Government

The Source
4:22 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Updated: Federal Judge Lifts City's Ban Against Cuellar

The Texas Civil Rights Project is taking up the case of Michael Cuellar, who was banned from going to City Hall and other city buildings.
Chris Eudaily TPR

* This is an update on an episode of "The Source" that aired in early January, Banned From City Hall. In order to provide some background on this latest development we are airing the original episode for the March 27 edition of "The Source."

(Update: March 27, 2:16 p.m.) The City of San Antonio lost in federal court today in its effort to permanently ban a former city employee from going to City Hall and attending city council meetings.

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City Council Elections
4:03 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Medina Challengers Voice Concerns At District 5 Town Hall

Voters will decide who will fill the district 5 seat on May 11
Ryan Loyd TPR News

The five candidates challenging incumbent David Medina for City Council District 5 - Richard Cardenas, Shirley Gonzales, John Carlos Garcia, Ricardo Briones, and Frank Ramirez - all say the representation in the district has been sub-standard.

They talked about their ideas at a town hall meeting on March 16 on the stage of the Guadalupe Arts Cultural Center in the heart of district 5, but Medina was missing.

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City Council Elections
2:30 pm
Tue March 26, 2013

Nirenberg Suggests To District 8 Constituents He's Ready For The Job

Ron Nirenberg speaks to people at the Hunters Creek meet and greet
Ron Nirenberg for City Council District 8 Facebook Page

With a month and a half to go until the city elections, candidates are defining themselves in different ways. For District 8 candidate Ron Nirenberg, the associate general manager of jazz station KRTU, that means attacking the issues head on.

"At the end of the day, this council race should be about how can we help our community, and how can we do the right thing. It doesn't have to be after the election," said Nirenberg.

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City Council Elections
3:06 pm
Mon March 25, 2013

Bernal, Unopposed, Celebrates First Term & Focuses On The Future

Councilman Diego Bernal speaks to supporters at Chris Madrid's on March 23, 2012.
Gonzalo Rodriguez Duable

He is the only council member unopposed, and instead of holding a re-election effort, District 1 Councilman Diego Bernal held a thank you celebration.

"A lot of our success is the product of us working hand-in-hand with neighbors, and so it's a chance for me to thank them for working with us," he said Saturday.

Bernal hosted a community party at popular burger spot Chris Madrid's, and offered people the chance to get their t-shirts screen printed with his logo, which was created by local artist Cruz Ortiz.

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Education Funding
3:17 pm
Fri March 22, 2013

Additional Education Funding Still Below What Was Cut Last Legislative Session

Districts that have financial difficulties like Premont are hoping the legislature can fix the way the state funds education to give them some help.
David Martin Davies TPR

The House Budget Committee approved additional funding for public school districts and changed a key component for how schools are funded locally. They voted out a budget bill out of committee late Thursday that will provide school districts $3 billion over the next 2 years.

Rep. Donna Howard, D-Austin, is the vice-chair of the committee and said that is still below what was cut during the 2011 budget.

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Texas Education
9:28 am
Fri March 22, 2013

Senate Committee Moved To Tears, Renews Discussion On Charter Schools

Education continues to be a major area of discussion during the 83rd Legislature.
Flickr user Phil Ostroff cc

A senate hearing at the capitol dials down the accountability standard for state dropout recovery schools under a bill authored by Sen. Leticia Van DePutte.

If the bill passes, dropout recovery schools would not face the same accountability standard as any other public school in the state.

Justina Gonzalez runs the Por Vida Academy & Charter School in San Antonio, an at-risk school for students that have fallen behind.

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Texas Legislature
6:39 am
Fri March 22, 2013

Colleges And Universities Could Start Doing DPS Background Checks For Student Housing

Students living in dorm rooms could be subjected to thorough DPS background checks if the bill passes
Flickr user Justin Harter cc

Lawmakers at the state capitol are hoping to give colleges and universities the ability to conduct DPS background checks for students living on campus.

Currently many colleges conduct public background checks on students seeking on-campus housing, but some college administrators don't believe they go far enough. Edward Williams, who works in residential life at Kilgore College in East Texas, testified in favor in the bill.

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Texas Legislature
4:19 pm
Thu March 21, 2013

2013 Budget Bill Passes With Only Two Opposing Votes

Texas State Capitol in Austin.
Ryan Poppe TPR News

Texas lawmakers approved a bill that replaces funds taken from public education and mental health providers but changes the structure of the state’s Medicaid.

The senate voted 29 to 2 in favor of the budget, with Senators Silvia Garcia, D-Houston, and Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, voting against the bill.

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Texas Veterans
2:50 pm
Thu March 21, 2013

Bills Filed To Help Veterans Use Military Certification To Find Work

State Sen. Leticia Van de Putte is pushing to make military certifications easier to transfer into civilian life.
Office of State Sen. Leticia Van de Putte

A set of bills in both the Texas House and Senate are there to ensure that the state’s veterans are able to use military training to obtain jobs. 

Sen. Leticia Van de Putte authored the bill that ensures training and certifications obtained by veterans and their spouses while serving in the military immediately transfer with them into civilian life. 

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Abortion Legislation
2:30 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Debate On Abortion Clinic Standards Touches Off Shouting Match

Texas State Capitol in Austin, where legislators and supporters/opponents are debating proposed legislation.
Ryan Poppe TPR News

A bill requiring higher standards for abortion providers has made it out of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services and is now on the senate floor for full review.

The discussion on the matter of requiring abortion providers to have a similar setup as surgical office quickly escalated from a civil conversation to a yelling match between the author of the bill, Sen. Bob Duell, R-Greenville, and Virginia Brawn, who owns a North Texas women's clinic.

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