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TribWeek: In Case You Missed It

The best of our best content from May 11-15, 2015.

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A controversial immigration enforcement bill similar to an executive order issued by former Gov. Rick Perry in December is moving forward in the Texas Legislature.

Top state leaders were negotiating intensely — and optimistically — Thursday afternoon on a master settlement on tax cuts, restraints on local property tax increases, border security, prosecutions of state ethics cases and open carry of handguns.

State Rep. Cecil Bell believes the U.S. Supreme Court will ultimately let states decide what to do about gay marriage, and hoped to preclude it in Texas with House Bill 4105. Delays aimed at killing Bell's bill largely shaped Thursday's crucial House schedule.

A months-long effort to reform the problem-plagued school finance system came to an end Thursday as House Public Education Chairman Jimmie Don Aycock withdrew a bill proposing fixes less than an hour into a scheduled debate. 

With the clock winding down on the legislative session, Tesla Motors, Uber and Lyft have little to show for the money they spent on high-profile lobbying. As deadlines loom, the bills they were steering appear to have run out of gas.

The already tortuous path for ethics reform at the Texas Capitol took another sharp turn Wednesday when a powerful House leader criticized the package passed by the Senate and praised by Gov. Greg Abbott two weeks ago.

Though people born in Latin American countries continue to make up the largest group of immigrants to Texas, their state numbers are decreasing while the rate of migration by Asian immigrants into Texas is rising sharply.

The reintroduction of deep fat fryers and soda machines into public schools may top the agenda of Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller. But some teachers and parents don't share his appetite for sugary drinks and french fries.

Despite the support of nearly every Republican in the U.S. Senate, including both from Texas, economic legislation seen as key to President Obama's legacy was blocked on the U.S. Senate floor Tuesday.

A panel of former chancellors and university presidents defended the University of Texas at Austin president’s role in admissions Thursday, but warned that students’ connections shouldn’t be a factor in whether they are admitted. And even after an attorney general's ruling in his favor, Regent Wallace Hall was told that he can't see confidential student information related to admissions. 

Full video of our conversation with state Rep. Dennis Bonnen, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.

In the Roundup: The end of the week marked the death of scores of bills in the Texas House, including school finance reform legislation. Lawmakers were strategically long-winded when considering bills, leaving little time to take up legislation before a key deadline. 

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