BROWNSVILLE — Good morning, I’m Na’Tassia Finley with your News Center 23 update. Today is Friday, February 17, 2012.
Twelve agencies in the Rio Grande Valley have received a total of $29.5-million dollars which was forfeited by former Gulf Cartel leader Osiel Cardenas Guillen. Officials say Cardenas oversaw a vast drug trafficking empire responsible for bringing thousands of kilograms of cocaine and marijuana into the US from Mexico. In February of 2010 he was sentenced to 25 years in prison and ordered to forfeit $50-million dollars. Twenty-nine and half million went to valley law enforcement agencies.
San Juan police department was awarded $1.1-million dollars, while the Cameron County Sheriff's Department was awarded nearly six-million dollars.
McAllen police are searching for a man who robbed a Smart Price store on the 300-block of Bicentennial early Monday morning. The suspect took laptops from display cases and then fled. Police believe the suspect is a Hispanic man in his twenties and is between five-seven to five-eleven in height. If you have any information on this crime, call McAllen police.
An electrical problem is to blame for a fire that broke out on the San Benito High School campus yesterday morning. Principal Delia Weaver says the fire was contained to a closet in the theatre department. School officials made the decision to postpone classes and hold students in the gym until maintenance crews could check out the AC units to ensure smoke was not coming through the air vents. Some costumes caught fire, but the main concern is smoke damage to the closet in the theatre department.
If you're one of those people that waits until the last minute to pay delinquent taxes the penalty for doing so has now increased from 12.5% to 15%. The BISD board of trustees approved the resolution Wednesday night. Property taxes were due at the end of January; any taxes not paid by June 30th are referred for collection on July 1st.
The disabled and senior citizens in Harlingen will now receive a tax break after the city commission approved two ordinances Wednesday night. The tax break will freeze property values for both parties.
The Homestead Tax Exemption was increased from four thousand to ten thousand dollars just last month.
The Harlingen Cardinals varsity football team just had its most successful year in school history and is now being featured on the cover of Rio Grande Yellow Pages.
More than half a million books will be distributed throughout the valley.
The cover shows the class 5A quarter finalists charging onto the field and features the team captains on the directory. Directory delivery is underway and will continue through March 16th.
Join us tonight for your Upper and Lower Valley reports right here on News Center 23 at five and ten. Have a great weekend. Take care!