• This RSS feed URL is deprecatedThis RSS feed URL is deprecated

    This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news

    Google News / 19.11.2017 04:21
  • Funeral held for Texas State student found dead after fraternity eventFuneral held for Texas State student found dead after fraternity event

    KINGWOOD, Texas (KXAN) — Friends and family said goodbye Saturday to the Texas State University student who was found dead after a fraternity event. Matthew Ellis was laid to rest in Kingwood, Texas, near his hometown of Humble northeast of Houston. The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission, the San Marcos Police Department, the university and the fraternity’s national chapter are all investigating the death. Phi Kappa Psi shut down the local chapter at Texas State University last week for what they say are unrelated reasons. Police said it is still possible that charges could be filed in this case.

    KXAN / 38 min. ago more
  • Boy, 11, accidentally shoots self with handgun in Caldwell CountyBoy, 11, accidentally shoots self with handgun in Caldwell County

    McMAHAN, Texas (KXAN) – An 11-year-old boy accidentally shot himself with a handgun in a rural Caldwell County town on Saturday morning, said the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office. It happened at about 10:11 a.m. when the boy was handling the weapon on a family property while under the supervision of his father in McMahan, Texas, the Sheriff’s Office said. The boy shot himself in the upper torso and the father also received an injury to his finger, officials said. Both the boy and his father were taken by helicopter to the hospital. The Sheriff’s Office said the boy was alert and talking but that the extent and severity of injuries were unknown at this time. The case is under investigation by the Caldwell County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Division, but they said there was no threat to the general public.

    KXAN / 3 h. 6 min. ago more
  • PHOTOS: Kids, parents turn out for Chuy’s Children Giving to Children ParadePHOTOS: Kids, parents turn out for Chuy’s Children Giving to Children Parade

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — The season of giving is here, and it kicked off with a big parade in downtown Austin Saturday morning. The annual Chuy’s Children Giving to Children Parade helps raise money and gifts for the Austin Police Department’s Operation Blue Santa. There were marching bands, giant balloons and even Santa Claus made an appearance. Along the route, the parade stops and children get to fill up the trucks with their unwrapped gifts. “It’s teaching our kids to give back to the community,” said one mother who attended with her family. “You know that there are other less fortunate people out there, and we need to be a part of helping those people.” There’s still time to donate. You can drop off unwrapped toys at numerous locations across the city, including fire stations, police substations and ACC campuses. Chuy’s Children Giving to Children Parade Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN photo) Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN photo) Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN Photo) Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN photo) Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN Photo) Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN photo) Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN photo) Chuy's Children Giving to Children Parade 2017 (KXAN Photo)

    KXAN / 6 h. 40 min. ago more
  • Hutto hosting recycling day for documents, electronicsHutto hosting recycling day for documents, electronics

    HUTTO, Texas (KXAN) — The Keep Hutto Beautiful Foundation is joining thousands of local organizers across the country to host a free document shredding and electronic recycling event. Members of the community are encouraged to drop off their unwanted electronics and their documents for shredding and recycling. Organizers say while the event is about recycling, it also helps people feel safe knowing that their documents and personal information is being properly destroyed. Balcones Shred, who will be doing the document shredding, will accept up to 5 boxes per person. Electronics that are brought will be given to Goodwill Central Texas for recycling. Goodwill partners with Dell Technologies to make sure electronic systems are refurbished and recycled responsibly. All kinds of electronics will be accepted except for tube televisions. The Hutto Food Pantry will also be on site collecting non-perishable foods just in time for Thanksgiving. The event will take place Saturday from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. at the Peterson Community Garden on Hutto Street. It is part of the national initiative of Keep America Beautiful.

    KXAN / 8 h. 54 min. ago more
  • The Weekend Gardener: How antique roses could make the perfect giftThe Weekend Gardener: How antique roses could make the perfect gift

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — It’s not too early to start thinking about Christmas. And if you’re looking for a unique gift for someone special this year, the weekend gardener shows you how antique roses could do the trick.

    KXAN / 9 h. 14 min. ago
  • Farm Yoga combines fitness and farm animal friendsFarm Yoga combines fitness and farm animal friends

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — There is a new workout craze is hitting Austin today — Farm Yoga. This unconventional workout partners yoga lovers with farm animals. As participants stretch into their tree pose, goats chickens, ducks and other farm animals roam around them. Sometimes the animals get more involved- even climbing on the participants. The creators of Farm Yoga say it’s all part of the fun. They encourage participants to use the animals as part of their exercise. Austinites will finally have a chance to participate in Farm Yoga when it comes to the city on Nov. 18. The two-hour session will begin at 10 a.m. at the Enchanted Woodlands Farm on Kit Carson Road. Organizers say they will be bringing the farm, you just bring yourself and a mat. Click here to purchase tickets.

    KXAN / 10 h. 28 min. ago more
  • Austin Answered: Why was Austin originally named Waterloo? - MyStatesman.comAustin Answered: Why was Austin originally named Waterloo? - MyStatesman.com

    Austin Answered: Why was Austin originally named Waterloo?MyStatesman.comThey then recommended Waterloo to the Texas Congress. It was renamed for the colonial leader Stephen F. Austin before the area was resurveyed to create today's downtown grid in 1839. Waterloo lives on in Waterloo Records, Waterloo Park and other ...

    Google News / 19 h. 14 min. ago
  • Texas' Abbott decries storm aid bill; White House bristlesTexas' Abbott decries storm aid bill; White House bristles

    In this Aug. 28, 2017 file photo, rescue boats fill a flooded street as flood victims are evacuated as floodwaters from Tropical Storm Harvey rise in Houston. Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is criticizing the Trump administration's $44 billion disaster aid request to Congress, saying it is "completely inadequate."

    Austin News / 21 h. ago
  • PHOTOS: Hillary Clinton signing her book in AustinPHOTOS: Hillary Clinton signing her book in Austin

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — Fans of Hillary Rodham Clinton filled BookPeople in downtown Austin to get their copy of her new book, What Happened, signed by the former Secretary of State. Clinton’s book tells the story of the unprecedented 2016 presidential campaign and its aftermath. Hillary Clinton at BookPeople Hillary Clinton at BookPeople on Nov. 17, 2017. (Courtesy: Tomoko Bason, BookPeople) Hillary Clinton at BookPeople on Nov. 17, 2017. (Courtesy: Tomoko Bason, BookPeople) Hillary Clinton at BookPeople on Nov. 17, 2017. (Courtesy: Tomoko Bason, BookPeople) Hillary Clinton at BookPeople on Nov. 17, 2017. (Courtesy: Tomoko Bason, BookPeople) Hillary Clinton at BookPeople on Nov. 17, 2017. (Courtesy: Tomoko Bason, BookPeople) Hillary Clinton at BookPeople on Nov. 17, 2017. (Courtesy: Tomoko Bason, BookPeople)

    KXAN / 22 h. 21 min. ago more
  • Feds approve $5 billion in housing help for Texas Harvey victimsFeds approve $5 billion in housing help for Texas Harvey victims

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — Texans affected by Hurricane Harvey could benefit from a new grant announced Friday by the federal government. Gov. Greg Abbott announced a $5 billion Housing and Urban Development grant to help rebuild after Hurricane Harvey. But he’s asking the federal government for a lot more. In return, the White House says, the state of Texas needs to “step up.” The funding, announced Friday, comes in the form of community development block grants. “We know it’s going to be a long recovery, but we’re going to do everything in our power to help expedite the very much needed funds to help these families rebuild,” HUD Deputy Secretary Pam Patenaude said. “This is to meet the unmet housing needs in the state of Texas and to help the Texans that have been displaced from their homes to rebuild their lives, to rebuild their homes, and to rebuild their communities,” she added. HUD Secretary Ben Carson issued a written statement that said, “As President Trump has said from the beginning, the whole federal family is with the people of Texas to help them recover from this devastating storm as quickly as possible.” Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, R-Texas, shakes hands with Pam Patenaude, deputy secretary for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, after the federal government announced a $5 billion community development block grant for victims of Hurricane Harvey. Nov. 17, 2017. (Nexstar Photo/Wes Rapaport) The announcement came from Patenaude in a press conference with Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, Republican U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, and Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush, where Abbott provided several updates on the state’s recovery efforts after the storm. The governor recently visited the nation’s capital, meeting with members of the Texas delegation to ask for $61 billion in funding. Congress passed a $15 billion relief package from the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) in September. President Donald Trump later approved another disaster package totaling $36.5 billion that included $18 billion for Texas, as well as help for Florida and Puerto Rico after Hurricane Maria. So far, Texas has been earmarked for approximately $33 billion in disaster aid. The storm did around $200 billion in damage, according to estimates. On Friday, the Trump Administration put forward another round of emergency relief money, totaling about $44 million nationwide, far less than what Abbott wanted for Texas. “What was offered up by Mick Mulvaney and OMB [Office of Management and Budget] is completely inadequate for the needs of the state of Texas and I believe does not live up to what the President wants to achieve,” Abbott said. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders mentioned the Lone Star State ought to consider spending some of its own money on rebuilding. “I don’t think $44 billion is a low amount. And my guess is if you ask any average citizen across this country, they wouldn’t feel like it’s low either. But at this point, Texas has not put any state dollars into this process,” Sanders said. “We feel strongly that they should step up and work with the federal government in this process.” Cornyn added that the relief needs in Texas are similar to what officials needed in the northeast after Super Storm Sandy, and the damage left behind by Hurricane Katrina in the south. “Texas has not put any state dollars into this process.” “We’re not going to be asking to be treated any better than anybody else, but we’re sure not going to tolerate being treated worse,” Cornyn stated. Vice President Mike Pence was in Austin this week with Energy Secretary Rick Perry to meet with FEMA officials and attend the Republican Governors Association conference. Abbott said that the President, Vice President, and other cabinet members have been working “aggressively and collaboratively” on Harvey relief with Texas officials and members of the Texas Delegation. “We are going to continue our work to make sure that we have the resources we need to adequately rebuild,” Abbot said, adding that they need to “work with the speed that is needed for fellow Texans who continue to suffer, continue to need housing in the most urgent way possible.” Land Commissioner Bush, who will head up the process to implement the grant funding and disperse the money, said a draft of the action plan was already completed.

    KXAN / 23 h. 52 min. ago more
  • Valley Center teacher dies of injuries from Austin car crash that took wife, son - The San Diego Union-TribuneValley Center teacher dies of injuries from Austin car crash that took wife, son - The San Diego Union-Tribune

    The San Diego Union-TribuneValley Center teacher dies of injuries from Austin car crash that took wife, sonThe San Diego Union-Tribune... crash in Austin last weekend. “My brother, Scott Latulippe, has been on life-support systems, and has shown no improvement,” said his brother, Tim Latulippe. “He passed away from his injuries he sustained in the car wreck on the 11th here in Austin ...Girl, 10, only survivor of crash that killed her familyfox5sandiego.comAustin police seek info from public on crash that killed mom, teen on US 183Austin American-StatesmanNeighbors remember California family members killed in Austin crashKXAN.com10Newsall 20 news articles »

    Google News / 1 d. 0 h. 14 min. ago more
  • Downtown Austin WOW Houses: Sophisticated And Elegant Design - Patch.comDowntown Austin WOW Houses: Sophisticated And Elegant Design - Patch.com

    Downtown Austin WOW Houses: Sophisticated And Elegant DesignPatch.comAUSTIN, TX -- Simply stunning and situated in the heart of Austin with amazing Congress Avenue views. This incredible David Bravo designed luxury residence in The Austonian will take your breath away. Featuring over 3,500 square feet of luxurious and ...

    Google News / 1 d. 0 h. 15 min. ago
  • Seniors say city of Austin is pricing them out of their recreation centerSeniors say city of Austin is pricing them out of their recreation center

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — Seniors on a fixed income are careful when it comes to how they spend their money. For some active seniors, they’re worried the city-owned space they use for social gatherings and activities will become too costly for them to rent. Recently, the city of Austin notified groups that rent space in its recreation centers that their bills will go up considerably at the start of 2018. “It really has gone out of sight,” said Teddy Sousares, who’s part of “Let’s Dance,” a group that has rented a room with a floating wood dance floor at Lamar Senior Activity Center for years. “The problem is not all seniors are going to be able to afford the amount of money that the club would have to increase the cost of dancing.” Sousares’ group says they rent the space out for a couple of hours almost every Friday night. In the past, group members say it has cost them a little less than $70 a gathering. Starting next year, the city will require a four-hour rental minimum. The increased rental time and rates will cost the dance group hundreds of dollars more. The city plans to raise the rate of the room at the Lamar Senior Activity Center to $50 an hour. It will also charge $55 an hour for staff and utilities fees, another $50 per hour for the kitchen they use to serve snacks, along with an extra $25 an hour for use of the ice machine. A $300 deposit would also be required to rent those spaces each time. If they were to rent all those things, it would cost the group $720 for a four-hour evening, not counting the deposit. Division manager of community recreation for Austin Parks and Recreation Department Lucas Massie says the higher fees are a result of the city mandating a higher living wage for employees. “We’re looking to recover 100 percent of our costs, and as our costs go up, we have to increase our rates,” Massie said, adding that events held by groups like “Let’s Dance” keep the center open after-hours, requiring employees to work extra hours. Sousares argues too many seniors are on fixed incomes and can’t afford such high rates, but he doesn’t think that should mean that they lose an opportunity for exercise and getting together as a community. “That’s going to knock half our people out, or more than half, and that means we’re going to probably shut down,” Sousares said. “For a center that’s built for our fun and our opportunities, they’re taking them away from us, instead of providing them, and that’s not fair.” Massie says Parks and Rec has received concerns about the rise in rental rates from a lot of other groups across the city, too. He says staff members are trying to work with the groups to figure out alternatives to leaving their centers, but he also says they won’t budge on the higher rates.

    KXAN / 1 d. 0 h. 17 min. ago more
  • Neighbors warn of ‘meth house’ up for sale, history not disclosedNeighbors warn of ‘meth house’ up for sale, history not disclosed

    AUSTIN (KXAN) —  A sign taped onto a brick fence, warning the house for sale on Lowdes Drive in south Austin has a history of meth manufacturing. That’s how a potential home buyer learned to ask questions. On the disclosure form, there was no mention of any history of meth making in the home. Jared Benedict was initially interested in buying and renovating the foreclosed home for his family. That is, until he learned of the home’s history that could impact their family’s health, particularly his 4-month-old baby girl. That neighbor’s sign, warning of the “meth house” was the only warning he said he received of the dangers inside the home that was up for sale. “I see that as sheer luck,” Benedict told KXAN. “If I wouldn’t have seen that sign, I would have no knowledge or even be able to go investigate all the things that I was able to find. It’s baffling to me.” The property’s history took some digging to find. KXAN requested calls for service from the address to Austin police. The listing included descriptions such as: narcotics information, drugs, burglary of residence and even accidental death. Police reports describe a meth overdose, people admitting to snorting meth, and the address, being under investigation for manufacturing meth. Seller’s Disclosure Notice from the Texas Real Estate Commission. The part about “Previous use of premises for manufacture of methamphetamine” is circled. “I’m a first-time father so I don’t know what I would do if I had fallen into that situation. It would have been heartbreaking,” Benedict said, thinking about how close he came to buying the home. Carol Voges is the neighbor who put up the warning sign. “I didn’t care about offending our neighbors. I wanted to protect potential buyers,” said Voges. “If you don’t flip it properly, then they could be harmed. And what if they have children? And I was extremely concerned about that.” Voges explained after the property owner died and her son died just days later, she helped the son’s girlfriend–who was living there at the time–clean up the home. It was during that time, Voges says she discovered a meth lab inside the home. “I just put gloves on and we went in there and took it down. And got rid of everything, and that’s how I know that there was a meth lab in there,” Voges said. “It should be mandatory that it is disclosed. Whether it’s rental or selling, I don’t care if the courts own it, I don’t care who owns it. Everybody should be able to know it.” The property, which is being sold by a probate court, is currently listed as “pending.” KXAN spoke with the selling agent who said she has no knowledge of the condition of the home. In Texas, a seller is required to disclose if a house was used as a meth lab to a buyer, however, if a bank or court takes ownership of a house, no disclosure is required. A foreclosed home will not have that information. For rental properties, no disclosure is required either. The health hazards associated with dangerous chemicals in meth is the reason why sellers have to disclose the information in the first place. The chemicals can cling to clothing, carpets and walls–which requires a company to come in and decontaminate the space. To see if a home you’re interested in was a meth lab at any point, the Drug Enforcement Administration does keep a national registry online. It’s free, but it depends on other agencies to supply the information. And many are not. The Texas list hasn’t been updated since February 2016. Even then, the list doesn’t keep track of whether the home was ever cleaned up.  

    KXAN / 1 d. 0 h. 31 min. ago more
  • East Austin College Prep dancer to perform in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day ParadeEast Austin College Prep dancer to perform in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — A junior at East Austin College Prep will join 599 other dancers to perform at the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade as part of the Spirit of America dance team. Eli Hernandez is one of only four male dancers selected to perform with the group. Hundreds of dancers ages 14-18 from across the country audition to be a part of the group and Hernandez took one of the slots. Hernandez is the captain of his school’s dance team. While this year will be the first time he’s participated in the parade, Hernandez actually secured a spot in the dance troupe last year but he couldn’t afford the cost associated with the trip. When he was chosen this year, his teachers made it a point to make sure he made it down Sixth Avenue. “We’re able to send Eli on his way! He’ll be one of 4 boys performing for Spirit of America out of the 600 dancers in the parade. We are thrilled that he is putting EAPrep on the map!” said EAPrep dance teacher Erika Agrait. Watch Hernandez and the rest of the parade on KXAN on Thanksgiving Day starting at 9 a.m.! 

    KXAN / 1 d. 0 h. 59 min. ago more
  • Listen To Our Weekly News Podcast!Listen To Our Weekly News Podcast!

    KUT Weekend brings you some of our favorite stories from the KUT newsroom. Updated Fridays. Subscribe in iTunes Subscribe via RSS Subscribe via Soundcloud Subscribe in Stitcher

    KUT.org / 1 d. 1 h. 11 min. ago
  • Couple sues after police mistake hibiscus for marijuanaCouple sues after police mistake hibiscus for marijuana

    PITTSBURGH (AP) — A Pennsylvania couple is suing their local police department and Nationwide Insurance Co. after they were arrested when an insurance agent mistook their hibiscus plants for marijuana. The lawsuit filed Tuesday by 69-year-old Edward Cramer and his 66-year-old wife, Audrey, claims the agent came to their Buffalo Township home Oct. 5 to investigate a fallen tree. The Cramers claim the agent took photos of their flowering hibiscus plant and sent the images to police. The lawsuit claims officers with assault rifles arrested the couple Oct. 7 and held them for several hours inside a police cruiser, despite both of them telling the officers the plants were actually hibiscus. The Cramers are seeking monetary and compensatory damages and court costs. Neither Buffalo Township police nor Nationwide provided comment.

    KXAN - Crime / 1 d. 1 h. 35 min. ago more
  • Art & Beer Bazaar Brings HOPE This Weekend EAST wraps up with the largest mural show in AustinArt & Beer Bazaar Brings HOPE This Weekend EAST wraps up with the largest mural show in Austin

    The annual Hops for HOPE: Art Show & Beer bazaar serves as the last leg of the East Austin Studio Tour and will highlight the work of 25 artists.

    Austin News / 1 d. 1 h. 36 min. ago
  • Graduate students to see tax increase in House GOP tax reformGraduate students to see tax increase in House GOP tax reform

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — During the process of trying to simplify and lower tax rates for most individuals and corporations, the GOP tax reform that just passed the House puts more burden on graduate students working to pay tuition. Nearly 3,900 students at the University of Texas at Austin make money by being a research or teaching assistant while they’re attending graduate school. All those students receive employment waivers for tuition, which means the money is not taxed. The new GOP plan would tax that income. Without a tuition waiver, Samantha Fuchs says she would not be at UT getting her doctorate in environmental engineering. “Graduate students should not be bearing the burden of the tax code,” said Fuchs, who works as a teaching assistant at the school. The money she makes goes directly to lowering her tuition, tax-free. “I don’t think there’s enough to change in my personal spending habits. I would just have to take out more loans to add to my student undergraduate loans,” said Fuchs. UT’s graduate student assembly notified the campus of the potential change on Friday. Right now a student making $20,000 a year at UT pays around $2,500 in taxes. The GOP tax reform plan would raise those taxes to $6,000 a year because they’ll be in a higher tax bracket. Swadhin Pradhan came to UT from Calcutta to get a Ph.D. in computer science. He’s a research assistant and plans to be a full-time researcher in the future. He says taxing student waivers will keep people out of the programs that make the business and the technology of tomorrow. “The graduate students are the life and blood of the research,” said Pradhan, “we need more money not less money.” The Republican Party of Texas did not specifically give a response to the tuition waiver complaints but party leaders said the tax reform aims to benefit as many as possible. “The ultimate goal of this tax reform bill is to lower the tax burden, simplify the tax code, and spur economic growth. We are eager to see a finalized bill that encompasses all three to help all Americans,” wrote Jamie Bennett, press secretary for the Republican Party of Texas. Senate Republicans say they will pass their version of tax reform after coming back from their Thanksgiving break. The House passed its own version Thursday. Both plans nearly double the standard deduction on personal income taxes as well as increase the child tax credit. The House and Senate plans have several key differences. The Senate plan repeals the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate, while the House plan does not touch it. The Senate plan also delays tax cuts for corporations until next year, while the House version’s cuts are immediate. President Donald Trump says he wants to sign a tax reform bill by Christmas.  

    KXAN / 1 d. 1 h. 54 min. ago more
  • ‘No Refusal’ in place for the next two weekends in Austin‘No Refusal’ in place for the next two weekends in Austin

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — As people hit the road for the holidays, the Austin Police Department says the next two weekends will be “No Refusal” weekends. The extended “No Refusal” weekends are part of the DWI initiative the department implemented at the beginning of the year and ran each weekend through September. Austin police was able to expand its initiative this year thanks to grants from the Texas Department of Transportation. “No Refusal” runs from 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. each Friday night through Sunday morning the weekends of Nov. 17-19 and Nov. 24-26. “No Refusal is not about making as many arrests as we can,” Lt. Blake Johnson with APD’s Highway Enforcement Unit said. “It’s about keeping unsafe drivers off Austin roadways and keeping the public safe. No Refusal ensures that we have solid blood alcohol content evidence of every arrest and as such enhances our ability to prosecute people who drive drunk and put others in danger.” Last month, APD wasn’t able to run “No Refusal” every weekend because their toxicology department was short-staffed.  

    KXAN / 1 d. 2 h. 9 min. ago more
  • International carrier boosts aircraft size for Austin flightsInternational carrier boosts aircraft size for Austin flights

    Air Canada is adding capacity for business travelers by adding 21 more seats per flight for its Austin-Toronto service. The extra seating on Air Canada's Embraer EMB 190 aircraft is part of its daily nonstop flight between Austin-Bergstrom International Airport and Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, which began in May 2015. The new service goes into effect on May 1, 2018. “The increased service and additional seats provide more opportunities for job creators in both markets and will encourage…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 3 h. 50 min. ago more
  • Taxpayer incorrectly says Austin school district tops other big districts in per-student spending - PolitiFactTaxpayer incorrectly says Austin school district tops other big districts in per-student spending - PolitiFact

    Taxpayer incorrectly says Austin school district tops other big districts in per-student spendingPolitiFact"Austin ISD has the highest taxable property value per student of all school districts in Texas," Roger Falk of the Travis County Taxpayers Union wrote in a November 2017 commentary published a few days before the bond won voter approval. "It also has ...

    Google News / 1 d. 4 h. 30 min. ago more
  • Police: Newborn punched in the head during domestic violence situationPolice: Newborn punched in the head during domestic violence situation

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — A 5-week-old baby girl is recovering from a fractured skull after police say her father punched her in the head as he was trying to assault the child’s mother. According to an arrest affidavit, on Oct. 31, Ruben A. Rodriguez, 27, came home from work and was angry the mother of his child had been out with her friend. An argument ensued and the woman said that’s when the situation escalated into a physical altercation. While the mother was holding the newborn against her chest, she said Rodriguez tried to strangle her and when he tried to punch her, he missed and hit the baby on the right side of her head. As the baby was crying, the suspect said, “Put her down, so I can really f— you up.” A doctor determined the baby had a “significant fracture” to her skull. Rodriguez was booked into the Travis County Jail on Nov. 8 and charged with injury to a child with intent to cause bodily injury, assault on a family member and possession of drug paraphernalia.

    KXAN / 1 d. 4 h. 32 min. ago more
  • Suspected DWI crash on US 183 claims third victimSuspected DWI crash on US 183 claims third victim

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — The deadly crash on US 183 near North MoPac that killed a mother and son last Saturday has claimed the life of a third person. Scott Latulippe, 41, was taken off life support Friday morning. Earlier this week, Scott’s brother-in-law Tim Enos told KXAN Scott’s brain had been damaged severely in the head-on crash. Now that he’s been taken off life support, the family is working with the hospital to donate his organs. Welcome home sign in Valley Central, where the Latulippe’s lived. Scott’s wife, Nancy, 38, and son Jackson, 14, died at the scene when police say Guy Brasted, 41, lost control of his Jeep, crossed the median and slammed into the family’s rental Fiat. Brasted was ejected from his Jeep, but he did not suffer any life-threatening injuries. The family’s 10-year-old daughter Kiera was the only survivor. The family was on their way to the Austin airport to head back home to Southern California when the crash happened. The Austin Police Department is asking anyone with information about Brasted or his conduct on the day of the crash, Nov. 11, they are urged to call police. Brasted is currently charged with two counts of intoxication manslaughter and one count of intoxication assault–the assault charge could be upgraded now that Scott has died. Authorities drew Brasted’s blood at the hospital and determined he had a Blood Alcohol Concentration level of .203, which is more than two times the legal limit. Valley Center High School in Valley Center, Calif. is holding a vigil for the Latulippe family Friday night following the school’s football game. Scott taught at the school and Jackson attended the school. Keira is expected to attend the vigil. Guy Brasted, 41, is accused of intoxicated manslaughter (APD Photo)

    KXAN - Crime / 1 d. 5 h. 9 min. ago more
  • Former Pa. Gov. Ridge recovering from heart attack - Carlisle SentinelFormer Pa. Gov. Ridge recovering from heart attack - Carlisle Sentinel

    Austin American-StatesmanFormer Pa. Gov. Ridge recovering from heart attackCarlisle SentinelAUSTIN, Texas — Former U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge was in the early stages of recovery from a heart attack, his wife said Friday, a day after he underwent an emergency heart procedure. The 72-year-old Ridge, a former Republican ...Former homeland security secretary Tom Ridge hospitalized in AustinAustin American-StatesmanUpdate: Former Governor Tom Ridge recovering from heart attackwitf.orgEx-Homeland Security Boss In Critical Condition In AustinPatch.comNBC 10 Philadelphia -WTAE Pittsburgh -Allentown Morning Callall 110 news articles »

    Google News / 1 d. 5 h. 15 min. ago more
  • Flying for Thanksgiving? Here's how to get the best dealFlying for Thanksgiving? Here's how to get the best deal

    Travelers looking to save money on airfare over the Thanksgiving holiday might want to consider getting in early and leaving much later. Travelers can expect to find the lowest prices if they fly out on Monday, Nov. 20 and if they return on Wednesday, Nov. 29, according to a report by Massachusetts-based airfare prediction app Hopper and Rhode Island-based InsureMyTrip, a travel insurance research firm. At midweek this week, domestic flights for Thanksgiving were averaging about $322 for a round-trip…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 6 h. 2 min. ago more
  • Unemployment in Austin area drops to 2.6 percentUnemployment in Austin area drops to 2.6 percent

    The Austin area's jobless rate dipped further in October, in part due to a smaller workforce. The Austin-Round Rock region's unemployment rate fell from 2.9 percent in September to 2.6 percent last month, according to data from the Texas Workforce Commission released Friday. Austin's unemployment rate was 3.3 percent in October 2016. The total workforce declined by about 8,000 workers from September to October. Leisure and hospitality businesses added about 3,200 jobs since September. Those…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 6 h. 7 min. ago more
  • Alcohol regulators investigating Texas State pledge deathAlcohol regulators investigating Texas State pledge death

    State alcohol regulators have opened an investigation into the death of a Texas State University fraternity pledge after an initiation ritual. The university about 50 miles south of Austin, Texas, suspended all fraternity and sorority chapters after Matt Ellis was found unresponsive Monday at an off-campus apartment.

    Austin News / 1 d. 6 h. 14 min. ago
  • more news
  • University of Houston to set up its own medical schoolUniversity of Houston to set up its own medical school

    A long time coming, the University of Houston Board of Regents has voted and approved establishing a college of medicine focused on primary care. The regents approved on Nov. 16 the results of a feasibility study requested by the Texas Legislature, according to an announcement. UH hopes to immediately finalize a partnership with the HCA Gulf Coast Division to bring 103 first-year resident positions to the Houston area by 2020, with a total of 309 by 2024. The next step is to receive medical degree…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 6 h. 35 min. ago more
  • High-profile Austin energy attorneys jump to Holland & KnightHigh-profile Austin energy attorneys jump to Holland & Knight

    Mark Davis, the executive partner who leads Holland & Knight's Austin office, said getting a chance to add two attorneys with solid experience was too good to pass up.

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 6 h. 46 min. ago
  • San Antonio Bakery Lorraine Brings Macarons to AustinSan Antonio Bakery Lorraine Brings Macarons to Austin

    Bakery Lorraine , the San Antonio French-inspired bakeshop , is expanding into Austin for its first-ever out-of-city location. It'll be found in the Rock Rose district up in Domain Northside by fall 2018.

    Austin News / 1 d. 8 h. 45 min. ago
  • Alcohol Beverage Commission investigating Texas State student deathAlcohol Beverage Commission investigating Texas State student death

    SAN MARCOS, Texas (KXAN) — In light of the death of a fraternity pledge at Texas State University earlier this week, the Texas Alcohol Beverage Commission says it is working to determine the source of any alcohol that may have been involved in the 20-year-old’s death. Police say they have not determine a cause of death, but believe alcohol may have been a factor. Matthew Ellis was found unresponsive at an apartment in San Marcos on Nov. 13 following a Phi Kappa Psi fraternity event the night before. “We will vigorously pursue any violations that may have contributed to cutting this young man’s life short,” said TABC Chairman Kevin J. Lilly. TABC is working with local law enforcement and says it could expand its investigation to identify retailers that make have sold to a minor or intoxicated person. Penalties for violations like those could include a business losing its liquor license and even jail time for an employee who sold the alcohol. Hundreds attend vigil for Texas State fraternity pledge who died “So-called ‘traditions,’ such as forcing a fraternity pledge to overconsume alcohol, have no place at a university,” Lilly said. “Regardless of the outcome of this investigation, TABC will proactively work with universities and law enforcement across Texas to combat and raise awareness of this senseless activity.” Texas State University President Denise Trauth has suspended all Greek Life activities at the school for now. A university spokesman said Texas State was already in the process of investigating Phi Kappa Psi following a complaint in September. The national chapter suspended the local chapter last week. Ellis’ funeral will be held Saturday, Nov. 18. His family said in his obituary that he had a passion for missions and asks people to donate to Kingwood United Methodist Church’s youth mission program.

    KXAN - Crime / 1 d. 9 h. 30 min. ago more
  • SailPoint IPO brings in $240M, far exceeding initial projectionsSailPoint IPO brings in $240M, far exceeding initial projections

    Sailpoint Technologies Holdings Inc. shares roared out of the gate Friday on their first day of trading, after the company supersized its initial public offering and ended up raising some $240 million. The cybersecurity-focused Austin software company, led by CEO Mark McClain, priced its 20 million shares at $12, a dollar more than the high end of its proposed share price range of between $9 and $11. In early trading, SailPoint shares shot up as high as $15 before slowly slipping back during the…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 10 h. 6 min. ago more
  • Kendra Scott to open first overseas jewelry locationKendra Scott to open first overseas jewelry location

    Kendra Scott is headed across the pond. Scott, the Austin entrepreneur whose jewelry empire now stretches across 73 U.S. retail outlets, is set to open a "store within a store" at high-end British retailer Selfridges in London. The outlet, which will open Nov. 20, will be in Selfridges’ flagship location on Oxford Street. Eight Kendra Scott employees, hired in London, will work at the shop. “This is such an exciting milestone in our journey… When I started this brand almost 16 years ago…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 11 h. 16 min. ago more
  • Austin investor is gobbling up duplexes in Research TriangleAustin investor is gobbling up duplexes in Research Triangle

    An Austin real estate investment firm has snapped up more duplexes near downtown Raleigh — part of a collection of about 1,700 amassed in recent years.

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 11 h. 26 min. ago
  • The best business schools in Texas, according to BusinessweekThe best business schools in Texas, according to Businessweek

    Nine Texas universities made Bloomberg Businessweek’s 2017 list of the country’s best graduate business schools. In all, 85 of the country’s best programs were featured, with Harvard Business School taking the top spot for the third consecutive year. The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Sloan School of Management took No. 2 and 3, respectively. Texas’ top-scoring school was Rice University’s Jones School of Business, at…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 11 h. 39 min. ago more
  • Rackspace hires new chief technology officerRackspace hires new chief technology officer

    San Antonio-based cloud hosting company Rackspace Hosting Inc., which employs about 650 people in Austin, hired a new chief technology officer Thursday after it closed on the acquisition of Datapipe Inc. Joel Friedman, the former chief technology and security officer at Datapipe, will now join Rackspace as its CTO. Friedman holds a bachelors degree from Rutger University in Computer Science. He worked as the chief security officer at Datapipe for 12 years before taking the lead as chief technology…

    Austin Business Journal / 1 d. 11 h. 47 min. ago more
  • A Dream Garage in North AustinA Dream Garage in North Austin

    As I pull into the driveway leading to the building at 8990 Research Blvd., I see a sign above the door that reads Trinity Tile Supply. It's just a decoy - a sign left behind by the former tenant.

    Austin News / 1 d. 13 h. 44 min. ago
  • As Columbus Goes For MLS Cup, Team Ownership Has Eyes On AustinAs Columbus Goes For MLS Cup, Team Ownership Has Eyes On Austin

    The Columbus Crew is in the midst of a playoff run that could land the team in the Major League Soccer Cup. But rather than enjoy a great season, Ohio’s capital city and the Crew's ownership are at an impasse that could mean the team moves to Austin. That would be a dream for one fanbase and a nightmare for another.

    KUT.org / 1 d. 14 h. 20 min. ago
  • Here are the top 5 things to do in Austin this weekendHere are the top 5 things to do in Austin this weekend

    The University of Texas at Austin's Department of Theatre and Dance bring witchy masterpiece The Crucible to life this weekend only. A bumping birthday party, cosplay coolness, and a holiday market top this weekend's list of the hottest things to in Austin.

    Austin News / 1 d. 18 h. 20 min. ago
  • 15 convictions linked to corrupt Chicago cop are thrown out15 convictions linked to corrupt Chicago cop are thrown out

    Joshua Tepfer of the University of Chicago's Exoneration Project talks to reporters after a judge in Chicago threw out the convictions of 15 men, some of whom are standing behind him, who say a corrupt Chicago pol... One of the people killed in a Northern California shooting rampage was driving to the store with her husband when they were randomly targeted. One of the people killed in a Northern California shooting rampage was driving to the store with her husband when they were randomly targeted.

    Austin News / 1 d. 22 h. 52 min. ago more
  • Central Texas man indicted in connection to boating deaths of father, daughterCentral Texas man indicted in connection to boating deaths of father, daughter

    BELTON, Texas (AP) — A grand jury has indicted a Texas man on multiple charges in connection with the boating deaths of a father and daughter. The Temple Daily Telegram reports that 44-year-old Jason Bernal faces two counts each of criminally negligent homicide and intoxication manslaughter in connection to the June 23 deaths of 31-year-old Patrick Oliver and 4-year-old Kaitlyn Oliver. Court documents say Bernal backed up a houseboat at Temple Lake Park and collided with Kaitlyn Oliver, who died of injuries at the scene. Records show that Patrick Oliver was injured while trying to rescue his daughter. He died from injuries on July 6. Patrick Oliver and Kaitlyn Oliver (Photo via KWKT) Bernal says he shouted a warning before backing up the boat. Court records show that Bernal said he couldn’t see over his three-story boat. Bernal declined to comment on the charges and referred questions to his attorney.

    KXAN - Crime / 1 d. 23 h. 16 min. ago more
  • Which areas of Austin have an increase in mail theft, and what USPS is doing about itWhich areas of Austin have an increase in mail theft, and what USPS is doing about it

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — Cases of thieves prying open mailboxes seem to happen in every neighborhood, and the crimes are picking back up heading into the holidays. In the Sendera neighborhood in south Austin off Slaughter Lane, it’s been a vicious cycle. Last week, it only took thieves two days to destroy a set of replacement mailboxes that had already been hit once. Data from the U.S. Postal Inspection Service shows 11 break-ins of mailboxes were reported from Oct. 1 through Nov. 16 in the following zip codes: 78745, 78747, 78748, 78749. Their neighborhood association asked the USPS to speak at their meeting Monday night to explain why it’s happening and what they’re doing to stop it. An undercover postal investigator explained it’s mostly drug addicts looking for cash, gift cards and checks they can forge and cash. He also said each mailbox unit can cost about $900 to replace. After several mailbox clusters were broken into in the Ridge at Scofield Farms neighborhood in north Austin over the summer, the neighborhood’s HOA decided to spend more money to install more secure mailboxes. The HOA also added extra lighting and security cameras to deter any looking for a quick buck. “Super glad, grateful that we do have these new, secure boxes,” said Allison Biesboer, who had her mail stolen. “I just thought, you know, that it was not a very neighborly thing to do.” Earlier this year, the United States Postal Service launched a free service which allows people to see their mail before it arrives in their mailbox. Informed Delivery allows users to sign up for notifications about incoming mail and track packages. Biesboer says ever since her mailbox was hit by thieves, her boyfriend has been checking the website daily. The USPS says they are starting to install the sturdier group mailboxes in neighborhoods across Austin. They also say it’s also a good idea to pick up your mail every day, and have shipments mailed to work or held at the post office.

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 0 h. 27 min. ago more
  • Mother of 3-year-old Richardson girl arrested, charged with child endangermentMother of 3-year-old Richardson girl arrested, charged with child endangerment

    RICHARDSON, Texas (KXAN) — The mother of a 3-year-old Richardson girl found dead in a culvert in October has now also been arrested and charged. KXAS in Dallas reports Sini Mathews surrendered to Richardson police Thursday and was arrested on a charge on child endangerment/abandonment. Sini originally told police she was sleeping when her adopted daughter Sherin disappeared during the early morning hours of Saturday, Oct. 7. Newly filed court documents indicate Sini and her husband left Sherin home alone while they went to dinner with their biological daughter the night she disappeared. The family said they left her behind because she wouldn’t drink her milk, but when they came back an hour-and-a-half later, Sherin was still in the kitchen. FILE- This undated photo provided by the Richardson Texas Police Department shows 3-year-old Sherin Mathews (Richardson Texas Police Department via AP, File) Sherin’s father, Wesley Mathews, has told authorities he ordered the child to stand next to a tree behind the fence at their home around 3 a.m. as punishment for not drinking her milk and that’s when she went missing. The day the child was reported missing, Wesley was arrested and charged with abandoning or endangering a child. After weeks of searching with drones and K-9s, authorities found Sherin’s body on Sunday, Oct. 22 in a culvert. After her body was found, the father’s story changed. Her father told police the little girl’s death was caused by choking on milk, according to an arrest affidavit. Wesley told police he had been trying to get his daughter to drink milk but she kept refusing. Eventually, Sherin began to drink the milk and he said he “physically assisted” the girl in drinking the milk while they were in the garage. The child began to choke and a short time later she died, the father told police. Wesley admitted to police he removed the body from the home after she died, the affidavit continued. Wesley is currently facing an injury to a child charge.

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 3 h. 29 min. ago more
  • Ex-Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge hospitalizedEx-Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge hospitalized

    In this Oct. 22, 2011, file photo, former Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge speaks to a crowd of hundreds protesting in front of the White House in Washington. A spokesman says Ridge is in critical condition after undergoing an emergency heart procedure at a hospital in Austin, Texas.

    Austin News / 2 d. 3 h. 32 min. ago
  • Hundreds of ‘Magic’ cards found inside truck after wild chaseHundreds of ‘Magic’ cards found inside truck after wild chase

    OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. (KFOR/NBC News) — The owners of a stolen truck recovered after a three-hour police chase say a bizarre collection of items was left inside by the alleged thief. The truck was stolen from Shane and Stephanie Jones’ Bridge Creek, Oklahoma driveway on Nov. 3. However, Shane says when he was coming back from a doctor’s appointment on Nov. 10, he noticed his truck on the highway. “I thought it looked like my truck and yep, I got a little closer. It was my truck. So I immediately pulled a U-turn, got behind him, he seen [sic] me, he knew. He just kinda sunk down in his seat and pulled his hat down and that’s where it all started,” Shane said. Shane then called police and that’s when the driver, 25-year-old Brenton Hager, led police on a three-hour chase. It finally came to an end when Hager crashed the truck into a pond. WATCH: The crazy 3-hour chase near Oklahoma City When the couple got their first look inside the recovered, and now trashed truck they were shocked by what they found. “Credit card information, banking statements that wasn’t his, car stereo…” said Shane. A ski mask, padlocks, fishing line, wiring ripped from the truck itself, even syringes, were all found inside. “He was living out of my truck,” Shane said. Hundreds and hundreds of ‘Magic the Gathering’ cards were also found in the truck. Read more: http://bit.ly/2A4ZYS5

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 4 h. 22 min. ago more
  • Church leaders turn to active shooter training in order to protect parishionersChurch leaders turn to active shooter training in order to protect parishioners

    LOCKHART, Texas (KXAN) — More than a week after 26 people were killed when a shooter opened fire at a church in Sutherland Springs, dozens of religious leaders gathered in Caldwell County to learn from law enforcement about how to respond in an active shooter situation. Seventy religious leaders from nearby churches packed a meeting room to hear advice from a variety of regional law enforcement. While the Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management was already planning to have this workshop, they explained the recent mass shooting accelerated the meeting to this week. “The topic of security in places of worship has come up since the incident in Sutherland Springs, and it’s been our mind for sometime,” said Martin Ritchey, Caldwell County Emergency Management coordinator. Ritchey said that in Texas the church community is an essential resource for first responders not only in crisis situations, but also in disaster response. Ritchey added that the county will be hosting similar crisis preparedness workshops in the county throughout the year. He said that like a football team, churches can better respond in an emergency if they’ve already practiced their “game plan.” Church leaders present at the workshop learned about everything from where to run to (it’s safer to run and hide in a concrete parking garage than a flimsy shed), how to plan (it’s better to have an emergency evacuation plan and practice it), to how to fight back (even discharging a fire extinguisher can be used to deter an attacker. They were encouraged to have conversations with both local first responders and their congregations about meeting places and evacuation routes. Law enforcement also encouraged churches that if their church members were assigned to regular security duties — whether they are armed or just keeping a watchful eye — to have those church members trained in crisis response. Some churches in attendance, like First Lockhart Baptist Church, have already bolstered their security measures following the shooting in Sutherland Springs. Caldwell County Office of Emergency Management hosting training for Houses of Worship on Nov. 16, 2017. (KXAN Photo/Alyssa Goard) Gary Rodgers, pastor of the church, attended the workshop hoping to learn about new ways to protect the over 200 people who come to worship with him each week. He explained that already, he is aware of which church members carry weapons, but wants to step up his knowledge of security measures for his church. Rodgers said the Sutherlands Springs shootings have pushed him and other church leaders to make immediate security changes. “All of us will be looking at things very differently, and being more cautious — which we should have been doing the whole time — but until something goes wrong, we usually don’t fix it, which is where most of us as churches found ourselves after the situation in Sutherland Springs,” Rodgers said. “To see something like [Sutherland Springs] take place, and it’s one of those moments where you say you can’t believe it, yet in our world, we’re learning, we’ve got to believe it, because it’s happening more and more,” he said. Rodgers has been a pastor at his church for over 30 years, when he first started they didn’t have an alarm system. But with break-ins and national tragedies over time, he watched as security measures progressed. “As a church, you never want to have locked doors, you wanna have open doors, but during worship, everything will be locked except the main two doors and there will be people there just watching, paying attention to everything that’s going on,” Rodgers explained.

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 4 h. 36 min. ago more
  • APD releases photos from stolen camera to try to find the ownerAPD releases photos from stolen camera to try to find the owner

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin police are hoping they can reunite someone with their camera, after they recovered it along with other stolen items at the beginning of the month. A man called police on Nov. 8 and said his car had been “rummaged through,” and he later found missing items posted to sales websites, according to an APD release. The victim connected with the seller, later identified as Juan Charles Gurley, 19. He allegedly admitted to stealing the property, and the victim teamed up with APD to set up a meeting time with the Gurley. He faces a Burglary of a Vehicle charge. Officers not only found that victim’s items, but others that also appear to have been stolen, APD said. One of those is a FujiFilm X10. Investigators couldn’t find a recent report of one being stolen, so they decided to share some of the pictures with the public to help them find the owner. APD said the photos appear to have been taken outside around the end of September. Anyone who may know anyone who is in the photos can let police know by calling 512-974-9211. APD released photos from an allegedly stolen camera in order to find the owner (APD Photo) APD released photos from an allegedly stolen camera in order to find the owner (APD Photo)  

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 6 h. 57 min. ago more
  • Naked man reported near UT Austin campusNaked man reported near UT Austin campus

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — The University of Texas at Austin Police Department is investigating a report of an indecent exposure near campus in which a man was not wearing any clothes. UTPD tweeted just before noon Thursday that it had received an anonymous report in the area of Guadalupe Street and W. 24th Street. The witness said the man was middle-aged but did not have any more of a description. He was reportedly in a 4-door, silver sedan. Officials are asking people to call 911 if the man or the car is seen. At the end of September, staff reported a separate indecent exposure on campus. The suspect description in the cases does not match. Editor’s Note: UT police say the naked man was in the car, not near the car. 

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 7 h. 10 min. ago more
  • Ex-Sen. Wendy Davis Reveals Sexual Assault By Texas LawmakerEx-Sen. Wendy Davis Reveals Sexual Assault By Texas Lawmaker

    Former State Sen. Wendy Davis says a fellow lawmaker inappropriately touched her when she served in the state legislature, and she is applauding a call for changing the policy for reporting sexual allegations in Austin. Former state Sen. Wendy Davis has revealed that a fellow lawmaker inappropriately touched her when she served in the state legislature, calling it a "systemic problem" that has long haunted women in the Texas Capitol.

    Austin News / 2 d. 8 h. 12 min. ago more
  • Three Williamson Co. men arrested in online solicitation stingThree Williamson Co. men arrested in online solicitation sting

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — An online sting targeting people who were looking to potentially have sex with a child netted three arrests in Williamson County last week. The Child Exploitation Unit with the Attorney General’s Office conducted the operation where investigators posed as children online. During the operation, three men, identified as Samuel David Kelley, 21, of Georgetown; Shane Michael Perry, 27, of Georgetown; and Joshua Logan Dean, 28, of Austin, all agreed to meet with who they thought were young girls, according to press release. During the investigation, authorities say all three men sent “sexually explicit messages” to the person who they thought was a child. Authorities say the undercover investigators posed as girls between the age of 14 and 15. All three men were arrested when they arrived at the location where they were supposed to meet the girl. They are charged with online solicitation of a minor. Attorney General Ken Paxton wants to remind all parents and teachers to be aware of their child’s actions on the internet. For cyber safety tips, click here.   

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 8 h. 56 min. ago more
  • Ex-AFD lieutenant accused of filming female firefighter in locker roomEx-AFD lieutenant accused of filming female firefighter in locker room

    AUSTIN (KXAN) — A former lieutenant with the Austin Fire Department is facing a charge of invasive visual recording, accused of secretly recording video of women in a fire station locker room. Lt. James William Baker, 52, had been employed with the city of Austin since 1986. The city says Baker, who worked at the Fire Station No. 1 in downtown Austin, recently retired, but an exact date wasn’t given. According to the search warrant, a woman who worked at the fire station discovered a recording device in the locker room of the Fire Station No. 1 in downtown Austin on Sept. 4. She gave it to her husband, who then turned it over to the Austin Police Department. Former AFD lieutenant James Baker, 52, is accused of filming a female firefighter in a station locker room (KXAN Photo/Sarah Rafique) She told APD she saw the lieutenant walk out of the women’s shower room shortly before she went in to take a shower, according to the search warrant. When she came out of the shower, she saw a blue light pointing toward the shower area, and found it was a device nestled in a pile of Christmas lights. “The victim said [the lieutenant] apologized to her several times and attempted to bargain with her to get the camera back,” according to court records. The woman said Baker also offered to retire or transfer from the department. When authorities questioned Baker about the camera, he said it belonged to him and told them he had put it in the locker room on Sept. 4 as well as on another earlier date when there were not any women working. He turned himself in Thursday and his bond is $7,500.

    KXAN - Crime / 2 d. 10 h. 10 min. ago more
  • Fulmore MS teacher told student 'Go back to Mexico,' protesters say - Austin American-StatesmanFulmore MS teacher told student 'Go back to Mexico,' protesters say - Austin American-Statesman

    Austin American-StatesmanFulmore MS teacher told student 'Go back to Mexico,' protesters sayAustin American-Statesman4 p.m. update: Several students who walked out of Fulmore Middle School on Wednesday told the American-Statesman they were protesting because a teacher ...and more »

    Google News / 2 d. 12 h. 35 min. ago
  • Flights between OKC and Austin, Texas, to take off in JanuaryFlights between OKC and Austin, Texas, to take off in January

    The flights will be available four days a week: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday. The flights from Austin are scheduled to depart at 5:05 p.m. and arrive at 6:25 p.m. ViaAir flights from Oklahoma City to Austin are scheduled to leave at 7:10 p.m. and arrive at 8:30 p.m. Introductory fares on the flights between Oklahoma City's Will Rogers World Airport and Austin-Bergstrom International Airport are as low as $99, the company said.

    Austin News / 2 d. 13 h. 3 min. ago more
  • Flights between OKC and Austin, Texas, to take off in January ... - NewsOK.comFlights between OKC and Austin, Texas, to take off in January ... - NewsOK.com

    NewsOK.comFlights between OKC and Austin, Texas, to take off in January ...NewsOK.comOKLAHOMA CITY - ViaAir will launch nonstop flights between Oklahoma City and Austin, Texas, beginning Jan. 18, the airline said Wednesday. The flights will ...and more »

    Google News / 2 d. 14 h. 19 min. ago
  • Who Is Cast in the Story of Austin Food?Who Is Cast in the Story of Austin Food?

    Rising property values and stiff competition mean restaurants live and die by media exposure.

    Austin News / 2 d. 17 h. 43 min. ago
  • SETX town has large cartel presenceSETX town has large cartel presence

    Members of the Juarez Cartel, Sinaloa Cartel and Cartel Jalisco Nueva Generacion can all be found in this West Texas city, according to the DEA.

    Austin News / 2 d. 22 h. 10 min. ago
  • In Austin, Pence makes pitch for "across the board" tax cuts - Texas TribuneIn Austin, Pence makes pitch for "across the board" tax cuts - Texas Tribune

    Texas TribuneIn Austin, Pence makes pitch for "across the board" tax cutsTexas TribuneEarlier Wednesday afternoon in Austin, Pence participated in a briefing with Abbott on the state's response to Hurricane Harvey. They were joined at the Austin office shared by Texas and the Federal Emergency Management Agency by FEMA administrator ...and more »

    Google News / 3 d. 1 h. 57 min. ago more
  • Austin ISD says missing 10-year-old girl is a custodial issueAustin ISD says missing 10-year-old girl is a custodial issue

    A 10-year-old girl who was abducted from a southwest Austin elementary school Tuesday remains missing, the Austin Independent School District says. Authorities say Angelia Jordan was taken by her mother from the Oak Hill Elementary School shortly after 3 p.m. AISD police posted photos to its Facebook page, saying, "Her mother and another juvenile, pictured in the green shirt, took Angelia from Oak Hill ES in Southwest Austin at 3:05pm today."

    Austin News / 3 d. 2 h. 48 min. ago more
  • more news
  • Nonstop flights to Austin, Texas, coming to Tucson International Airport - Arizona Daily StarNonstop flights to Austin, Texas, coming to Tucson International Airport - Arizona Daily Star

    Arizona Daily StarNonstop flights to Austin, Texas, coming to Tucson International AirportArizona Daily StarStarting January 18, Via Air, a Florida-based airline, will offer nonstop flights to Austin, Texas. Service to Austin will operate Mondays, Thursdays and Fridays aboard 50-seat Embraer ERJ-145 jets. To introduce the new service, Via Air is offering a ...and more »

    Google News / 3 d. 8 h. 59 min. ago more
  • The Best Ramen Joints in Austin - ThrillistThe Best Ramen Joints in Austin - Thrillist

    ThrillistThe Best Ramen Joints in AustinThrillistKemuri, from the chefs behind Ramen Tatsu-ya, boasts two noodle dishes that reflect the restaurant's unique flavor profiles: the Texas ramen deviates from classic ramen with the addition of a thick beef broth and a slice of smoked brisket, and the ...

    Google News / 4 d. 3 h. 29 min. ago
  • After A Candidate Withdraws, Council Delays Revealing City Manager CandidatesAfter A Candidate Withdraws, Council Delays Revealing City Manager Candidates

    Austin City Council will not release the names of the finalists vying for the vacant city manager position today. Council members went to great lengths to keep the selection process secretive last week. After criticism, the council, candidates and the search firm tasked with finding a city manager agreed to make the names public by no later than today. Mayor Steve Adler said that reveal will have to wait – as one of the five candidates has dropped out of the running.

    KUT.org / 5 d. 11 h. 16 min. ago more
  • Austin Wants To Make It Easier To Build Garage ApartmentsAustin Wants To Make It Easier To Build Garage Apartments

    The Austin City Council took a step yesterday to streamline the process of building and remodeling homes by approving the Family Homestead Initiative . The resolution calls for the city to identify all the regulations and costs associated with the process.

    KUT.org / 8 d. 14 h. 20 min. ago
  • Austin Will Reveal The Names Of City Manager Candidates After AllAustin Will Reveal The Names Of City Manager Candidates After All

    After jumping in an airport shuttle last week in an attempt to maintain secrecy, Austin City Council members agreed Thursday to release the names of second-round candidates for the vacant city manager position. Up to five names of candidates will be made public no later than Monday.

    KUT.org / 9 d. 1 h. 19 min. ago
  • Why Did Texans Need To Vote On Seven Constitutional Amendments?Why Did Texans Need To Vote On Seven Constitutional Amendments?

    Voters added seven amendments to the Texas Constitution yesterday. Adding amendments is standard operating procedure for the Texas Legislature: The document, which was ratified in 1876, now has almost 500 amendments . But why? That's the question sent in to KUT's ATXplained project, which answers questions from our audience. Just hours after the addition of the new amendments, Caroline Ring asked: "Can y’all explain WHY the 7 constitutional amendments had to be amendments? Why couldn’t the legislature just pass regular laws?" There are a couple reasons: One reason focuses on the mechanics of law and the constitution; the other focuses on politics. Making it legal Let's start with the mechanics of law and the constitution. If the state constitution says something is unconstitutional, passing a law doesn't make it constitutional. You've got to change the constitution. Hugh Brady, a professor at the University of Texas School of Law, heads up the school's legislative lawyering clinic . He

    KUT.org / 10 d. 3 h. 23 min. ago more
  • For Black DACA Recipients In Texas, It Often Feels 'Impossible To Exist' For Black DACA Recipients In Texas, It Often Feels 'Impossible To Exist'

    Editor's note: We have removed the last name of the woman profiled in this story to protect the identity of her parents. Oluwatoyosi, Toyosi for short, stands observant, her hands clasped in the middle of a crowd of more than 40 people in the basement of Hogg Auditorium. The 21-year-old is showcasing a collection of designs at Fest Africa: Africa Uncut, the Texas African Student Organization’s annual cultural showcase.

    KUT.org / 12 d. 11 h. 38 min. ago more
  • Austin Is Trying Hard To Keep Its City Manager Search Secret. That May Be Illegal.Austin Is Trying Hard To Keep Its City Manager Search Secret. That May Be Illegal.

    Austin City Council members have been meeting this week with candidates to be Austin’s next city manager — which is among the most powerful positions at City Hall. But the city's gone to great lengths to keep this selection process secret. It's declined to name the candidates, and council members appear to have gone to great lengths to conceal their identities.

    KUT.org / 16 d. 6 h. 25 min. ago more
  • What's Austin's Newest Piece Of Real Estate? An Island Rising Up From Lady Bird LakeWhat's Austin's Newest Piece Of Real Estate? An Island Rising Up From Lady Bird Lake

    A new island has risen up near the boardwalk on the south shore of Lady Bird Lake. I noticed it on a recent jog, and I’m not the only one.

    KUT.org / 16 d. 13 h. 9 min. ago
  • New Apartments Could Be Coming To This Northwest Austin Shopping CenterNew Apartments Could Be Coming To This Northwest Austin Shopping Center

    A popular shopping center in Northwest Austin could be redeveloped to include hundreds of apartments. The 17-acre site, owned by Great Hills Retail Inc., currently includes a shopping center, restaurants, a movie theater and a bank. It will be up to Austin City Council to decide whether to allow for new types of development there.

    KUT.org / 17 d. 15 h. 20 min. ago
  • When Will The City Do Something With The Old Home Depot Off St. Johns?When Will The City Do Something With The Old Home Depot Off St. Johns?

    It has been more than eight years since the City of Austin bought a 20-acre property near the intersection of I-35 and St. Johns Avenue. The space used to house a Home Depot store. Today, the building sits vacant.

    KUT.org / 22 d. 15 h. 19 min. ago
  • Austin's New Central Public Library Opens Saturday. Will People Use It?Austin's New Central Public Library Opens Saturday. Will People Use It?

    Taylor Barnett, 24, hasn’t had a public library card since the 1990s, when she was growing up in Victoria, Texas. She would go frequently to the library with her grandparents, especially after they bought a computer with little idea of how to use it.

    KUT.org / 22 d. 15 h. 20 min. ago
  • Austin City Council Could Find Long-Awaited Answers In Trump's JFK ReleaseAustin City Council Could Find Long-Awaited Answers In Trump's JFK Release

    In a strange twist of fate, Austin City Council – which currently includes members who’ve been vehemently resistant to President Trump's policies – could get a long-lost wish granted today when the administration releases more than thousands of files related to the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

    KUT.org / 23 d. 4 h. 46 min. ago
  • More Than 400 Austin Musicians Signed Up To Perform At Harvey Shelters. 6 Played.More Than 400 Austin Musicians Signed Up To Perform At Harvey Shelters. 6 Played.

    Deandra Delgado and her four children took refuge in an Austin shelter after Hurricane Harvey pounded her small Texas town of Edna. As she anticipated returning home to a trampled town, Delgado looked around the cot-strewn gymnasium of the Wilhelmina Delco Center in North Austin, which served as a shelter immediately after the storm hit. "There's really not much to do," she said. "We sleep a lot."

    KUT.org / 23 d. 6 h. 35 min. ago more
  • Austin Fire Department donates used equipment to LBJ Fire AcademyAustin Fire Department donates used equipment to LBJ Fire Academy

    Left to right: Sarah McGee (LASA); Asst. Chief Richard Davis (AFD); Genoice Walker (LBJ); Asst. Chief Aaron Woolverton (AFD); Guadalupe Castaneda (LBJ); Asst. Chief Pablo Ruiz (AFD); Raavi Chokhawala (LASA). by Ann Fowler AUSTIN –  Students at the LBJ Fire Academy will make good use of $70,000 worth of equipment donated to it by the Austin Fire Department (AFD) on Sept. 15. Assistant Chief Aaron Woolverton said, “We’re donating 69 air packs and 15 turnout ensembles to a program at AISD … to help our young people consider a career in public safety and the fire service. We are very proud of this program and look forward to getting more life out of this equipment the Fire Department no longer needs.” The LBJ Fire Academy, housed at LBJ High School, was established in 2006 and has about 200 graduates. The two-year program gives students the opportunity to receive firefighter and emergency medical technician (EMT) certification and college credit. Not all of the students will go into fire service. The medical aspects may spur some to go to into nursing or attend medical school. Others may attend the program for the challenge—and it certainly looks good on a college resume. Leon Hudson, EMS and Fire Training Coordinator at the LBJ Fire Academy, told the Gazette, “I don’t have exact figures regarding how many alums are in the fire service, but I know of at least ten graduates working at fire departments, five working for EMS services, and several who are in college nursing programs, one labor and delivery nurse, and one graduate who began medical school this year. “We recruit students during the sophomore year from six AISD high schools: Anderson, Austin, Lanier, LASA, LBJ and McCallum,” said Hudson. Students attend the first class of the day at the Fire Academy, then return to their home campuses for the remainder of each school day. Fire Academy students attending the donation ceremony were Genoice Walker III, Guadalupe Castaneda, Raavi Chokhawala and Sarah McGee. The students demonstrated how quickly they could prepare to fight a fire by donning the fire apparel in just over a minute. McGee, a junior at LASA, lives in Circle C. Her mother, Cheryl, was also on hand. She said her daughter wants to become a marine biologist, but is enjoying the challenges of the program. Walker’s grandfather became one of the first African American firemen in Galveston 60 years ago. For more information on the LBJ Fire Academy, see www.LBJFire.org.  

    Oak Hill Gazette / 37 d. 2 h. 56 min. ago more
  • Democrats vie to unseat WorkmanDemocrats vie to unseat Workman

    Candace Aylor and Vikki Goodwin.  photo: Ann Fowler by Ann Fowler OAK HILL –  More than a year before the election, four Democratic candidates for House District 47 participated in a candidate forum hosted by Our Revolution Central Texas, a group inspired by presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, with a stated goal of changing “American politics to make our political and economic systems once again responsive to the needs of working families.” Republican Paul Workman has represented House District 47, covering western and southern portions of Travis County, since January 2011. Several dozen people attended the Sept. 12 forum at the Hampton Branch of the Austin Public Library, featuring candidates Candace Aylor, Elaina Fowler, Vikki Goodwin and Sheri Soltes. Ana Jordan and Michael Garemko asked questions of the panel. Jordan ran against Workman in 2016, receiving 42 percent of the vote to Workman’s 54 percent. Candace Aylor Aylor, a fourth-generation Texan, has been a nurse for more than 15 years. One of her priorities is affordable health care. She has served on the Behavioral Health Advisory Committee to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. She said watching the District 47 representative looking at his smart phone, boots propped on his desk, while citizens testified in earnest, made her want to run for that office. Aylor wants to work toward meaningful reform so that marginalized groups are better protected by law enforcement. She would also like to see better funding for schools. “I operate with incredible integrity,” she said, adding she knows how to stand her ground. Aylor said in attending hearings at the state Capitol, she does not feel it is set up to hear from the people of Texas. If Aylor could pass one bill immediately, it would be health care for all. For more information, go to voteCandaceAylor.com. Elaina Fowler Elaina Fowler serves as executive director of AFSCME Texas Retiree Chapter 12 and served as chief of staff for State Representative Helen Giddings for nearly two years. Fowler says her stint in the state legislature has given her a valuable advantage of forging professional relationships with staff offices and agencies. She told the Gazette, “The possibility to arrive at the Capitol as a freshman legislator with institutional knowledge to hit the ground running from the beginning definitely reduces the learning curve. This is a major advantage that most candidates and new legislators do not possess.” Fowler said, “For as long as I can remember I have had a passion for public service and for doing the right thing in the most effective and responsible way. This has carried over into my interests of fostering positive and collaborative communication between environmental groups and developers and working within my community to serve others through the boards and organizations to which I belong.” Fowler says she wants to make a difference. “I want to protect and preserve the integrity of District 47,” she said. “We have wonderful and beautiful communities. I believe that it’s essential that we elect an individual who can build consensus, promote unity, and foster open communication among all community stakeholders.” She is concerned that recent legislation is harmful to the District. She said, “Our current representative and certain members of our legislature have made their viewpoint very clear with recent proposed legislative changes that weaken environmental protections, demonstrate our state’s diminishing commitment to ecologically sustainable development principles and will lead to further imbalance between development and environmental imperatives.” Fowler also wants to work with school districts and teachers to improve classroom instruction. She said, “We should always have a bias toward spending that has the largest direct impact on classroom learning.” If she could pass one piece of legislature, Fowler said it would be to help retirees, who are going through “dire straights” right now. Fowler is working on a web page. Her Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/FowlerforHD47/. Vikki Goodwin Vikki Goodwin has lived in southwest Austin for 24 years and owns Goodwin & Goodwin Real Estate. She said the hundreds of millions of dollars the state takes from Austin Independent School District (AISD) spurred her to run for office. She told the Gazette, “After years and years of hearing AISD representatives talk about the huge amounts of money going to the state in the Robin Hood school funding plan, I decided the only way we are going to change the funding system is to elect new people to the Legislature who make that a priority.” Goodwin said the Legislature inadequately funded Child Protective Services (CPS), creating dire consequences for children who should be protected by that agency. “We need people in the Legislature who are committed to adequately funding the services we need—public education, CPS and Medicaid, for starters,” she said. Goodwin has served on many boards and committees: the Family Selection Committee at Austin Habitat for Humanity, the AISD Strategic Plan, a grant review committee with Impact Austin, HOA Boards, the Oak Hill Association of Neighborhoods Board, and various committees within the Austin Board of Realtors. She said, “I care deeply about my community, and feel that serving in the Legislature is the next logical step for me to serve my community in a greater capacity.” She added that her experience on these committees have given her insight into the concerns of people in District 47, particularly school funding and traffic. Goodwin said, “I’m aware of the issues involved with traffic, and the lack of transit ideas that are outside the box that could make a difference in our district. Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) and the city of Austin are working together on ways to improve transit in Austin, and I think that’s a great start. Given the legislature’s recent actions on trying to take away a city’s ability to pass ordinances or do things that might be outside the norm, I would support cities that work toward solutions that make sense in their areas.” If she could pass one piece of legislature, Goodwin would repair public school finance. For more information, see www.VoteVikki.com. Her Facebook page is https://www.facebook.com/Vikki4Tx/. Sheri Soltes In 1988, Soltes founded Service Dogs, Inc., a nonprofit that trains dogs to assist people who have hearing or mobility impairments. Prior to her work with Service Dogs, Soltes was a civil trial attorney, as well as a briefing attorney for the First Court of Appeals in Harris County. “As I have watched the actions of the legislature and our state leaders in recent years, I have seen the powerful ignore or take advantage of entire groups of people in our state,” Soltes told the Gazette. “… they are all under attack by a narrowly-focused group that is not representative of our great Texas. I’m smart, I’m honest, I’m fearless—I could not live with myself if I just stood by.” Added Soltes, “I have fought to improve the lives of Texans living with disabilities for the last 30 years through my organization Service Dogs, Inc. We rescue dogs from animal shelters and train them to help deaf or mobility challenged Texans and we do it free of charge. I’ve helped abused children in the courthouse get comfort and find their voice with our Courthouse Dogs program. I’ve worked with the Texas Juvenile Justice Department to create the nation’s first and only juvenile prison Service Dog training program, now in its third year.” Service Dogs, Inc. has 15 employees, and Soltes said she continued to pay full wages to an employee who suffered a stroke. “You can judge me by the way I treat my employees, she said. “I do the right thing.” She also said that donors to her nonprofit sometimes want special treatment. She said she does not give special consideration for donors to Service Dogs, nor would she do that for donors to her campaign. She added, “The best way to judge how someone will act in the future is to look at how they have acted in the past. Whether I am on the Legislative floor introducing a bill or meeting with you in my office, I will be fighting for you, not developers and their friends.” If she could pass one piece of legislature, Soltes would reverse Senate Bill 4 that outlawed Texas sanctuary cities. For more information on Soltes, see http://sherifortexas.com/ or her Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SheriForTexas/ About Our Revolution Central Texas According to Claudia Corum of Our Revolution Central Texas, the organization supports: A $15/hour minimum living wage Medicare for everyone Removing big money from politics Addressing climate change and environmental issues Workers rights on the job Stopping “hateful” state legislation such as SB4 and SB6 (the “bathroom bill”) Expanding Medicaid and Social Security  

    Oak Hill Gazette / 37 d. 3 h. 7 min. ago more
  • Phase 2 of Violet Crown Trail is coming through Oak Hill areaPhase 2 of Violet Crown Trail is coming through Oak Hill area

      According to Janae Spence, the city project sponsor, the cost of this portion of Phase 2 is just over $1 million, including a parking area to be paved on the east side of Latta at Convict Hill (left). Completion is expected in spring of 2018. She spoke recently at the Will Hampton Library. – photo: Ann Fowler by Ann Fowler OAK HILL – City staff gave an update recently on a portion of Phase 2 of the Violet Crown Trail, a 7-mile stretch that will ultimately connect Home Depot Blvd. with the Ladybird Johnson Wildflower Center. When finished, the Violet Crown Trail will be 30 miles in length, from Zilker Park to Hays County, ending a mile short of FM 150. Phase 1, a six-mile stretch from Zilker Park to Highway 290 West at Brodie Lane, has been completed. According to Janae Spence, the city project sponsor, the cost of this portion of Phase 2—from Dick Nichols Park to Home Depot Blvd., is just over $1 million, including a parking area to be paved on the east side of Latta at Convict Hill. Completion is expected in spring of 2018. Spence said, “Construction will start clearing from the east side of the trail to the west side, then construction will start from the west connection by Dick Nichols to the east.” The parking lot is planned to be installed last and will include space for a school bus to park. While some local residents expressed concern that a parking lot might attract homeless who come to the nearby Abiding Love Church food pantry, Spence said that is unlikely because no bathrooms will be built at the location. One reason for paving the parking lot is to lessen the chance of spreading an infestation of tawny crazy ants (TCAs), a highly invasive and destructive species of ants that have been identified at the site. Several residents in the area have reported infestations of TCAs, first identified by pest control operator Tom Rasberry in Pasadena, Texas in 2002. TCAs have spread to 28 Texas counties, including Travis, Hays and Williamson. TCAs invade homes and businesses, causing damage to electrical and computer systems. To lessen the spread of TCAs, officials suggest buying landscaping materials only from trusted dealers who can confirm no presence of TCAs. Officials advised paving the parking area at Latta including improved drainage, as TCAs are attracted to wet, humid areas. “This reduces the chances of a queen, brood and workers relocating their nest in parked vehicles and ‘hitching a ride’ to a new location to start a new crazy ant locality where they will spread further,” said Todd Bayless, a natural resources specialist with Travis County. Phases 3, 4 and 5 will complete the Violet Crown Trail, the first regional trail system in Central Texas. The Trail was envisioned by the Hill Country Conservancy, with planning started in 2006. Construction updates are available at austintexas.gov/violetcrowntrail.  

    Oak Hill Gazette / 37 d. 3 h. 34 min. ago more
  • No animals left behindNo animals left behind

    Coyote—a dog that has been afraid of people and had difficulty getting into the foster’s car.   by Ann Fowler AUSTIN –  In the last few decades, the status of pets has changed. They’ve gone from the barnyard in your grandparents’ day, to the backyard in your parent’s day, to the bedroom for many current pet owners. For many, pets are part of the family, so they were not going to be left in harm’s way if Austin could help it. Austin Pets Alive! As Hurricane Harvey closed in on the Texas coast, Austin Pets Alive sent out a plea: foster all dogs currently in the Austin shelter to make room for Harvey evacuees. Pets in animal shelters in Harvey’s path were in danger of being euthanized due to fear of flooding or staff’s inability to come to work to care for the animals. Staff at Austin Pets Alive! reached out to shelters to allow animals to come to Austin for the duration. Maya Gudamaralla of the Villages at Western Oaks heard about APA’s need for fosters and immediately applied. She told the Gazette, “I decided to foster because pets are often overlooked during hurricanes and then are left in harm’s way.” She was introduced to Coyote, a dog that has been afraid of people and had difficulty getting into the foster’s car. “Her behavior makes me think she was badly mistreated,” said Gudamaralla. “In the days she has been here she is taking treats from our hand and has become a little more relaxed. We are able to get closer to her without her running away. It will take time, but I think with lots of love she will be fine.” Coyote’s foster family has nicknamed her Cupcake. She gets along with the Gudamaralla’s dog, Daisy. The family plans to foster her until she is adopted, but they are considering adopting her themselves. At any given time, APA has about 600 dogs in foster homes around Austin. Christina Felton, an APA volunteer, told the Gazette that number had doubled as people offered to take in dogs—either those already living at APA or those who evacuated in from affected areas—during the storm. While some were returned to the shelter after the storm, many remain in foster. These families will take their charges to adoption events until they find their forever homes. In the aftermath of the storm, APA volunteers, led by executive director Dr. Ellen Jefferson, caravanned to Houston and Beaumont to help save more pets and bring them to safety. An Austin Humane Society emergency pet shelter was activated as floodwaters persisted in Houston and Beaumont, and nearly 200 animals from those areas were brought in to receive medical exams and get cleaned up. APA partnered with the city of Austin to keep those animals safe and comfortable until they could be reunited with their families. Such visibility may have led to Austin Pets Alive! being listed as an organization worthy of donations by those wanting to help Hurricane Harvey victims. Donations from the organization’s wish list have been arriving daily, requiring more volunteers to sort them. Some can be used immediately, while others will be stored or shipped to shelter partners in need. The quick response by Austin Pets Alive! and others contrasted with what happened in New Orleans. Officials learned the hard way in 2005 that many people will not leave their pets—even to save themselves. In the wake of Hurricane Katrina, people stayed in harm’s way when pets were not allowed on evacuation buses or in emergency shelters. Social media showed scores of pets being rescued as floodwaters rose, and when a photo was posted of people sitting outside an emergency shelter because pets weren’t allowed in, that rule quickly changed. www.austinpetsalive.org Quade Foundation This Texas non-profit helps make sure adopted animals get every opportunity to find their happily ever after home. The group provides financial opportunities for education programs, medical assistance, and behavior and training instruction to animal organizations and adopters. Bob Bridge, secretary of the group, told the Gazette, “Keeping a metropolitan area’s ‘no-kill’ status is no easy task.” He added, “Some adopters later find themselves in predicaments where they may be compelled to return the companion animal because of personal circumstance or inability to meet their animal’s medical needs. Quade Foundation provides assistance for these cases.” The group is currently providing assistance to APA during the Hurricane Harvey evacuations. www.quadefoundation.org The Canine Center for Training and Behavior In 2005, trainers from the Canine Center, through Best Friends Animal Society, flew to areas devastated by Hurricane Katrina to assess dogs. Working in triage, each dog was quickly evaluated as: Ready to be reclaimed by its family Ready for immediate adoption Needing foster care to receive a little more attention Not adoptable The team stands ready to go back into action, but has also offered services to evacuation centers to teach relaxation and enrichment techniques to help animals and their humans better cope. The group offers discounted pet selection services to help get dogs placed with the right families. It is heartbreaking to hear of a dog being returned to a shelter days or weeks after adoption because “it’s not a good fit.” Another service the Canine Center offers is helping those who have taken in evacuees and their pets. What happens when the dogs don’t get along? The Canine Center offers deeply discounted rates to help families integrate households. www.morefunthandirt.com Pet Stores bring in donations Local pet stores have made it easy for customers to donate to help Hurricane Harvey victims. Healthy Pet stores offered a 20 percent discount and no tax on purchased donations. All dog-wash proceeds September 1 through 3 were donated to the cause. All stores were drop-off points for items purchased in-store or not. Tomlinson stores are accepting monetary donations through Sept. 10 for the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, with funds paid out every evening for immediate use. The Austin Zoo Companion animals are not the only ones affected by Hurricane Harvey. The Austin Zoo is accepting crates of all sizes to help Victoria’s Texas Zoo, which was ravaged by the storm. www.austinzoo.org  

    Oak Hill Gazette / 67 d. 1 h. 23 min. ago more
  • Hurricane Harvey has local impactHurricane Harvey has local impact

    The Junior Teen Leadership at Small Middle School. story and photo by Ann Fowler OAK HILL –  Hurricane Harvey may be gone, but if Katrina is any indication, the impact will last for decades. From estimated sustained winds of 130 mph at landfall at Rockport, Texas, to nearly 50 inches of rain dumped on portions of the gulf coast, Texas was hit hard. According to AccuWeather, this storm may be the most costly natural disaster ever in America, costing more than hurricanes Katrina and Sandy combined: $190 billion. Oak Hill resident Mark Hanna is the spokesman for the Insurance Council of Texas, the largest state insurance association in the United States. His son and wife evacuated from Houston and will stay with him until floodwaters recede. Hanna said, “Many people had no flood insurance on their homes because they had never seen the effects of a 50-inch rainfall. Flooded rivers, streams and bayous set record levels.” Drivers lacking comprehensive auto insurance may be left stranded, Hanna said. And he advised people not to attempt to start a car that was submerged as it can create more problems. Hanna suggests having a reputable towing company bring the vehicle to a reputable mechanic who can determine any damage once the engine has dried out. Hanna lists lessons learned from the historic storm: Homes built to the state’s stronger building code held up better and with minor to moderate damage compared to homes not built to code. People who did not evacuate where the storm made landfall all say they would never again want to ride through another hurricane. Most likely only 1 in 6 homes in the Houston area had flood insurance. No telling how many motorists did not have comprehensive insurance. Hanna said the uninsured can seek help from the Red Cross, Salvation Army, churches, family friends and neighbors. FEMA may offer possible financial assistance, but that could be months away. Hanna offered the following suggestions: The claims process and filing deadlines for Harvey-related damage did not change on September 1. Claims for policies under the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association and the National Flood Insurance Program are not subject to recent changes in property damage litigation laws, despite recent assertions to the contrary. Contact the agent or company who sold you the insurance policy to file a claim. Many insurers may be available in the damaged areas. Check to see if your company has a response team near you. Document property damage with photos and video as soon as possible and provide this information to your insurance adjuster. Make temporary repairs if necessary to prevent further damage. Keep receipts for repairs and document all communication with your insurer. Neither a homeowner’s insurance policy nor a renter’s insurance policy provides flood coverage.  Flood insurance is a separate policy. A flood insurance policy can be    sold by any insurance agent, but the coverage is provided by the National Flood Insurance Program. To insure your vehicle from flood damage, you needed comprehensive insurance coverage. The Texas Department of Insurance Consumer Protection Help Line at 1-800-252-3439 can provide needed information on agents and insurance companies as well as resolve insurance complaints. Austin’s lessons learned The city of Austin set up shelter for 700 evacuees, although it was prepared for 7,000. A ‘mega-shelter’ at the Austin Convention Center was planned but ultimately unneeded. Said District 8 Councilmember Ellen Troxclair, “Flexibility has been a key tool in what has made the City a great partner with the state, other cities, counties and agencies in adapting to what is needed and supplying it. Going from planning for up to 7,000 evacuees to scaling down to 1,500-2,000 has been an excellent exercise in being prepared, but reacting quickly to accommodate changing circumstances.” Added Troxclair, “I was born in Houston and still have family and friends there who have lost their homes. It has been an amazing sight to see our community, state and country come together for a bigger purpose, helping neighbors.” Students get drive started Oak Hill area schools were not impacted by the wrath of Hurricane Harvey, save for a one-day, two-hour delay. But students wasted no time in planning donation drives to help those who were affected by the storm. Dr. Cathryn Mitchell, principal of Gorzycki Middle School, said the student council set up a donation drive. She added, “We have also been working with Bee Creek United Methodist Church who is working with Burger Center, as well as Park Manor nursing home, who received evacuees.” Austin Independent School District (AISD) spokeswoman Cristina Nguyen told the Gazette that children evacuated to the Austin area will not miss any school time. “AISD has already begun enrolling students at the shelters in Austin and plan to welcome all evacuee students into AISD.” In addition, all evacuee families were welcomed to watch varsity sports events last weekend free of charge. At Small Middle School, the Junior Teen Leadership classes led by Kevin Mullen, David Juarez and Shaun Hopkins, compiled a list of items suggested by the American Red Cross and Austin Pets Alive. The students challenged their peers to bring in as many of the items as possible. Principal Matthew Nelson said they partnered with Yeti.com, whose staffers picked up hundreds of pounds of donations to deliver to the affected areas. Said Nelson, “Our kids all wanted to contribute in some way or fashion and we are blown away by their compassion and enthusiasm to help.  We are excited that Yeti reached out to us and offered a direct channel to get our collected goods into the right hands.”    

    Oak Hill Gazette / 67 d. 2 h. 50 min. ago more