(June 11, 2013) -- The UTSA College of Public Policy (COPP) and the UTSA Institute for Economic Development (IED) Rural Business Program have partnered with Shell Oil to strategically develop municipal governments in the Eagle Ford Shale region. The UTSA-Shell Municipal Capacity Building program promotes socioeconomic growth by helping the Eagle Ford Shale's rural communities prepare for current challenges and future needs and by identifying potential opportunities as a result of the changes happening in the area.
Municipal government officials and citizens from communities in Dimmit, Uvalde and Zavala counties will convene for the program's final meeting from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, June 14 in the Buena Vista Building Meeting Assembly Room (1.338) at the UTSA Downtown Campus.
"The training program was created to help these cities and counties better understand the ins and outs of municipal governance beginning with the basics," said Francine Romero, associate dean of the UTSA College of Public Policy. "At the fifth session, we hope to see this enhanced knowledge put into action, when our participants develop strategies inspired by the professional guidance they have received in the last four meetings."
On June 14, participants will work toward refining and realizing their action plans through a session facilitated by Jeff Barton, a planning and policy consultant, and Bill Burnett, vice president of Bowman Consulting, both former Hays County commissioners. These action plans may include a sustainable community project proposal eligible for up to $15,000 of grant funding by Shell."
Since March, representatives from rural communities in and around Shell's Eagle Ford Shale operations have attended the monthly municipal training workshops in Carrizo Springs. The workshops are hosted by the UTSA-Shell partnership with a curriculum designed by Romero and presented by a variety of professional and UTSA faculty experts. Elected city officials, community leaders and local government employees attended the trainings, which have focused on fundamental aspects of municipal governance such as municipal structure, social capacity, land use and planning, and communications, e-government and public relations.
"We've worked to lay a foundation in these cities that is conducive to economic and social development," said Romero. "There has to be a new level of sophistication in the way these governments are run moving forward, and we designed these training sessions as a way to help them come into their own as city governments in this new environment shaped by the operations in the Eagle Ford Shale."
Adrian DeLeon, mayor of Carrizo Springs, said that the training sessions have spurred his city to adopt new ways of conducting its business. Carrizo Springs has been significantly impacted by the oil and natural gas boom in the shale.
"We're doing more work with e-government and strengthening our infrastructure," said DeLeon. "For example, we've uploaded our charter online, which we didn't previously have. We're also currently installing electronic meter readers around the city."
The second phase of the UTSA-Shell Municipal Capacity Building program is already in the planning stages. It will target cites along Interstate 35 and in La Salle County beginning in September and continuing through February 2014.
UTSA researchers are exploring matter at the atomic level with Helenita. It's one of the most powerful microscopes in the world, with the ability to operate near the theoretical limit of resolution. At 9 feet, 2 inches tall and weighing more than two tons, Helenita can dissect almost anything. With Helenita's resolution, researchers can study particles atom by atom to see how they behave.
That's critical in developing nanotechnology that will help diagnosis early-stage breast cancer or make helmets that are uber strong. Moreover, the detail that Helenita provides will allow nanotechnology researchers to create new therapies and treatments to fight a wide range of human diseases.
Did you know? Helenita can magnify a sample 20 million times its size, which would make a strand of human hair the size of San Antonio.
Join AIA San Antonio’s Women in Architecture group for their networking and happy hour event, where all design professionals are welcome.
Liberty Bar, 1111 S. Alamo St.
This documentary, presented by the San Antonio Film Festival, documents the experience of re-entry after incarceration. The film features Michael Gilbert, associate professor in the department of criminal justice and director of the Office of Community and Restorative Justice program at UTSA.
Tobin Center for the Performing Arts, 100 Auditorium Circle
Discover resources and strategies for teaching Tejano history and culture and get a special educator's tour of the new long-term exhibit, Los Tejanos.
Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. César E. Chávez Blvd.
This cowboy-themed programming, offered in conjunction with Our Kids Magazine's Kidcation Week, gives families the opportunity to visit with cowboy docents, enjoy readings and visit activity tables.
Institute of Texan Cultures, 801 E. Cesar E. Chavez Blvd.
The UTSA Alumni Association hosts this annual gala honoring the Alumna of the Year, Alumnus of the Year and the Alumnus of the Year Lifetime Achievement award winners.
Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort & Spa, 9800 Hyatt Resort Dr.
After graduation, Queretaro native founded a music label recognized by SXSW
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