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11:13 am
Fri March 21, 2014

City Planning Future Of Plaza De Armas, While Preserving Its Past

The exterior of Plaza de Armas. The complex sits in the shadows of City Hall downtown.
Ryan Loyd TPR News

Once a military training ground, the Plaza de Armas building near City Hall is entering a new phase of its historic life.

On Thursday, city council members approved an amendment to the design-and-build contract, increasing the project's cost by $1.4 million for a total of $11 million. The council also voted in favor of Executive Chef Chuck Hernandez's restaurant, O'liva, being located within the complex of Plaza de Armas.

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Water Resources
4:47 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

LCRA Board Approves Money For Major Downstream Reservoir Project In Wharton County

LCRA hearing in Nov. 2013 to decide on raising the lake level threshold for the Highland Lakes.
Ryan Poppe TPR News

 The Board of Directors for the Lower Colorado River Authority has approved the next phase of a downstream reservoir that will capture some of the water heading to Matagorda Bay.

This week, the LCRA board approved spending $17 million that will go toward finalizing the design of the reservoir in Wharton County.

The LCRA’s Clara Tuma said the reservoir in the lower basin will provide fresh water to the Gulf Coast bays, as well as Texas rice farmers on the coastal plains.

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Texas Public Schools
4:01 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

TEA Approves Use Of Tablet Applications During 8th Grade STAARS Math Exam

Officials with the Texas Education Agency say 8th graders this year will be allowed to use calculator apps on a tablet during the math portion of their State of Texas Assessment of Academic Readiness end-of-course exam.

While to some it may not seem like a big deal, Debbie Ratcliffe with the TEA says it is, especially considering that no other standardized tests allow the use of apps during testing.

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World Music at SXSW
3:41 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Austin Group Atash Brings The Sounds Of The World To Texas

Alejandro Moreno-Alanis

Atash is a multi-cultural band based in Austin, so for them, lodging wasn’t an issue at the jam-packed South By Southwest festival. The members are from Iran, India, West Guinea, Africa, Cuba, Mexico and the United States. We started out talking about the band members, and also got into the subject of Islam and music during our interview.

Deirdre Saravia: "Mohammad, tell me about yourself, where do you come from?"

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The Source - March 20, 2014
2:04 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

The Source: What Will The Statehouse Do To Graduation Requirements?

Ryan Poppe TPR News

When House Bill 5 passed last year it signaled yet another change in course for public education in Texas. Texas House and Senate members will take another look next Wednesday at the standards they passed last year and how the State Board of Education has implemented them.

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Equal Pay
12:31 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Groups React To Gender Pay Difference In Express-News Salary Report On AG Office

Republican gubernatorial candidate Greg Abbott is taking criticism for gender pay grades in the Texas attorney general's office.
Courtesy photo

Democratic women’s groups are weighing in on a new report showing women working in Attorney General Greg Abbott's office are paid less than their male counterparts. The numbers come on the heals of a major battle between Abbott and Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis over equal pay laws.

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Criminal Justice
12:14 pm
Thu March 20, 2014

Texas’ Highest Criminal Court Hears First Case Using New "Junk Science" Law

The Texas Court of Criminal Appeals heard oral arguments this week in a case of a man convicted of murdering a toddler. The attorneys for Neal Robbins used a new law that allows for a new trial if the forensic science used to convict them is discredited and out-of-date.

Robbins was convicted of killing a 17 month old in Houston in 1999 and in 2007 the medical examiner changed her opinion. Since then the Texas Legislature passed a new law that allows someone convicted to petition for a new trial if the forensic science methods used to in their case is suddenly discredited. 

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Arts & Culture
11:58 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Siclovia Takes Social Approach To Promoting March 30th Southside Event

Colorful Síclovía bikes.
esd & Associates

It’s the event that closes down streets and invites San Antonians to come out and play, but there's change in the air. Previous Síclovía events have been held on Broadway, but this year they are moving to the Southside.

"The new route will be starting along St. Mary’s near Cesar Chavez, and then stretching down to Mission Concepción," said YMCA’s Director of Marketing Laura Waldrum. "The event is going to take place on Sunday, March 30.”

If you’re new to San Antonio, Waldrum described Síclovía this way:

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The Source - March 20, 2014
11:35 am
Thu March 20, 2014

The Source: The Breakdown Employing Youth

Brookings Institution

The last decade was a disaster in terms of American employment. The people that have suffered the most though are a group of people not often considered -- the nation's youth. Basic job skills, employment socialization and other skills are all having to be learned later in life because the ability for a young adult to get a job has fallen off a cliff.

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Arts & Culture
10:28 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Carmen Tafolla Reflects Ahead Of Her Final Performance As Poet Laureate

Carmen Tafolla in the TPR studios.
Chris Eudaily TPR News

Carmen Tafolla, San Antonio’s first poet laureate, is nearing the end of her time in the position, and as I found from talking to her, there’s no rest for the weary.

“Right now I’m still working away, scripting on a fantastic performance piece that is actually the last of the poet laureate signature series, and it’s March 29,” Tafolla said.

She will be joined onstage at the event by several other San Antonio poets and musicians.

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