The Brief: March 13, 2014

UT-Austin President Bill Powers is shown at a hearing of the House Select Committee on Transparency in State Agency Operations on Dec. 18, 2013.
UT-Austin President Bill Powers is shown at a hearing of the House Select Committee on Transparency in State Agency Operations on Dec. 18, 2013.

If the University of Texas System regents tap Gov. Rick Perry's reported favorite, Kyle Janek, as their next chancellor, they won't get pushback from the president of the system's flagship campus.

Texas Student Creates Travel Fund for Abortions

Lenzi Sheible founded Fund Texas Women, a non-profit organization that pays for women's travel costs associated with obtaining an abortion.
Lenzi Sheible founded Fund Texas Women, a non-profit organization that pays for women's travel costs associated with obtaining an abortion.

A 20-year-old UT-Austin student responded to Texas lawmakers' restrictive abortion regulations by founding Fund Texas Women, a nonprofit that pays travel expenses to help Texas women get abortions in and outside of the state.  

The Brief: March 12, 2014

Hispanic Growth Rate by Texas House District
Hispanic Growth Rate by Texas House District

Writing in The Wall Street JournalDante Chinni of the American Communities Project at American University makes the argument that if Texas flips blue, it could do so in a hurry. And not just because of the state's growing Hispanic population.

At South by Southwest, Cities Taking Cues From Perry

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Gov. Rick Perry shows a picture of his new granddaughter to a reporter after voting early in Austin on Oct. 30, 2013.
Gov. Rick Perry shows a picture of his new granddaughter to a reporter after voting early in Austin on Oct. 30, 2013.

Gov. Rick Perry has ruffled feathers across the country by encouraging businesses in other states to relocate to Texas. Now, cities like Chicago and Washington, D.C., are doing the same thing at South by Southwest — right in Perry's backyard.

Patterson, Staples Weigh In on Lt. Gov. Runoff

State Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, speaks to supporters in Houston after primary election results indicate he is heading into a runoff with Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.
State Sen. Dan Patrick, R-Houston, speaks to supporters in Houston after primary election results indicate he is heading into a runoff with Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst.

Jerry Patterson and Todd Staples offered differing takes on Tuesday on how the May runoff between their former lieutenant governor primary opponents — Dan Patrick and incumbent David Dewhurst — might turn out.

Hugh Daigle: The TT Interview

Hugh Daigle, assistant professor in the University of Texas at Austin's Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering, is the lead researcher on a federally funded project investigating methane hydrates.
Hugh Daigle, assistant professor in the University of Texas at Austin's Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering, is the lead researcher on a federally funded project investigating methane hydrates.

The University of Texas at Austin professor of petroleum and geosystems on the idea of tapping methane hydrates — an abundant source of natural gas found in rocks buried beneath the ocean's surface. 

Suit Puts Abortion Protocol Regulation in Spotlight

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An abortion procedure room at the Whole Woman's Health ambulatory surgical center in San Antonio.
An abortion procedure room at the Whole Woman's Health ambulatory surgical center in San Antonio.

Texas' controversial new abortion law requires doctors to follow a federally approved protocol, rather than a more commonly used method, when administering drug-induced abortions. The requirement is under scrutiny in a case challenging the law. 

The Brief: March 11, 2014

During a stop at the Spindletop Museum in Beaumont, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz pitched his energy policy bill, which he calls the American Energy Renaissance Act.
During a stop at the Spindletop Museum in Beaumont, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz pitched his energy policy bill, which he calls the American Energy Renaissance Act.

Ted Cruz's positioning for the next stage of his political career was the common thread in Monday's news coverage of Texas' junior senator.

In Central Texas, Drought Threatens Hydropower

LCRA's Max Starcke Dam, just east of Marble Falls, Texas. It is one of six dams the agency operates.
LCRA's Max Starcke Dam, just east of Marble Falls, Texas. It is one of six dams the agency operates.

The ongoing drought in Central Texas is claiming an innocent bystander: hydroelectricity. As the Lower Colorado River Authority limits water releases downstream, hydroelectricity — a power source that spurred the LCRA's creation almost 80 years ago — has faded further into obscurity.

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