La Feria News

Primera Hires New City Manager

Primera”s newest City Manager, Celina Gonzales, talks about her new job with the City of Primera. Photo: Tony Vindell/LFN

by Tony Vindell/LFN

A new city manager has come on board with the City of Primera and the mayor said he is glad to have someone with a financial background.

Celina Gonzales is the new administrator and probably the first woman to manage this city of about 4,300 residents.

The city operates on a $2.1 million budget that will end on Sept. 30 of this year, down from the previous budget of more than $3.2 million.

Gonzales, 42, reported to work on July 22.

“It’s great to be here,” she said. “Primera is growing and I am looking at ways to make improvements.”

Gonzales said the city needs to upgrade its drainage system.

The city was hit hard during the June 24 flood. Scores of homes were affected by the rising waters and many residents reported losses to personal property.

Gonzales said she would like to establish better relationships with Harlingen Water Works and with Cameron County Drainage District

Number 5 so the city can cope better in the event Mother Nature strikes back.

Before joining the City of Primera, she worked as director with Harlingen Water Works for about a year and as finance director with the City of Los Fresnos from 2007 to 2017.

The city has a workforce about 50.

Mayor Dave Kusch said Gonzales took over Javier Mendez’s job.

“We believe her professionalism and background are good assets for the city,” he said. “She will help Primera grow.”

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