economy

Texas
2:20 pm
Tue December 23, 2014

Low Oil Prices Fueling A Texas Recession? Economists Disagree

"Hitchhacking" via Flickr

Economists don’t seem to agree on whether the plummeting price of oil could cause a recession in Texas next year.

The price per barrel has dropped to $55, about half of where it was during the first part of 2014.

Michael Feroli, the chief U.S. economist at J.P. Morgan Chase, recently told clients that Texas is “at risk of slipping into a regional recession” because of the decline in oil prices. 

However, Economist Michael Plante with the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, doesn’t think a recession is on the horizon.

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The Source - September 16, 2014
12:22 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

The Source: The Employee Vs. The Contractor

Credit McClatchy Newspapers

Construction firms in Texas are dodging taxes, shifting them to employees and shorting the government out of $1.2 billion, according to a new investigative report called Contract to Cheat conducted by the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram and McClatchey newspapers.

More than 37% of Texas' 800,000 construction workers are being misclassified as independent contractors instead of employees, says an investigative report.

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Business
10:47 am
Wed September 10, 2014

Gov. Perry, Rep. Villalba Meet With Chinese Investors On Development Trip

A state legislator that has joined Texas Gov. Rick Perry during his Asian Economic Development Trip said investors from China and Japan are poised to provide the private funds needed to grow the state’s economy and fulfill some of its infrastructure needs.

State Rep. Jason Villalba, R-Dallas, said Perry asked him to join him in Beijing to meet with hundreds of Chinese investors that are interested in growing the Texas economy by either providing capital for existing projects or bringing business to the state.

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Eagle Ford Shale
10:27 am
Tue September 9, 2014

Nordheim Fights Becoming The Fracking Waste Capital Of The Eagle Ford

Lyn Janssen holds a yard sign which protests the proposed fracking waste disposal pits near Nordheim.
Credit David Martin Davies / TPR News

At a recent Monday night in Nordheim, a town of 300 about 75 miles southeast of San Antonio, neighbors are gathering at the old dance hall; the Nordheim Shooting Club.

But this isn’t for a night of boot scootin’, they are here to organize against what they see as an environmental threat to their town and their way of life.

Two massive fracking waste disposal pits, one 200 acre site and the other 575 acres, are being proposed for right outside of town.

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Fronteras
2:05 pm
Fri September 5, 2014

Families Losing Hope For DNA Evidence At Tijuana Body Dump Site

The site known as "La Gallera" in Tijuana where Santiago Meza said he dissolved 60 bodies in lye, Aug. 22, 2014.
Jill Replogle

Fronteras: Nearly a quarter of Texas business owners are foreign born. Texas entrepreneurs want more high-skilled visas. The private space company XCOR recently broke ground at the Midland International Airport. Some hope this new industry will stabilize the region’s traditionally oil and gas-based boom-and-bust economy. Some family members of the missing in Mexico hoped to find answers at a gruesome body disposal site discovered in Tijuana several years ago. But hope is dwindling for DNA evidence at this site where bodies were dumped.

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International Trade
10:08 am
Fri August 29, 2014

International Partners Discuss Trusted Trader Programs At Customs Conference

Truckers like this one at Port San Antonio as well as other shipping industry partners and that make goods for export can learn safer transportation practices through the U.S. Customs and Border Protection's Trusted Trade Partner agreements
Credit Eileen Pace

  More than 1,000 individuals representing companies and organizations that ship materials across borders are in San Antonio this week for the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Conference. They came to network with their international partners and to learn more about special government programs that streamline processing and offer additional security when they send goods to other countries.

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Texas Film Industry
10:37 am
Thu August 28, 2014

Texas House Lawmakers Look At Film Incentive Program

Credit Texas Film Commission

Yesterday a House select committee discussed the benefits to providing film companies incentives to operate in within the state.

The committee was designed to go through each of the state’s economic incentive programs with a fine-tooth comb to determine if the state is benefiting from these corporate relationships. That list included the Texas Moving Image Industry Incentive Program, which is managed by Heather Page, the director of the Texas Film Commission, a division of the governor’s office.

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Local Business
12:16 pm
Mon August 18, 2014

Construction Industry Struggling To Fill Growing Number Of Job Openings

Joe Aguilar, who says he has worked only about a month for the painting contractor for the Alamo Stadium project, paints the walls of the stadium days before the facility's grand re-opening.
Credit Eileen Pace / TPR News

An announcement earlier this year that the number of construction jobs has increased was good news, heralding a recovering economy. But the news is a double-edged sword for contractors who have to try harder to find good workers.

Soon there will be bands playing and football players running the length of the field at Alamo Stadium. After 18 months of construction, the 2010 San Antonio ISD bond project was completed this week.

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Fronteras
2:04 pm
Fri August 8, 2014

Brownsville Area To Boast SpaceX Launch Site

Spacex.com

Fronteras: South Texas lands SpaceX. Brownsville Mayor Tony Martinez talks to us about what the investment means for this border area. We keep hearing the term "unaccompanied minor" to refer to the Central American immigrants crossing the border alone. But how accurate is this term after these minors cross into the U.S.? Also, the number of child migrants arriving at our souther border is decreasing. We speak to POLITICO about that recent turn of events and what may be contributing to it.

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Texas Business
3:35 pm
Thu July 24, 2014

State Lawmakers Debate Future Of Texas Economic Incentive Programs

Credit Ryan Poppe / TPR News

There is a divide among state lawmakers regarding economic incentive programs for new and expanding businesses.  Some lawmakers and state leaders question whether these programs remain useful and beneficial for the state's economic growth.

The debate centers on local and state tax credits and multi-million dollar grants from the Texas Enterprise Fund, which is controlled by Texas Gov. Rick Perry and has awarded more than $500 million to businesses since the fund was set up in 2003.  

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