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The Midday Brief: Top Texas Headlines for March 24, 2011

Your afternoon reading: committee votes to reduce health care cuts; study says budget could force hundreds of thousands of layoffs; judge's decision could impact voter ID

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Your afternoon reading:

  • "Hundreds of thousands of Texas jobs would be lost in the next two years under projected revenue and spending levels in a budget proposal approved by a House committee, according to a new analysis." — LBB analysis: Hundreds of thousands of jobs lost, Texas Politics
  • "Though Republican lawmakers remain unswayed by Texas Democrats’ arguments that disenfranchising minority voters should outweigh unsubstantiated fears of polling place voter impersonation — the U.S. Department of Justice, and possibly the courts, will consider those contentions in light of the Voting Rights Act (VRA) before allowing a voter photo identification law to take effect. That is, unless a U.S. District Court judge in Washington, D.C., issues an opinion — which is expected to come soon." — Impending decision by D.C. judge has implications for voter ID in Texas, The Texas Independent
  • "A bill that will protect stray bison in Texas from being shot as trespassers was approved unanimously this morning by the Texas Senate. We know it’s not the 1800s anymore, but this may be as close as it gets this legislative session." — Stray-bison bill gets OK, Postcards

New in The Texas Tribune:

  • "Deliberation about what to cut — and whom to save — ended with a vote to restore $4.5 billion to state health agencies at a Senate Health and Human Services sub-committee hearing this morning. The issue now goes to the full Senate Finance Committee." — Committee Votes to Restore $4.5 Billion for Health Services
  • "In response to widespread criticism of its hiring of Rick O'Donnell, a proponent of controversial higher education reforms, as a special adviser to the University of Texas System Board of Regents, the system's leadership has decided to move him into a new position that will exist for only a matter of months." — UT System Redefines Adviser's Position, Sets End Date
  • The Houston builder and Health Care Compact Alliance vice chair on how an interstate compact could fix health care in Texas — and give the state some semblance of local control over what he calls an unsustainable health care system. — Leo Linbeck III: The TT Interview

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