Records show Mexico president misrepresented Valle de Bravo land deal

Mexico's President Enrique Pena Nieto reacts during a ceremony to sign into law new-anti corruption legislation on May 4. (Henry Romero /Reuters)
Mexico’s President Enrique Pena Nieto reacts during a ceremony to sign into law new-anti corruption legislation on May 4. (Henry Romero /Reuters)

By Simon Gardner / Reuters

Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto misrepresented to authorities the circumstances under which he acquired one of his properties, public documents reviewed by Reuters show, a discrepancy that could add to the controversy surrounding his personal finances.

According to an official asset declaration first made in 2013, Pena Nieto stated that he acquired the property through a “donation” or gift from his father. Pena Nieto has since updated and ratified this declaration twice.

Under a public information request, Reuters reviewed documents showing that Pena Nieto actually purchased the property in question – a 1,000 square meter piece of land in the town of Valle de Bravo – in 1988 from a third party. He paid 11.2 million pesos, equivalent to around $5,000 at the time, the registry shows. His wealth declaration lists the property as being valued at just 11,200 “old” pesos, the equivalent to around $5 at the time.

The declaration lists eight other real estate properties, five of which are also listed as donations. Reuters couldn’t determine if those five properties, which include houses and land, are accurately characterized.

http://www.reuters.com/article/2015/05/28/us-mexico-property-politics-idUSKBN0OD2SE20150528

Will drought dim Baja California’s wine boom?

Valle de GuadalupeSan Diego Union-Tribune -The past five years have left Baja’s Valle de Guadalupe high and dry. The semiarid Valle has fallen well below its already paltry 8 to 10 inches annual average rainfall since 2010.

The drought has juiced the Valle de Guadalupe’s wine industry into survival mode, with owners and growers trying everything they can — from old-fashioned farming techniques to innovative technology to buying up land outside the Valle — to keep the grapes growing and the wine flowing.

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2015/may/26/will-drought-dim-baja-wine-boom/

“El Bronco” emerges as powerful independent candidate

CSM – Dozens of volunteers in Monterrey this week were intent on hawking Mexico’s newest model in political candidates: the independent.nThe gubernatorial race in Nuevo León is heating up, with the first non-affiliated candidate, Jaime Rodríguez Calderón, aka “El Bronco,” posing a formidable threat to the incumbent Institutional Revolutionary Party (PRI).

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Americas/2015/0528/Mexico-elections-Will-El-Bronco-factor-drive-weary-voters-to-the-polls-video

Planned new U.S. embassy in Mexico is a “fiasco”

The current U.S. Embassy in Mexico City is crowded, outdated and needs to be replaced.
The current U.S. Embassy in Mexico City is crowded, outdated and needs to be replaced.

By Nancy Cordes / CBS

No one disputes that the current U.S. Embassy in Mexico City is crowded, outdated and needs to be replaced. So four years ago the State Department bought a 15 acre plot in a former industrial district for $120 million.

But there was a catch: the site had housed a Colgate-Palmolive factory for decades, which left behind hazardous waste. Colgate has been cleaning the site but it’s been three and a half years and it’s still not ready for construction.

It is an embassy that was supposed to cost $577 million to build, but the construction estimate has gone up by one third — and the State Department hasn’t even broken ground yet.

“It’s a bit of a fiasco,” said Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah.

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/us-embassy-mexico-city-fiasco/

Why Mexico has a chance at Copa America 2015

Latin Post – Mexico heads to the Copa America as a guest with hopes of finally pulling off its first ever victory in the tournament. With the Gold Cup also taking place this summer, many expected the team to send a B-squad to compete, but to the surprise of many, the squad heading to Chile is actually filled with veterans capable of making a deep run.

http://www.latinpost.com/articles/55824/20150527/copa-america-2015-predictions-analysis-why-mexico-has-chance-at-deep-run.htm