LAGUNA VISTA, RGV – A federal grant of $700,000, coupled with $300,000 in local matching funds, will allow for sewer and water infrastructure for the eagerly-anticipated South Texas Eco-Tourism Center in Laguna Madre.

Among the speakers at a news conference to announce the funding were U.S. Rep. Filemon Vela, state Sen. Eddie Lucio, Jr., state Rep. Alex Dominguez, Cameron County Judge EddieTreviño, Jr., Cameron County Commissioner David Garza, and Lower Rio Grande Valley Development Council executive director Ron Garza.

Rolando Vela

The South Texas Eco-Tourism Center is being built on ten acres of land donated by the City of Laguna Vista. Retail and housing is expected to be developed along Highway 100 as part of the project. The federal grant is coming from the Economic Development Administration.

The news conference coincided with the monthly meeting of the RGV Small Cities Coalition. Mayors from the cities of Primera, Bayview, Laguna Vista, Palm Valley, Raymondville, Palmhurst attended the Small Cities event. In fact, city officials from 20 cities attended the event.

In exclusive interviews, Ron Whitlock of Ron Whitlock Reports spoke with LRGVDC’s Garza, Cameron County Judge Treviño, and Rolando Vela, city manager to Laguna Vista.

In the interview, Whitlock asked Vela about plans for a second causeway to South Padre Island.