From the daily archives: Tuesday, November 29, 2011

By Betty Predmore

Over 300 people gathered at Holt Park on Thanksgiving Day to enjoy the delicious meal served by members of Turning Point Ministries and Turning Point Life Center.  Holt Park had a festive look as guests gathered around the beautifully decorated tables and enjoyed the music and testimonies shared throughout the day.
The day was shared by family and friends of Turning Point, along with many of Holtville’s winter visitors and other families in need of a warm Thanksgiving meal.  Even through the light drizzle of rain, there was joy and celebration, and a feeling of true Thanksgiving among all those who gathered to take part in the 13th annual Thanksgiving at Holt Park. Turning Point would like to thank all of those that helped make this possible.
To continue the blessings this holiday season, Turning Point will be hosting their annual Food Basket Give Away on Saturday, December 17th.  This annual event has been renamed the Mike Johnson Memorial Food Basket Give Away in honor of the late Mike Johnson, Turning Point Director, who began this event so many years ago.  Being one of his favorite days of the year, it is only fitting that he went to be with the Lord on the date of last year’s Give Away, which was December 18th.  Anyone interested in signing up to receive a food basket can contact Jim at 791-1913 or Turning Point Men’s Home at 356-4307.

 

Calexico, Calif. — U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Calexico downtown port of entry arrested a 19-year-old male Mexican citizen after they discovered 52 pounds of cocaine hidden in the vehicle he was driving when he entered the port Sunday.

Seized Cocaine
Calexico CBP Officers Seize Cocaine
Photo Credit: Photo Courtesy of U.S. Customs and Border Protection

The seizure occurred at about 5:15 p.m. when a CBP officer conducting inspections of vehicles and travelers referred a red 1992 Chevrolet Camaro for further examination.

During the intensive inspection, a canine team was utilized and the detector dog alerted to the rear area of the vehicle. A search of the vehicle led officers to the discovery of 21 wrapped packages of cocaine concealed inside a non-factory metal compartment within the rear bumper. The estimated street value of the narcotic is approximately $468,000.

CBP officers turned custody of the driver, a resident of Mexicali, Baja California, over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents who then transported him to the Imperial County Jail where he currently awaits arraignment.

CBP placed an immigration hold on the Mexican citizen to initiate removal from the United States at the conclusion of his criminal proceedings.

CBP seized the narcotic and vehicle.

 

WIND ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 8 AM MST /7 AM PST/ TO 7 PM MST /6 PM PST/ THURSDAY…

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN PHOENIX HAS ISSUED A WIND ADVISORY… WHICH IS IN EFFECT THURSDAY FROM 8 AM MST… 7 AM PST TO 7 PM MST… 6 PM PST.

* AFFECTED AREA: THE LOWER COLORADO RIVER VALLEY INCLUDING FAR EASTERN RIVERSIDE COUNTY AND EASTERN IMPERIAL COUNTY IN SOUTHEAST CALIFORNIA… WESTERN YUMA COUNTY INCLUDING YUMA… WESTERN LA PAZ COUNTY… AND THE NORTHEAST THIRD OF IMPERIAL COUNTY INCLUDING THE CHOCOLATE MOUNTAIN RANGE RIDGE TOPS AND SOUTHWEST FACING SLOPES ALONG THE IMPERIAL VALLEY.

* LOCATIONS INCLUDE: YUMA… BLYTHE… EHRENBERG… PARKER… AND INTERSTATE 10 IN WESTERN LA PAZ WESTWARD INTO EASTERN RIVERSIDE COUNTY.

* TIMING: THURSDAY FROM 8 AM MST… 7 AM PST TO 7 PM MST… 6 PM PST.

* WINDS: FROM THE NORTH SUSTAINED AT 25 TO 35 MPH WITH GUSTS BETWEEN 35 AND 45 MPH.

* IMPACTS:TRAVEL MAY BE DIFFICULT… ESPECIALLY ALONG EAST TO WEST ORIENTED ROADS… AND ESPECIALLY FOR HIGH PROFILE VEHICLES. SMALL UNSECURED OBJECTS MAY BECOME AIRBORNE.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS…

A WIND ADVISORY MEANS THAT SUSTAINED WIND SPEEDS OF BETWEEN 30 AND 40 MPH ARE EXPECTED… OR WIND GUSTS OF BETWEEN 40 AND 58 MPH. WINDS THIS STRONG CAN MAKE DRIVING DIFFICULT… ESPECIALLY FOR HIGH PROFILE VEHICLES. IN ADDITION… STRONG WINDS OVER DESERT AREAS COULD RESULT IN BRIEFLY LOWERED VISIBILITIES TO WELL UNDER A MILE AT TIMES IN BLOWING DUST OR BLOWING SAND. USE EXTRA CAUTION.

 

By Mario Conde

The Calexico Planning Commission approved the Grand Plaza project at their Monday meeting that will bring jobs and brand name stores to the border city.

Its been a long time coming for the Charles Company who has been working with the City of Calexico for more than five years to develop an outlet shopping center that will be located on the south side of West 2nd Street, approximately ½ mile west of the International Port of Entry and downtown Calexico, and bounded to the south by the U.S-Mexico border.

The construction process for the proposed project would consist of two phases. The first phase of construction would include the development of 12 buildings with approximately 241,625 square feet of building area and a storage/maintenance building with 6,400 square feet. Phase I would be developed on the eastern side of the project site and is proposed for construction.

Phase II would include the development of 12 buildings with approximately 320,025 square feet of building area and a storage/maintenance building with approximately 6,400 square feet on the western side of the project site. Construction of Phase II is proposed to begin and end within six years of the Phase I construction start date.

The project applicant proposes to develop the site with a total of approximately 561,650 square feet of commercial/retail uses. To accomplish this, the project required a general plan amendment to change the land use classification from industrial to commercial highway, a zone change for the portions of the site that are currently zoned open space and industrial to commercial highway, a tentative subdivision tract map to divide the project site into six parcels, development review approval subject to the Municipal Code, West 2nd Street road re-alignment and widening, and an Owner Participation and Disposition and Development Agreement with the City of Calexico Redevelopment Agency.

Project Consultant Ron Holley said that this project contemplates to have tenants such as GAP, American Eagle, Aeropostal, Nike, Guess, Ralph Lauren, Levi, and others. The $94 million dollar project is expected to bring over $140 million dollars in annual sales tax revenue to the City of Calexico. Holley said that Grand Plaza will have 268 full time jobs and 617 working part-time. The project applicants already submitted plans the City and are hoping to break ground and start construction by March 2012.

 

                   Local officials met with DHS Secretary Napolitano on jobs and public safety

 

Washington, D.C. – Today, Mayor Luis J. Castro and Chief James Neujahr met with senior Administration officials – including an hour-long discussion with Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano in the White House – to talk about enhancing public safety and economic development in the U.S.-Mexico border region.

Castro and Neujahr, along with Economic Development Specialist Julia Osuna, joined a delegation of border sheriffs, police chiefs, and other officials from the Southwest who traveled to share their on-the-ground perspectives, successes lowering crime rates in their communities, and ideas on how to overcome existing challenges. In addition to Secretary Napolitano, the group met with Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Alan Bersin and representatives from the National Economic Council, the Domestic Policy Council, the Office of Public Engagement, the Department of State, and the Department of Commerce.

In the morning, they also discussed the urgent need for Congress to appropriate more money for local law enforcement jobs. Additional funding is sorely needed in Calexico, where Neujahr recently had to cut 25 positions because of reduced cross-border commerce. President Obama’s American Jobs Act would address this need by allocating $5 billion for state and local law enforcement and first responders, creating 40,000 new law enforcement jobs around the country and mandating expedited hiring through the Department of Justice’s COPS (Community Oriented Policing Services) Program.

 
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