Vol 31, Issue 41 Print Issue

The Week in the Rearview Mirror

Early voting wraps up today with turnout numbers not keeping pace with population growth over the past four years. That could mean trouble for Democratic statewide candidates hoping to expand the electorate in their efforts to break a 20-year losing streak.

The Texas Ethics Commission adopted a rule on Wednesday that would require politically active nonprofits to disclose the identity of their donors. The action, which had been anticipated for several months, is likely to spur litigation and further legislation next year.

The San Antonio City Council voted on Thursday to move ahead on a controversial $3.4 billion water pipeline project that would increase the city's water supply by up to 16 billion gallons annually. Critics claimed the project wasn't necessary and could clash with other water management methods, such as conservation.

Attempting to defuse further controversy, Houston Mayor Annise Parker on Wednesday withdrew subpoenas against five pastors who were working to repeal the city's equal rights ordinance. Drawing ire was a request in the original subpoena for the pastors' sermons.

Gov. Rick Perry continued his embrace of the national stage in a Monday speech at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library, saying the nation wanted a "clean break" from President Barack Obama.

Texas regulators on Tuesday tightened rules for wells that dispose of oilfield waste, a response to the spate of earthquakes in North Texas.

Political People and their Moves

Gov. Rick Perry named five members — Arthur “Art” Eisenberg of North Richland Hills, Sheree Hughes-Stamm of Spring, Harvey Kessler of Southlake, Robert "Bobby" Lerma of Brownsville and Ashraf Mozayani of Houston — to the Texas Forensic Science Commission. They will serve terms to expire Sept. 1, 2016, with the exception of Lerma whose term expires Sept. 1, 2015.

Donna King of Leander was appointed judge of the 26th Judicial District Court in Williamson County by Perry for a term to expire at the 2016 general election.

Aimee Bertrand leaves the post of Director of Community Engagement and Media for the Houston Apartment Association to join the Harris County Office of Legislative Relations as Legislative Coordinator.

Former Secretary of Defense and CIA Director Robert Gates endorsed GOP challenger Will Hurd in the CD-23 contest. It is Gates' first and only endorsement of the election cycle.

The Alliance of Independent Pharmacists of Texas endorsed Republican Sid Miller for agriculture commissioner and state Rep. J.D. Sheffield, R-Gatesville, for re-election.

Deaths: Starke Taylor, 92, cotton merchant and past president of the Texas Cotton Association who was elected Dallas mayor in 1983 in his first appearance on a political ballot. He served two terms.