local news

Bexar County Budget
9:34 am
Wed September 17, 2014

Bexar Budget Adds Courthouse Security, Other Law Enforcement

Visitors to the Cadena Reeves Justice Center and the Bexar County Courthouse will soon enter the building under the scrutiny of armed guards instead of security guards.
Credit Eileen Pace

Bexar County commissioners Tuesday approved a nearly $1.7 billion budget for the next fiscal year.

Officials say higher property values allowed the county to lower the tax rate while increasing services for family justice, neighborhoods, and public safety.

County commissioners took a long look at a law enforcement budget request and in the end, approved the largest program change, according to Sheriff Susan Pamerleau, in anyone’s memory.

Read more
Bexar County
1:39 pm
Tue September 16, 2014

Judge Proposes Pilot Program To Speed Up Child Abuse & Neglect Cases

State District Judge Peter Sakai increased adoption of foster children in Bexar County by 1000 percent from 1995 to 2005. He is proposing a new pilot program to reduce the amount of time it takes a child abuse case to reach a resolution.
Credit Bexar County

  

A family court judge is asking Bexar County to help fund a pilot program that would streamline cases in the family courts.  Judge Peter Sakai hopes to add two court managers and other elements to the program that will help connect the dots with other parts of the legal system.

The child abuse and neglect court in Bexar County accounts for $3.5 million a year in fees for court-appointed attorneys.

"And our system is second only to the total felony courts," Sakai said. 

Read more
Community Health
4:30 pm
Mon September 15, 2014

South Texas Women’s Health Care Group Splits With Planned Parenthood

Credit Planned Parenthood

For years, the Planned Parenthood Association of Hidalgo County have served the women of their region by providing physicals, pap smears, mammograms, screening for cancer, HIV and sexually transmitted infections and treatment for diabetes, but not abortions.    

But CEO Patricio Gonzales says the stigma of being associated with abortions led to their board's decision to change the group's name to Access Esperanza, Inc. and split fully with Planned Parenthood.

Read more
Science & Technology
5:06 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

UTHSC Studies Tooth Regeneration To Save Children's Teeth

A new study that uses stem cells to regenerate teeth is underway at the UT Health Science Center in San Antonio. 

 The study is looking at restoring the life of a damaged tooth and bringing the practice to the forefront as the go-to treatment to replace standard root canals, which cause affected teeth to die. 

 Dr. Anibal Diogenes, assistant professor of endodontics at the UT Health Science Center, said children are at risk for serious problems with their teeth, especially the front teeth.

Read more
Bexar County
1:13 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

Grant Funding Ends, Veterans Court Asks Bexar County For Ongoing Support

Judge Wayne Christian congratulates a veteran who completed the program in the Bexar Co. Veterans Treatment Court. District Attorney Susan Reed, Bexar Co. Sheriff Susan Pamerleau, and Bexar Co. Clerk Gerry Rickhoff came in support of the program's graduates.
Credit Veterans Treatment Court, San Antonio

    

The Bexar County Veterans Treatment Court is reaching the end of its grant funding and its judge is calling on the county to fund the court's ongoing operation.

The court processes hundreds of veterans – many of whom have been awarded the Purple Heart or Bronze Star. It has been operating out of County Court 6 for the last four years, working with veterans accused of misdemeanor crimes to get them out of the offending cycle and help them back into productive lives. 

Read more
Pre-K in Texas
12:59 pm
Fri September 12, 2014

TEA Seeking Federal Grant To Expand Pre-K In Texas

The city of San Antonio's Pre-K 4 SA program, an all-day pre-K, graduated its first class in June of this year.
Credit Ryan Loyd / TPR News

The Texas education commissioner has informed federal officials the state intends to seek a $30 million grant that would expand pre-kindergarten opportunities. That would include increasing enrollment for non-English speaking students and possible all-day pre-K.

While the two gubernatorial candidates debate how pre-K should be run, Texas Education Commissioner Michael Williams wants to make sure Texas has the financial resources for increasing pre-K opportunities.  

Read more
2014 Governor's Race
4:39 pm
Thu September 11, 2014

Abbott Campaign Files Ethics Complaint Over Wendy Davis Book Tour

Democratic nominee for governor, Fort Worth State Sen. Wendy Davis at book signing in Austin
Credit Ryan E. Poppe

Wendy Davis' Republican gubernatorial opponent Greg Abbott has gone from asking for a general inquiry regarding Davis' book sales and promotional activity to launching a formal complaint with the Texas Ethics Commission.

The Abbott campaign filed the formal complaint during the first stop of Davis’ book signing tour in Austin.

In a statement, the Abbott campaign’s Matt Hirsch writes:

"Sen. Davis' book promotion has gone from ethically questionable to outright unlawful,"  

Read more
City Government
10:21 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Interim Councilwoman Aguirre-Rodriguez Suspends District 7 Staff

Mari Aguirre-Rodriguez reorganized her staff Wednesday, suspending the chief of staff and policy adviser.
Credit City of San Antonio

Interim Councilwoman Mari Aguirre-Rodriguez is shaking her staff up at city hall, calling for suspensions of top aides in the office and the reassignment of others. Derek Roberts, the chief of staff, and Colin Strother, the senior adviser, have been restricted from city hall and the men say their access to the computer system has been shut off.

Read more
Texas Public Schools
4:45 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Group Releases Study Detailing Problems With 2015 Social Studies Textbooks

Credit Flickr user Corey Seeman (cseeman) / cc

The Texas Freedom Network-released study shows the content in some of social studies textbook submitted to the Texas State Board of Education is deeply flawed and biased. The study points to problems with the Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills that publishers use as an outline.

The Texas Freedom Network’s Kathy Miller said their team of university professors found serious distortions of history on topics ranging from religion and democracy to free enterprise and affirmative action, which she said can be traced back to the social studies standards set by the SBOE in 2010.

Read more
Insurance
2:30 pm
Wed September 10, 2014

Dewhurst Calls For Texas Windstorm Insurance Association Exit Strategy

Credit Ryan Poppe / TPR News

Difficulties in finding a way to fund the state’s Texas Windstorm Insurance Association and a number of lawsuits has caused Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst to ask a legislative committee to study what shutting the state agency down would look like. 

Dewhurst told the Senate’s Committee on Business and Commerce that the state should no longer be in the insurance business.  

“We always talk about we shouldn’t be competing with the private sector," Dewhurst said. "We’re competing with the private sector; we’re operating a $77 billion insurance company and that scares me.”

Read more

Pages