardenas with a 9-1 major decision while at 119, Jonathan Sandoval lost to Jake Lincoln with an 8-0 major decision shutout.


The meet continued with five consecutive Brawley wins, starting Oscar Lizarraga winning a 14-9 decision in the 125 division over Brady Beamon, followed Angel Carrillo winning over Ryan Dolittle by a 7-3 decision at 130, Mitchell Maya going over Adam Cham 6-2 in 135, Sawyer Smith defeating Dylan Lincoln 6-4 in the 140 division and J.L. Mayo taking out Jacob Dunning 11-6 at 145.


Steel Canyon took the next two matches as Cougar Todd Graff defeated Wildcat Anthony Carmona at 152 with a 3-1 decision and Michael Durkam took Raven Smith to a 13-4 major decision at 160.


Brawley took the next two matches by pinfall as JJ Solorzano pinned Nick Pastore in the third period with 33 seconds left on the clock in the 171 lbs match and Ray Liston going over Alex Trevo 35 seconds into the third period of the 189 lbs. division.


Steel Canyon took the 215 lbs match as Anthony Cazares defeated Brawley’s Abel Arias by a pinfall in the third period while Brawley finished strong with a first period pin in the heavyweights as Joseph Gueler defeated Valin Kattoula.


Cibola and Steel Canyon then wrestled the second match, with Cibola winning the match 61-4.  However, due to the time difference and the late hour, Cibola’s match with Brawley had to be postponed until a later date.


Brawley’s weekend performance at the “Bash at the Beach” tournament scored the school a second place overall, with six wrestlers placing in the top six of their division.  They included:


119:  Alfonso Osuna in 1st place.

125:  Oscar Lizzaraga in 6th place

130:  Mitchell Maya in 3rd place

135:  J.L. Mayo in 3rd place

140:  Anthony Carmona in 3rd place

152:  Eddie Ruiz in 4th place


Central Union placed 38th with Joey Creiglow taking 4th at 171.


Palo Verde tied for 43rd place.


After another home three-way dual meet vs Palo Verde and Coachella Valley on Wednesday, Brawley’s next home meet will be on January 20 when they face the Calexico Bulldogs.


Calexico Port Officials Implement Traffic Strategies to Minimize Wait Times


Calexico, Calif. – U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials with the Port of Calexico are adding vehicle lanes to ease vehicle congestion and wait times during the holiday season.

calexico portCBP officials are experiencing an increase in border traffic as the holiday season continues and as a result will be adding an additional three passenger vehicles lanes to more effectively and efficiently screen vehicles through the Calexico East port of entry during peak travel days beginning this weekend through January 3, 2010. 

Some vehicles entering at the Calexico East port will be directed into the commercial facility and processed through the truck lanes on Sundays between the hours of 9 a.m. and midnight when the facility is typically closed to commercial traffic. Three truck lanes located within the commercial facility brings the number of available lanes to 11 for travelers crossing through the Calexico East port which normally operates eight passenger vehicle lanes.

Port managers worked with their counterparts in Mexico to increase their ability to screen and process more vehicles and people during peak travel days and times, which typically occur on Sundays.

“We implemented this strategy this past Sunday and the results were positive,” said Billy Whitford, Calexico port director. “The process allowed CBP to screen more vehicles and passengers through the Calexico East port without compromising our enforcement mission.”

To ease their screening and entry into the United States, travelers are advised to be prepared by having all documents ready before approaching an officer, answer all questions truthfully, and declaring everything acquired from foreign. Travelers are also advised to plan their trips around the peak travel days and times.

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