Texas Matters: With the investigation into the West fertilizer plant explosion ongoing, the House Homeland Security & Public Safety Committee held a hearing to clarify who is responsible for reviewing these kinds of facilities. Also on this show: The chances that Ted Cruz makes a presidential run and the future of high-stakes testing in Texas.
At public universities in Texas, only 1 in 4 full-time freshman graduates within four years. That's obviously a problem for students -- and with Texas legislators considering a bill that would increasingly link state funding to graduation rates, it's a pressure point for colleges, too.
Update: The Texas A&M Board of Regents approved the university’s $450 million plan to redevelop Kyle Field into the biggest stadium in Texas (by seating capacity). Demolition work on the existing stadium is slated to begin in November this year, with plans for a grand opening in time for the 2015 football season.
Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 11:59 am
Update: More signs from the City of Austin that Attorney General Greg Abbott's opinion won't mean any changes for now: a memo from City Manager Marc Ott on the matter. It reads, in part:
While we will continue to evaluate the Attorney General’s opinion, it continues to be our belief that the City’s domestic partner group benefits program is not prohibited by the Texas Marriage Amendment, and that the Texas Legislature did not intend the Amendment to have that effect when it was placed before the voters in 2005.
The Attorney General’s opinion does not require the City to take any specific action, and we do not intend to change domestic partner eligibility for our benefits program at this time.
Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 3:43 pm
Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins believes the county's same-sex benefits plan approved last fall is legal, despite Monday's opinion from the Texas Attorney General that said local governments and school districts offering marriage benefits to same sex partners violate the state constitution.
Originally published on Tue April 30, 2013 12:36 pm
Hays County is looking for alternative groundwater supplies. An open Request for Proposals seeks to pipe in water from aquifers that could be tapped to supplement water from the Edwards and Trinity aquifers.
County Commissioner Ray Whisenant (R-Precinct 4) says the existing supply of water appears to be unsustainable with the county's current growth rate.
Officials are still trying to pin down who is responsible for the explosion at the fertilizer plant in West, Texas, but national and state politicians attended a tribute to urge a national sense of community. Also on this show: The Geroge W. Bush Library was dedicated this week, which is bringing up conversation about the meaning of the former president's legacy. As Texas continues to cope with drought conditions, residents who depend on rivers like the San Saba are battling agriculture interests for water rights. The U.S. Supreme Court weighs in on the cross-border Texas-Oklahoma water war.
Two potential presidential candidates are in Dallas today. Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush will talk about immigration to one organization. Then in the evening, past Secretary of State Hillary Clinton will address a group of apartment executives.
Originally published on Mon April 22, 2013 11:42 am
This is the first installment in the KERA News series "Inside the Bush Center."
George W. Bush’s environmental legacy as president was decidedly . . . mixed. He established the largest protected marine environment in American history – more than a hundred million acres set aside in our Pacific territories. But he also permitted more mountaintop removal by mining companies. And he refused to sign the Kyoto Protocols on global warming. Yet the George W. Bush Presidential Center on the campus of SMU is unequivocally eco-sensitive. The new center will be dedicated Thursday.