Tribpedia: The Brief

We’re merged the convenience of the email blast and the need-to-know nature of the Brief into a single daily missive, delivered from newsletters editor John Reynolds’ fingertips directly to your inbox first thing every morning.

The Brief will still show up on our website — once a day, early in the morning. But if you’re the type who reaches for your ...

State Rep. Dawnna Dukes, D-Austin, speaks with media following the presentation of a $15,000 scholarship donation to Huston-Tillotson University at the African American Heritage Festival on the University campus in Austin, TX on Feb. 27, 2016.
State Rep. Dawnna Dukes, D-Austin, speaks with media following the presentation of a $15,000 scholarship donation to Huston-Tillotson University at the African American Heritage Festival on the University campus in Austin, TX on Feb. 27, 2016.

The Brief: Dawnna Dukes' case heads to grand jury

Travis County prosecutors will present evidence today to a grand jury and seek an indictment against State Rep. Dawnna Dukes. Here's what you need to know. 

Rep. Garnet Coleman D-Houston questions Texas DPS Director Steve McCraw during a September 20, 2016 House County Affairs committee hearing
Rep. Garnet Coleman D-Houston questions Texas DPS Director Steve McCraw during a September 20, 2016 House County Affairs committee hearing

The Brief: Who will pay for criminal justice reform in Texas?

A big question remains for lawmakers as they start the session: If the state is going to reform how county jails address mental health, who is going to pay for those changes in a tight budget year? 

Tourists wander through the state Capitol rotunda in Austin on Jan. 9, 2017, the eve of the 85th Texas Legislative Session.
Tourists wander through the state Capitol rotunda in Austin on Jan. 9, 2017, the eve of the 85th Texas Legislative Session.

The Brief: Legislature faces tight budget to start 2017 session

As lawmakers meet in Austin today for the start of the 85th Legislative Session, The Texas Tribune will be there with the biggest state capital bureau in the country to give you everything you need to know during the next 140 days.

Protesters of Senate Bill 6, which would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings and universities based on “biological sex,” in the Texas Capitol on Jan. 5, 2017.
Protesters of Senate Bill 6, which would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings and universities based on “biological sex,” in the Texas Capitol on Jan. 5, 2017.

The Brief: Rhetoric already heating up in "bathroom bill" fight

While announcing Senate Bill 6 — the so-called "bathroom bill" — on Thursday, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick admitted he was in for a "tough fight." The final weekend before the Legislature convenes for its 2017 regular session has already seen the first skirmishes.

State Sen. Lois Kolkhorst and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick unveil the text of Senate Bill 6, which would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings and universities based on “biological sex,” on Jan. 5, 2017.
State Sen. Lois Kolkhorst and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick unveil the text of Senate Bill 6, which would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings and universities based on “biological sex,” on Jan. 5, 2017.

The Brief: Transgender bathroom fight heads to Legislature

After months of sparring over the rights of transgender Texans, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Sen. Lois Kolkhorst on Thursday announced a bill that would require transgender people to use bathrooms in public schools, government buildings and public universities based on “biological sex.”

Brackish water flows from an unplugged abandoned well outside of Imperial in Pecos County — one of several in the area likely drilled for oil but later tapped for water.
Brackish water flows from an unplugged abandoned well outside of Imperial in Pecos County — one of several in the area likely drilled for oil but later tapped for water.

The Brief: Growth in number of abandoned wells fuels concerns

Texas is home to nearly 300,000 active oil and gas wells. When most wells end their service operators will plug them, limiting pollution threats, and move on. But the state is facing a surge of abandoned drilling sites and dwindling funds to clean them up.

An elector casts his vote for President of the United States during the Electoral College meeting at the Texas Capitol on Dec. 19, 2016.
An elector casts his vote for President of the United States during the Electoral College meeting at the Texas Capitol on Dec. 19, 2016.

The Brief: Texas electors make Trump's victory official

Thirty-six of Texas' 38 electors voted for Donald Trump at a Monday afternoon meeting at the Capitol, enough to put the real estate mogul over the 270-vote tipping point to be confirmed as the next president of the United States.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick assures the audience at the Freedom, Faith and Fellowship event May 12, 2016 that he will uphold conservative principles as leader of the Texas Senate in 2017.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick assures the audience at the Freedom, Faith and Fellowship event May 12, 2016 that he will uphold conservative principles as leader of the Texas Senate in 2017.

The Brief: Senator-elect says Patrick’s bathroom bill will focus on schools

Citing conversations with Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, state Senator-elect Dawn Buckingham said that Patrick’s bill will not affect businesses and sporting venues.