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2015 Legislative Session
10:43 am
Wed July 2, 2014

Lawmaker Plans 2015 Bill To Address Safety Concerns At Chemical Facilities

Lawmakers will consider regulating chemical facilities in the 2015 legislative session.
Credit Ryan Poppe / TPR News

After a year of investigating the lead up to the fertilizer plant explosion in the town of West, Texas, one state lawmaker announced his intention to author a bill to make such chemical facilities safer.

State Rep. Joe Pickett, D-El Paso, chairman of the Texas House Homeland Security & Public Safety Committee, made the announcement during a committee hearing Tuesday.

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KPAC Blog
4:40 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

UTSA's Statewide Choir Retreat "Boot Camp"

UTSA Choir Camp.
Gary Mabry

The halls of UTSA have been filled with the sound of singing the last few days thanks to a statewide choir camp, which brought about 250 high school students statewide onto the campus.

UTSA Professor of Music Gary Mabry said the camp begins Sunday evening and runs through Wednesday afternoon.

Those students are broken up into alto, tenors, sopranos and basses, and they’re sectioned off to work with group leaders.

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Local Business
4:30 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Shirley Gonzales Expands Family Business, Encourages Others To Make Investments

Shirley Gonzales' new building along West Commerce has been in the works since 2009.
Credit Ryan Loyd / TPR News

As city council members push for redevelopment across town, one member in particular is doing that with her personal business.

District 5 Councilwoman Shirley Gonzales dedicated her family's pawn shop business along West Commerce, encouraging other business leaders to do the same to revitalize the area.

Gonzales said it's been a long time in the making. Since 2009, Gonzales said she's worked toward opening the new Bill's Pawn and Jewelry, adjacent from the old location.

Now the 10,000 square foot building is a reality.

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The Source - July 1, 2014
4:17 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

The Source: What's In A Platform?

Flickr user TN Drum Guy cc

Last month's Texas republican party platform aimed to rouse the base, inspiring action. Blowback inside and outside the party of endorsing reparative therapy for homosexuals and the party's abandoning a guest worker program had party leaders walking back the importance of the document.  As the democrats wrapped up their own convention this weekend, we want to know how important these conventions and platforms really are. 

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Summer Book Drive
2:34 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

SA Reads' Summer Book Drive Kicks Off

www.sareads.org
Credit SA Reads

The fifth annual SA Reads Summer Book Drive is kicking off this week with a mission to provide books to children who may not have access to them.

The book drive was originally started by Congressman Joaquín Castro in 2010, but is now run by Literacy San Antonio. Executive Director Pamela Toman said their goal is to collect as many books as possible.

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Arts & Culture
2:11 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Photo Exhibit At Blue Star Features Striking Portrait Silhouettes

Jenelle Esparza
Jack Morgan

An exhibit opening at the Blue Star Contemporary Art Museum on Wednesday is a series of portraits that don’t really look like portraits.

“A common theme throughout this work and a lot of my work is identity," said Jenelle Esparza, the artist/photographer whose work is featured in the exhibit called Ancestral Archetypes.

"So I used silhouettes of people instead of a detailed frontal portrait of somebody," she said.

In fact those portraits reveal very little detail of each person’s face, and as Esparza explained, that’s not by accident.

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Border & Immigration
1:14 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

Castro Critical Of Congress For Failing To Address Humanitarian Border Crisis

Congressman Joaquín Castro, D-San Antonio.
Credit U.S. Government

Applauding President Barack Obama’s executive order, Congressman Joaquín Castro, D-San Antonio, said Congress has failed to address the thousands of unaccompanied Central American children now here in the state.

Obama called the surge of Central American children to the United States through Texas a "humanitarian crisis" and said he can no longer wait on Congress to pass an immigration reform bill.

The President announced he would order a shift of immigration enforcement resources from the interior of the country toward the southern border. 

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Texas Politics
12:00 pm
Tue July 1, 2014

San Antonio Lawmaker Calls Texas Republicans “Pendejos”

State Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer.
Credit Trey Martinez Fischer

State Rep. Trey Martinez Fischer, D-San Antonio, caused a stir among Texas Republicans for comments he made during this weekend’s Texas Democratic Party convention.

During his keynote speech, Martinez Fischer said the GOP "should stand for gringos y otras pendejos."

Republican candidates immediately took issue with the comment.

Martinez Fischer said his comments were meant to address the name-calling and disrespect he says Democrats have been shown by Republican candidates in 2014 and meant to address some the items in the Republican party platform.

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VIA Street Car
10:26 am
Tue July 1, 2014

VIA Releases Economic Impact Study For Streetcar

The many proposed routes for streetcar pictured have been narrowed to just one in the Broadway corridor.
VIA Metropolitan Transit

VIA Metropolitan Transit has released a commissioned study showing a $1.3 billion economic impact along the routes of its proposed streetcar system. Those opposed to the street car system say the transit authority is paying for exactly what they want to hear.

The economic impact study commissioned by the SABÉR Institute at St. Mary’s University and the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce predicts a multi-billion dollar return on investment over 25 years through VIA’s initial $280 million.

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The Source: July 1, 2014
9:57 am
Tue July 1, 2014

The Source: Derailments Spike Along With Oil Shipments

Link to original image: http://bit.ly/1lvK3ci
Credit Flickr user Paul Sullivan / cc

Transporting crude oil from areas booming with the hydraulic fracturing revolution relies heavily on railroads. Busier railroads means more derailments and more derailments with trains loaded with old cars filled with oil means more tragedies.

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