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FROM OVERNIGHT: Austin Oaks clears hurdle but future remains uncertain

The planned redevelopment of a Northwest Austin business park appeared to be living on borrowed time early Friday, falling short of the supermajority support from the City Council it would need for final approval. Still, the council voted 7-4 to move the project forward after more than four hours of public testimony and contentious, sometimes rancorous debate on the dais that resulted in major changes...
Much-needed win keeps Spieth in contention for Dell Match Play weekend

Much-needed win keeps Spieth in contention for Dell Match Play weekend

Jordan Spieth managed to steady his game Thursday while a nasty wind whipped through trees, created white caps on the lake and tried to topple the flags adorning the slick greens at Austin Country Club. After his round, Spieth proclaimed that the conditions possibly were the “toughest I’ve ever seen it out here.” The former Texas star, with a decisive win over Yuta Ikeda, stayed...

Court asked to block Texas congressional map for 2018 election

Texas should be blocked from using a map of congressional districts that was found to have been drawn in violation of the U.S. Voting Rights Act, a federal court was told Thursday. The motion, filed with a three-judge panel in U.S. District Court in San Antonio, follows a March 10 ruling that invalidated three districts, including one in Travis County, that the court said were drawn by Republicans...
In UT talk, FBI’s Comey tackles cyberterror threats, but mum on Trump

In UT talk, FBI’s Comey tackles cyberterror threats, but mum on Trump

FBI Director James Comey’s remarks Thursday at a University of Texas symposium on intelligence explored a variety of counterterrorism strategies, but he refused to address the elephant in the room: namely President Donald Trump and the FBI’s investigation into his campaign’s possible links to Russia. The first question from the audience to Comey asked him whether his approach to...
Ernest and Sarah Butler give $1 million to Austin Opera

Ernest and Sarah Butler give $1 million to Austin Opera

Major benefactors Ernest and Sarah Butler — who have strategically given tens of millions of dollars to build up Austin’s arts and are the namesakes for the Butler School of Music at the University of Texas — are donating $1 million to support the position of Austin Opera’s artistic director. Earlier this year, not long after Annie Burridge took the reins as Austin Opera&rsquo...
Trump budget threatens Texas environmental and energy research

Trump budget threatens Texas environmental and energy research

Projections of hurricane flooding along the Texas Gulf Coast. The development of a window glaze to better control the heating of buildings. An analysis of the relationship between air pollution and hypertension in Mexican-Americans. An examination of the effectiveness of water treatment systems in poor communities in West Texas. A look at health risks of extreme heat for aging Houstonians. All these...

Fungus causing lethal bat syndrome detected in Texas

The fungus that causes the deadly white-nose syndrome in hibernating bats has been detected in Texas, federal and state officials announced Thursday. White-nose syndrome has led to the death of as many as 6 million bats in North America over the last decade, though scientists think non-hibernating bats, like those found beneath the Ann Richards Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin, are not susceptible...
Taylor gets $500,000 state grant for skatepark, square improvements

Taylor gets $500,000 state grant for skatepark, square improvements

Taylor now has all the money it needs to build a skatepark downtown. The city received a $500,000 grant from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department on Thursday to help build the skatepark and make improvements to a park next to it at Heritage Square, officials said. Construction on the skatepark will probably begin in the late summer or early fall, said Brent Humphreys, a Taylor resident who started...
Georgetown to begin $2.5 million park improvement project

Georgetown to begin $2.5 million park improvement project

The city of Georgetown is starting a $2.5 million improvement project at San Gabriel Park that will include a new playground, new picnic areas and pavilions and restoration of a spring habitat. The groundbreaking will be at 10 a.m. Friday at Chamber Way and E. Morrow Street. Construction is expected to be completed in 10 months, according to the city. Voters approved the money for the project in a...
UPDATE: 2 dead after rollover crash on U.S. 183 in southeastern Travis County

UPDATE: 2 dead after rollover crash on U.S. 183 in southeastern Travis County

Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Services medics say two people have died after a rollover crash in the southbound lanes of U.S. 183 in southeastern Travis County. The crash happened just before 8 a.m. near Von Quintus Road and only involved one vehicle. Authorities identified the victims as two adult men, but no other identifying information was available. Drivers should expect heavy delays...

Hays County deputies say another car was pulled over by a fake cop on Thursday morning

Authorities in Hays County say they are investigating another incident in which someone impersonated a police officer and pulled a vehicle over. According to the Hays County sheriff’s office, the new case happened around 12:15 a.m. on Thursday on FM 2001 near Satterwhite Road in Kyle. Authorities said a man was driving in the area when a pickup pulled up behind him and turned on red and blue...
COLD FRONT COMING: Line of storms to bring quarter-inch of rain to Austin area by 11 a.m.

COLD FRONT COMING: Line of storms to bring quarter-inch of rain to Austin area by 11 a.m.

8:30 a.m. update: A Pacific cold front will move east at 25 mph through the Hill Country and the Austin metro area late Friday morning, the National Weather Service says.  Showers and isolated thunderstorms will move into the Interstate 35 corridor around 11 a.m., forecasters say, with a few showers possible further east of I-35. The outlook from the weather service calls for spotty rainfall...
Krauthammer: American democracy is not so decadent after all

Krauthammer: American democracy is not so decadent after all

Under the dark gray cloud, amid the general gloom, allow me to offer a ray of sunshine. The last two months have brought a pleasant surprise: Turns out the much feared, much predicted withering of our democratic institutions has been grossly exaggerated. The system lives. Let me explain. Donald Trump’s triumph last year was based on a frontal attack on the Washington “establishment,&rdquo...
Gail Collins: Trump stays buggy

Gail Collins: Trump stays buggy

Whatever Donald Trump has, it’s spreading. We’ve got a president who makes things up — and won’t retract when he’s cornered. This week press secretary Sean Spicer followed the leader. He picked up Trump’s wiretap story and added a new exciting detail: Not only had Barack Obama bugged Trump Tower, he might have used British intelligence spies to do the dirty work...
UT groups promote sex assault prevention ahead of annual ‘Round Up’ weekend

UT groups promote sex assault prevention ahead of annual ‘Round Up’ weekend

The University of Texas is gearing up for  the 87th annual “Round Up” weekend, an annual philanthropy event hosted by the Interfraternity Council at Texas, but some students and organizations are taking precautions to prevent sexual assault. From Thursday night through Saturday, members of the IFC – which governs 27 Greek fraternities at UT – host charity events at...
Corrections officer trainee picked for Travis jury; judge ends trial

Corrections officer trainee picked for Travis jury; judge ends trial

A man who is taking classes to be a law enforcement officer made it onto a Travis County jury this week before a county judge learned of the conflict of interest and called off the trial. It was all a misunderstanding, Judge Nancy Hohengarten said. On a jury questionnaire signed March 1, the man listed his occupation as dental assistant, a position he held before he was laid off in February. But he...

Hays County deputies say fake cop may have pulled over a second person

HAYS COUNTY Officials say fake cop pulled over a second person Hays County sheriff’s deputies say a person suspected of pretending to be a law enforcement officer and stopping a vehicle on the road last week might have been involved in a second fake traffic stop early Thursday. Officials say that about 12:15 a.m., a man was driving on FM 2001 near Satterwhite Road in Kyle when a pickup truck...
‘Unusually high’ number of grass fires due to discarded cigarettes, high winds, dry conditions, Austin fire says

‘Unusually high’ number of grass fires due to discarded cigarettes, high winds, dry conditions, Austin fire says

Improperly discarded cigarettes, high winds and dry conditions have led to an unusually high number of small grass fires in the city, Austin fire officials said Thursday.  Firefighters have responded to more than 50 grass fire calls since 11 a.m., and the number is inching closer to 60, Austin Battalion Chief Palmer Buck said.  Buck said discarded cigarettes that were not properly extinguished...
Windy, dry Thursday fans blazes across Central Texas

Windy, dry Thursday fans blazes across Central Texas

A large blaze that gutted an apartment building in San Marcos was one of several fires in Central Texas fueled by dry conditions and high winds Thursday. The fire started about 1:15 p.m. at a building at the Champions Crossing apartment complex on 345 Champion Blvd.,said San Marcos communications director Kristi Wyatt. About a dozen units were affected by the fire, Wyatt said. No one was immediately...
Watch for thunderstorms Friday morning in Austin

Watch for thunderstorms Friday morning in Austin

Friday could give Central Texas a taste of the downside of spring. Storms conceived by a front coming from the west and moisture from the Gulf of Mexico should roll over the region in the morning, bringing widespread rain and possible lightning before clearing out in the afternoon, according to the National Weather Service. Thursday’s gusting winds were an early symptom of the front, which preceded...

Business Digest: Austin-area gasoline prices edge higher

FUEL Austin-area gas prices rise 2 cents Austin-area gas prices rose by 2 cents per gallon this week, according to auto club AAA Texas. The average local price for a gallon of regular gasoline rose to $2.09, according to AAA Texas. The price this week is 29 cents more than the same week last year, when the average price per gallon was $1.80, according to AAA Texas data. Gasoline prices have remained...

Schwarzenegger to address U. of Houston graduates, minus $40K fee

Arnold Schwarzenegger — actor, businessman, former California governor and, lately, trader of salvos with President Donald Trump — will be the University of Houston’s commencement speaker May 12. The university initially said he would be paid $40,000, then announced that he was waiving the fee. “Gov. Schwarzenegger wasn’t aware that a fee was arranged by his representatives...
Officials: Round Rock SWAT raid yields stolen items

Officials: Round Rock SWAT raid yields stolen items

The Williamson County sheriff’s office SWAT team found several items linked to armed robberies and vehicle burglaries in Round Rock while searching a house early Wednesday in Round Rock, officials said in a news release. The robberies and burglaries happened between December and January, the release said. Horace Lee Caruther Jr., 41, was arrested and charged with being a felon in possession...
Police impersonator may have pulled over a second person, Hays County deputies say 

Police impersonator may have pulled over a second person, Hays County deputies say 

Hays County sheriff’s deputies say a person suspected of pretending to be a public safety officer and stopping a vehicle on the road last week might have been involved in a second fake traffic stop early Thursday. Officials say that about 12:15 a.m., a man was driving on FM 2001 near Satterwhite Road in Kyle when a pickup truck activated red-and-blue lights on the dashboard.  The man...
ACC Round Rock closed due to power outage

ACC Round Rock closed due to power outage

Austin Community College’s Round Rock Campus closed Thursday due to a power outage in the area, according to a media release. Classes and events at the campus are canceled, officials said. All other campuses will continue on a regular schedule. Updates on the outage will be posted on the ACC website homepage as well as the college’s Facebook and Twitter accounts. ACC’s Round Rock...
UPDATE: Police working to account for all residents after San Marcos apartment fire

UPDATE: Police working to account for all residents after San Marcos apartment fire

5:25 p.m. update: San Marcos police are still working to account for all the residents of an apartment that was damaged in a fire this afternoon. Earlier: An apartment complex is on fire in San Marcos, city officials said. The fire started about 1:15 p.m. at a building at the Champions Crossing apartment complex on 345 Champion Blvd., off Post Road, said San Marcos communications director...
‘Private school voucher’ bill approved by Senate panel

‘Private school voucher’ bill approved by Senate panel

The Senate Education Committee on Thursday approved a bill that would redirect state money to help students pay for private school tuition among other non-public educational expenses. Senate Bill 3, which has emerged as one of the most divisive education measures so far this session, won the approval of seven senators in the committee — Eddie Lucio, Jr. of Brownsville was the only Democrat to...
A&M fires back as Rick Perry disputes gay Aggie student’s election win

A&M fires back as Rick Perry disputes gay Aggie student’s election win

The notion, advanced by former Gov. Rick Perry, that a diversity agenda was somehow behind the election of the first openly gay student body president at Texas A&M University is “just not accurate,” a university spokeswoman said Thursday. Perry, now the U.S. energy secretary, suggested in a Houston Chronicle op-ed column Wednesday that the election of Bobby Brooks was tainted. A student...
Georgetown auction owner stole from customers, police say

Georgetown auction owner stole from customers, police say

The owner of an auction company in Georgetown is accused of stealing property worth more than $26,000 from five of her customers, according to an arrest affidavit. Robin Elizabeth Kasper, 38, of Austin was charged with theft, a state jail felony punishable by up to two years in jail. Kasper is accused of stealing furniture, household items and collectible items worth a total of $26,279 from the five...
Woman jumped from moving car on I-35 to escape carjacker, police say

Woman jumped from moving car on I-35 to escape carjacker, police say

Police say a woman dove out of a moving car on Interstate 35 in early March to escape a carjacker. According to an arrest warrant affidavit filed on Wednesday, Tyquan Hassan Guzman, 17, is accused of kidnapping the woman and stealing her car on March 8. In the affidavit, police said Guzman approached the woman as she slept in her car in the 1400 block of Tinnin Ford Road. According to the report...
Zach Theatre announces its 2017-2018 season. What’s in it for families?

Zach Theatre announces its 2017-2018 season. What’s in it for families?

The creators of “Cenicienta” will return with “The Adventures of Enoughie” for the 2017-2018 season at Zach Theatre.

Community news: Austin Water offers landscape rebate

TRAVIS COUNTY AUSTIN Landscape rebate offered Austin Water is offering rebates to residents who use combination of mulch, compost and core aeration to save water by keeping it in their yard, reducing the need to water. Residents will buy materials or services listed on the “Landscape Survival Tools Rebate” application and apply to the landscape and keep all receipts. They should then take...
NEW DETAILS: DPS say vehicle illegally passed Hays High student before fatal crash

NEW DETAILS: DPS say vehicle illegally passed Hays High student before fatal crash

Texas Department of Public Safety officials say a vehicle whizzed by a Ford Mustang driven by 16-year-old Brynn Ashtyn Aylor in a no-passing zone just before she lost control of the car and veered into oncoming traffic on Wednesday afternoon. According to preliminary details released authorities, Aylor was headed north on FM 2770 when she crashed around 4:35 p.m. Barrera said the passing vehicle was...
A&M student who lost election files court papers for possible lawsuit

A&M student who lost election files court papers for possible lawsuit

A Texas A&M University student who was disqualified after winning the most votes for student body president has asked a court for permission to take sworn statements in preparation for a possible lawsuit on religious, due process and other grounds. Lawyers for Robert McIntosh filed the petition Thursday in state district court in Brazos County seeking to depose Amy Loyd, Rachel Keathley and Aaron...
Here are some of the Texas vanity plates rejected in 2017 so far

Here are some of the Texas vanity plates rejected in 2017 so far

Vanity license plates are fun. But, if the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles has anything to say about it (and it does), not too fun.
Rick Perry takes break from Cabinet duties to intervene in Aggie GlowStickGate

Rick Perry takes break from Cabinet duties to intervene in Aggie GlowStickGate

  Good day Austin: Well, I suppose glow sticks do come under the purview of the Department of Energy.
APPROVED: Austin City Council OKs key measures to reboot police DNA lab

APPROVED: Austin City Council OKs key measures to reboot police DNA lab

The Austin City Council on Thursday agreed to a plan that would turn over the city’s police DNA lab to the state. City Council members voted to authorize city staff to negotiate a Texas Department of Public Safety contract, not to exceed $4 million over 5 years, that would allow the agency to oversee day-to-day operation of the lab, from hiring employees to forensic analysis. The plan will...
COUNCIL WATCH: Austin Oaks, airport expansion and DNA lab on agenda

COUNCIL WATCH: Austin Oaks, airport expansion and DNA lab on agenda

In addition to a package of items the City Council approved Thursday dealing with the Austin Police Department’s troubled DNA lab, here are the other items we’re watching: Austin Oaks: This item, which was postponed after the March 2 meeting went past midnight, involves the redevelopment of the Austin Oaks office park at MoPac Boulevard and Spicewood Springs Road with 1.2 million square...
COMEY ON CLINTON EMAILS: ‘I’m not going to talk about it,’ FBI Director says

COMEY ON CLINTON EMAILS: ‘I’m not going to talk about it,’ FBI Director says

11:55 a.m. update: FBI Director James Comey appeared at the University of Texas on Thursday to discuss a wide range of topics related to his agency's focus on counterintelligence, but he drew a line a student’s question about Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. The student asked Comey whether his late October announcement on the agency’s investigation into Clinton’s emails shaped...
WEATHER ALERT: Wind advisory for Hill Country, Austin metro area until midnight

WEATHER ALERT: Wind advisory for Hill Country, Austin metro area until midnight

4:40 p.m. update:  The wind advisory in effect until midnight in Central Texas has been expanded to include Travis, Hays, Blanco and Caldwell counties, according to the National Weather Service. Areas south of the Austin metro area are also affected, including Comal, Guadalupe and Bexar counties. A wind advisory is issued when sustained winds of 26 to 39 mph are expected. Southeast...
Census: Austin metro hits 2 million mark again, this time for real

Census: Austin metro hits 2 million mark again, this time for real

Perhaps the balloons and confetti fell a little too early last year when the Austin metro area celebrated surpassing 2 million residents. Turns out, after some routine revisions to the U.S. Census Bureau data, Austin actually hit that milestone later than originally thought, according to new numbers released Thursday. Specifically, the five-county metro area cleared that population hurdle by July...
UPDATED: Dozens hold vigil calling lawmakers to save Obamacare

UPDATED: Dozens hold vigil calling lawmakers to save Obamacare

10:25 p.m. update:  Roughly 80 people gathered Wednesday in front of University Medical Center Brackenridge to urge their federal lawmakers to vote no Thursday on a bill that would repeal and replace Obamacare.The vigil was one of many across Central Texas to call on lawmakers to save the Affordable Care Act. The event was organized by liberal activist group Indivisible. Several people...
JUST IN: Man may have tried to impersonate an officer while pulling driver over, Hays County deputies say

JUST IN: Man may have tried to impersonate an officer while pulling driver over, Hays County deputies say

Investigators are looking for someone who may have been impersonating a police officer while attempting to pull someone over in Hays County. On Thursday night, a woman reported that she was driving with a friend on FM 2001 near Goforth Road in Kyle when a light-colored Chevrolet pickup truck with damage to its front left quarter panel activated red-and-blue interior lights, the Hays County sheriff&rsquo...

Murder suspect out on bond after DA fails to take case to grand jury

A murder suspect who authorities believe has deep ties to the Crips street gang is out on bond because Travis County prosecutors didn’t take his case to a grand jury in the time required by state law. On Monday, state District Judge Brad Urrutia released Joseph Sterling, 28, on a personal bond that cost the defendant about $40. Law mandates a case go before the grand jury within 90 days of an...
UPDATE: Hays High School student dead, 2 others seriously injured after crash near Buda, officials say

UPDATE: Hays High School student dead, 2 others seriously injured after crash near Buda, officials say

9:10 p.m. update: School district officials have identified the Hays High School sophomore who died in a two-vehicle crash near Buda Wednesday afternoon as Brynn Aylor, 16.  Aylor was killed after a crash in the 2600 block of Jack C. Hays Trail, officials said. Two women who were traveling in the other vehicle involved were seriously injured and taken to area hospitals, Texas Department of Public...
Abbott’s Texas stomps Austin, local governments

Abbott’s Texas stomps Austin, local governments

Governor Greg Abbott speaks before signing his new book ‘Broken but Unbowed’ as he launches his book tour at the Austin-based Texas Public Policy Foundation.
Judge rules lawsuit can proceed in violent arrest of Breaion King

Judge rules lawsuit can proceed in violent arrest of Breaion King

U.S. District Judge Sam Sparks has ruled that a lawsuit against the city of Austin in the July 2015 violent arrest of teacher Breaion King can proceed and denied a request by city officials that it be thrown out. Sparks had initially dismissed the city as a defendant, saying that the lawsuit wasn’t specific enough. But King’s attorneys refiled the case, which Sparks said meets legal standards...

Central Texas nurse likely infected patient with Hepatitis C in 2015, federal report says

A Central Texas nurse likely infected at least one patient with Hepatitis C when the nurse reused saline syringes, according to a report this month from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The 2015 incident happened in Region 7 of the Department of State Health Services, a 30-county area that includes the Austin metro area counties of Travis, Williamson, Hays and Bastrop, agency...
678-home subdivision to bring traffic signal to Hamilton Pool Road

678-home subdivision to bring traffic signal to Hamilton Pool Road

A 678-home development will begin construction in June, and it is expected to bring a new traffic signal and possibly an elementary school to the winding, narrow thoroughfare of Hamilton Pool Road. The first phase of Provence, a development planned on the 910-acre Hatchett Tract with two entrances on Hamilton Pool Road, received approval from the Travis County Commissioners Court this month and previously...
Round Rock man acquitted of aggravated robbery over pellet gun dispute

Round Rock man acquitted of aggravated robbery over pellet gun dispute

Defense attorney Daniel Wannamaker asked jurors to “do the impossible” and return a not guilty verdict even though substantial evidence tied his client to a Spicewood convenience store robbery in December 2015. Wednesday, following two days of discussion about the functionality of a couple of pellet guns that were used in the crime, the jury found 21-year-old Dustin Clark of Round Rock...

Business Digest: AT&T says data usage doubled during SXSW

SOUTH BY SOUTHWEST AT&T: SXSW data usage doubled since 2015 AT&T users attending South by Southwest this year used more than 86.36 terabytes of data, the company said. That’s equivalent to 247 million selfies or streaming music for 122,000 straight days, according to AT&T. This year’s figure is more than double the data used just two years ago. In 2015, Dallas-based AT&T reported SXSW...
Texas state senators meet Trump for health care discussion

Texas state senators meet Trump for health care discussion

Two Texas state senators, both physicians, took part Wednesday in a White House panel on women in health care — attended by President Donald Trump — in preparation for Thursday’s U.S. House vote on the Republican plan to replace Obamacare. “Unfortunately, Obamacare is making it much harder for all of the doctors, nurses and health care professionals, men and women alike, to...
Head of Austin’s Hispanic chamber leaving for national post

Head of Austin’s Hispanic chamber leaving for national post

Mark Madrid, president and CEO of the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, has resigned to take a new position elsewhere, the organization said Wednesday. Madrid, who joined the chamber in 2014, has been named executive director of the Latino Business Action Network. Under his leadership, the Greater Austin Hispanic Chamber of Commerce was named United States National Hispanic Chamber of the...
State freezes bid to privatize foster care in northwestern Texas

State freezes bid to privatize foster care in northwestern Texas

A much-heralded effort to privatize foster care in 30 northwestern Texas counties is on hold while the state investigates whether the bidding process was compromised by a purchasing director who is the wife of a high-ranking state official forced to resign in 2014. The Health and Human Services Commission has put its request for proposals for “foster care redesign” on pause, saying in...
Fate of Texas 45 Southwest toll road project now in judge’s hands

Fate of Texas 45 Southwest toll road project now in judge’s hands

Opponents of plans to build the Texas 45 Southwest toll road returned to federal court on Wednesday, asking a judge to stop the project now under construction and send planners back to the drawing board. Critics have long argued the 3.6 mile-long toll road, the subject of fierce debate in Austin for three decades, would harm the environment. Supporters and transportation planners have countered...
Pedestrian hit by car last week in North Austin dies, police say

Pedestrian hit by car last week in North Austin dies, police say

A pedestrian who was hit while walking on North Lamar Boulevard on March 12 has died after being in the hospital for more than a week. Austin police on Wednesday identified the man who died as 59-year-old Tomas Garcia-Servin. Garcia-Servin was crossing North Lamar Boulevard near Rundberg Lane in the middle of the block when he was struck by a car. He was taken to University Medical Center Brackenridge...
After state inspection, 90 animals seized from Florence shelter

After state inspection, 90 animals seized from Florence shelter

Williamson County’s animal control unit seized 89 cats and a dog from a no-kill shelter in Florence on Wednesday following a state inspection, officials said. The cats and dog were being evaluated but their conditions were not known, the Williamson County sheriff’s office said in a news release. It said the Texas Department of State Health Services filed a complaint against the shelter...

Promoting Texas’ oil, gas industry

From left, Chris Ryan, Gabriel Briseno and Casey Abate with Cheniere Energy Partners offered demonstrations with liquefied natural gas during Texas Energy Day at the Texas Capitol on Wednesday. The event was intended to promote Texas oil and gas industry and to showcase industry technologies. RALPH BARRERA/AMERICAN-STATESMAN
Police: Road rage episode led to downtown shooting amid SXSW revelers

Police: Road rage episode led to downtown shooting amid SXSW revelers

As throngs of people crowded onto downtown Austin’s streets during the South by Southwest Music Festival last week, an apparent argument between the occupants of two cars triggered a violent response from one of the passengers, who fired gunshots into the air, according to court documents filed Wednesday. Austin police said they think the shooter was 22-year-old Eric Benitez, who was arrested...
Is Austin home to millennial ‘slackers’? Yes, but not as much as other Texas cities

Is Austin home to millennial ‘slackers’? Yes, but not as much as other Texas cities

The Pew Research Center found last year that the current generation of 18-to-34-year-olds (millennials) are more likely to be currently living with their parents than to be living with a spouse or significant other, or living alone or with roommates, for the first time in 130 years.
Trump’s Texas border wall hits a snag in Falcon Lake

Trump’s Texas border wall hits a snag in Falcon Lake

A few days before a late winter bass fishing tournament, a steady stream of anglers backed their motorboats into the chilly waters of Falcon Lake and zipped away in hopes of finding a lucky spot among the lake’s many inlets and islands. The largemouth bass are almost always biting in this 154-square mile reservoir, the largest lake on the Rio Grande and in many ways the economic lifeblood of...
Senate budget plan amounts to ‘cooking the books,’ Straus says

Senate budget plan amounts to ‘cooking the books,’ Straus says

The Texas Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday unanimously approved a $106.3 billion two-year budget using an accounting trick that delays a $2.5 billion payment for transportation funding to the following budget cycle. The maneuver prompted harsh criticism from House Speaker Joe Straus and further distanced the two chambers as they struggle to find common ground in a tight budget year. Finance Committee...
Texas Republican holdouts imperil GOP health care bill

Texas Republican holdouts imperil GOP health care bill

Heading into what could be the most critical vote of the Trump presidency, about 10 of the 25 Republican members of Congress from Texas have yet to declare their support for the GOP plan to replace Obamacare with the American Health Care Act. Three of the seven Republicans representing parts of Travis County have yet to give a firm “yes,” though U.S. Reps. Roger Williams, R-Austin, and...
Gang member accused of murder out on bond due to technicality

Gang member accused of murder out on bond due to technicality

A murder suspect who is a high-ranking member of the Crips street gang is out on bond because Travis County prosecutors did not take his case to a grand jury in the required time. On Monday, State district Judge Brad Urrutia released Joseph Sterling, 28, on a personal bond that cost the defendant about $40. The state law mandates a case go before the grand jury within 90 days or else the judge...
Could old medical building become new affordable housing complex?

Could old medical building become new affordable housing complex?

On the northeastern edge of downtown sits an empty four-story building that could help meet Austin’s growing demand for affordable housing. The city recently bought the HealthSouth building at Red River and 12th streets, a facility that previously housed a physical rehabilitation center. Now some City Council members want to investigate the possibility of converting the nearly 88,000-square-foot...
Millennial-minded Moxy hotel would bring 154 rooms to The Drag

Millennial-minded Moxy hotel would bring 154 rooms to The Drag

It appears Marriott is looking to bring a little Moxy to The Drag. The hotel company has submitted preliminary plans to the city of Austin seeking approval to build a 154-room boutique hotel targeting millennials on the rapidly changing stretch of Guadalupe Street adjacent to the University of Texas campus. City documents indicate the hotel would be constructed at 2552 Guadalupe St., taking the place...
Senate approves bill opposed to boycott of Israel

Senate approves bill opposed to boycott of Israel

The Texas Senate on Wednesday approved legislation banning state contracts and investment in companies that boycott Israel. Senate Bill 29, sent to the Texas House on a 25-4 vote, was a response to the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement that seeks to change Israeli policy toward Palestinians. Texas should not do business with companies that participate in the “BDS” movement, which...
Accused robber who wielded pellet gun acquitted by Travis County jury

Accused robber who wielded pellet gun acquitted by Travis County jury

A Travis County jury returned a not guilty verdict in Dustin Clark’s aggravated robbery trial. Although Clark’s attorney admitted in Tuesday’s closing arguments that his client robbed a Spicewood Quick N Save in December 2015, Clark was ultimately acquitted because the weapons he and two co-defendants used to threaten the cashier were two pellet guns incapable of killing. The...
Texas Senate gives initial OK to ban on abortion insurance

Texas Senate gives initial OK to ban on abortion insurance

The Texas Senate, voting 19-10, gave initial approval Wednesday to a bill that would ban insurance coverage for abortions in the state. Senate Bill 20 by Sen. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, would prohibit abortion coverage in private plans, under the Affordable Care Act and in state-issued insurance plans, except for medical emergencies. Those interested in abortion coverage would have to purchase supplemental...
UPDATE: State complaint led to animal seizure at Florence shelter

UPDATE: State complaint led to animal seizure at Florence shelter

3:00 p.m. update: The seizure of 89 cats and one dog from an animal shelter in Florence was prompted by a complaint from the Texas Department of State Health Services, according to a news release from the Williamson County sheriff’s office. It said the complaint led to an animal cruelty investigation by the county’s animal control unit, and that the animals were seized at 10:40 a.m. Wednesday...
AFFIDAVIT: Mom says she choked her 6-year-old son for acting out, police say

AFFIDAVIT: Mom says she choked her 6-year-old son for acting out, police say

A 36-year-old Austin mother has been accused by police of choking her 6-year-old son in his bed Sunday evening. Sara Inez Gonzales, 36, was booked into the Travis County Jail on Sunday night on a charge of injury to a child, according to jail records. An arrest affidavit said the child’s grandmother called police around 8:18 p.m. after she found the Gonzales straddling her son and choking...
THE LATEST: Environmentalists make case against Texas 45 Southwest

THE LATEST: Environmentalists make case against Texas 45 Southwest

Opponents of Texas 45 Southwest returned to federal court Wednesday morning, arguing that transportation officials should be sent back to the drawing board and required to do a more comprehensive environmental review of the project and two others on South MoPac Boulevard. The 3.6 mile stretch of Texas 45 Southwest, a toll road now under construction, would link MoPac’s southern terminus to FM...
UPDATE: Four hospitalized after rollover crash in Northeast Austin

UPDATE: Four hospitalized after rollover crash in Northeast Austin

Four people were hospitalized on Wednesday morning after a crash in Northeast Austin. Austin-Travis County Emergency Medical Service medics were called out to the crash at 10:44 a.m. in the eastbound service road of U.S. 290 at Parmer Lane after receiving reports that as many as four people had been injured, two of whom may have been pinned inside their vehicle. Crews arrived shortly after and found...

Community news: Stories about Austin’s historic squares sought

TRAVIS COUNTY DOWNTOWN AUSTIN Stories about city squares sought The Downtown Austin Alliance, in partnership with the Austin Parks and Recreation Department, is looking for people to share their stories, memories, photos and experiences of the city’s historic downtown city squares: Republic, Brush and Wooldridge. Community meetings will be held to collect stories that demonstrate the diverse...
NEW TODAY: Man accused of taking nude photos of ex-girlfriend without permission, police say

NEW TODAY: Man accused of taking nude photos of ex-girlfriend without permission, police say

A man accused of texting an ex-girlfriend nude photos of her that he snapped without permission faces a charge of invasive visual recording. The woman called police on Valentine's Day to file a report against Gary Saucedo Guzman, 53, who she said took the photos while she was sleeping, according to an arrest warrant affidavit. The affidavit said the woman told investigators Guzman spent the night...
Speaker Joe Straus says Senate ‘cooking the books’ in ‘Enron’ budget

Speaker Joe Straus says Senate ‘cooking the books’ in ‘Enron’ budget

The Texas Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday unanimously approved a $106.3 billion two-year budget that relies on an accounting trick that delays a $2.5 billion payment for transportation funding to the following budget cycle. The maneuver prompted harsh criticism from House Speaker Joe Straus and further distanced the two chambers as they struggle to find common ground in a tight budget year....
How Austin mom Jinny Suh is taking on anti-vaxxers, President Trump and RFK Jr. in defense of inoculation.

How Austin mom Jinny Suh is taking on anti-vaxxers, President Trump and RFK Jr. in defense of inoculation.

  Good day Austin: Jinny Suh is a South Austin mother with a baby and a four-and-half-year-old, a lawyer who received a bachelor’s and master’s in biology and the founder and leader of Immunize Texas, the grassroots organizing arm of the Immunization Partnership, which is having a lobby day the Capitol today. Here is her story. Suh, who grew up in northern California, and her husband...
When it comes to this list of heavyweights, San Antonio is way ahead of Austin

When it comes to this list of heavyweights, San Antonio is way ahead of Austin

The San Antonio Riverwalk is a great place for a stroll — or to sit down and have some drinks.
Love books? Austin ranked best Texas city for readers

Love books? Austin ranked best Texas city for readers

If you’re a book lover and you live in Austin, you’re in the right place, according a Texas book publication.
Fryer fire closes Sonic restaurant at Stassney Lane in Southeast Austin

Fryer fire closes Sonic restaurant at Stassney Lane in Southeast Austin

A Sonic Drive-In restaurant on Stassney Lane in Southeast Austin will be closed for cleanup Wednesday after a fryer fire damaged the building, Austin fire officials said. Firefighters around 5:45 a.m. Wednesday extinguished the fire, which was contained to the fryer at the restaurant at 5105 E. Stassney Lane, near the intersection with Nuckols Crossing Road.  No injuries were reported, Austin...

Kyle police drop probe of teacher, aide accused of assaulting student

Update: The Kyle Police Department in October 2014 dropped its investigation of two people who worked at Fuentes Elementary School and were accused a month earlier of assaulting a special-education student, according to a police document. The two employees were Kelly Cedillo and Shannon Wages. The document says Kyle police detectives were “unable to prove an offense occurred.” The Texas...
Patchy fog could meddle with morning commute in Austin; sunshine likely in afternoon

Patchy fog could meddle with morning commute in Austin; sunshine likely in afternoon

Wednesday forecast for Austin: Patchy fog is likely through the morning commute in Austin on Wednesday ahead of another warm, sunny afternoon. According to the National Weather Service, fog in the area should break up around 9 a.m., clearing the way for partly sunny skies through the rest of the day. Temperatures were recorded at 68 degrees in the Austin metro area around 6 a.m., and afternoon highs...
NEW DETAILS: Travis County sheriff’s office questions DHS report on immigration detainer requests

NEW DETAILS: Travis County sheriff’s office questions DHS report on immigration detainer requests

The Travis County sheriff’s office argued in a press release Tuesday evening that a recent Department of Homeland Security report was misleading. The DHS report, released Monday, concluded that the Travis County sheriff’s office refused more jail detention requests from federal immigration authorities from Jan. 28 to Feb. 3 than any other law enforcement agency that the report...
Travis County considering $30,000 contract with ‘go away’ benefit

Travis County considering $30,000 contract with ‘go away’ benefit

As an appointed official, Cyd Grimes didn’t accrue paid leave like the typical Travis County employee. But after 24 years of service during which she estimates she saved taxpayers millions of dollars, the recently retired purchasing agent feels the county owes her a payout for the vacation time and sick leave she never took. Nearly $30,000 of it, to be exact. The county attorney’s office...
Cop turns table on IRS scammer

Cop turns table on IRS scammer

With less than a month left in tax season, Americans may be getting those phone calls that claim that the IRS will have a an arrest warrant issued. It’s all a scam, and the callers tried to scam the wrong person this time. Kyle Roder received a call from the “IRS” that threatened that he’d be arrested if he didn’t call back ASAP, The Huffington Post reported. >...
2-year-old with rare disease becomes honorary police officer in NJ

2-year-old with rare disease becomes honorary police officer in NJ

A 2-year-old with a rare genetic disease became the youngest police officer in New Jersey, WABC reported. >> Read more trending news Trent Powers is battling Duchenne muscular dystrophy, and on Wednesday he became an honorary member of the Spotswood Police Department.  Powers was all smiles as he received his own uniform and a small Chevy Tahoe police car. Powers was presented...
Scientists develop blood test to detect, find cancer

Scientists develop blood test to detect, find cancer

Scientists at the University of California may have just made the next breakthrough in the battle against cancer. A test called CancerLocator works by looking for DNA released from tumors and circulates in the blood, The Telegraph reported. >> Read more trending news And the test doesn’t just find cancer, it can also tell doctors where the cancer is located. That’s because tumors...
Assisted living facility worker in Florida arrested for filming couple having sex

Assisted living facility worker in Florida arrested for filming couple having sex

A Florida woman who worked at an assisted living facility secretly recorded two residents having sex last year and posted the video on a social media website because she found it amusing, the Tampa Bay Times reported. Alexis Gloria Rebecca Williams, 20, of St. Petersburg, was charged with one count of video voyeurism and one count of video voyeurism dissemination, the Pinellas County Sheriff&rsquo...
7 things to know now: Health care vote; new iPad; ‘Star Wars’ news

7 things to know now: Health care vote; new iPad; ‘Star Wars’ news

Here's a roundup of news trending across the nation and world today. 1. Health care vote: President Donald Trump decided the time for talking was over, according to the White House, when he let GOP leaders in the House know late Thursday that he wanted an up or down vote on a new health care package to take place on Friday. After a day of wrangling for votes, Trump said he was done working deals with...
Florida mom fends off intruder with shotgun

Florida mom fends off intruder with shotgun

Mothers are known for being over-protective when it comes to their children. However, did this Florida mom go too far when she used a shotgun to fend off an intruder earlier this month? >> Read more trending news   A security camera captured a man trying to break into a Miami home occupied by a woman and her children, according to Morning Express with Robin Meade.  “They...
Trump chicken balloons coming to America

Trump chicken balloons coming to America

A huge Donald Trump chicken is expected to fly high at the Tax March in San Francisco.  >> Read more trending news  The organizers of the march bought a 13-foot balloon, which taunts Donald Trump’s golden locks and hand gestures, from Chinese e-commerce site Aliababa, according to SF Gate. March organizers weren’t satisfied and scrambled to get money for an even...
Former Egyptian president Mubarak set free

Former Egyptian president Mubarak set free

Former Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak has been freed from his detention, the BBC reported. >> Read more trending news Mubarak,88, left a military hospital in southern Cairo and went to his home in the northern suburb of Heliopolis, his lawyer said. Mubarak was released after Egypt's top appeals court earlier this month cleared him over the deaths of protesters in the 2011 uprising. Mubarak...
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