Kelsey Sheridan en Front Steps Executive Director Fired <p>After three months at work, <a href="">Front Steps Executive Director Jim Ormand</a> was fired August 5 after just three months on the job.</p><p><a href="">Front Steps</a> is a non-profit organization that operates the city-owned Austin Resource Center for the Homeless, one of the largest homeless shelters in Central Texas. Fri, 12 Aug 2011 19:08:12 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2210 at Front Steps Executive Director Fired Urban Rail Prototype Displayed <object height="319" width="425"><param name="flashvars" value="offsite=true&amp;lang=en-us&amp;page_show_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627410849056%2Fshow%2F&amp;page_show_back_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627410849056%2F&amp;set_id=72157627410849056&amp;jump_to=" /><param name="movie" value="" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><embed allowfullscreen="true" flashvars="offsite=true&amp;lang=en-us&amp;page_show_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627410849056%2Fshow%2F&amp;page_show_back_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627410849056%2F&amp;set_id=72157627410849056&amp;jump_to=" height="319" src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425"></embed></object><p>&nbsp;</p><p>People got a chance to climb aboard the possible future of Austin&#39;s mass transit system on Thursday. <a href="">Kinkisharyo</a>, a Japanese-based streetcar manufacturer, is taking its new prototype on an American tour.</p><p>The streetcar runs on a combination of power from batteries and overhead wires, storing energy when the train brakes and eliminating the need for overhead wires in parts of the route, Kinkisharyo project manager Bill Kleppinger said. Fri, 12 Aug 2011 16:23:44 +0000 Katrina Tollin, Kelsey Sheridan & Daniel Reese 2203 at East 7th Street Business Owners Hope For Better Days Ahead <p><object height="319" width="425"><param name="flashvars" value="offsite=true&amp;lang=en-us&amp;page_show_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627286403223%2Fshow%2F&amp;page_show_back_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627286403223%2F&amp;set_id=72157627286403223&amp;jump_to=" /><param name="movie" value="" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><embed allowfullscreen="true" flashvars="offsite=true&amp;lang=en-us&amp;page_show_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627286403223%2Fshow%2F&amp;page_show_back_url=%2Fphotos%2Fkutaustin%2Fsets%2F72157627286403223%2F&amp;set_id=72157627286403223&amp;jump_to=" height="319" src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425"></embed></object></p><p>For the past sixteen months, a project to beautify East 7th Street has plagued local businesses. &nbsp;Construction to improve safety and utilities limited access to restaurants, tax consultants, and convenience stores.&nbsp; Now that the streets look nicer with fresh paint and new plants, some business owners are wondering if it was all worth it. Thu, 11 Aug 2011 19:53:09 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan & Daniel Reese 2197 at Fatal Car Accident Results in Closure of US 290 <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="350" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" scrolling="no" src=";vpsrc=6&amp;ll=30.232819,-97.901402&amp;spn=0.006489,0.00912&amp;z=16&amp;output=embed" width="425"></iframe><br />&nbsp;</p><p>One person was killed this afternoon when an 18-wheeler crashed into a small car in Oak Hill on US 290 near Scenic Brook Drive.&nbsp; The crash occurred at 2:38 p.m.</p><p>Police are directing traffic around the accident scene, according to the Sheriff&#39;s office. All the lanes are closed in both directions. A Department of Public Safety representative said she didn&#39;t know how long the lane closures would last.</p><p> Wed, 10 Aug 2011 21:41:55 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2191 at Meet Austin's New Friend: Jacmel, Haiti <p>A Haitian city devastated by the 2010 earthquake has been designated as Austin&#39;s newest &quot;<a href="">Friendship City</a>&quot;.&nbsp; Mayor Lee Leffingwell says<a href=""> Jacmel, Haiti</a> has a lot in common with the Live Music Capital. It&#39;s a creative city, famous for its arts scene, film institute and scenic beauty.</p><p>Friendship cities are supposed to foster cooperation between their respective residents and businesses. It&#39;s not quite as big a deal as the &quot;Sister City&quot; designation, which typically involves more collaboration between local governments and a more formalized agreement. Tue, 09 Aug 2011 21:29:56 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2171 at Meet Austin's New Friend: Jacmel, Haiti Study: Nine Out of Ten Preschoolers' Lunches At Unsafe Temperatures <p>A <a href="">University of Texas study</a> found that 90 percent of bag lunches brought to school by preschool students were kept at temperatures that could result in food-borne illnesses.</p><p>The researchers took the temperatures of 700 preschoolers lunch&#39;s at nine different Texas child care centers. Forty-five percent of the lunches had at least one ice pack and 39 percent had none. Tue, 09 Aug 2011 17:48:42 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2169 at Study: Nine Out of Ten Preschoolers' Lunches At Unsafe Temperatures AISD Misses AYP <p>The Texas Education Agency <a href="">released preliminary results&nbsp;</a>for the federal ratings of school districts today. Austin Independent School district did not meet federal standards, known as Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP). It is a federal designation as part of the <a href="">No Child Left Behind</a> program.</p> Thu, 04 Aug 2011 21:03:27 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2141 at AISD Misses AYP State Urges Parents To Seek Regulated Day Cares <p>There are more than 25,000 daycare operations and homes in the state of Texas. &nbsp;And as the school year looms, parents have to choose among them to find safe child care that&#39;s a good fit for their family&#39;s needs. &nbsp;But a warning from the state: be careful when choosing; 524 Texas operations have been found guilty of abuse or neglect. Mon, 01 Aug 2011 20:45:30 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2106 at State Urges Parents To Seek Regulated Day Cares Fun Fun Fun Lineup Released <p>Fun Fun Fun Fest released its <a href="">2011 lineup</a> today.&nbsp;Organizers expect to sell more than 15,000 tickets and have added an extra day to the festival. This year it will be held at Auditorium Shores because it outgrew its previous venue of Waterloo Park.&nbsp;</p><p> Mon, 01 Aug 2011 20:01:17 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2103 at Fun Fun Fun Lineup Released 45th Anniversary of UT Shooting Marked With Dedication Ceremony <p>The Austin Police Association is holding a ceremony to dedicate a hall in their new facility to the people who worked to restore safety during the Texas Tower shooting. Today is the 45th anniversary of the shooting.</p><p><a href="">The shooter, Charles Whitman, </a>was a student at the University of Texas. A former Marine who grew up with an abusive father, he admitted to killing his mother and his wife in a suicide note.</p><p>The next day, Whitman began shooting people from the top of the Texas Tower with a sniper rifle. He climbed up to the top of the tower with hundreds of rounds of ammunition, water and food supplies. Mon, 01 Aug 2011 15:49:16 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2096 at 45th Anniversary of UT Shooting Marked With Dedication Ceremony ACC Can Move Forward With Construction After Lawsuit's Dismissal <p>A federal appellate court <a href="">dismissed the lawsuit</a> brought against Austin Community College&#39;s proposed Hays County campus. The new campus was approved by voters in 2009. It would have been partially funded by a property tax increase and federal stimulus money.</p> Fri, 29 Jul 2011 18:35:01 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2086 at Texas School Accountability Ratings Due Today <p>The <a href="">Texas Education Commissioner</a> will release this year&#39;s school ratings at 1 p.m. Austin ISD will hold a news conference to talk about its results at 2 p.m.</p><p>The annual accountability ratings helps parents compare their children&#39;s schools to others in the district or state. Consistently low performing schools risk being shut down.</p><p>The ratings are compiled through a combination of standardized test scores, graduation rates and drop-out rates.&nbsp; Schools are categorized as exemplary, recognized, academically acceptable and academically unacceptable.</p><p>Check back on as the ratings are released. Fri, 29 Jul 2011 15:03:33 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2077 at Texas School Accountability Ratings Due Today Cows on Parade: More Public Art for Austin <p>There are <a href="">CowParade </a>exhibits in 75 cities in 30 countries on 6 continents. And now, in Austin. Forty-seven cow sculptures were installed all over town last night to the surprise of Austinites this morning. Before the exhibit&#39;s finished there will be 100-150 cows all over Austin. The cows were all created by <a href="">local artists</a> and will be auctioned off to raise money for the <a href="">Dell Children&#39;s Medical Center</a> in the fall.</p> Thu, 28 Jul 2011 17:54:59 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan & Daniel Reese 2067 at Cows on Parade: More Public Art for Austin Wealth Gap Rises Nationally and in Austin <p>A <a href="">recent Pew Research Center analysis of federal data</a> found that the wealth gap between whites and African American and Hispanics is at a 25 year high. Nationally, the median wealth of white households is 20 times that of black households and 18 times that of Hispanic households. The study also found that minority families were hit harder by the recession:</p> Tue, 26 Jul 2011 19:18:29 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2054 at Wealth Gap Rises Nationally and in Austin Austin Watches Clock Tick Down on Debt Ceiling Deadline <p><object height="272" width="425"><param name="movie" value=";hl=en_US&amp;showinfo=0" /><param name="allowFullScreen" value="true" /><param name="allowscriptaccess" value="always" /><embed allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" height="272" src=";hl=en_US&amp;showinfo=0" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425"></embed></object></p><p>Time is running out for the <a href="">debt ceiling debate,</a> and Austinites are watching.&nbsp; KUT freelancer Jeff Heimsath produced this video to constrast local opinions with those of a University of Texas economist.&nbsp;</p><p>Here&#39;s the issue: there&#39;s a legal cap on how much money the United States is allowed to borrow.</p><p>Right now it&#39;s $14.3 trillion, which the government says it will exceed by early August. To prevent this, the United States either needs to cut spending drastically or raise that ceiling. Otherwise, it means the U.S. will default on its loans. Fri, 22 Jul 2011 20:21:36 +0000 Jeff Heimsath & Kelsey Sheridan 2027 at All Texas College Students Need Meningitis Vaccine <p><a href="">A new state law</a> passed by the 2011 Legislature requires any college student under 30 who attends classes on a Texas campus must be vaccinated against meningitis. Previously only students who lived on campus needed one.</p> Fri, 22 Jul 2011 19:46:57 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2025 at All Texas College Students Need Meningitis Vaccine Austin's Mike Judge Revives "Beavis and Butthead" <div style="background-color:#000000;width:520px;"><div style="padding:4px;"><embed allowfullscreen="true" allowscriptaccess="always" base="." flashvars="" height="201" src="" type="application/x-shockwave-flash" width="425"></embed><p style="text-align:left;background-color:#FFFFFF;padding:4px;margin-top:4px;margin-bottom:0px;font-family:Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif;font-size:12px;">&nbsp;</p></div></div><p>Video courtesy of MTV</p> Fri, 22 Jul 2011 15:16:49 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2019 at Texas Rangers Hosts Open Tryouts in Round Rock <p>It&#39;s every baseball player&#39;s dream: To be picked from the crowd at an open tryout at your hometown ball park to play for your favorite Major League team.</p><p>Scouts for the defending American League Champion Texas Rangers did just that Wednesday morning, holding&nbsp; open tryouts for all positions at the Dell Diamond in Round Rock. Not surprisingly, many came out for a chance to show their talents to professional baseball scouts. The Horton family came from Crawford, Texas for the opportunity.</p> Wed, 20 Jul 2011 22:42:56 +0000 Jessie Wang, Kelsey Sheridan & Daniel Reese 2005 at Texas Rangers Hosts Open Tryouts in Round Rock Gone With the Wind Dresses Being Restored at Harry Ransom Center <p>Conservation work is underway on three of the dresses worn by Vivien Leigh in the movie, &quot;<a href="">Gone with the Wind</a>.&quot; The work at UT&#39;s <a href="">Harry Ransom Center</a> comes after the institution raised $30,000 for the restoration.</p><p> Wed, 20 Jul 2011 22:14:25 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 2004 at Gone With the Wind Dresses Being Restored at Harry Ransom Center UT Study Recommends More Sex Ed To Prevent Teen Births <p><a href="">A University of Texas study</a> funded by the <a href="">Texas Department of State Health Services</a> says expanding sexual health education in public schools could help reduce teen births in Texas, a state with <a href="">one of the highest</a> teen pregnancy rates in the country.&nbsp; Texas <a href="">dropped a health education requirement </a>for high school students in 2009, making it one of the only states in the country not to require it.</p><p>Traditionally, it was thought that the best way to prevent teen pregnancy was to encourage kids to wait until they finish school and get a job before having kids. The report found that teens and parents of all ethnic groups tend to agree. Yet teenage girls are still getting pregnant and having babies. Tue, 19 Jul 2011 20:50:22 +0000 Kelsey Sheridan 1989 at UT Study Recommends More Sex Ed To Prevent Teen Births