Kristen Cabrera http://kut.org en Top Morning Stories September 19, 2011 http://kut.org/post/top-morning-stories-september-19-2011 <p><strong>Bastrop County Complex Fire Update</strong></p><p>Bastrop county officials say the Bastrop County Complex fire was 95 percent contained as of Sunday. Officials released <a href="http://www.co.bastrop.tx.us/bcdisaster/BastropComplexFireFACTSHEET09.18.2011_-1-.pdf">The Bastrop County Complex Fire Factsheet </a>on the county&#39;s Office of Emergency Management <a href="http://www.facebook.com/pages/Bastrop-County-Office-of-Emergency-Management/193202960708177">Facebook</a> page.</p><p><strong>Austin City Limits Festival 2011</strong></p><p>Yesterday rounded out&nbsp; the last day of the ACL festival. If you were not part of the 75,000 people there each day, KUT&#39;s Texas Music Matters has reviews of the headlining acts. Here is just a handful:</p><p> Mon, 19 Sep 2011 12:30:30 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2543 at http://kut.org Top Morning Stories September 19, 2011 City Warns About Fires In Large Compost Heaps http://kut.org/post/city-warns-about-fires-large-compost-heaps <p>Spontaneous combustion is real, at least when it comes to compost heaps.</p><p>Large commercial compost heaps of over 12 feet tall can become dangerous if not properly maintained, says Lauren Hammond, spokesperson for Austin&#39;s <a href="http://www.cityofaustin.org/sws/default.htm">solid waste services department</a>.</p><p>She says, the conditions have to be &quot;just right&quot; for a pile to self-ignite.</p><p>The record triple digit heat we&#39;ve been experiencing can raise the temperature of a compost pile above 160 degrees. Mix that with the various gasses that are released from decomposition and the abundance of dry organic material, and you could have a real fire hazard on your hands.</p><p>Though most residential compost piles are no where near 12 feet tall, Hammond says, they still need to be maintained and monitored weekly. Wed, 31 Aug 2011 20:47:46 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2373 at http://kut.org City Warns About Fires In Large Compost Heaps Top Morning Stories August 23, 2011 http://kut.org/post/top-morning-stories-august-23-2011 <p><strong>Austin School board passes budget; Argues over historic property tax breaks</strong></p><p>After passing a $700 million operating budget for the 2011-2012 school year, the <a href="http://www.austinisd.org/">Austin Independent School District</a> focused on Historic Property tax breaks. Last year the program was suspended due to budget concerns, but this year the school board voted to reinstate the program--at an estimated cost of $382,000. &nbsp;</p> Tue, 23 Aug 2011 14:37:58 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2290 at http://kut.org Top Morning Stories August 23, 2011 Texas Parks and Wildlife Issues Black Bear Warning http://kut.org/post/texas-parks-and-wildlife-issues-black-bear-warning <p>Leaving out cat food for the neighborhood cat? You might be feeding the neighborhood bear instead, according to a <a href="http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/newsmedia/releases/?req=20110817a&amp;nrtype=all&amp;nrspan=2011&amp;nrsearch=">statement </a>by the <a href="http://www.tpwd.state.tx.us/">Texas Parks and Wildlife Department</a>.</p><p>&ldquo;We&rsquo;re getting a few reports of people seeing bears during daylight hours, and that&rsquo;s unusual,&rdquo; says Mike Krueger of Texas Parks and Wildlife. &ldquo;It&rsquo;s the associated water around homes and the food. The pet food, the smell of cooking; all those things could attract bears. &rdquo; Thu, 18 Aug 2011 22:00:09 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2265 at http://kut.org Texas Parks and Wildlife Issues Black Bear Warning Companies Investigate Oil Sheen Off Gulf of Mexico http://kut.org/post/companies-investigate-oil-sheen-gulf-mexico <p>The Associated Press is <a href="http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5iA8rDgzrpzWsij-J-HYeKtBLuG4A?docId=4a58105018824e8abe5f957cfd029f6f">reporting</a> the investigation into an oil sheen that was spotted off the Gulf of Mexico last week. Various oil companies, including BP, are trying to figure out where the sheen came from.</p><p>An oil sheen (not the same as a spill) happens when a thin layer of oil settles on top of the water shimmering in different colors and can come from leaks or spills.</p><p> Thu, 18 Aug 2011 16:50:22 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2261 at http://kut.org Companies Investigate Oil Sheen Off Gulf of Mexico Rodriguez and Spy Kids Actors to Visit Children's Hospital http://kut.org/post/rodriguez-and-spy-kids-actors-visit-childrens-hospital <p>Actors from the fourth installation of Robert Rodriguez&#39; s <em>&quot;Spy Kids&quot;</em> films will meet with the children of<a href="http://www.dellchildrens.net/"> </a><span><a href="http://www.dellchildrens.net/">Dell Children&rsquo;s Medical Center</a> on </span> Saturday.</p><p>The new <em>&quot;Spy Kids&quot; </em>stars Rowan Blanchard, Mason Cook, along with old Spy Kids Alexa Vega and Daryl Sabara and Rodriguez himself will be greeting the children and signing posters at 1 p.m., before their red carpet Austin premier at <a href="http://www.thelongcenter.org/">The Long Center for Performing Arts</a> at&nbsp; 4 p.m.</p><p> Fri, 12 Aug 2011 22:10:28 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2212 at http://kut.org Rodriguez and Spy Kids Actors to Visit Children's Hospital Perry's Presidential Speech to Feature Video Made By Atheist http://kut.org/post/perrys-presidential-speech-feature-video-made-atheist <p><object height="272" width="425"><param name="movie" value="http://www.youtube.com/v/Ufq0nojWR1M?version=3&amp;hl=en_US&amp;showinfo=0" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><embed allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" height="272" src="http://www.youtube.com/v/Ufq0nojWR1M?version=3&amp;hl=en_US&amp;showinfo=0" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425"></embed></object></p><p>Fresh off last week&#39;s National Day of Prayer in Houston, Perry&#39;s Saturday announcement speech, <a href="http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0811/61199.html">POLITICO</a> reports, will features <a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ufq0nojWR1M&amp;feature=player_embedded">this</a> two-minute YouTube video created by Michael Wilson. filmmaker and a declared atheist.</p><p> Fri, 12 Aug 2011 17:24:16 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2206 at http://kut.org Wildflower Center Pays Tribute to Namesake http://kut.org/post/wildflower-center-pays-tribute-namesake <p>The<a href="http://www.wildflower.org/"> Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center</a> will pay tribute to the woman who got the center started.</p><p>To commemorate the day former President Lyndon Johnson presented his wife with 50 pens he used to sign beautification laws she inspired, the center will offer free admission and several activities this Sunday.</p> Thu, 21 Jul 2011 17:17:04 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 2013 at http://kut.org Wildflower Center Pays Tribute to Namesake Obesity-Related Bills That Almost Made It http://kut.org/post/obesity-related-bills-almost-made-it <p>Texas is now the 12th Fattest state in and is ranked 7th in childhood obesity.</p><p>It is more likely that a child will be obese if the parent is, said Dr. Shreela Sharma, assistant professor at the Michael and <a href="http://www.sph.uth.tmc.edu/dellhealthyliving/">Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living</a> at UTHealth.</p><p>This has been on the mind of some Texas Legislators this past 82nd session. But not everyone was able to get their bills passed. Fri, 08 Jul 2011 22:10:00 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 1915 at http://kut.org Obesity-Related Bills That Almost Made It Texas Obesity Ranking Ticks Higher http://kut.org/post/texas-obesity-ranking-ticks-higher <p>Texas is the 12th most obese state in the U.S., according to <em>F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America&#39;s Future 2011</em>. The <a href="http://healthyamericans.org/reports/obesity2011/release.php?stateid=TX">report</a> is from the non-profit research group <a href="http://www.healthyamericans.org/">Trust for America&rsquo;s Health</a>.</p><p>Texas has been slowly creeping up the list for the past two years, ranking <a href="http://www.healthyamericans.org/reports/obesity2009/release.php?stateid=TX">14th in 2009</a>, and <a href="http://healthyamericans.org/reports/obesity2010/release.php?stateid=TX">13th in 2010</a>. The obesity rate in Texas for adults is 30 percent.&nbsp; Fifteen years ago that number was 16 percent.&nbsp;</p><p> Thu, 07 Jul 2011 22:23:53 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 1902 at http://kut.org Texas Obesity Ranking Ticks Higher Anthony Graves Receives Compensation for Wrongful Imprisonment http://kut.org/post/anthony-graves-receives-compensation-wrongful-imprisonment <p class="Text-TextBody HoustonText">Texas Comptroller Susan Combs paid Anthony Graves $1.45 million today, to compensate for his 18 years of wrongful imprisonment. Graves was originally convicted of the 1992 killing a 45-year-old grandmother and five children. He served 12 years of his sentence on death row.</p> Thu, 30 Jun 2011 21:39:04 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 1850 at http://kut.org Anthony Graves Receives Compensation for Wrongful Imprisonment Water lines prone to breakage under drought http://kut.org/post/water-lines-prone-breakage-under-drought <p>Refael Eizraelov spotted water spilling into the street on Adirondack Lane in North Austin this morning. He called the city&#39;s 3-1-1 to report it.&nbsp; They informed him that <a href="http://www.ci.austin.tx.us/water/">Austin Water Utility</a> had known about the leak yesterday.</p><p>&quot;We don&rsquo;t have a lot of water in Austin, at the Edwards Aquifer. Everyone knows it&rsquo;s very low and very precious, and we cannot let water like that just spilling down the drain,&rdquo; he said.</p> Thu, 30 Jun 2011 18:07:45 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 1845 at http://kut.org Water lines prone to breakage under drought San Antonio Hopes to Cash In On Austin's F1 Visitors http://kut.org/post/san-antonio-hopes-cash-austins-f1-visitors <p>San Antonio tourism officials are hoping to attract the international travelers who could flood Austin during Formula One events.&nbsp;Casandra Matej, executive director of the San Antonio Visitors and Convention Bureau, says the ideal international visitor would stay a few evenings in Austin and then head to San Antonio.</p><p>&ldquo;There will be San Antonio opportunities to kind of create synergy for that,&quot; she said. &quot;We can provided that extended stay for the people that are going to enjoy the race.&rdquo;</p> Thu, 23 Jun 2011 20:40:40 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 1781 at http://kut.org San Antonio Hopes to Cash In On Austin's F1 Visitors Road Closures on Ben White and I35 http://kut.org/post/road-closures-ben-white-and-i35 <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="350" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" scrolling="no" src="http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msa=0&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;msid=216014887752236278861.0004a5eeaf67b2887abc7&amp;ll=30.219841,-97.745619&amp;spn=0.025958,0.036478&amp;z=14&amp;output=embed" width="425"></iframe><br /><small>View <a href="http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msa=0&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;msid=216014887752236278861.0004a5eeaf67b2887abc7&amp;ll=30.219841,-97.745619&amp;spn=0.025958,0.036478&amp;z=14&amp;source=embed" style="color:#0000FF;text-align:left">Ben White Closure</a> in a larger map</small></p><p>Construction on Ben White Freeway interchange will begin at 8 p.m. tonight, and last till Sunday morning. TxDOT will divert west-bound traffic on to east-bound lanes configuring one lane in each direction for about two miles. Fri, 17 Jun 2011 22:02:27 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 1731 at http://kut.org Austin Unemployment Ticks Higher, Texas Rate Unchanged http://kut.org/post/austin-unemployment-ticks-higher-texas-rate-unchanged <p>More people have jobs in Austin, but 6.7 percent of those actively looking for work are still unemployed. Lisa Givens from the Texas Workforce Commission says Austin added 3,900 jobs last month. Despite this, the unemployment rate rose slight slightly from 6.5 percent in April to 6.7 percent, a result of more people looking for work. Fri, 17 Jun 2011 18:23:09 +0000 Kristen Cabrera 1726 at http://kut.org Austin Unemployment Ticks Higher, Texas Rate Unchanged