Michael Marks

Texas Eclipse Festival attendees with disabilities describe treacherous conditions

Landowners in southeast Texas say they should be able to sue the state over their flooded property, and the U.S. Supreme Court agrees. People in Winnie, Texas, say their land only started to flood after the state rebuilt part of nearby Interstate 10. Now, they can seek compensation for the damages.
Live music seems more expensive, but are musicians getting paid more? Not really. We’ll talk to someone trying to change that.
And the attorney general crusades against a media outlet on behalf of Elon Musk.

Judge overseeing struggling foster system fines the state $100,000 a day

A federal judge says Texas’ foster care system is still broken – and has fined the state $100,00 per day.
The new book “City Limits” examines the effort to rethink urban highways in Texas and traces a history of racism and inequality in three of the state’s’ largest cities. We’ll hear from author and journalist Megan Kimble.
Over the past two decades, developers in Austin have built hundreds of windowless bedrooms. But now some elected officials want them banned.
And: The next generation of mechanics is getting ready to work on the next generation of cars.

Tracking the unprecedented rise in ocean temperatures

Rising temperatures in the forecast this week. Will blackouts come with them? ERCOT, the state’s electric grid operator, says the power might go out this week.
Did a doctor in Houston keep patients from receiving organ transplants? His own hospital is investigating.
And becoming a psychologist is expensive, but Texas is trying to make it cheaper. Could it make mental health care more accessible too?

Tracing the foodways of Black Seminoles

The Supreme Court finally has its own ethics code for justices following a series of scandals – including a Texas billionaire showering gifts on Justice Clarence Thomas. Will this new code of conduct make a difference?

Bison once ruled the Great Plains of North America before being hunted almost to extinction. We’ll hear about how Indigenous people in Texas are supporting their slow rebound.

For descendants of Black Seminoles – a group whose members included former slaves and the Seminole native people – finding foodways through Texas and Mexico takes care and intention.

And: Colleges can no longer use race as a determining factor in admissions, thanks to a Supreme Court decision earlier this year. What’s the upshot? It may surprise you.

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Clemency comes for Black soldiers, a century after their court-martial and execution

Gov. Greg Abbott signed a bill last week that will do away with COVID-19 vaccine mandates. Medically vulnerable folks are speaking up about its effects.

More than 100 years ago, a regiment of Black soldiers was found guilty of crimes like mutiny and murder after a riot in Houston. Now, the Army has cleared their names.

Pope Francis has fired Texas bishop Joseph Strickland, a rare move that some say highlights the growing divide between the Vatican and more conservative factions of the Catholic church.

Feral hogs can be a common sight in North Texas – and the invasive species loves one neighborhood in Arlington in particular.

The Texas discovery of a new, dog-sized dinosaur

After months of stalemate, are the Texas House and Senate finally making progress on school spending?

For millions of years, the bones of a tiny dinosaur lay undisturbed in what are now the shores of Lake Grapevine. We’ll learn about a new species.

El Paso residents are concerned about the growing number of high-speed chases in their city.

And: Are city parks set to decline? A new law could make it tougher for urban areas to procure parkland.

Dungeons & Dragons becomes lifeline for some Texas death row prisoners

When it comes the electric grid, every megawatt counts during peak demand. Industrial batteries have long been seen as a potential game-changer for energy storage. We’ll have details about how they’re coming online in the Lone Star State.

A new vaccine for COVID-19 will be in pharmacies soon. An epidemiologist lays out what you and your family needs to know.

Plus, Dungeons & Dragons on death row, the latest headlines, and a school finance revolt in North Texas.

Texas voting restrictions challenged in court

The trial of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton continues, but not for long. We’ll have details on the latest testimony from the Senate floor.

State senators could start deliberations in Paxton’s impeachment trial as soon as Thursday.

Texas voting laws go on trial in San Antonio. We’ll have details about a case challenging state bans on 24-hour polls and drive-thru voting.

All that, and how to keep your trees fungus-free, the best bean and cheese taco in Texas, and the latest headlines from across the state. It’s coming up today on the Texas Standard.

The state’s appointing conservators to oversee Austin’s school district

The Texas Education Agency wants to appoint a management team to help Austin ISD address “systemic issues” in serving students with disabilities, less than a month after the state announced a takeover of Houston ISD.

Some real fish tales out of San Angelo: We’ll tell you about the lake where anglers are catching tons of monster fish.

We’ll hear about the Country Music Television Awards’ Texas debut, the first time the ceremony has been held outside Nashville.

And what to look for from the state Legislature this week.

Taylor Swift fans in Texas are ready for the Eras Tour

For the first time in three years, Medicaid recipients have had to re-apply for the benefit as a major safety net installed during the pandemic disappears – and millions of Texans may lose health coverage.

Taylor Swift is coming to town, and the excitement is off the charts for the superstar’s Texas swing, starting this weekend in Arlington.

Also take a deep dive into deep fakes.

The ‘forever chemicals’ used in fracking in Texas

Calls for justice in Ciudad Juárez after dozen of migrants die in a fire at a detention facility. New details emerge about what happened just across the border from El Paso on Monday night.

Texas school districts banned hundreds of books last year. Now, the Legislature is looking to create standards that could pull even more books off the shelves.

Research increasingly shows that “forever chemicals” are making their way into our environment – especially in Texas, where they’re used in oil and gas extraction.

Plus an update from commentator W.F. Strong and a climate referendum in El Paso.

Dozens of migrants killed in Juárez fire

A deadly fire burned through a migrant processing facility in Ciudad Juárez, just across the border from El Paso – we’ll hear the latest on the catastrophe that claimed the lives of dozens of people.

Green energy firms are scrambling to snap up federal dollars, but first they need to know what “made in America” really means.

And after the pandemic caused a “she-cession,” the Dallas Fed reports that women entrepreneurs are bouncing back.

What’s in the Texas House budget

The opioid fentanyl has become a scourge for many communities. But where is it coming from? New court filings shed light on the fentanyl supply chain. We’ll tell you where it comes from, and how it’s being smuggled into Texas.

The Texas economy just keeps growing. How does this keep happening, and when will it ever stop?

What if Shakespeare was from the Valley? We kind of have an answer. We’ll hear from the professors who compiled pieces from writer’s who’ve reimagined some of the playwright’s works by setting them along the border.

Plus the latest on the Legislature, the Typewriter Rodeo, and breaking news from across the state.

This West Texas town has been under a boil-water notice for nearly 5 years

State lawmakers heard hours of testimony on a bill that would restrict gender-affirming care for minors. Senate Bill 14 wouldn’t just end access to gender-affirming care for young Texans, it would also revoke the medical license of any doctor who provides it.

How Texas’ first family of oil and gas both regulates and profits from the energy industry.

And in far West Texas, the community of Toyah is dealing with a boil-water notice that seems like it will never end.

There’s a growing push to recycle fracking wastewater in Texas

As temperatures fall, a humanitarian crisis in El Paso deepens as there is a scramble to find shelter for thousands of migrants. Now Texas National Guard troops have been called in to maintain order at the scene. We’ll have the latest on a tenuous situation along the border. Plus, what to do with all the water used in fracking. Recycle it, maybe? We’ll hear why the idea is catching on now. And we’ve got one-on-one interview with a broadway star who’s got south Texas roots. These stories and more today on the Texas Standard:

Demand for mental health care continues to soar

Psychologists are seeing a surge in demand for mental health treatment. How can they meet a growing need? 60% of the nation’s psychologists are too busy to take on new patients. We’ll tell you how they’re trying to meet the post-pandemic demand. Plus there’s a runoff in Austin’s mayoral election. We’ll hear from both candidates on why they should lead the capital city, starting today with Kirk Watson. And we’ll go back in time in south Texas, when Vaqueros roped and ranged through the desert scrub. All that plus a World Cup update and the latest headlines today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: September 16, 2022

A demographic shift decades in the making is finally here. So what’s it mean for the state’s future? New data from the census bureau shows there are now more Hispanic than white residents in Texas. We’ll talk it over with the state’s demographer. Plus the story of a novelty website purchased for one and a half billion dollars. We’ll hear from the author of a new book that charts the rise of Youtube. All that, and of course the week that was in Texas politics today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: September 15, 2022

A major logistics catastrophe avoided. We’ll talk about the railroad worker strike that wasn’t. Railroad worker unions were prepared to go on strike without a contract that had better protections for sick time. We’ll have the latest on the deal that’s kept the trains on the tracks. Plus you’ve heard of blue books, the green book, but what about the beige book? It’s choc full of the economy’s secrets, and our own Sean Saldana’s been looking through a copy. And a major bridge project in Corpus Christi has produced major headaches. We’ll tell you why. That and the biggest headlines of the day, today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: September 14, 2022

Texas’ border security mission has cost more than four billion dollars and counting. Where’s all that money coming from? Operation Lone Star put 10,000 Texas National Guard troops along the state’s border with Mexico. Today we’ll help you make sense of how the state’s paying for it. Also a looming railroad strike could mean pain for people in the checkout line and Democrats at the polls. What’s the Biden administration doing to keep the trains running on time? And do people with low incomes get audited more than others? We’ll see how that claim holds up under scrutiny from Politifact. All that and more today on the Texas Standard:

Texas Standard: September 13, 2022

More details emerge about the horrific conditions faced by youths locked up in Texas’ juvenile justice facilities. Locked in a cell 22 hours per day with no place to use the restroom… That’s how some of the kids in Texas’ youth detention system spend their weekends, thanks to short staffing at the facilities. We’ll learn more about what’s being done to fix it. Plus an offensive by the Ukrainian military found Russian troops on the back foot. What’s it mean for the future of the war? Also on today’s show we’ll learn about two kinds of butterflies, health insurance for Texas musicians and the evolution of the copyright. All of that and more today on the Texas Standard: