TribWeek: Top Texas News for the Week of 12/19/11

As Gov. Rick Perry pushes his employment initiatives on the presidential campaign trail, he often touts the jobs created by the Texas Enterprise Fund. But Perry’s opponents say the fund’s contributions to the Texas economy have been far overstated.

While some immigration advocates are hailing the Obama administration's condemnation of alleged civil rights abuses by Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio, others question the timing.

Will the lights stay on in 2012? Even Texas grid operators, who are coming off a tumultuous year, cannot say for certain. A lot will depend on the weather — namely, whether the state suffers through another piping-hot summer.

When Michael Morton is officially cleared of wrongful murder charges on Monday, his lawyers will try to do something unprecedented: They will ask for a special inquiry into former prosecutor Ken Anderson's role in his conviction.

Gov. Rick Perry wrapped up the first leg of his bus tour through Iowa on Thursday, and now he's heading back to Austin for Christmas.

Using information provided by the Texas Ethics Commission, we have built a new interface for accessing campaign contributions and expenditures dating back to 2000 — our most comprehensive campaign finance database yet.

The candidates have filed (for now) and the elections start in April (probably). Whenever the voting finally happens, it will help to have a scorecard. We've put together election brackets so that you can quickly size up the competition and learn the results.

An old Republican rival of Gov. Rick Perry is calling on state and federal officials to investigate whether he broke the law when he began collecting his lucrative pension without actually leaving his job.

By the end of the year, there will likely be four school finance lawsuits pending against the state. We’ve come up with a guide to keeping them all straight.

In Texas, where mental health professionals are already hard to come by, another issue has exacerbated the situation in the state's growing minority populations: finding treatment providers who understand the communities' cultural and language differences.



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