Austin
12:54 pm
Tue November 2, 2010

City Announces Finalists For Shelter Chief Job

Town Lake Animal Center has been without a permanent director since May.
Photo by KUT

The City of Austin has announced the list of finalists for the Chief Animal Services Officer position that's been vacant since May.  The finalist chosen for the job will have authority over the city's shelter operations, and will oversee the move from Town Lake Animal Center to the city's new shelter in East Austin. 

The finalists will be in Austin on Monday, November 8th for interviews and a public meet-and-greet.  The city is wants feedback from the public.

From the City of Austin:

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2010 midterm elections
12:31 pm
Tue November 2, 2010

How to Vote and Where to Watch Results Tonight

It wouldn't be an Election Day without a box of donuts in the newsroom.
Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

Polls across Texas close at 7 p.m. today.  Travis County voters can find their polling place here, and check out sample ballots here. If you're outside Travis County, check out your Central Texas county's website below or call them for info on polling locations.  

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politics
10:51 am
Tue November 2, 2010

Texas Comptroller Says 2010 Tax Revenue Is Short $2 Billion

This report from the Texas Comptroller says her revenue projections from last year were short $2 billion.

A new report says revenue projections for the current budget are $2 billion less than Texas Comptroller Susan Combs forecasted last year.

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2010 midterm elections
5:06 pm
Mon November 1, 2010

How to Use an eSlate Voting Machine

The eSlate voting machine depicted in these new "I Voted" stickers is used across Travis County and other parts of Texas.
Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

In case you're new to the eSlate voting machines used in Travis County and other parts of Texas, here's an instructional video courtesy of San Mateo County in California. The only big difference is that we don't have the paper backup that they do. 

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2010 midterm elections
4:38 pm
Mon November 1, 2010

What Do Early Voting Numbers Say About Election Outcome?

Early turnout in Travis County this year looks similar to 2006, according to one Democratic strategist.
Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

As Austinites head to the polls tomorrow, political campaigns around the county are already handicapping the election, based on turnout for early voting.  KUT News spoke with Democratic political consultant Mark Littlefield to learn about his analysis of early voting trends in Travis County.

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crime
4:11 pm
Mon November 1, 2010

APD Probe Murder in Southeast Austin

Austin police are investigating the city's 30th murder of the year, a stabbing on the East Side.
Image courtesy APD

Austin police are dealing with their 30th homicide case of the year. This time last year, there had been 19 recorded murders in Austin.

Someone called police at 10:11 p.m. yesterday to report two men fighting at Pleasant Valley Road and East Riverside Drive. By the time officers arrived, they found a 50-year-old man in the street bleeding from a stab wound. He was rushed to Brackenridge Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police got a description of the alleged attacker from witnesses and arrested him a short while later. Charges are pending.

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education
3:46 pm
Mon November 1, 2010

Google Map of Campus Shootings

An Austin police officer patrols the University of Texas campus after student Colton Tooley shot himself with an AK-47.
Image by Caleb Bryant Miller for KUT News

Our friends at Reporting Texas, an internet news site edited by journalism graduate students at the University of Texas, just put together this interactive Google Map of college shootings across America.  It seems particularly timely, given that it's been a little over a month since 19-year-old Colton Tooley brought his AK-47 to the UT-Austin campus.

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2010 midterm elections
3:10 pm
Mon November 1, 2010

Perhaps the Biggest Election Issue Not Being Talked About

Hard cash will be in short supply next legislative session, if the state comptroller's estimates hold true. But the issue hasn't received much attention from candidates on the campaign trail.
Tracy Olson/Flickr flickr.com/tracy_olson/

Texas is staring down the barrel of a budget shortfall that could reach $25 billion or higher. It's a staggering figure, considering that California was practically brought to its knees over a $20 billion budget deficit. That was in a state that spends twice as much as Texas.

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art
1:20 pm
Mon November 1, 2010

Photographer Says State Stole His Art for Inspection Sticker

Photographer David K. Langford says his photograph (pictured right) was inadvertently stolen by the Texas Department of Public Safety for a vehicle inspection sticker (left).
Images provided by David K. Langford and Texas DPS.

A photographer from Boerne, a town of 10,000 about 90 miles southwest of Austin, is suing the Texas Department of Public Safety over the art used on more than 4 million inspection stickers.  David K.

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entertainment
12:30 pm
Mon November 1, 2010

Halloween Post-Mortem

Thousands of people poured downtown on Saturday and Sunday nights to celebrate Halloween, including this man, who dressed up as Ronald McDonald.
Image courtesy Flickr user efohbe http://www.flickr.com/photos/49031772@N04/

Sixth Street was packed to the gills both Saturday and  Sunday night as costumed  revelers turned out in droves to celebrate Halloween. Flickr users efohbe and EgOiStE were among those out snapping dozens of pictures.  KVUE says "tens of thousands" showed up last night.

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education
11:35 am
Mon November 1, 2010

Eastside Memorial Teachers Organize Against Principal

An empty hallway at Eastside Memorial High. Teachers in the Global Tech High on the campus have filed a group grievance against their principal.
Photo by Nathan Bernier for KUT News

Austin School Trustees are holding a special meeting tonight to discuss a personnel matter that pits some teachers at Eastside Global Tech High against the school's principal.

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local media
11:29 am
Mon November 1, 2010

FCC Busts Austin Pirate Radio Station

Unlicensed local radio station KAOS was shut down last week by the FCC.

Federal Communications Commission agents descended on Austin pirate radio station KAOS FM last week. You can watch a video of the bust on KAOS's website.

In the video, FCC agent Stephen Lee tells the operator of KAOS that he would be let off with a warning if he complies with the request to shut down the pirate radio station.

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Traffic
10:05 am
Sat October 30, 2010

18-Wheeler Fire Shuts Down Ramps To Highway 183 In North Austin

Heavy traffic for Saturday morning drivers, as firefighters closed off part of US 183 to battle a tanker truck fire on the US 183-Mopac flyover. Drivers on the frontage road of Hwy 183 N were redirected to avoid the access ramp.
Photo by Erika Aguilar for KUT News.

UPDATE (1:00 p.m.):

Authorities are keeping the flyover ramp from northbound US 183 to Mopac closed, after this morning's fiery crash of a tanker truck. 

 The tanker truck was carrying a load of gasoline when it crashed around 6:00 a.m. Investigators believe the driver may have been going too fast on the ramp causing it to flip over.

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education
4:27 pm
Fri October 29, 2010

UT Breaks Ground on New Computer Science Building

UT-Austin broke ground today on a new $130 million complex for the computer science department.
Image courtesy University of Texas

Students and faculty in UT's computer science program are currently spread across seven different buildings. That will all change in 18 to 24 months when the new Bill and Melinda Gates Computer Science Complex opens.

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City
3:56 pm
Fri October 29, 2010

Mayors Show Support for Proposition 1

Austin Mayors Collected at City Hall to Show Their Support for Prop 1.
Photo by KUT News

A collection of mayors old and new congregated at City Hall today to show their support for the passage of Proposition 1. With early voting concluding at day’s end and the general election a mere four days away, the group hoped to leave a lasting impression on voters that will lead to the Proposition's passage.

Proposition 1 is a bond proposal that if passed would allocate $90 million to 45 mobility projects across the city.

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film
3:16 pm
Fri October 29, 2010

The Strange Demise of Jim Crow

The film producer of The Strange Demise of Jim Crow will be at the Carver Museum tonight to screen the documentary and talk about integration in Texas.
Screen capture from The Strange Demise of Jim Crow

Texas' shameful, racist past might seem like ancient history to some people, but it was only a generation ago that it was illegal for a white person to marry an African-American.

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security
2:06 pm
Fri October 29, 2010

All is Cool at Austin Airport Despite Security Panic Elsewhere

No heightened security at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, despite security concerns elsewhere in the US.
Image courtesy Dave Wilson http://www.flickr.com/photos/dawilson/

President Obama is scheduled to speak at 3:15 pm CST today about a potential terrorism plot being investigated on three continents. The scare involves suspicious packages shipped on cargo planes from Yemen to the United States, reports Philadelphia's ABC affiliate WPVI.

The investigation included two planes at Philadelphia International Airport. Officials tell Action News that a total of six packages were removed from the planes there.
 

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entertainment
12:49 pm
Fri October 29, 2010

How To Have a Happy Halloween in Austin

Throngs of costumed revelers will flood 6th street this weekend, like these guys did last year.
Image courtesy Chris Blackmor http://www.flickr.com/photos/cblackmor/

Two days left until kids will be knocking at your door requesting candy in exchange for not "tricking" your house with toilet paper. But the parties aren't waiting till Sunday. They start tonight and last all weekend.

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politics
12:35 pm
Fri October 29, 2010

Rally to Restore Sanity Comes to Austin

While Jon Stewart's "Rally to Restore Sanity" is making a big media splash, some question the political motivation for the event.
Photo Courtesy of the Austin Rally to Restore Sanity

The Rally to Restore Sanity will is not only happening in the nation’s capital this Saturday, but it's also going down in Austin. The uncharacteristic move to rally behind political moderatism will happen at the State Capitol.

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transportation
11:23 am
Fri October 29, 2010

City Council Inks Deal to Add Ten Miles of Bike Lanes

Austin City Council approved a deal with the Texas Department of Transportation yesterday that will build 10 miles of bike lanes in Austin.
Photo by Katie Hayes for KUT News

Bicycle enthusiasts are reacting with glee to an Austin City Council vote yesterday that approved a deal to build ten miles of bike lanes in Austin.

The deal between the city and the Texas Department of Transportation will see the two split the bill for $1.1 million. TxDOT's share of the cash is coming from the federal government's Transportation Enhancement Program.

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