Monthly Archives: March 2015

U.S. Junk Cars Sustain A Local Microeconomy In Guatemala

Story originally published at

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A version of this story aired on Texas Standard from KUT Austin.

 

MARFA, Texas — Old cars that have little resale value in the United States are being towed in caravans that begin in California, Arizona and Texas and end up in Guatemala.

The cars are also loaded up with old bicycles, recycled car batteries and clothing that have been jettisoned in the United States.

The vehicles are fixed up in Guatemala and sold across Central America.

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Solar Arrives In Mexico Border Town, Could Be Key To Rural Economy Restart

Story originally published at

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BOQUILLAS, Mexico — The sealing of the border after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, crushed connected rural economies in both Mexico and the United States.

Today in one swath of northern Mexico, a formal border crossing with Texas is the lynchpin of a plan to rebuild the post-9/11 economy in both countries on one rural section of the Rio Grande.

Wires distributing solar power flow from a utility pole, Boquillas, Coahuila (Lorne Matalon)

Wires distributing solar power flow from a utility pole, Boquillas, Coahuila. (Lorne Matalon)

But economic rebirth in one small, but strategically located, town is stunted because there’s no electricity in the area.

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Texas County Refuses To Accept Federal Checkpoint Drug Cases

Story originally published at

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SIERRA BLANCA, Texas — A border county in Texas with two U.S. Border Patrol highway checkpoints is refusing to prosecute drug cases previously sent to it from those checkpoints.

The county—and all four states bordering Mexico—wants funding from Washington, D.C. to handle cases that federal prosecutors decide to send to state courts.

Cars and trucks heading east on Interstate I-10 east of El Paso pass through a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint in Hudspeth County, Texas. The county, the first gatekeeper in the state legal system, is not accepting federally initiated drug cases sent to it from the checkpoint. (photo: Maiya Keck)

Cars and trucks heading east on Interstate I-10 east of El Paso pass through a U.S. Border Patrol checkpoint in Hudspeth County, Texas. The county, the first gatekeeper in the state legal system, is not accepting federally initiated drug cases sent to it from the checkpoint. (Maiya Keck)

But federal money has run dry.

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