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Section A: General News


Letter: Perez left a legacy for Floresville




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April 24, 2013 | 1,570 views | 12 comments

Editor:

Re: “Excited about a thriving Floresville,” April 10.

Kudos, again, to Virgil Russell for his positive, optimistic, and valid appraisal of our town. His “tour” certainly will open anyone’s eyes to the good things happening in Floresville. We should all take his optimism to heart and take that tour!

Lest we forget, the “budding” businesses that Virgil listed are the flowering of the last “seeds” planted, so to speak, by former Floresville Economic Development Corp. (FEDC) Executive Director Jesse Perez. We, as a town, would be remiss to not recognize the great legacy left by this individual in his 12-plus years of tenure. He was that unique type of economic developer that recognized his job was more than just focusing on the attracting of those endeavors that create primary jobs, enhance tax revenues, and infuse new dollars into the community -- although he did that very well. He knew, and felt, how important quality of life and community development were to that primary purpose. As he used to say, “In order to recruit new businesses, residents, and promote the city, we have to have something to promote.”

He was big on preserving the town’s history. To Jesse, this gave our community character and added to tourism opportunities. Another facet was his fierce focus on making our town stand out in its vibrancy and cared-for look. On a personal level, he was the go-to guy, not only for city officials/employees, but also citizens who needed help -- getting entitlements, assistance in job/educational matters, letter writing, etc. He was, as they say, a man for all seasons for our town.

To put substance to the above, we need to look at just a smattering of things that will forever constitute his imprint. In my view, the most significant was the impact he had on the creation of the early college center. He -- along with former Floresville superintendent, Dr. David Vinson, and Alamo Colleges’ Dr. Zaragoza -- was instrumental in this achievement, which will have wonderful and lasting benefit for our town. On the hardcore economic development attainments -- on Virgil’s tour -- we have the sprawling Walmart with its 275-300 employees, O’Reilly’s and Auto Zone, the Wilson County Health Center, the highly successful H-E-B with its 200-215 employees, and the retention of the U.S. Post Office, which was poised to go elsewhere.

His touch is everywhere. The affordable senior apartments on Paloma Drive, the skateboard park -- which literally took kids off the street, the downtown renovation, the opening of the historic Rancho de las Cabras -- eight years in the making, The Beer Warehouse -- which represents town history and provides an affordable place for small events, and on and on.

Also, something that cannot be quantified, was the expansive and effective networking ties he had with local, state, and national officials and agencies.

Who can forget the colonel, chugging along in his FEDC van, tending to field business or crossing the courthouse square on his way to Jalisco’s with prospective business folks in tow, and -- of course -- his ever-present Outback hat? I and many other townspeople will not.

ALFRED “FRED” GONZALES

Floresville

Editor’s note: Read about current FEDC activities on page 2A.
 

Your Opinions and Comments

 
Delightful  
Downtown  
April 25, 2013 5:12pm
 
Thank you Be Careful for your fact-filled response to Fred "Q" - unfortunately a waste of time because narcissist egoist such as Fred live in "their" reality. Fred, go buy another piece of jewelry - ... More ›

 
Glenn Quagmire  
Quahog, Rhode Island  
April 25, 2013 2:34pm
 
That train station ain't wasting away. Termites needs a home, too.

 
Be Careful  
Floresville, TX  
April 25, 2013 2:27pm
 
Fred, you are just trying to justify the incompetence of FEDC which you were a part of. Just because you say it good things doesn’t mean it was good. FEDC under Perez and your leadership wasted money and opportunities to make ... More ›

 
In the know  
Floresville  
April 24, 2013 8:13pm
 
Fred, you still don't get it, do you? We don't care what you have to say. Quit living in the past. The Kernel worked without a job description or a contract. He did whatever the heck he wanted and the FEDC board did not ... More ›

 
ole fogey  
floresville  
April 24, 2013 3:30pm
 
According to Fred Q, Mr Perez was so great that he could "juggle feathers in a hurricane" and "nail jello to a wall". But it was not about that it was about getting businesses and jobs here to Floresville ... More ›

 
LaLa Land  
Floresville, TX  
April 24, 2013 3:21pm
 
SHUT UP FRED!!!!!! NO MAS!!!!!!

 
Senior Citizen  
Wilson County  
April 24, 2013 1:03pm
 
And HOW LONG did it take to get La Quinta settled. Seems to me, they would have been here years ago, but for issues with the city.

 
Airborne Trooper  
wilson cty  
April 24, 2013 10:29am
 
In order to entice business to come here you have to give a little and make them want to come. When the Kernel was in charge he gave, WalMart and HEB, way too much of a tax credit. So much that the city really doesn't profit ... More ›

 
Fed Up With Arrogance  
Sin City  
April 24, 2013 10:06am
 
And the Chili's?? Oh yes he was in negotiations and could not talk about it!!! But it was coming.... Good thing we have not sat around and waited!! So many things were coming but he was in negotiations and could not tell anyone ... More ›

 
Concerned Tax Payer  
Floresville, Texas  
April 24, 2013 9:59am
 
Really, Fred? HE SCREWED THE TAXPAYERS OF FLORESVILLE!!! And so did the Board, which you were a part of. Why don't you write an editorial explaining how y'all spent the 1.5 million dollars that was supposed to be used at Rancho ... More ›

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