local news

Education Funding
3:17 pm
Fri March 22, 2013

Additional Education Funding Still Below What Was Cut Last Legislative Session

Districts that have financial difficulties like Premont are hoping the legislature can fix the way the state funds education to give them some help.
David Martin Davies TPR

The House Budget Committee approved additional funding for public school districts and changed a key component for how schools are funded locally. They voted out a budget bill out of committee late Thursday that will provide school districts $3 billion over the next 2 years.

Rep. Donna Howard, D-Austin, is the vice-chair of the committee and said that is still below what was cut during the 2011 budget.

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Texas Education
9:28 am
Fri March 22, 2013

Senate Committee Moved To Tears, Renews Discussion On Charter Schools

Education continues to be a major area of discussion during the 83rd Legislature.
Flickr user Phil Ostroff cc

A senate hearing at the capitol dials down the accountability standard for state dropout recovery schools under a bill authored by Sen. Leticia Van DePutte.

If the bill passes, dropout recovery schools would not face the same accountability standard as any other public school in the state.

Justina Gonzalez runs the Por Vida Academy & Charter School in San Antonio, an at-risk school for students that have fallen behind.

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Texas Legislature
6:39 am
Fri March 22, 2013

Colleges And Universities Could Start Doing DPS Background Checks For Student Housing

Students living in dorm rooms could be subjected to thorough DPS background checks if the bill passes
Flickr user Justin Harter cc

Lawmakers at the state capitol are hoping to give colleges and universities the ability to conduct DPS background checks for students living on campus.

Currently many colleges conduct public background checks on students seeking on-campus housing, but some college administrators don't believe they go far enough. Edward Williams, who works in residential life at Kilgore College in East Texas, testified in favor in the bill.

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Texas Legislature
4:19 pm
Thu March 21, 2013

2013 Budget Bill Passes With Only Two Opposing Votes

Texas State Capitol in Austin.
Ryan Poppe TPR News

Texas lawmakers approved a bill that replaces funds taken from public education and mental health providers but changes the structure of the state’s Medicaid.

The senate voted 29 to 2 in favor of the budget, with Senators Silvia Garcia, D-Houston, and Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, voting against the bill.

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Texas Veterans
2:50 pm
Thu March 21, 2013

Bills Filed To Help Veterans Use Military Certification To Find Work

State Sen. Leticia Van de Putte is pushing to make military certifications easier to transfer into civilian life.
Office of State Sen. Leticia Van de Putte

A set of bills in both the Texas House and Senate are there to ensure that the state’s veterans are able to use military training to obtain jobs. 

Sen. Leticia Van de Putte authored the bill that ensures training and certifications obtained by veterans and their spouses while serving in the military immediately transfer with them into civilian life. 

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Fiesta 2013
5:52 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Convention And Visitors Bureau Campaigning To Fill Hotels For Fiesta Week

Eileen Pace TPR

The San Antonio Convention and Visitors Bureau is kicking off a new campaign to increase occupancy at area hotels during Fiesta week.

Krystal Jones, senior brand manager for the bureau, said locals often don’t try to book hotels, thinking they’re booked up long in advance.

"Fiesta, of course, is a busy time, and a lot of locals come and enjoy Fiesta. And automatically you think there might not be room at the hotels but we do have availability. We sit at about 70 percent," she said.

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Teacher Training
5:25 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Google Grant Awarded To TIER Program At Northwest Vista College

The Texas Institute for Educational Robotics (TIER) at Northwest Vista College has been awarded a grant from the Google Computer Sciences for High School program.

TIER is an outreach program at Northwest Vista College to get younger students interested in pursuing degrees in science, technology, engineering and math and was awarded the money to give middle school teachers a gaming-type tool to use in teaching their regular classes.

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Local Business
5:05 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Port San Antonio Launches Food Truck Court

Spice Sea food truck is in rotation at Port San Antonio
Eileen Pace TPR

Even though thousands of workers file into different businesses at Port San Antonio every day, there have been relatively few places for them to go for lunch.

As of early March, gourmet foods, burgers and ethnic specialties are offered at the Port in the form of the newest food truck court. Each Tuesday and Thursday at the corner of General Hudnell and Billy Mitchell Boulevard the trucks park for lunch.

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Economy & Jobs
3:48 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Local Economists Say San Antonio Has Bounced Back From Recession

The increase in housing development, like the one at the former Birdsong Peanut Factory on the West Side is helping San Antonio continue to recover economically.
Ryan Loyd TPR

San Antonio economists told members of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce that San Antonio recovered from the recession faster because it didn’t suffer as great an impact as the rest of the nation, or even Texas.

Keith Phillips with the local branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas, said metropolitan statistical area's in Texas have recovered all of the jobs lost in the recession, and San Antonio suffered the least:

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Abortion Legislation
2:30 pm
Wed March 20, 2013

Debate On Abortion Clinic Standards Touches Off Shouting Match

Texas State Capitol in Austin, where legislators and supporters/opponents are debating proposed legislation.
Ryan Poppe TPR News

A bill requiring higher standards for abortion providers has made it out of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services and is now on the senate floor for full review.

The discussion on the matter of requiring abortion providers to have a similar setup as surgical office quickly escalated from a civil conversation to a yelling match between the author of the bill, Sen. Bob Duell, R-Greenville, and Virginia Brawn, who owns a North Texas women's clinic.

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