Kelli Ainsworth en ABIA and AAA Hope These Travel Tips Make for Happy Holidays <p>If you’re flying out of Austin for the holidays, be ready to arrive at the airport early and expect long lines.&nbsp; <a href="" target="_blank">Austin-Bergstrom International Airport is advising travelers</a> to arrive 90 minutes before their departure time from today through Dec. 21.</p><p>Checkpoints open at 4 a.m. to give passengers on the earliest flights ample time to get check their bags and get through security. ABIA has also temporarily opened a fourth&nbsp;security checkpoint to handle the high volume of holiday travelers and reduce security wait times.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p> Wed, 19 Dec 2012 22:15:52 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5952 at ABIA and AAA Hope These Travel Tips Make for Happy Holidays AISD Releases List of Schools Frozen to Transfers <p>The Austin Independent School District has released<a href="" target="_blank"> its list of schools that are frozen to transfers</a> for the 2013-2014 school year.</p><p>Over two dozen campuses are &nbsp;frozen to transfers, while another 17 will be reevaluated after requests for priority transfers are approved.</p><p>Beginning Jan. 7, parents will be able to submit their transfer requests by mail or in person at AISD's Office of Student Services.</p><p> Wed, 19 Dec 2012 16:38:03 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5950 at AISD Releases List of Schools Frozen to Transfers A Month After the Election, Texas Casts Its Electoral Votes <p>Though the election was called for President Barack Obama over a month ago, members of the Electoral College will officially cast their votes today.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Texas electors</a> will meet to cast the state’s electoral votes <a href="" target="_blank">this afternoon at the Capitol</a>.Texas has 38 electoral votes&nbsp;–&nbsp;the second highest of any state, behind California&nbsp;–&nbsp;which were won by Mitt Romney.&nbsp;</p><p>Each party selects 38 potential electors who promise to vote for that party’s candidate, should they win the state’s popular vote.&nbsp; Because Mitt Romney won Texas, the 38 Republican electors will cast their votes for him today.</p><p> Mon, 17 Dec 2012 16:30:12 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5928 at A Month After the Election, Texas Casts Its Electoral Votes Sorry, A&M Fans: The UT Tower Wasn’t Lit Up for Johnny Football <p>On Saturday night, following Texas A&amp;M quarterback <a href="">Johnny&nbsp;Manziel’s&nbsp;Heisman win</a>, some Aggies got so carried away by their excitement that they saw the man called “Johnny Football” everywhere.</p><p>The University of Texas’s <a href="">December graduation</a> also took place on Saturday.&nbsp; It’s the university’s tradition to light the clock tower orange, with the windows lit to form the class year of the graduates.&nbsp; So Saturday night, the clock tower bore a giant 12, in honor of the 2012 graduating class.</p><p> Mon, 10 Dec 2012 16:44:27 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5860 at Sorry, A&M Fans: The UT Tower Wasn’t Lit Up for Johnny Football Austin-Bergstrom Reports 32nd Straight Month of Growth <p>Austin-Bergstrom&nbsp;International Airport had a record August, according to&nbsp;<a href="">data released by the City of Austin over the weekend.&nbsp;</a></p><p>A total of 838,994 passengers traveled through&nbsp;ABIA&nbsp;in August, up six percent from the same time last year.&nbsp;(August is the last month for which the airport has full data.)</p><p>United Airlines and its regional carriers saw the most growth in August. They flew 47 percent more passengers than in August 2011.</p><p> Mon, 10 Dec 2012 15:58:16 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5859 at Austin-Bergstrom Reports 32nd Straight Month of Growth Fulmore Middle School Choir Invited to Carnegie Hall <p>Fulmore Middle School’s Advanced Girls Choir has been invited to participate in the <a href="" target="_blank">Distinguished Concert Singers International</a> performance at Carnegie Hall in January.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Composer Francisco Nunez</a> asked the choir to perform his “Music for Treble Voices.”&nbsp; Nunez, Director of the Youth Choir of New York heard the <a href="" target="_blank">Fulmore Advanced Girls Choir </a>perform while attending the <a href="" target="_blank">Texas Music Educators Convention</a> in Dallas. He was impressed with both the girls and their director, Yvette Carroll.</p><p> Wed, 05 Dec 2012 15:49:06 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5827 at Fulmore Middle School Choir Invited to Carnegie Hall Construction and Closures Ahead for Hike and Bike Trail <p>Two separate projects on Lady Bird Lake may temporarily get in the way of folks using part of the hike and bike trail.</p><p>The city is getting ready to begin work along the Shoal Creek peninsula near the Seaholm Power Plant. Construction begins soon, and is expected to last six months. Portions of the hike and bike trail near the peninsula and the parking lot west of Shoal Creek and South of Cesar Chavez will be closed and those using the trail will be detoured to Cesar Chavez.</p><p> Wed, 05 Dec 2012 14:34:54 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5824 at Construction and Closures Ahead for Hike and Bike Trail Gov. Perry Wants to Fast Track Vocational Certification in Texas <p>Governor Perry announced his intention Tuesday to <a href="">launch a Skilled Workforce Initiative</a> in Texas to address demand for certified, highly-skilled workers in the manufacturing sector.</p><p>The initiative would reduce the time it takes for students to earn vocational certification in certain high-demand fields, such as manufacturing and industrial business. Under the initiative, certification programs will award credit to students who enter the program already possessing some experience and skills necessary for certification.&nbsp; Backers hope the program will allow students to get certified and begin filling jobs more quickly, while also saving them time and money by allowing them to bypass lessons on subjects they’ve already mastered.</p><p> Wed, 28 Nov 2012 20:59:45 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5741 at Gov. Perry Wants to Fast Track Vocational Certification in Texas Texas Researchers Developing New HIV Vaccine <p>The San Antonio-based <a href="" target="_blank">Texas Biomedical Research Institute has applied for a patent</a> for a new genetically engineered HIV vaccine. This new vaccine would provide lifelong protection from the disease with a single dose.</p><p>The vaccine is designed to target the cells that line the body’s surface structures. which are the point of entry into the body in approximately 90 percent of HIV cases. Once HIV enters the body through these cells, it quickly spreads to the lymph nodes and other organs, where it replicates throughout the body. The new vaccine would stimulate the body’s outer layers and cells to generate cells that produce antibodies to HIV.&nbsp;</p><p> Thu, 22 Nov 2012 14:49:00 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5703 at Texas Researchers Developing New HIV Vaccine Kyle Wastewater Plant Spills Sewage <p>More than 100,000 gallons of partially treated wastewater, which contained solids, was discharged from the City of Kyle wastewater treatment plant.</p><p>Aqua Texas, Inc. operates the plant. The company said in a press release that it’s still reviewing the conditions that caused the spill but "an upset of the sludge blanket in the clarifier" occurred.</p><p>The company is trying to clean up Plum Creek downstream of the spill using mobilized vacuum trucks.</p><p>So far, the company says, no fish kill has been seen, and live fish have been observed.</p> Wed, 21 Nov 2012 13:47:49 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5701 at Kyle Wastewater Plant Spills Sewage Five Ways to Fight Hunger and Homelessness This Week <p>The Ending Community Homelessness Coalition (ECHO) kicked off its annual&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week</a> this past weekend.&nbsp;ECHO will host daily community events through Nov. 18 to educate Austin residents on the causes of homelessness and hunger. ECHO hopes community education spurs community action to help end local homelessness.</p><p>To that end, several events are being hosted by ECHO and other community groups this week. Here's a rundown:&nbsp;</p><ul><li><strong><a href="">Oxfam Hunger Banquet</a></strong>, Tuesday, Nov. 3: Meals are served based on the luck of the draw. &nbsp;While some attendees will be served filling meals,others will have relatively bare plates. The banquet is aimed at raising awareness of inequalities in food distribution in the world. Mon, 12 Nov 2012 20:47:19 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5611 at Five Ways to Fight Hunger and Homelessness This Week Following a Technical Delay, Unofficial Results From Williamson County Are In <p>Williamson County released its <a href="" target="_blank">unofficial elections totals </a>early this morning, following a technical delay that required one of the voting machines to be read by a technician.</p><p>Following poll closures last night, one of the iVotronic machines at a Williamson County precinct malfunctioned and election administrators at the precinct were unable to access the results from that machine. Administrators called a technician to obtain the results from the machine.&nbsp;</p><p>"The backlight went out on one of our voting machines and so the election judge couldn't see the screen in order to get it properly closed. And so we had a technician that had come down from Dallas to repair the machine so that we could get the votes counted from that machine," Connie Watson, Public Affairs Manager for Williamson County, says. Wed, 07 Nov 2012 15:35:00 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5566 at Following a Technical Delay, Unofficial Results From Williamson County Are In Former UT Coach Darrell K Royal Passes Away <p></p><p>Longtime University of Texas football coach Darrell Royal passed away this morning.&nbsp;He was 88-years-old.</p><p>Royal coached the Longhorns from 1957 to 1976 and led the team to three National Championships. Royal also served as athletic director from 1962 to 1979.</p><p>The University honored Royal in 1996 by renaming the football stadium,&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">Darrell K Royal-Memorial Stadium</a>. During the announcement, UT System chancellor William Cunningham said, “No individual has contributed more to athletics at UT-Austin than Darrell Royal. He is a living legend.”</p><p>Royal was the all-time&nbsp;winningest&nbsp;coach of the Longhorns.&nbsp;&nbsp;<a href="" target="_blank">KUT&nbsp;spoke with Royal's wife, Edith, last month</a>. She said Royal enjoyed attending UT football games long after he retired from coaching the team.</p><p>A friend of the Royal family told&nbsp;KUT&nbsp;News that plans for his memorial services are underway. The LBJ Presidential Library has set up <a href="">a memorial page for Royal </a>with photos and a phone conversation between Royal and President Lyndon Baines Johnson.&nbsp;</p><p>After the news of Royal's passing broke this morning, fans used Twitter to express their reactions and condolences:</p><p>Richard Justice, an correspondent (<a href="">@richardjustice</a>): "RIP Darrell Royal.&nbsp; Man of integrity and humor, intimidating and kind, absolutely brilliant with people."</p><p>Brian Jones (<a href="">@BJ_CFB</a>), a former UT football player and current football analyst for CBS Sports: "Thoughts and prayers to the Darrell Royal family and Longhorn Nation!&nbsp; We lost a great one!"</p><p>Cole&nbsp;Constien&nbsp;(<a href="">@ColeConstien</a>): "Thank you for the memories Darrell Royal.&nbsp; You have a place in every true sports fan's heart.&nbsp; Rest in peace."</p><p>Yvette (<a href="">@YLoTexas</a>): "Rest in peace Coach Darrell Royal.&nbsp; A great man, champion and Texan.&nbsp; The Eyes of Texas shed a tear today.&nbsp; Hook 'em."</p><p>Jeff Howe (<a href="">@JeffHowe247</a>), a football reporter for"Somber start to the day with the passing of Darrell&nbsp;Royla&nbsp;at age 88.&nbsp; He's responsible for why so many cheer for the Longhorns."</p><p>Here's a statement from Governor Rick Perry on the passing of Darrell Royal:</p><blockquote><p>“Darrell Royal was a coaching icon and the face of football in the Lone Star State for a generation of Texans. His legacy can be counted in national championships, but also in his unending devotion to his university and in the Darrell K Royal Research Fund for Alzheimer’s Disease. Anita and I join Texans everywhere in mourning his loss. Our thoughts and prayers are with his beloved wife, Edith, son, Mack, and his extended family and friends.”</p></blockquote><p>Current<a href="" target="_blank"> UT Football Head Coach Mack Brown </a>also shared his thoughts:</p><blockquote><p>"Today is a very sad day. I lost a wonderful friend, a mentor, a confidant and my hero. College football lost maybe its best ever and the world lost a great man. I can hardly put in words how much Coach Royal means to me and all that he has done for me and my family. I wouldn't even be at Texas without Coach. His council and friendship meant a lot to me before I came to Texas, but it's been my guiding light for my 15 years here.<br><br>"Coach gave so much more to the State of Texas and college football than he took away. He&nbsp;forgot more football than most of us will ever know, including me. His impact on the game, the coaches and players, the community and the millions of lives he touched, is insurmountable.&nbsp;He will be missed in so many ways. Wed, 07 Nov 2012 14:11:55 +0000 Laura Rice & Kelli Ainsworth 5568 at Former UT Coach Darrell K Royal Passes Away The 2012 Elections Cost $6 Billion. Here’s What You Could Do With That Money <p>Here’s an eye-opening number: The total spending&nbsp;by candidates, political parties and Super PACs on this year’s presidential and congressional elections will be just shy of $6 billion.&nbsp;</p><p>So say money-in-politics watchdogs <a href="">The Center for Responsive Politics</a>. A <a href="">report on its OpenSecrets blog</a>&nbsp;predicts combined spending for the 2012 elections is on track to exceed its already astronomical prediction of $5.8 billion.</p><p>While the CRP notes that direct spending on the presidential election is actually down slightly from 2008 (going from $2.8 million last cycle to an estimated $2.6 million), spending by congressional candidates is up, as is the wave of Super PAC spending and advocacy advertisements funded in the wake of the Supreme Court’s “Citizens United” decision allowing corporate contributions.</p><p>“What remains unknown – and may never fully be accounted for – is how much money secretive ‘shadow money’ organizations spent, with some investing massive sums on ads, but also on unreported and purportedly ‘non-political’ activities, as the election neared,” the CRP writes.</p><p> Mon, 05 Nov 2012 20:04:24 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5522 at The 2012 Elections Cost $6 Billion. Here’s What You Could Do With That Money Austin Animal Center Hopes Residents Elect to Adopt <p>Austin Animal Center is urging residents to <a href="" target="_blank">“cast a ballot for companionship”</a> on Election Day this Tuesday.</p><p>Tomorrow marks the final day of the center’s “Elect to Adopt a Homeless Animal” campaign, which launched on Thursday, November 1. As a part of the campaign, Austin Animal Center is waiving adoption fees for all dogs and cats. Adopted animals will be spayed or neutered, vaccinated, microchipped and equipped with a collar and tag.&nbsp;&nbsp;</p><p> Mon, 05 Nov 2012 17:00:01 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5515 at Austin Animal Center Hopes Residents Elect to Adopt Watch Out: It's Deer Mating Season! <p>The <a href="" target="_blank">Austin/Travis County Health and Human Services</a> department is warning drivers to be on high alert for deer in the road during November and December.</p><p>These two months are what’s known as the “rut,” or deer mating season. During this time, deer can be inattentive to their surroundings and are more likely to dart out into the road and into the path of an oncoming car.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">According to data released by the City of Austin and APD</a>, there were 50 deer-involved collisions in 2011.&nbsp; There have been 11 so far this year. Nationwide, research has found that approximately 200 people a year in the United States die in deer-related car accidents. Eighteen percent of all accidents involving deer occur during November. December is the third most common month for accidents involving deer. Mon, 05 Nov 2012 14:16:34 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5514 at Watch Out: It's Deer Mating Season! Early Voting is Underway - Here’s Where and When You Can Vote (Updated) <p><strong style="margin: 0px; padding: 0px; border: 0px; font-size: 13px; vertical-align: baseline; color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; ">Update 2 (Nov. 5)</strong><span style="color: rgb(51, 51, 51); font-family: Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif; font-size: 13px; ">: Early voting is over in Austin, but on Election Day (Nov. 6) Austin voters can cast ballots <a href="">at any polling place in Travis County</a>.</span></p><p><strong>Update (Nov. 2):&nbsp;</strong>Today is the last day to cast a ballot during early voting. Most <a href="">early voting locations</a> are open until 7 p.m. but the "Mega Voting Site" at Highland Mall will be open until 9 p.m.</p><p>So far, more than 202,000 Travis County voters have cast a ballot—that’s about 32 percent of registered voters.</p><p>Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 6.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank">Capital Metro is offering free rides </a>on all buses and the MetroRail throughout the day on Election Day to help people get to the polls.</p><p>On Election Day, Travis County voters do not have to cast a ballot at their precinct but can vote at <a href="" target="_blank"><em>any </em>polling location in the county</a>. Fri, 02 Nov 2012 19:05:34 +0000 Tyler Pratt, Kelli Ainsworth , Laura Rice & Laura Rice 5409 at Early Voting is Underway - Here’s Where and When You Can Vote (Updated) The Lead: UT Pushes for Prop 1, Domestic Partner Benefits, Video Chats in County Jails <p>Good Halloween morning. It’s going to warm up a bit today, with highs in the low 80s, but be prepared for a cool Halloween night, with a low of 57, according to the National Weather Service.</p><p>Here are some stories KUT has been working on:</p><p><strong><a href="" target="_blank">Automatic Admission to UT Getting More Difficult:</a></strong></p><blockquote><p>UT President Bill Powers says that for the Summer/Fall of 2014 and Spring of 2015, UT will automatically admit Texas seniors who rank in the top 7 percent of their high school class. That’s down from the top 9 percent this Fall/Spring and the top 8 percent next Fall/Spring.</p></blockquote><p><a href="" target="_blank"><strong>UT Makes Final Push for Prop 1:</strong></a></p><blockquote><p>The University of Texas is responding to criticism directed at Proposition 1, which would raise property taxes to help fund a UT medical school. Critics have said that UT has enough money to fund the project. However, UT President Bill Powers says, that a great deal of the money in the university’s coffers is already earmarked for other purposes. Wed, 31 Oct 2012 14:39:53 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5480 at A Few More Reasons Not to Drink and Drive This Halloween <p><strong>1. You're More Likely to Get Caught Tonight</strong>:</p><p>The Austin Police Department is enforcing a <a href="" target="_blank">"No Refusal policy</a>" beginning tonight at 9 and ending Thursday at 5 a.m.</p><p>That means police will conduct blood search warrants on drivers who are pulled over on suspicion of drunk driving and refuse to voluntarily submit to a breathalyzer or blood test.</p><p><strong>2. It'll Cost You:</strong></p><p>Police say anyone found with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher will be charged with a Class B misdemeanor and could face 3 days to 6 months in jail, a one year suspension of their driver’s license and a fine of up to $2,000 for a first offense. Wed, 31 Oct 2012 12:09:21 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5478 at A Few More Reasons Not to Drink and Drive This Halloween Next Breakthrough in Alzheimer's Research Could Happen in Texas <p>The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center is partnering with Baylor College of Medicine and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to <a href="" target="_blank">st</a><a href="" target="_blank">udy Alzheimer’s and similar neurodegenerative diseases</a>.</p><p>Together, the researchers are forming the Neurodegeneration Consortium (NDC). The researchers plan to take what they say is a new approach to studying Alzheimer’s. Most previous research has been based primarily on one theory, which posits that Alzheimer’s and the related degeneration are caused by the build-up of a specific chemical in the brain.</p><p>But NDC investigators believe recent medical research and advances indicate that <em>many </em>factors may contribute to the development of Alzheimer’s. They plan to study and identify these factors and hope the knowledge they gain can be used to create better diagnostics and treatments for Alzheimer’s and similar conditions. Mon, 29 Oct 2012 17:53:06 +0000 Kelli Ainsworth 5467 at Next Breakthrough in Alzheimer's Research Could Happen in Texas