Blanco County News
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Wednesday, January 21, 2015 • Posted January 23, 2015
AUSTIN — Gov. Rick Perry addressed a joint session of the House and Senate for the last time on Jan. 15. Before recounting various aspects of the state’s performance during his record-breaking tenure as chief executive, Perry said, “I have come here to reflect on what we have done together, and to say farewell.
, cmclure@blanconews.com
Wednesday, January 21, 2015 • Posted January 23, 2015
A growing state like Texas has many fiscal needs, but District 45 Texas State Rep. Jason Isaac, R-Dripping Springs, would like lawmakers to find a different approach than merely running up debt. “My observation has been that we recognize a problem and we find a solution that includes some sort of debt,” Isaac, who represents Blanco County in the Texas House of Representatives, said.
Wednesday, January 14, 2015 • Posted January 16, 2015
AUSTIN — Signaling his intent to promote transparency and accountability in the 84th Texas Legislature, House Speaker Joe Straus on Jan. 9 announced that in the coming weeks the House would release a budget proposal designed to strengthen oversight of state agency contracts. The Legislature convenes Jan. 13. Agencies or institutions of higher education, under the proposal, would have to meet new reporting requirements prior to awarding a contract or making a purchase worth more than $10 mill ...
Wednesday, January 14, 2015 • Posted January 16, 2015
When District 45 State Rep. Jason Isaac, R-Dripping Springs, sees Blanco State Park, it immediately transforms him back to when he was first elected. “I always think about that river because it holds some of my fondest memories,” Isaac recalled, mulling a morning cup of tea. “In 2011, in the first week after I was sworn in, Blanco residents like Connie Barron were coming to me and saying, ‘hey, Blanco State Park is on this closure list.’” To hear Isaac tell the story, it is as if ...
Wednesday, January 7, 2015 • Posted January 9, 2015
AUSTIN — When the 84th Texas Legislature convenes on Jan. 13 and oaths of office are administered, the political party split will be 21 Republicans to 10 Democrats in the 31-member Senate, and 98 Republicans to 52 Democrats in the 150-member House. The composition and leadership of committees, the flow of legislation through those committees and control of floor debate will be according to the wishes of new Lt.
Wednesday, December 31, 2014 • Posted January 2, 2015
AUSTIN — 2014 has been a banner year for job creation in Texas, according to government assessments. Drawing on figures calculated by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Texas Workforce Commission on Dec. 19 reported employers added 34,800 seasonally adjusted total non-farm jobs in November, for a total of 441,200 jobs added since last year.
Wednesday, December 24, 2014 • Posted December 31, 2014
AUSTIN — State Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston, on Dec. 18 requested that the special prosecution unit of the Travis County District Attorney’s Office “begin a formal and thorough investigation” into transactions between the State of Texas and 21CT, a software intelligence firm with offices here and in Vienna, Virginia. Information about the transactions came to light via an ongoing investigation and stories published by the Austin American-Statesman.
Wednesday, December 17, 2014 • Posted December 31, 2014
AUSTIN — On Dec. 11, a Senate-House joint committee empaneled to adopt a sufficient balance for the state’s “rainy day fund” approved $7 billion as the floor for it. Properly titled the Economic Stabilization Fund, the oil and gas tax-fueled pool of money was created by constitutional amendment in 1988 when oil was selling as low as $10 a barrel, causing state coffers to run thin.
Wednesday, December 10, 2014 • Posted December 31, 2014
AUSTIN — Gov. Rick Perry on Dec. 3 ordered state agencies to check the employment eligibility of current and prospective employees by using E-Verify, an Internet-based system that allows employers to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States. Perry also urged Congress to pass legislation “to provide the resources necessary to secure our southern border.” Perry’s announcements come in the wake of President Obama’s executive action on immigration on Nov ...
Wednesday, December 3, 2014 • Posted December 5, 2014
AUSTIN — Police responded to reports of gunfire in the capital city’s downtown area around 2 a.m. on Nov. 28. An estimated 100 shots were fired in about 10 minutes, hitting buildings including the Mexican consulate, police headquarters and the federal court building. No pedestrians, motorists or building occupants were reported injured in the incident. An armed suspect identified as Larry Steven McQuilliams, 49, of Austin, was shot and killed when he was confronted by an Austin police of ...
Wednesday, November 26, 2014 • Posted November 28, 2014
AUSTIN — President Barack Obama on Nov. 20 announced his decision to take executive action on immigration because Congress has not acted on immigration reform to address the presence and inflow of undocumented residents. “In order to temporarily stay in the U.S. without fear of deportation, these undocumented parents of U.S.
Wednesday, November 19, 2014 • Posted November 21, 2014
Open Enrollment for the coverage under the Affordable Care Act runs from November 15, 2014 through February 15, 2015. In conjunction with the Open Enrollment period, SRA International, aleading provider of IT solutions and professional services to government organizations, has opened an Enrollment Assistance Center in Austin to provide fair, accurate and impartial guidance to individuals as they make their ACA health care selections. The enrollment assistance center is staffed with trained and ...
Wednesday, November 19, 2014 • Posted November 21, 2014
AUSTIN — On Nov. 10, dozens among Texas’ 31 state senators and 150 state representatives, including a few members-elect who won’t be sworn for nearly two months, jumped right in and filed legislative bills in advance of the 84th regular session of the Texas Legislature, which convenes on Tuesday, Jan.
Wednesday, November 12, 2014 • Posted November 14, 2014
AUSTIN — Winners in the Nov. 4 general election on the whole proved that incumbency and/or running as a Republican continue to be assets when Texas voters hit the polls. Democrats Wendy Davis and Leticia Van de Putte lost by wide margins to Republicans Greg Abbott and Dan Patrick for the offices of governor and lieutenant governor, respectively.
Wednesday, November 5, 2014 • Posted November 6, 2014
AUSTIN — The Secretary of State’s Elections Division on Oct. 31 posted early voting turnouts for each of the state’s 15 highest-population counties: Harris, Dallas, Tarrant, Bexar, Travis, Collin, Denton, El Paso, Fort Bend, Hidalgo, Montgomery, Williamson, Galveston, Nueces and Cameron. Of the 8,978,313 registered voters in those counties, 1,715,731 voted early in person or by mail.