Texas Matters

Fridays at 3:30 p.m., Saturdays at 6:30 a.m., and Sundays at 9:30 p.m.

Texas is a big state with a growing, diverse population and as the population grows, the issues and challenges facing its residents multiply.  Texas Matters is a statewide news program that spends half an hour each week looking at the issues and culture of Texas.

Texas Matters is hosted by David Martin Davies, who talks directly with policymakers and newsmakers in a lively discussion designed to shed light on issues often overlooked by other media.

David Martin Davies:

Davies is the host of "The Source" and a veteran journalist with over 20 years’ experience covering Texas, the border and Mexico. He is a regular contributor to NPR and American Public Media's "Marketplace." Davies also has written for "The San Antonio Light", "The San Antonio Express-News," "The Texas Observer" and others, and hosted KLRN public television’s interview program "Conversations."

Texas Matters is made possible by the UTSA Institute of Texan Cultures.

You might think you have deep roots in Texas, but they do not compare to some of the great trees of the state. These Live Oaks, Pecans, Elms and Cypress have stood tall through the ages. They watched the six flags come and go. They gave shade to the history makers and sometimes provided the limbs for grim lynchings.

The Texas A&M Forest Service has collected the most storied trees of the state in the book “Famous Trees of Texas” Gretchen Riley co-authored the book with Peter D.Smith.

Politics runs on money – lots and lots of money. And money brings out people of the most slippery of ethics. That’s what Ken Davis – a Texas oilman and multi millionaire discovered when he decided to fund a conservative super PAC. Robert Faturechi reports for Pro Publica and wrote the article “Super PAC Men: How Political Consultants Took a Texas Oilman on a Wild Ride”

Ryan E. Poppe

It’s up to the Texas legislature and other state leaders to get the state ready for the coming population explosion. Monday marks the midpoint of the 84th legislative session and this is a good time to check in on the progress of the session with State Representative Trey Martinez Fischer – a democrat from San Antonio.

Since July the price of oil has dropped 50% and that is having a negative impact on the Texas Economy.  Texans are far likelier than most Americans to work in extraction of oil and gas, mining support activities, pipeline transportation, and petroleum refining.

  So job growth in the state is stalling. Texas is now 4th in the nation for creation of jobs – that’s according to the latest numbers from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. California is number one.

David Martin Davies

Hydraulic fracturing – or fracking – is the practice of extracting oil trapped in shale rock. It’s producing large quantities of oil in South Texas in the Eagle Ford Shale. That’s one reason why the price of oil has dropped.  But there are questions about the environmental cost of fracking. And one 78-year old nun wants to make sure fracking is done right.

Driving down Texas Highway 72 Sister Elizabeth Riebschlaeger is following a flatbed trailer and calling 9-1-1.