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The Midday Brief: Top Texas Headlines for Feb. 21, 2011

Your afternoon reading: Advanced Placement incentives, the budget shortfall and 1987, and one House member's immigration solution

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Your afternoon reading:

  • "Experts say the current shortfall of $15 billion to $27 billion is more comparable to — or even worse than — the 1987 crisis precipitated when the energy and commercial real-estate markets collapsed. It resulted in that era's no-new-taxes GOP governor, Bill Clements, signing into law the state's biggest-ever tax increase at $5.7 billion." — This shortfall is similar to crisis in '87, Houston Chronicle
  • "Cutting Texas' landmark Advanced Placement incentive program might seem to some like an easy way to save $14.2 million a year. But higher education experts argue that the money that would be saved by cutting the program, which covers a portion of student exam fees and pays for teacher training, is a drop in the bucket compared with higher education money saved when students graduate from high school with college credits already under their belts." — Student testing incentives on the chopping bloc, Austin American-Statesman
  • "Rep. Lois Kolkhorst, R-Brenham, apparently wants to help the federal government do their duty. She introduced a bill that would allow sheriffs who are holding (and holding and holding) nonviolent illegal immigrants in their jails to go ahead and hand-deliver them to federal officials. Yes, they could be dropped off at the offices of any U.S. representative and senator." — State rep on immigrants: Special delivery to fed offices, Trail Blazers

New in The Texas Tribune:

  • "Cutting $10 billion public education funding could push more than two-dozen school districts from the group that receives state financing into the group that writes checks to the state to even things out between richer and poorer districts." — "Rube Goldberg" School Finance System Faces New Test
  • "Texas isn't about to re-regulate its power industry. But the power failures earlier this month have called into question one of Texas' most basic tenets: that we do everything, including deregulation, better than anyone else." — Blackouts Revive Debate Over Electric Deregulation
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