State News

Texas Education
12:46 pm
Sat December 21, 2013

Memo: Perry pushed new adviser position at A&M board

Rick Perry
NPR

On the afternoon before the Texas A&M System Board met to select an interim president — a selection that found Gov. Rick Perry backing one candidate and Chancellor John Sharp backing another — Perry contacted regents with a proposal for a new position "on par with [the] chancellor." 

For its title, the governor suggested "Executive President (Director) of the Board of Regents or President of the Office of the Executive Board of Regents (or something similar)." 

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Texas Crime and Courts
8:38 am
Thu December 19, 2013

Suit cites 'randomly chosen' body cavity search of woman

NPR

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents subjected a U.S. citizen to unwarranted searches, including vaginal probes and a CT scan, according to a lawsuit filed Wednesday by the American Civil Liberties Union in a U.S. district court. 

The woman, who is referred to as “Jane Doe” in the lawsuit, is a New Mexico resident and was stopped while entering the United States at the Cordova Bridge in El Paso on Dec. 12, 2012, according to court records. 

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Texas Crime and Courts
3:31 pm
Wed December 18, 2013

'Restorative justice' presented as option for offenses

The State of Texas Supreme Court building in Austin.
State of Texas

Could restorative justice - also known as victim/offender mediation - work as an option for punishment of low-level crimes? The Texas Public Policy Foundation's recent report "Reviving Restorative Justice: A Blueprint for Texas" suggests yes. Derek Cohen explains and discusses the reasoning behind an approach that emphasizes the offender's debt to the victim rather than the offender's debt to the state.

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Texas Water
11:15 am
Wed December 18, 2013

Crackdown on 'earmarks' leaves Red River salty

The Red River forms most of the boundary between Texas and Oklahoma.
Shelly Kofler KERA

Russell Schreiber, the director of public works for Wichita Falls, has a one-track mind these days. 

“I go to bed thinking about how we can shore up our water supply, and I wake up trying to do it,” he said. 

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Texas Health
9:55 am
Wed December 18, 2013

In North Texas, 'navigators' under scrutiny

An online course for Affordable Care Act 'navigators'
NPR

For Martha Blaine, the 10 Affordable Care Act "navigators" who meet clients daily on behalf of the Community Council of Greater Dallas blend in with the rest of her staff. 

“They are all employees,” said Blaine, the organization’s executive director. “So they have to undergo all of the same rules, regulations ... and standard operating procedures.” 

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2014 Election
8:30 am
Wed December 11, 2013

Few anticipated Stockman's challenge

U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman
NPR

Just before 6 p.m. Monday, U.S. Rep. Steve Stockman shocked many by opting to end his re-election campaign and formally challenge U.S. Sen. John Cornyn in next year’s Republican primary. 

While the Friendswood Republican's decision drew quick national attention that evening, a select few saw it coming. In the days beforehand, news of Stockman’s plans quietly spread among some Texas Republicans, setting off a scramble for those interested in replacing Stockman in the U.S. House but not willing to run against him.  

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2014 Election
8:48 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Abbott setting sights on education policy debate

Greg Abbott
KUT

Attorney General Greg Abbott will spend most of the next month talking about education, signaling that he won’t cede any ground on the issue to state Sen. Wendy Davis, who is making her support of public schools a calling card in the governor’s race. 

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Texas Government
8:41 am
Tue December 3, 2013

Perry misses deadline on Red River boundary issue

The lapsed deadline is the latest twist in the nearly two centuries of debate over the exact whereabouts of Texas’ 540-mile border with Oklahoma.
Shelly Kofler KERA

Gov. Rick Perry doesn't appear to be in a hurry to address the confusion swirling around Texas’ border with Oklahoma. 

He has missed a legislative deadline to assemble a commission tasked with solving the problem, though there is still time make appointments ahead of a deadline for the commission’s first meeting. 

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Texas Government
1:04 pm
Mon November 18, 2013

Tyler native joins GOP gubernatorial hopefuls

Lisa Fritsch
lisafritsch.com

She is barely a blip in the polls, and the odds of her securing the Republican nomination for Texas governor are viewed as vanishingly small. 

But Lisa Fritsch, a conservative activist, author and former radio show host, suddenly has bragging rights among second-tier candidates trying to make a respectable showing against the overwhelming primary favorite, Attorney General Greg Abbott. 

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Texas Crime and Courts
12:36 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

One-third of criminal appeals court leaving office

The Texas Supreme Court Building in Austin. Three of the nine seats on the Court of Criminal Appeals will be contested in the 2104 election.
http://www.thc.state.tx.us/

All three Texas Court of Criminal Appeals judges whose terms expire in 2014 — one-third of the nine-member panel — have elected not to seek another term, setting the stage for unusually high turnover on the state's highest criminal court.

"This is a lot leaving," said Chuck Mallin, appellate chief in the Tarrant County district attorney's office. "It's always a scary proposition, because you don't know what you're going to get."

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