Texas

News, policy discussions, and major events happening in or related to Texas, told from an Austin perspective

Gabriel Cristóver Pérez / KUT

Central Texans are expressing solidarity and concern after Saturday’s deadly white supremacist and neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Marjorie Kamys Cotera/Texas Tribune

A bill that would change the way cities and counties collect property taxes is moving forward in the Texas House. On Saturday, lawmakers approved Senate Bill 1 on second reading. The measure would lower the rollback rate, or the annual percent increase in property taxes, from 8 percent to 6 percent. Any increases above that would have to go to the public for a vote.

The bill’s sponsor, Representative Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, repeatedly noted that SB 1 does not aim to save taxpayers any money, but it would allow them to weigh in on some increases.

Sally Donovan/Wikimedia Commons (Public domain)

From Texas Standard:

A coalition of rural Texas hospitals says small-town hospitals in the state are facing a "closure crisis" after those in Crockett and Trinity ceased operations over the summer.

The group says the recent closures bring the total number of closed rural hospitals in the past four years to nearly 20. And if the Texas Legislature and the U.S. Congress don't act, more rural communities will be left without immediate access to quality health- and emergency care.

 

KUT News

From Texas Standard:

One issue that's been top priority during the special legislative session is school finance. On Thursday, nearly 1,500 school officials sent a letter to Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick urging him to support the primary legislation that deals with school finance, House Bill 21, which passed out of the House on Monday. The Senate's Education Committee heard testimony on HB 21 Friday.

Michael Cavazos/News-Journal

Bernie Tiede lost in the courts again Thursday, but he isn’t giving up.

Tiede — a small-town East Texas mortician whose crime prompted a Hollywood movie — has already been sentenced twice in the 1996 shooting death of wealthy Carthage widow Marjorie Nugent, and he is asking for yet another trial. On Thursday, a state appellate court denied that request, affirming his 99-year sentence.

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