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Chief Justice Hecht: Texas Must Back Promises to Veterans

by John Michaelson/TNS AUSTIN, Texas – They have put their lives on the line for the freedoms in this country, and among those pushing Texas to make sure the promises made to veterans are kept are the most powerful judges in the state. For many service members, the move back into civilian life can present […]

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Retaining Texas Justice: $500 Million in Free Legal Help

by John Michaelson/TNS AUSTIN, Texas – This is National Pro Bono Week, and while it will soon come to a close, the dramatic need for affordable legal services in Texas is a real struggle that continues each and every day. Attorney Harry Reasoner, chair of the Texas Access to Justice Commission, says with around five-million […]

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Texas Residents and Businesses Pay $218-Billion in Federal Taxes

by John Michaelson/TNS AUSTIN, Texas – Texas residents and businesses paid $218 billion in federal taxes in 2013, according to a new report. Becky Sweger, director of data and technology for the National Priorities Project, says its “State Smart” research added up the federal taxes paid by residents and businesses in Texas, which worked out […]

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TxDOT REMINDS FOOTBALL FANS TO MAKE A SOBER RIDE GAME PLAN

Alcohol-related crashes in Texas rise on game days AUSTIN — As the Texas Longhorns and Oklahoma Sooners kick off their long-standing football rivalry this weekend, the Texas Department of Transportation reminds drivers to stay sober and safe as they make their way to and from their game-day destinations. “The Texas/OU rivalry game dramatically increases traffic […]

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Nacho Estrada and Maclovio Visit the Valley

Special Performance at Harlingen Cultural Center photos and story by Bill Keltner/La Feria News To say that Harlingen native Nacho Estrada is a professional ventriloquist is an understatement. Estrada and his friends have been entertaining audiences from coast to coast at national teachers, principals, and educational conventions since his graduation from Harlingen High School in […]

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Plans for New Texas ICE Facility Get Cold Shoulder

by John Michaelson/TNS AUSTIN, Texas – With Immigration and Customs Enforcement moving ahead with plans for a massive new for-profit family detention center in South Texas, many in the region are giving the proposed ICE facility the cold shoulder. The center will be located on a 50-acre site just outside of the town of Dilley and house […]

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Number of Texans in Poverty at 4.5 Million

by John Michaelson/TNS AUSTIN, Texas – Latest figures show the poverty rate has dropped in Texas, although the change is minimal and in some parts of the state, the financial struggles for families are much more widespread. The U.S. Census Bureau reports the statewide poverty rate has dipped to 17.5 percent, although it’s double that in the […]

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Research: Few Benefits for Workers with Temporary Visas

by John Michaelson/TNS AUSTIN, Texas – Immigrants from Mexico can fill the gap where there’s a need for agricultural or low-skilled work in Texas and other states. However, a new study finds little benefit for those who legally obtain a temporary worker visa. Indiana University researcher Lauren Apgar found that temporary workers hold jobs with the […]

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BP Found “Grossly Negligent” for Gulf Oil Spill Disaster

Ruling Could Add Billions in Fines by John Michaelson/TNS AUSTIN, Texas – A federal judge has found that the “reckless conduct” of BP caused the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, which left 11 people dead and became the largest environmental disaster in U.S. history. Thursday’s ruling concluded that the massive spill in 2010 was the result of “gross […]

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Passenger Pigeon: Painful Reminder of Needed Protections

Imperiled in Texas: Lesser Prairie-Chicken and Ocelot by John Michaelson AUSTIN, Texas – Monday marks the 100th anniversary of the extinction of the passenger pigeon. The commemoration is being used to urge protection of other species that may face the same fate and for the law that protects them. The Endangered Species Act was passed in 1973, […]

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