July 26, 2014

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Congressional Report

Dear Friends,

Every week, I send you an update on my latest work in Washington and Texas.  Please read about a few of my recent activities below and make sure to share any thoughts you may have with me on my Facebook or Twitter pages.

Meeting with Sen. Cornyn and City Officials in the Rio Grande Valley

​I met with Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) and local officials in the Rio Grande Valley this week to discuss how to handle the recent immigration crisis. Our discussions surrounding Sen. Cornyn and my recent legislation, the HUMANE Act, were productive and we are taking steps forward together.

This week, I joined Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) to meet with local officials from the Rio Grande Valley where we discussed the ongoing immigration crisis and the Humane Act. I am committed to working closely with local officials in the Valley to hear exactly what they need and their suggestions are to address the crisis. I would like to thank the Senator for joining me and Mayor Beto Salinas for welcoming us in Mission.

What They Are Saying About the HUMANE Act

Two weeks ago, I joined Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) in introducing the Helping Unaccompanied Minors and Alleviating National Emergency (HUMANE) Act, legislation designed to reform current law and ensure safety and humane treatment of the migrants along the border.

This week, both the Border Trade Alliance and the South Texans' Property Rights Association endorsed the Humane Act.  Click here to read the BTA's endorsement and here to read the STPRA endorsement.  

See below what the news has been saying about Sen. Cornyn and my legislation:

-7/20/14, Odessa American: "Texas View: Thwarting the Migrant Smugglers"

- 7/18/2014, Valley Central: "Lawmakers campaign for HUMANE Act"

-7/16/14, Politico: "Ron Barber backs Cornyn-Cuellar plan"

-7/17/14, Fort Worth Star Telegram, "Cornyn-Cuellar bill is worth considering"

- 7/16/2014, Washington Examiner: "Congress finally showing leadership on the immigration crisis"

My Letter to FEMA Requesting Reimbursements for Local Governments 

Since the immigration crisis began, local governments, non-profit organizations, law enforcement, and community partners have been shouldering a large and unexpected cost.  These communities have expended hard-earned taxpayer dollars in support of law enforcement and community efforts to address the surge of unaccompanied minors crossing the border and provide them the care they need. 

That is why this week, I sent a letter to Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Craig Fugate and the Appropriations Committee requesting financial assistance and reimbursement for communities affected by the current border crisis.  In my request, I included letters from the City of McAllen, City of Laredo, and Webb County Sheriff’s Office detailing costs incurred by each entity.  I asked Administrator Fugate for his support for the many communities in my congressional district and to do his utmost to secure reimbursements for the costs they have incurred.  

To read the full text of my letter, click HERE.   

Medal Presentation in Wilson County

​I presented Mr. Pedro Devora, a veteran of World War II, with seven medals for his service to the United States and the 28th District. My office was able to assist Mr. Devora in receiving the proper recognition for his years of service and bravery defending our country.
This week, I joined American Legion Post 38 to present seven awards to Wilson County veteran, Mr. Pedro Devora.  Mr. Devora contacted my office last November to inquire about awards he did not receive upon his discharge from the Navy. 

My staff worked with the Department of the Navy to ensure Mr. Devora received the medals he had earned during his service on the U.S.S. Sangmon in the Pacific Theater in World War II. These awards are a testament to the bravery and courage exhibited by Mr. Devora as well as a reminder that those traits have not gone unnoticed over time. I am happy that my office was able to help Mr. Devora receive the proper recognition for his fearlessness to fight for freedom. 

Tour of HEB Pharmacy in La Vernia 

I visited a local HEB pharmacy in La Vernia to hear from the employees and listen to their concerns. I am committed to ensuring that all residents of TX28 have access to health care and it was a pleasure to witness firsthand all the hard work they are putting in for the 28th District.
This week, I visited the HEB pharmacy in La Vernia to meet with pharmacy professionals and discuss the importance of accessibility to healthcare. In most cases, community pharmacists are the only healthcare professionals with a specialized education that a patient sees.  It was a pleasure to speak to them personally and thank them for all of their hard work.   

Meeting with Star County Industrial Foundation 

​I met with Rose Benavidez of the Starr County Industrial Foundation in Washington, D.C. We discussed issues and opportunities in Starr County and ways in which to energize the economic community.
It was great to meet with Rose Benavidez of the Starr County Industrial Foundation in Washington, D.C. We discussed ways to continue stimulating economic growth and diversity in the Valley. The Starr County Industrial Foundation has been an integral part of the community for over 40 years.

Meeting with Southwest Council of Agribusiness

​I met with representatives of the Southwest Council of Agribusiness in Washington, D.C., this week. We discussed the recent status of farming in South Texas and how we can work together to create more opportunities for farmers in the 28th District.
I met with the Southwest Council of Agribusiness in Washington, D.C. this past week and discussed future prospects of growth and opportunity in South Texas farming. It was a productive discussion to hear from their viewpoint as well as for me to express my support for the farmers in TX28.

Intern Spotlight Series - Ernest Baca

Ernest Baca is an intern in my Rio Grande Valley office where he supports staff in a number of responsibilities. After he finishes his senior year at UT - Pan American, Ernest hopes to work in the U.S. Department of State.
Ernest Baca is an intern in my Rio Grande Valley district office, where he has assisted the staff with casework and supporting events. Ernest is entering his senior year at University of Texas - Pan American where he is studying Political Science. He enjoys reading and travelling and has plans of working for the State Department after taking his Foreign Service Officer Exam. Ernest has been a great asset to my office. Thank you for all your hard work!

Visit my website to read more about Ernest's internship in my office!

Twitter Updates

If you have any comments, don't forget to visit my Facebook or Twitter pages to share them with me.  I look forward to hearing from you!





7/21/14, KGNS News: Congressman Cuellar's reply to deployment of national guard to border  

7/20/14, Waco Tribune: EDITORIAL: President should signal his support for Cornyn-Cuellar border relief bill

07/18/14, KGNS: ​Rep. Cuellar reinstates $5 million in funding to border water infrastructure program

7/17/14, Houston Chronicle: Good faith effort 


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