July 4 Arts and Crafts Show
July 1-4
San Antonio River Walk
San Antonio, TX

Freedom Fest at Market Square
Thursday, July 4
12 pm - 8 pm

San Antonio, TX

Fourth of July Parade
Thursday, July 4
Houston Square
Castroville, TX

Kiwanis Club July 4th Celebration
Thursday, July 4
5 pm

5th Street to Kokernot Park
Alpine, TX

July Jubilee and Centennial
Friday, July 5
Downtown Leakey
Leakey, TX

Uvalde Fourth of July Golf Tournament
Friday, July 5
Uvalde Memorial Golf Course
Uvalde, TX

Friday Night Fever
Friday, July 12
Wommack Chevrolet
1955 U.S. 90 E.
Castroville, TX

Viva Big Bend
Thursday, July 25
50 Musical Acts at Venues in Alpine, Marfa, Fort Davis, and Marathon

San Antonio District Office
Falcon International Bank
2530 SW Military Drive
Suite 103
San Antonio, Texas 78224
Toll Free 1.800.459.0119
Fax 210.932.2572
Eagle Pass District Office
Maverick County Courthouse
501 Main Street
Suite 114
Eagle Pass, Texas 78852
Fax 830.758.0402
Pecos District Office
312 S. Cedar Street
Suite 100
Pecos, Texas 79772
Fax 432.447.0275
Capitol Office
P.O. Box 12068
Capitol Station
Austin, Texas 78711
Fax 512.463.1017
July 2013 - Message from Carlos
The 83rd Legislature's second special session that begins Monday gives Gov. Rick Perry, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, and other Republicans another opportunity to pass an onerous anti-abortion bill, and there is little doubt that this time they will prevail.

And with the world watching, it also gives them another chance to play by the rules and respect Senate traditions.

Because of Sen. Wendy Davis' valiant and effective filibuster — and a heavy dose of confusion on the Senate floor — the first special session ended in failure for the abortion bill, cynically and insincerely touted as a means to protect women's health.

As the last night of the session progressed, it became clear that Davis had the will and the stamina to go all the way with her filibuster. To stop her, Gov. Dewhurst sustained several highly questionable points of order, and near the end Democrats were not recognized by the chair for important motions.

Beyond the rules, the Texas Senate also has well-established traditions regarding the filibuster that the Republicans chose to ignore.

The rules of filibuster prohibit a senator from sitting in their chair or leaning on their desk; they can't drink water, eat food, receive aid from another senator, or leave the floor to use the bathroom. But over the years, a tradition has emerged that allows Senate colleagues, even those on opposing sides, to help each other out, to ease the burden with something as simple as a few slivers of ice or candy mint.

In fact, colleagues from both parties came to the aid of Texas Republican Sen. Bill Meier during his record-setting 43-hour filibuster in May 1977 against a worker's compensation bill. Such traditions were already in place when Texas Democratic Sen. Henry B. González spoke for 22 hours against a set of segregation bills in 1961, setting a record for that time.

But on this night, that tradition of courtesy and statesmanship was not extended to Davis. She was clearly held to a standard that filibustering senators have not had to meet in the past.

Every Democratic senator was ready to go and prepared to filibuster. We all brought our sneakers — or in my case, Marine combat boots — but for this mission we choose Davis.

And with the support of her Democratic colleagues — and a deafening chorus from abortion rights advocates in the gallery who had watched her shabby treatment in silence for hours — Davis prevailed.

The night ended in victory for Texans who want to keep abortion safe and legal, but it is only temporary. The bill will be brought up for debate much sooner in the new 30-day session, eliminating the filibuster as an effective tactic to those who oppose the measure.

The Republicans are going to have their bill. Whether or not Texans support this measure, they must have confidence that the legislative process is fair, and that the majority party respects the rules and traditions that have allowed the Texas Senate to operate so well.

That didn't happen last time. Let's hope it does now.

Semper Fi!

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Uresti: Drive smart over the July 4th Holiday

The Texas Department of Public Safety, noting that Independence Day ranks among the deadliest holiday periods on Texas highways, has increased its DWI patrols for a 10-day period that includes the July 4th holiday.

"I urge all Texans to drive smart over the long holiday weekend, and that means staying sober and watching your speed," Sen. Uresti said. "Don't ruin your family's holiday by driving irresponsibly."

The DPS is increasing its DWI patrols for a 10-day period — from June 28 to July 7 — a period that includes Independence Day. Troopers will focus their patrols in high-risk locations at times when alcohol-related crashes are most frequent.

DPS Director Steven McCraw joined Uresti in urging Texans to enjoy and mark this holiday responsibly.

“Impaired driving can quickly turn a time of celebration into a tragedy, so Texans should designate a sober driver or secure another form of transportation if they plan to drink alcohol," McCraw said. "Our troopers will also be doing their part during the holiday by increasing their patrols to keep our roadways safe.”

During the 2012 July 4th enforcement effort, DPS troopers made 1,294 DWI arrests, with 361 being the direct result of increased patrols.

Stay cool but watch the pool

The No. 1 summer danger for preschool aged children isn't bicycle accidents, too many hotdogs, or sunburns. It's swimming pools.

According to the Center for Disease Control, hundreds of kids are seriously injured or drown each year in home swimming pool accidents, often because a parent or caregiver is temporarily distracted.

To prevent such tragedies, the American Academy of Pediatric suggests these pool safety tips:
  • Never leave your child alone in or near water, even for a moment. Fishponds can also be a serious risk of drowning for young children.
  • Install at least a 4 foot fence on all sides of your pool with a locked gate or ladder.
  • Empty and put away kiddie pools after each use.
  • Keep rescue equipment and a phone by the pool.
  • Remember that kids who have learned how to swim should still be closely supervised.

New horned dinosaur discovered in Big Bend National Park

Researchers with the U.S. National Park Service and Texas Tech University recently revealed that a new species of horned dinosaur, Bravoceratops polyphemus, has been discovered in Big Bend National Park.

Steven L. Wick and Thomas M. Lehman made the initial discovery two years ago following several months of field work and were able to recover portions of the giant skull. Bravoceratops, or “wild horn-face,” is named after the Rio Bravo del Norte, the Rio Grande, which marks the border between Big Bend National Park and northern Mexico.

Bravoceratops polyphemus was one of the largest members of a group of horned dinosaurs called chasmosaurines, which lived during the Late Cretaceous Period — from about 75 million to 65 million years ago. In life, the animal had a skull about seven feet in length, with both its brow horns each over three feet long.

The discovery is especially exciting given that Big Bend National Park is currently developing a new fossil bone exhibit in order to showcase many of the park's most spectacular finds. A full-size replica of the skull of is currently being considered for the new display.
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©2013 Carlos Uresti Campaign  •  A.M. Hernandez, Treasurer  •  P.O. Box 240431  •  San Antonio, Texas  •  78224