Government

Texas Legislature
10:41 am
Wed May 15, 2013

State Sen. Escorted To Office By DPS After Heated Exoneration Debate

Ryan Poppe TPR News

The Senate Criminal Justice Committee hearing was to be one of the last phases for a bill that would set up the state’s first exoneration commission to examine past wrongful convictions to determine what went wrong.

The hearing began with Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, stating she didn’t feel the Tim Cole Exoneration Commission was a needed item, and then it escalated from there.

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State Budget
3:30 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Committee Still Debating Spending Issues In State Budget Bill

Flickr user TN Drum Guy cc

Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, a house leader on the Legislative Budget Board, said the joint committee has hit snags in several areas, but has reached a tentative agreement on some key spending issues in regard to Senate Bill 1, the state budget bill.

"Hopefully we will have an agreement sometime today on public education," Pitts said, adding that they were discussing $3.2 billion for public education would be taken from the state general revenue and property tax appraisals.

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City Government
2:36 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

With Only 7 Percent Voter Turnout In May Election, City Policies Roll On

Current San Antonio City Council Districts.
Chris Eudaily TPR

Voters cast their ballots over the weekend and now that the city elections are over - except for two June runoffs in Districts 5 and 8 - the direction of policies in San Antonio will largely continue uninterrupted.

This is mostly to do with the fact that voters chose candidates like Mayor Julián Castro, District 1 Councilman Diego Bernal and District 4 Councilman Rey Saldaña, who all support progressive issues.

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Texas Legislature
12:03 pm
Tue May 14, 2013

Legislature Passes Strict Political Nonprofit Contribution Transparency Bill

Ryan Poppe TPR News

From now on political nonprofit groups will have to post any contributions being received from lawmakers or money going towards political campaigns thanks to a bill passed in the Texas Senate and now House.

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Bexar County Sheriff
11:06 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Bexar County Sheriff Responds To Recent Deputy Arrests

Susan Pamerleau addresses media about the recent incidents involving her deputies.
Eileen Pace TPR

Following the arrest of several deputies in the past week, Bexar County Sheriff Susan Pamerleau told reporters she has implemented programs to address disciplinary problems among deputies and detention guards.

In three separate incidents, two deputies were arrested at their homes in connection with domestic violence issues.

Paul Berry, a sheriff's department spokesman, said that in another incident two jail guards got into a fight Sunday evening.

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Texas Legislature
4:01 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

CPRIT Funding Contingent On Passage Of Oversight Bill

The House and Senate established a provision as part of the Senate’s budget that requires passage of a Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas oversight bill in order for the group to be funded by the state.  

Early this month Senators passed a set of bills, one authored by Sen. Jane Nelson, R-Dallas, that add a new level of oversight and transparency for the troubled CPRIT.   

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Texas Legislature
1:23 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

Bill For Total Cell Phone Ban In And Around School Zones On Final Vote

Chris Eudaily TPR

Currently drivers are required to put down their cell phone while driving through the areas of a school, which are usually governed by flashing lights and warning signs. 

House Bill 347, which was authored by Rep. Jim Pitts, R-Waxahachie, and sponsored by Sen. Bob Nichols, R-Jacksonville, takes that law two steps further.

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New Braunfels
12:09 pm
Mon May 13, 2013

New Braunfels Set To Vote On Dog-Friendly Restaurants And Pedicabs

Ryan Loyd TPR

The City of New Braunfels will take a final vote on some consumer-friendly ordinances at its next meeting.

In April the city took an initial reading on an ordinance to allow people to bring their dogs with them to dinner or the bar if the restaurant or bar has a patio.

New Braunfels Mayor Gale Pospisil said the ordinance known as "paws on the patio" would require business owners to apply for the permit, which has a few restrictions.

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City Council Elections
11:12 am
Mon May 13, 2013

Rebecca Viagran Unseats Ozuna With Ease In District 3

Rebecca Viagran talks to supporters on election night after she handily won the District 3 seat.
Ryan Loyd Texas Public Radio

San Antonio's South Side has a new councilwoman to represent them at City Hall. Rebecca Viagran clinched 51 percent of the vote, surging far above Leticia Ozuna’s 38 percent.

Ozuna, although not truly an incumbent because she was appointed to the seat a year and a half ago to fill Jennifer Ramos’ unexpired term, was running her first race and expected to win the seat.

She cited experience and her work on technology issues for the city as reasons she should come back for a full term. Mayor Julián Castro also endorsed her.

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City Council Elections
11:01 am
Mon May 13, 2013

City Election Wrap: Easy Wins, An Upset And Two Runoffs

Shirley Gonzales led the five challengers in District 5 and now faces incumbent David Medina in a June 15 runoff.
Ryan Loyd TPR

Saturday's city council election wrapped up with several decisive victories for incumbents, but a few races are still to be decided.

District 4 Councilman Rey Saldaña beat his challenger with 84 percent of the vote, East Side Councilwoman Ivy Taylor will be returning for a third term, Ray Lopez of District 6 and Cris Medina of District 7 each won their races handily, as did District 9 and 10 Council Members Elisa Chan and Carlton Soules.

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