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Lawmaker wants to give Texas psychologists power to write prescriptions
A bill from state Rep. Dustin Burrows would let some Texas psychologists write prescriptions. Supporters say the move would ease a shortage of psychiatrists, currently the only mental health doctors allowed prescription privileges.
Most community colleges won't ban guns in classrooms with minors
Some people hoped that community colleges would ban guns in any classroom that has students under 18. So far, that seems unlikely.
With money tight, will Texas leaders use the state’s savings account?
Facing a shortage of cash, will Texas lawmakers tap the $10 billion piggybank known as the Rainy Day Fund?
Clinton to speak in Houston in April
Hillary Clinton is coming to Texas for one of her first political appearances since her devastating defeat in the presidential election last year.
Texas Rangers investigating sexual assault scandal at Baylor
The Texas Rangers have opened a preliminary investigation at Baylor University amid a lingering sexual assault scandal.
At Planned Parenthood fundraiser, Bush daughter emphasizes group's importance under Trump
Barbara Pierce Bush, the daughter of former President George W. Bush, insisted that the work Planned Parenthood is doing is especially important after a changing of the guard in Washington.
Businesses line up against Dan Patrick's high-priority insurance bill
Legislation that would make it harder for people to recover damages after an insurance claim has hit a wall of opposition from business interests.
Expect fewer man-made earthquakes in Texas, federal agency says
The odds that a man-made earthquake will hit Texas this year have plummeted, according to new risk projections from the U.S. Geological Survey that are based on the amount of seismic activity that's occurred here in the past few years.
Texas House, Senate unanimously pass measures overhauling child welfare system
After months of calls from advocates to take drastic measures, both chambers unanimously passed bills on Wednesday that would change how the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services cares for vulnerable children.
UT System says it won't proceed with Houston campus
The University of Texas System has decided to scrap its controversial plans to build an educational and research facility in the city of Houston.
Treat same-sex couples the same as others, Texas Supreme Court told
Same-sex couples are entitled to the same treatment as opposite-sex couples, a lawyer for the city of Houston argued before the Texas Supreme Court on Wednesday in a case challenging the city's benefits policy for married same-sex couples.
What you need to know
Rep. Garnet Coleman, D-Houston, will lay out the "Sandra Bland Act" at a noon press conference Thursday. Coleman has said his act would affect how law enforcement and corrections personnel deal with race, poverty, mental health, and accountability.
Sandra Bland, 28, was found dead in her Waller County Jail cell three days after being arrested, following a heated exchange with a police officer. Her death was ruled a suicide. The incident raised questions about mental health in jails and how police deescalate confrontational interactions with people they stop.
- The Texas House County Affairs Committee has already laid the foundation for the legislation. Proposals included calls to increase police training for deescalation and mental health awareness, jail-to-treatment diversion programs and eliminating consent searches during stops.
- For updates today, follow Texas Tribune Reporter Johnathan Silver.
News from home
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What we're reading
Abbott ducks medical marijuana talk with Texas veterans, Longview News-Journal
McAllen cited in legislative open records debate, The Monitor
Pot smokers rejoice: small amounts of marijuana now can lead to class, not jail, San Antonio Express-News
When an unthinkable crime shatters a family, a father is forced to confront the emotional wreckage, The Dallas Morning News
Eckhardt: Travis County is 'planning for volatility' from state, feds, Austin American-Statesman ($)
Mega-rich conservative donors are behind Texas' obsession with amending the Constitution, The Dallas Morning News ($)
City 'pauses' police body camera rollout over battery questions, The Houston Chronicle ($)
How Trump will hurt my border town, The New York Times ($)
For your calendar
Bring your friends and join us for happy hour and conversation about the Texas Legislature at "On the Record" at The W Austin Records Room Tuesday, March 7.
Photo of the day
Fearing deportation, immigrant families are crowding passport lines across Texas as undocumented parents seek U.S. passports for their American children. “We’re here to get our kids passports, in case they kick us out.” Photo by Marjorie Kamys Cotera. See more photos on our Instagram account.
Quote to note
"For ICE agents to detain someone in family court when she is seeking an order of protection against her abuser flies directly in the face of both the letter and the spirit of these laws and punishes the very victims these laws were designed to protect."
— Negar Katirai, law professor at the University of Arizona, about the the ICE arresting and detaining an immigrant victim of domestic violence in El Paso via TribTalk
The Brief is written and compiled by your morning news baristas, Bobby Blanchard and Sanya Mansoor. If you have feedback or questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. We're a nonprofit newsroom, and count on readers like you to help power newsletters like this. Did you like what you read today? Show your appreciation by becoming a member or making a donation today.