State government

Jacob Villanueva

Is Texas in the Race?

The federal government is giving away $4.35 billion to state education systems through Race to the Top. But is Texas already out?

Full Story 
Todd Wiseman

Broken Border, Part Five: Safer?

In some places, the governor's border security efforts have led to a reduction in crime — in rural counties, for instance, where there aren't many people and there wasn't much crime to begin with. But in large urban counties like El Paso and Webb, it's a different story.

Full Story 

Party Hoppers

"It’d be like someone standing at the Alamo going, ‘I’m not gonna survive this thing,’ and all of a sudden he jumps up and starts speaking Spanish!" says Rep. Mark Homer, D-Paris. Maybe so, but switching parties usually works out.

Full Story 
Elise Hu

Robert's Rules

State schools chief Robert Scott recently failed to get the Legislature to increase the cap on charter schools — then found a legal way to do it anyway, much to the dismay of state Democrats and teachers unions.

Full Story 
chuckhopson.com

2010: Hopson's BFF

Republican Brian Walker, who lost a close race to Democrat Chuck Hopson in 2008, endorsed Hopson's reelection bid next year — now that Hopson has switched to the GOP.

Full Story 

Forensic Science Chairmen Face Off

John Bradley, the Williamson County District Attorney and the newly-appointed chairman of the Texas Forensic Science Commission, spent his morning answering a steady stream of questions from Texas lawmakers. At issue, if and when his panel will re-open the investigation into whether faulty science led to the arson conviction of Cameron Todd Willingham, who was executed by the state in 2004.

Full Story 
Elise Hu

TribBlog: Bradley Makes His Case

Williamson County District Attorney John Bradley expected some verbal jousting today at the Senate Criminal Justice Committee about his plans for the Texas Forensic Science Commission. He was right.

Full Story 

The Brief: November 10, 2009

If Williamson County DA John Bradley is sick of the spotlight, then he got appointed to the wrong commission. Of course, many people would argue that regardless.

Full Story 
Justin Dehn

Broken Border, Part Three: Decriminalize?

Experts from around the U.S. and Mexico are debating the War on Drugs and its affect on violence south of the border. Some of them wonder whether decriminalization is the answer.

Full Story 
Jacob Villanueva

Sanction Season

The state is cracking down on officials who run afoul of election, lobbying and officeholder rules. Just ask Harris County Commissioner Jerry Eversole.

Full Story 

TribBlog: Sunset's Up

House Speaker Joe Straus' picks for the legislative committee that says whether the state should kill or keep state agencies: Reps. Dennis Bonnen, R-Angleton, Rafael Anchia, D-Dallas, and Byron Cook, R-Corsicana. San Antonio attorney Lamont Jefferson, who's with the Haynes and Boone law firm, will serve as the House's public member.

Full Story 
Jacob Villanueva

Texas Reading Exams Fail the National Test

Federal officials say Texas' testing standards in reading are below the “basic” proficiency standards — and that low bar means those passing the TAKS may not be as proficient as advertised.

Full Story