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City Government
12:01 pm
Thu May 8, 2014

How A Bag Ban Would Create A Burden For People Without Vehicles, Low Income

As city leaders discuss the possibility of a plastic bag ban, people who rely on public transportation believe a ban would be discriminatory.
Ryan Loyd TPR News

San Antonio city leaders are in the middle of discussions on a possible ban on single-use plastic bags. The topic comes as cities across the country are taking drastic steps to reduce the use of plastic bags to cut down on litter.

Most people would agree they're bad for the environment, but opponents say a proposed bag ban could unfairly target the poor because reusable bags cost money, and they're a burden to carry around for those without a vehicle.

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The Source - May 8, 2014
11:03 am
Thu May 8, 2014

The Source: Where Should Burden For New Water Supply Be?

http://bit.ly/1mG0dXc
Flickr User: Brandon Watts cc

More than 3 million people move to Texas every year and the need for new building to accommodate housing and jobs for some of those people requires more water and more infrastructure for water. 

How we pay for some of that expansion has come under fire as the San Antonio Water System (SAWS) has recommended doubling the amount of so-called impact fees on developers from $1,297 to $2,796. Impact fees are a one-time fee that pays for water and sewer infrastructure.

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Financial Accountability
10:06 am
Thu May 8, 2014

In Second Report From SBOE Vice Chair, Charter Financial Disparities Go Beyond Pay

Ratliff is hoping his series of reports about charter school financial accountability will make its way to the Legislature in the 2015 session.
Credit Ryan Poppe / TPR News

Using data from the Texas Education Agency’s website, State Board of Education Vice Chairman Thomas Ratliff showed how the overall spending at a majority of charter schools is over the recommended amount set by the state.   

Ratliff said the general conversation about charter schools focuses on school choice, but, he said, the financial management and accountability isn’t something that’s often addressed. Following his study on superintendent pay at charter schools, it was suggested that he examine overall spending.

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Arts & Culture
6:23 am
Thu May 8, 2014

Beirut Part 4: A "Rich, Painful, Complicated" History

Corniche, looking west.
Jack Morgan TPR Arts

I was in Beirut, Lebanon, for an arts and culture symposium recently. Hungry for stories, I hit the streets looking. What I found was a city full of interesting people. Everyone with whom I spoke had either lived though a war or they had fled for their safety.

“As the war started in Lebanon in 1976 we left to Canada," said Hanibal Srouji, a slender, soft-spoken 57-year-old Beirut artist.

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Community
9:46 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Group Could Steer Discussion On Ride-Sharing In San Antonio

Supporters and opponents of ride-sharing filled City Hall chambers to hear the city staff recommendations on updating the vehicle-for-hire ordinance.
Credit Ryan Loyd / Texas Public Radio

Over the next 60 days, city leaders, representatives from the cab industry and ride-share officials will form a work group to draft possible revisions to San Antonio's vehicle-for-hire ordinance.

Wednesday, the city council's Public Safety Committee backed the recommendation presented by the Assistant Police Director Steve Baum, who suggested revising the vehicle-for-hire ordinance's Chapter 33.

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Local History
6:33 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

Leaning Boehler Building Stays At Josephine Street

The Boehler Building gained its distinctive starboard slant as a result of surviving the big flood of 1921. Water reached the bottom of the second floor and when it receded, the building leaned dramatically to its right and has remained so ever since.
Credit Courtney King

The City’s Historic and Design Review Commission has denied permission for the Boehler Building’s owner to move the leaning structure to the Pearl property down the street.

The new owner of the crooked building, which many people still call the Liberty Bar, wanted to move it from its location on Josephine at the Hwy 281 exit, two blocks south to the corner of Avenue A and Pearl Parkway.

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The Source - May 7, 2014
4:39 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

The Source: FDA Places New Regulations On E-Cigs

Credit Lauri Rentala / http://bit.ly/1iYnxNp

Last month the Food and Drug Administration released new regulations on e-cigarettes. The marketplace for the nicotine-delivery device has been described by critics as the wild west, where little is known about the issues with the products and what practices the vendors use to manufacture.

One popular new regulation is limiting the sale of the devices to minors. The FDA stopped short of banning ads on TV and marketing that some argued was directed at children. 

Did the FDA go far enough? 

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The Big Give
4:20 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

A Big Total For The Big Give

UPDATE, 4:00 p.m. Thursday May 8: Big Give S.A. organizers have updated their city-wide total, which now stands at $2,017,441.50.

Original post:

It was a big day for San Antonio. Organizers of The Big Give S.A. cheered the “incredible” response to the first-ever 24-fundraising day, which raised nearly $2 million dollars for over 460 area non-profits.

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2014 Republican Lt. Gov. Runoff
3:21 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

T.V. Attack Ads Go Live In Latest Lt. Gov. Debate Between Dewhurst And Patrick

Dewhurst (far left) and Patrick (far right) debated once again in the lieutenant governor primary runoff.
Credit WFAA and the Texas Tribune

The final debate in the Republican lieutenant governor primary runoff election got combative as both state Sen. Dan Patrick and incumbent Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst fixated on each others' personal finance decisions and the latest round of attack ads.

Early on in the debate, which was held in Dallas and hosted by the city’s ABC affiliate, WFAA-TV, and Texas Tribune, the two candidates set the same tone that Texas voters following the race have become familiar with.

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The Source - May 7, 2014
2:06 pm
Wed May 7, 2014

The Source: Sexual Assaults On Campus Brought To Fore

Aidan Wakely-Mulroney / http://bit.ly/1g8MwrF

An estimated one in five women are sexually assaulted on college campuses across the country, according to Vice President Joe Biden and the White House Task Force to Protect Students from Sexual Assault. While the numbers themselves have been questioned, the issue of campus sexual assault is a real one claiming too many victims. 

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