economy

Which Texas cities take the lead in ending homelessness?

The U.S. Senate has passed a major aid bill for Ukraine and Israel – but its fate in the House is uncertain.

Despite its dominance in politics statewide, the Republican Party in Texas ain’t what it used to be. What’s changed, why, and what it means for the future.

As the numbers of people experiencing homelessness rise nationwide, some cities are making progress. A new report examines what’s working and what lessons can be learned.

In Texas oil country, two longtime rivals are expected to merge this year in a $26 billion deal. What it adds up to.

Plus, a conversation with celebrated author and poet Sandra Cisneros.

A report from Eagle Pass after a weekend of immigration protest

A bipartisan bill to address border security: one that mandates that President Biden shut down the border. David Martin Davies with more on the Senate bill on immigration and border security and an update on border protests over the weekend.

What appears to be the first human brain chip implant by Elon Musk’s Neuralink is raising concerns about safety, consent, and transparency. We’ll hear from a medical ethicist who’s been studying the implications.

In El Paso, a new exhibit that highlights a surprising relationship between humans and ducks.

And the thousandth PolitiFact check of Donald Trump – what the numbers say.

Rare ‘Cattle Tyrant’ spotting dominates birders’ attention

Traumatic injuries are the leading cause of death in the U.S. for people under 45, and the odds of survival may depend on what part of the state you’re in. Lauren Caruba of the Dallas Morning News joins us to talk about a new investigation.

The Texas Standard’s Sean Saldaña has the latest on what some may see as contradictory signals in new employment numbers in Texas.
Are Texas roads considerably less congested? Why a new state-mandated report may raise some eyebrows.

And why the visit of a Cattle Tyrant to Corpus Christi drew excited fans from far and wide. The Standard’s Raul Alonzo explains.

Is this the end of efforts to keep Fairfield Lake State Park public?

For the first time in modern memory, the Texas House is set to take up a school voucher-like plan.

How do you put a price tag on a state park? We’ll hear more about the challenges facing Texas Parks and Wildlife as it tries to reclaim parkland purchased by developers.

In a dramatic U-turn this week, China’s president appears to be trying to warm up to the U.S. Some clues as to why might be found in a new report from the Dallas Federal Reserve.

Also: What some forecasters are calling a “super El Niño” is coming soon to Texas.

Lawmakers discuss school savings accounts

After unprecedented attacks over the weekend, Israel is at war with Hamas. Jeremi Suri of UT’s LBJ school with more on what to expect as fighting intensifies.

A big day at the state capitol as lawmakers are called back into session by the governor. On the table: school savings accounts, what critics call vouchers, that some fear will upend public school funding.

Texas mega ranches hitting the market at what appears to be a quickening pace.

Plus the would be restaurant rivals who formed what they call the Taco Mafia.

We’re tracking Texas cryptids all October

From guns to religion, free speech and more, a very loaded docket awaits the Supreme Court as it begins a new term.

Why a race for Houston’s top financial officer is getting so much attention.

A plan to consolidate schools in San Antonio could leave behind almost 20 empty buildings – and the district needs to figure out what to do with them.

As the dollar strengthens, other currencies weaken. But there’s a notable outlier: We’ll look at why the Mexican peso seems to be doing so well.

Also, as the spookiest month of the year gets started, a look at why Texas is so full of mysterious creatures unconfirmed by science.

San Antonio ISD could close as many as 17 schools

San Antonio ISD could close nearly one-fifth of its schools as it deals with aging buildings and falling enrollment. But it’s not just San Antonio – this reflects a larger challenge facing many school districts across Texas.

A mystery at the Tarrant County Appraisal District has led to an office shake-up that may leave some taxpayers holding the bag.

What’s happening to the Texas economy? The Standard’s Sean Saldana’s been getting some clues from the Dallas Fed’s new Beige Book entry.

And: What’s to become of Benito, a giraffe in a Juárez park at the center of a controversy?

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.

Tours from Beyoncé and Taylor Swift are big for local economies

COVID cases in Texas rise by almost 25% in a week as concerns mount over a new variant. Although the vast majority of Texans have given up masks and social distancing, health officials say they’re still important tools as cases pick up and students return to the classroom. Dr. Catherine Troisi of UTHealth Houston joins us with an update.

Young plaintiffs in Montana score a high-profile victory in a fight to force their home state to take climate change more seriously. Could a similar approach work in Texas?

And: Tours from Beyoncé and Taylor Swift are generating huge spending on everything from concert tickets and merch to spillover effects on travel, clothing and more.

Heat and the next Great Migration

An exemption to Texas’ abortion ban is on hold after an appeal by the state attorney general. What comes next?

Just how powerful are social media algorithms? Texas researchers test whether changes could help defuse political polarization.

Texas Public Radio’s David Martin Davies got in a kayak to take an up-close look at Gov. Greg Abbott’s floating wall in the Rio Grande.

And a warning that climate change could reverse demographic trends showing major population growth in places like Texas: Could there be a great migration northward?

Remembering Paul Reubens and Pee-wee’s ties to Texas

Triple-digit temperatures are having a cooling effect on the the Texas economy, with a projected $9 billion in losses this summer due to the heat alone, according to economist Ray Perryman.

Gasoline prices at the pump rise an average 30 cents in one month. What’s behind those increases?

A tribute to Paul Reubens, the Pee-wee Herman actor who forgot everything … but remembered the Alamo and won his way into the hearts of many a San Antonian.

And we’ve got the smokers, we’ve got the pit masters – so why is Texas pulled pork so wrong? Texas Monthly’s barbecue editor Daniel Vaughn weighs in.

KUT Morning Newscast for July 25, 2023

Central Texas top stories for July 25, 2023. Texas congressman urges better OSHA protections for heat. Austin Community College finds new Chancellor. Fire conditions spread.

State policies cause Texas to slip from top business rankings

A lawsuit challenging Texas’ new prohibition on hormone blockers and other treatments for transgender youth.

Lawmakers failed to pass new rules on locating concrete batch plants – what do those pushing for change plan to do next?

A report shows modest economic growth in Texas, we’ll hear more. Plus – Texas slips in the rankings of business-friendly states. Why and what are the implications?

A hit, or a swing and a miss? A certain sport using bats and balls arrives in Texas for summer, but are Texans ready for professional cricket?

Plus the week in Texas politics with the Texas Tribune.

KUT Morning Newscast for July 3, 2023

Central Texas top stories for July 3, 2023. Wrap up of Austin’s nurses’ strike. Record breaking travel numbers for July 4th. New connections to Panama at Austin’s airport.

What did the Legislature accomplish for rural Texans?

The U.S. House approved a measure lifting the debt ceiling, but we’re not out of the woods quite yet.

As state lawmakers continue to tangle with the governor’s priorities, what actually was accomplished in the regular legislative session? A roundtable of Texas reporters looks at changes for rural Texans.

A federal district judge will hear arguments today on the future of DACA in a case brought by the attorney general of
Texas, who’s now been impeached and suspended. How much does that change things, if at all?

Also, they’re not just a time suck but a money pit, too: What can be done to cut the cost of meetings?

Uvalde mariachi team’s win was a bright spot in a year of darkness

Why couldn’t Republicans who control the Legislature see eye to eye?

There’s a cost to Texas taxpayers that comes with the Legislature going into overtime. Professor Mark Jones of Rice University helps us crunch the numbers.

The Texas Education Agency is expected to take over the Houston Independent School District on Thursday. We’ll take a look at what state-appointed managers face once they start getting settled in.

How did a fight over state incentives to attract business in Texas turn out – and did business boosters get what they wanted?

Plus, the young mariachi band that gave Uvalde something to cheer for.

Cloud seeding has never been proven, but drought-stricken Mexico is ready to try

At first, media coverage of the Cleveland, Texas, shooting focused on the manhunt for the gunman. But what about the victims lost?

As the clock ticks away for the 88th legislative session, there are some bills with bipartisan support that advocates say could have a positive effect on the state’s LGBTQ residents.

Housing affordability in Texas: is the state losing a certain edge? The Texas Standard’s Sean Saldana explains.

The cost of living is hitting Texans hard – how a group in San Antonio is fighting back with coupons.

Mexico is trying its hand at a controversial technique – cloud seeding – to break its drought.

Plus the week in politics with the Texas Tribune.

What more electric vehicles mean for the Texas electric grid

Momentum is growing among Republicans to use the U.S. military to take on drug cartels in Mexico in the fight against fentanyl. How serious is such talk?

More ripple effects following a ruling by a federal judge in Amarillo that would effectively ban the abortion drug mifepristone.

The Dallas Federal Reserve finds young adults feel increasingly disconnected from work and school – but there may be more to the story.

And with more electric vehicles hitting the road in Texas, how will the need for pluggable power affect the state’s electric grid?

What a banking slowdown in Texas means for the economy

The relationship between U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas and Dallas billionaire Harlan Crow is under scrutiny after a ProPublica investigation reporting that Thomas accepted lavish vacations and more from the GOP donor.

The Texas House has passed a sweeping budget that reveals a lot about support for some key issues including school vouchers, gun-related crimes and more.

And the Texas Standard’s Sean Saldana with what a new survey of bankers tells us about the state of Texas’ economy.

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.