From the daily archives: Monday, December 21, 2009

Giselle Romero  1st place regional competitionGiselle Romero participated in the local competition of the NBA FIT/WNBA FIT CHALLENGE hosted by the Calexico Recreation Dept. in late Sept.  She was the local champion in the 13 & 14 year old girls division showcasing her skills in five stations: jump rope, wall pass, defensive slide, speed revolution and line sprints.

This gave her the opportunity to advance to the 2009-2010 Los Angeles Clippers NBA/WNBA FIT regional’s competition on Saturday, Dec. 19, 2009 at the Veteran’s Sports Complex in Carson, Ca.

The regional competition tip-off with a fun and exciting fitness clinic with NBA’s player Sean Rooks as the special guest speaker.  Giselle Romero was given an official NBA/WNBA FIT Challenge Regional T-shirt and a first place regional plaque for her efforts.

All regional champions will be contacted in late January concerning advancement.  Only two regional champions with the highest overall score in each gender and age group will be invited to the National Finals, which will be held February 12-14, 2010 at the NBA All-Star Jam Session presented by Adidas in Dallas, Texas.  Congratulations to Giselle and Good Luck !!!

Jamie Ann Chew

Sports Coordinator


2010 Imperial Valley Census Count To Begin This Spring

By Luke Phillips
Starting in the spring of 2010 Imperial Valley residents will be receiving forms in the mail, or knocks on their door, to be counted in the 2010 nation-wide census.
Residents of the United States have been counted every ten years since 1790, as stipulated in the Constitution, for the purpose of distributing federal funding and determining each state’s number of seats in the House of Representatives.
The only major change this time around is that the head of each household will be asked to complete and return a 10-question survey. Those who don’t return the form will receive a visit from a census taker who will ask the questions in person.
The questionnaire takes about 10 minutes to complete and asks for demographic information including whether a home is rented or owned and the names, gender, ages and race of others living in the home. The information collected is not shared with anyone and is protected by federal law. The penalty for divulging census information includes a $250,000 fine or 5 years in prison, or both.
Census recruiters will also be in the area during the first three months of 2010 to hire hundreds of temporary workers to collect census information. Census jobs have flexible hours and can pay up to $18.50 an hour.
The Census Bureau requires each applicant to pass a background check and a multiple-choice exam that tests reading, following written instructions, basic math and map reading.
Those hired are required to complete four days of paid training, which can be scheduled for weekend or evening hours, and will be assigned to work in the community where they reside. Bilingual speakers and U.S. residents are given preference.
January through March 2010, census recruiters will be holding workshops and testing in Calexico on Mondays, Ocotillo on Tuesdays, Holtville on Wednesdays and El Centro on Fridays. Call your local EDD or One Stop employment center for more information or to reserve a seat. You can also visit the census Web site at


By Mario Conde

One of the top Mexican drug cartel dealers was killed last Wednesday in a bloody shootout in Mexico that left three dead.
Arturo Beltran Leyva died Wednesday during a shootout with Mexican naval authorities, along with five suspected members of the Sinaloa-based cartel.
The shootout took place in an apartment complex in Cuernavaca, the capitol of Morelos, and lasted over two hours. The firefight included drug gang members tossing grenades at the troops.
After the death Beltran Leyva, aka the “boss of bosses”, revelations over the drug lord’s control of Morelos begin to surface. In the state of Morelos, Leyva manipulated civil and military authorities in at least half of its municipalities. It was in Cuernavaca where Beltran settled and where he was ultimately confronted by the Mexican Navy.
His power and influence was felt from Colombia to the United States and his operations have allowed him to infiltrate to the most important National Security Institutions.
The Mexican Government considered him to be the highest leader in his cartel and was one most wanted criminals in Mexico. Beltran Leyva’s brother, Alfredo, was arrested January 8, 2008 by the Mexican Army along with two other brothers.
Because of this capture, Beltran Leyva blamed Sinaloa Cartel leader Joaquin Guzman Loera. This caused many bloody shootouts between the Cartels in Sinaloa that ended with the assassination of Guzman Loera’s son.
In 2008, the Beltran Leyva cartel joined a criminal organization called “Los Zetas” who operated in the Gulf of Mexico. This move forced the U.S. Authorities to support the Mexican Government in searching for Beltran Leyva. Through the years, the Beltran Leyva cartel was able to expand their presence in states such as Tamaulipas, Guerrero, Chiapas, Queretaro, Quintana Roo, Sonora, Sinaloa, and Mexico City.
President Felipe Calderon declared this as a major victory against rampant drug trafficking and violence, has left many authorities and residents expecting more bloodshed.
Popular signer Ramon Ayala of the band Bravos del Norte will be held in custody for up to 40 days while investigators decide whether he should be charged in connection with organized crime. Ayala was taken into custody Dec. 11 when the military raided a mansion where they say a drug cartel Christmas party was being held.
Ayala’s lawyer, who denied his client has any ties to the Beltran Leyva Cartel, said the band was performing at the party but will be investigated by authorities since they believe Ayala could be involved in criminal activity and money laundry, among other crimes.


By Mario Conde

YolandaCotaThe Calexico High School Bulldogs will be recognized as number #1 in the nation in AP Spanish Language and College readiness for 2009.

In a press release made by Calexico High School principal Gilbert Barraza, he said that Calexico High School The College Board AP Report to The Nation, Will Be Announcing and Featuring Calexico High School in their 2010 February Issue. The announcement will highlight Calexico’s high proficiency in the Spanish AP test for this year and putting the Bulldogs as number one in the United States.

The Calexico High School Principal congratulated AP Spanish teacher Yolanda Cota and Ana Montes for good job in Calexico and called them a “dynamite Team.”

“The Calexico United School District faculty and staff have created and sustained a College Going Initiative committed to maximizing our student’s potential.” Barraza said.

He also highlighted that the district is 98% of the Calexico Unified School District enter kindergarten with little or no English and additionally 88% of them are economically disadvantage. More than three fourths of the students have limited English proficiency and are classified English learners, he said.

Barraza also mentioned that US News and World Report declares Calexico High School a Silver Medal School winner with a College Readiness Index of 25.9. Calexico High School has been awarded with 12 Gates Millennium Scholars over the last four years and has averaged an 82% college going rate to two and four year institutions such as U.C. Berkeley, U.C. San Diego, U.C. Davis, UCLA, U.C. Riverside and Stanford to name a few.


By Betty Predmore

DSC_0066Turning Point Ministries held their annual Food Basket Give-Away on Saturday, December 19th. Church members along with resents of the Men’s and Woman’s Homes were on hand to hand out food baskets that included lasagna, canned goods, candy, beans, rice, sugar, flour, tortillas, and produce. The baskets were topped off with warm scarves and small toys. In addition to the baskets, household items and clothing were also given out throughout the afternoon. There was delicious hot cocoa and hot apple cider to enjoy along with a true spirit of giving that was a blessing to all who participated.

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