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New in TribTalk: Simpson on the Border; McLeod on Black Educators

Think It's Hot in Austin Now? Get Used To 110

The Onion Creek substation was badly flooded with heavy storms last fall. It is one of the many "critical infrastructure assets" whose vulnerability to climate change will be studied by Austin.
The Onion Creek substation was badly flooded with heavy storms last fall. It is one of the many "critical infrastructure assets" whose vulnerability to climate change will be studied by Austin.

While an aversion to climate science persists in much of conservative, Republican-led Texas, Austin is looking to prepare for what scientists say are the inevitable consequences of climate change.

The Brief: July 28, 2014

State Sen. Wendy Davis, the Democratic nominee for governor, addressed supporters on Saturday, July 13, 2014, in East Austin as she concluded her "Texans Deserve to Know" tour.
State Sen. Wendy Davis, the Democratic nominee for governor, addressed supporters on Saturday, July 13, 2014, in East Austin as she concluded her "Texans Deserve to Know" tour.

The Fort Worth Star-Telegram's Bob Ray Sanders is pushing back against one major tenet of the conventional wisdom surrounding the race for governor: Wendy Davis needs to maintain a healthy separation between her and President Obama.

Migrant Children Put Foster Care Rules in Spotlight

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On June 24, 2014, volunteers gather at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in McAllen, where the Rio Grande Valley Catholic Charities have a makeshift shelter to help handle the surge of immigrants who have crossed into the U.S. in recent weeks.
On June 24, 2014, volunteers gather at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in McAllen, where the Rio Grande Valley Catholic Charities have a makeshift shelter to help handle the surge of immigrants who have crossed into the U.S. in recent weeks.

The influx of children into the state from Central America has many Texans wondering how they can help. Foster care is one option, but advocates say potential foster parents should first understand the differences between the state and federal systems.

Housing Crunch Hurts Foster Care Oversight

Child Protective Services caseworker Juan Carlos Pacheco rents a spare bedroom in his childhood friend's home in Odessa. He has also lived in a trailer with five other people and a one-bedroom apartment with six other people. His own family lives in El Paso.
Child Protective Services caseworker Juan Carlos Pacheco rents a spare bedroom in his childhood friend's home in Odessa. He has also lived in a trailer with five other people and a one-bedroom apartment with six other people. His own family lives in El Paso.

The oil boom has brought jobs and prosperity to Midland and Odessa, but it has also driven up housing prices, making it difficult for the Department of Family and Protective Services to hire caseworkers.

 

The Brief: July 25, 2014

Adjutant General John Nichols of the Texas National Guard explains the Guard's role in helping secure the border as Gov. Rick Perry, l, and DPS Director Steve McCraw listen July 21, 2014.
Adjutant General John Nichols of the Texas National Guard explains the Guard's role in helping secure the border as Gov. Rick Perry, l, and DPS Director Steve McCraw listen July 21, 2014.

Can those National Guard troops being sent to the border arrest people? The latest word is they can. And the reason why is that Rick Perry sent them, and not the federal government.

Lawmakers Hear Tales of Foster Care Woes

State lawmakers have already met several times this year to discuss rampant and persistent problems in the state's foster care system. On Thursday, they heard from former foster youths to find out what needs to be changed.

UT System Expected to Name New Chancellor on Tuesday

The Board of Regents meeting for The University of Texas System on Feb. 14, 2013 at Ashbell Smith Hall.
The Board of Regents meeting for The University of Texas System on Feb. 14, 2013 at Ashbell Smith Hall.

The University of Texas System Board of Regents has scheduled a meeting for Tuesday, when they are expected to name the sole finalist to be the system's next chancellor. Sources with knowledge of the search told the Tribune that Admiral William H. McRaven is likely to be chosen.

Denton Fracking Ban Could Spur Legal Clash

A gas well last fracked in March sits 385 feet from Debbie Ingram's home in Argyle, Texas on July 22, 2014.
A gas well last fracked in March sits 385 feet from Debbie Ingram's home in Argyle, Texas on July 22, 2014.

A North Texas town's effort to ban hydraulic fracturing may prompt an unprecedented showdown between two powerful rights: a city's authority to shape development and mineral owners' right to tap their resources.