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City Government
3:24 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Bernal To Focus On Most Aggressive Vacant Building Plan The City Has Seen

Councilman Bernal walked through the crowd delivering his state of the center city address Friday.
Ryan Loyd TPR News

District 1 City Councilman Diego Bernal said soon the city will look at the most aggressive policy it has ever seen on empty buildings. On Friday he outlined that promise at his second State of the Center City address.

As TPR has reported, San Antonio has a downtown vacancy rate of 29 percent. That figure is 19 percent citywide, which is why Bernal said he will be introducing a bold measure to take care of empty buildings.

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Texas Politics
3:19 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Patrick-Castro Immigration Debate Set For April 15

Republican lieutenant governor candidate Dan Patrick sits outside the Alamo to call out Mayor Castro ahead of the March primary.
Dan Patrick via YouTube

Republican lieutenant governor candidate Dan Patrick’s campaign has set a date for a debate with San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro -- the campaign also leaked information about a possible statewide runoff debate in the planning stages with incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.

Allen Blakemore, Patrick’s chief campaign strategist, said they have settled on April 15 for the debate that has caused much friction between the two elected officials.

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Texas Matters
3:11 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

What Does The March Primary Tell Us About Texas Politics Going Forward?

David Martin Davies TPR News

Texas Matters: Breaking down results from the March primary election -- there were some surprises, but for most it was just another day at the office. Also on this show: Changes at the Southern Poverty Law Center.

Tea party remains strong in Texas

Tuesday was primary day in Texas, the first in the nation and a kickoff for the 2014 election season. The two top candidates looking for party nominations for governor -- Republican Greg Abbott and Democrat Wendy Davis -- had their expected solid wins.

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Bag Bans
2:37 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Texas Lawmaker Requests Bag Ban Opinion From Attorney General Abbott

State Rep. Dan Flynn, R-Canton, says several members of the Texas Retailers Association have requested he find about the legality of some Texas city’s efforts to ban the use of plastic shopping bags.

Flynn is hoping to discover whether plastic bag bans violate sections of the state’s Health and Safety Code:

"Well it’s a health issue -- they want you to use these cloth bags that get so nasty and dirty," Flynn said. "Why in the world would government get involved in something like this? And then, of course, the retailers are getting beat up over this."

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Arts & Culture
1:36 pm
Fri March 7, 2014

Dancers From Around The World Coming To San Antonio Folk Dance Festival

Komenda Ethnic Dance Ensemble.
Jane Steig Parsons

They’re coming to San Antonio soon, and they’re hoping you will join them at the San Antonio Folk Dance Festival.

“It is a gathering of people who love folk dancing, both to view it, and to do it,” said Michael “Misi” Tsurikov, one of the festival’s organizers. And he clearly has a love for folk dancing.

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Texas Public Schools
11:19 am
Fri March 7, 2014

Texas 8th Graders May Have To Take Two End-Of-Course Math Tests This Year

Federal education officials have denied a state waiver that would have eliminated the need to test eighth grade students' math skills more than once -- the denial is related to provisions in House Bill 5 that reduced the overall number of end-of-course exams.

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Fronteras
11:06 am
Fri March 7, 2014

Despite Water Crisis, Some Arizona Farmers Are Exporting Crops

Some of Yuma County's alfalfa will go to feedlots and dairies in the region. Others will be shipped overseas to China, where the demand for hay has grown.
Laurel Morales Fronteras

Fronteras: As California struggles with its water crisis and the rest of the southwest deals with drought, some criticize Arizona farmers for exporting some of their crops overseas. In the final part of our series "Pipe Dreams" we look at the controversy of indirectly exporting water overseas. A new lawsuit in Arizona federal court is trying to block new state abortion restrictions from taking effect on April 1. What's at stake in that state's latest legal fight over abortion? Also, crowded college classrooms have some U.S. students heading south of the border for their higher education.

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Leon Valley
9:37 am
Fri March 7, 2014

Leon Valley's First Major Facilities Expansion In 40 Years Is Nearly Complete

Leon Valley City Hall will gain about a third more space once a new fire station is built that will allow the police department to move out of the main administration building.
Leon Valley

Residential growth and new business development are quietly moving forward in an area where it might be least expected. The City of Leon Valley is marking the progress with its first major facilities expansion in 40 years.

Nestled in the near-Northwest area of San Antonio, Leon Valley is pretty much land-locked on all sides.

“I would say we are about 90 percent built out." City Manager Manny Longoria said.

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Arts & Culture
4:40 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

A Unique Art Exhibit For The Blind At Mercury Project Gallery

A recently-blinded war vet experiencing The Color of Blind exhibit.
Katherine Brown

Imagine an art exhibition where what the art looks like isn’t that important.

"The Color of Blind is an interactive art show for the visually impaired," said Trina Bacon, the founder and curator of The Color of Blind.

“It’s a touch show where you can go and actually touch all the art pieces," she said. "The way the blind see is through touch.”

It's an odd concept to grasp, but once you make that leap -- realizing that the eyes aren’t playing a role -- it gives the concept of an art show a whole new meaning.

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2014 Governor's Race
3:17 pm
Thu March 6, 2014

Davis Presents Innovation & Technology Component Of Education Platform At SXSWedu

Wendy Davis says her education policy will contain a greater use of technology even amongst poorer school districts -- the Democratic nominee for governor was one of the keynote speakers at this week’s South by Southwest Education conference.

In a packed room at SXSWedu in Austin, Davis provided a sneak peak at another component to her education platform: Innovation and technology.

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