Phoebe Flanigan http://kut.org en City Council Approves Athenahealth Incentives Deal - But Not Unanimously http://kut.org/post/city-council-approves-athenahealth-incentives-deal-not-unanimously <p>Last night the Austin City Council approved a deal that offers nearly $680,000 dollars in incentives for <a href="http://www.athenahealth.com/">athenahealth</a> to expand in Austin. The grant will be offered in addition to a $5 million subsidy from Gov. Rick Perry's <a href="http://governor.state.tx.us/ecodev/financial_resources/texas_enterprise_fund/">Texas Enterprise Fund</a>.</p><p>But not everyone is happy with the deal. Some council members argue that the city’s booming economy doesn’t need to offer subsidies to bring business to Austin. (The deal passed on a 5-2 vote, with city council members Laura Morrison and Kathie Tovo voting no.)</p><p><a href="http://www.infactdaily.com/">Austin Monitor</a> publisher Michael&nbsp;Kanin&nbsp;says that this debate is heating up as council members become increasingly divided on the issue of business incentives.</p><p> Fri, 31 Jan 2014 17:45:55 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9688 at http://kut.org City Council Approves Athenahealth Incentives Deal - But Not Unanimously Up to 37,000 Travis County Voters Could Lack Required ID http://kut.org/post/37000-travis-county-voters-could-lack-required-id <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Austin is just over a month away from March primaries&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">–&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">and Monday, Feb. 3 is the final day to <a href="http://www.traviscountytax.org/goVoters.do">register to vote</a>.</span></p><p>Some Texans will also need to get their IDs in order. Following <a href="http://kut.org/post/voting-rights-act-partially-overturned-texas-implements-voter-id-law">a 2013 Supreme Court decision</a>, a state issued drivers license or one of several approved documents is required to cast a ballot at Texas polling stations. (See <a href="https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/1010780-texas-voter-id-requirements.html">more information on acceptable documents</a>.)</p><p>Tax Assessor/Collector Bruce Elfant says the new law could affect voters in Travis County.</p><p> Thu, 30 Jan 2014 18:59:02 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9680 at http://kut.org Up to 37,000 Travis County Voters Could Lack Required ID What Weather Closures Mean for Central Texas' HD 50 Special Election http://kut.org/post/what-weather-closures-mean-central-texas-hd-50-special-election <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Republican </span><a href="http://www.drmikefortexas.com/" style="line-height: 1.5;">Mike VanDeWalle</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and Democrat </span><a href="http://celiaisrael.com/" style="line-height: 1.5;">Celia Israel</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> face off in a special election for District 50 today.&nbsp;</span></p> Tue, 28 Jan 2014 16:36:52 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9659 at http://kut.org What Weather Closures Mean for Central Texas' HD 50 Special Election Power for Parkinson's Inspires Patients to Step Into an Active Life http://kut.org/post/power-parkinsons-inspires-patients-step-active-life <p class="p1">With a vibrant live music scene, a bustling tech sector and a top-flight university, Austin seems like an oasis for young people.</p><p class="p1">However, the seemingly youthful Texas capital isn't wasted on the young.&nbsp;</p><p class="p1">The Austin-Round Rock area has the fastest growing population of people between ages 55 and 64, and the third-fastest growing for those 65 and over, according to U.S. Census data.&nbsp;</p><p class="p1">An organization called Power for Parkinson's is offering those affected by the disease a chance to step forward into an active, healthy life.&nbsp;</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/127765095&amp;color=ff6600&amp;auto_play=false&amp;show_artwork=true" width="100%"></iframe> Wed, 08 Jan 2014 13:03:06 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9483 at http://kut.org Power for Parkinson's Inspires Patients to Step Into an Active Life 14,000 Texans Signed Up for Obamacare Plans http://kut.org/post/14000-texans-signed-obamacare-plans <p>Early technical issues with the new healthcare marketplace, <a href="http://www.HealthCare.gov">HealthCare.gov</a>, brought serious criticism to an already controversial government initiative. But a new report published by the U.S. Department of Health &amp; Human Services suggests that the tides may be turning for Obamacare.</p><p>By the end of November, coverage plan enrollment numbers for Texans had jumped to 14,000 –&nbsp;that’s <a href="http://kut.org/post/under-3000-texans-sign-insurance-obamacare-website">up from 3,000 the month before</a>.</p><p>And many more Texans are on their way to enrolling. According to the same report, nearly a quarter of a million Texans have applied for coverage and are waiting to choose a Marketplace plan. Those numbers are actually the second highest in the nation for states that are supported or fully run by a federal (rather than a state-implemented) healthcare Marketplace. Wed, 11 Dec 2013 14:11:34 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9346 at http://kut.org 14,000 Texans Signed Up for Obamacare Plans Thanksgiving 2013: Turkey Trot Road Detours, City of Austin Closures http://kut.org/post/thanksgiving-2013-turkey-trot-road-detours-city-austin-closures <p>Even if you’re <a href="http://kut.org/post/either-flying-or-driving-expect-crowds-thanksgiving-travel">staying off the highway </a>this Thanksgiving, your plans might still be affected by holiday schedules and street closures.</p><p>Chief among them: the <a href="http://thundercloud.com/index.php/trot-home">23rd Annual ThunderCloud Subs Turkey Trot</a> takes place downtown Thursday morning, with many roads &nbsp;blocked off until noon. The course, which begins at Auditorium Shores, features a five-mile run, a one-mile walk, and a <a href="http://www.steppingstoneschool.com/">Stepping Stone School</a> Kids’ K. (See a map of related street closures below.)</p><p> Wed, 27 Nov 2013 20:22:40 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9281 at http://kut.org Thanksgiving 2013: Turkey Trot Road Detours, City of Austin Closures Either Flying or Driving, Expect Crowds for Thanksgiving Travel http://kut.org/post/either-flying-or-driving-expect-crowds-thanksgiving-travel <p>Getting out of town this weekend to join relatives for Thanksgiving?</p><p>Plan wisely – it’s one of the busiest travel days of the year. According to a report by <a href="http://www.texas.aaa.com/home.html">AAA Texas</a>, 3.4 million other Texans will also be traveling for the holidays.</p><p>Most travelers will leave for their trip on Wednesday, Nov. 27 and return on Sunday, Dec. 1. For those going out of town, 3.1 million plan to travel by car.</p><p> Wed, 27 Nov 2013 16:20:16 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9276 at http://kut.org Either Flying or Driving, Expect Crowds for Thanksgiving Travel Where Do We Grow From Here? Urban Farms and Gentrification in East Austin http://kut.org/post/where-do-we-grow-here-urban-farms-and-gentrification-east-austin <p><em>Debate over whether urban farms contribute to the gentrification of Austin’s eastside was prolonged last month, when the Austin City Council decided to postpone a decision on <a href="http://kut.org/post/austins-urban-farm-proposals-have-some-neighbors-crying-foul">changes to the city's urban farm rules</a>. The council is slated to take action on that matter today. </em></p><p><em>Before their decision, a look at the issue from two standpoints: an examination of the gentrification debate, and a look at one urban farm in action.</em></p><p>Walk down the gravel path at 3300 Govalle Road and you’ll feel as though you’ve stepped into the middle of the countryside. “It doesn’t even feel like you’re in the city of Austin,” says Dorsey Barger.</p><p>She would know: as a co-owner of <a href="http://www.hausbarfarms.com/">HausBar Farms</a>, she gets to live there.</p><p><iframe frameborder="no" height="166" scrolling="no" src="https://w.soundcloud.com/player/?url=https%3A//api.soundcloud.com/tracks/115825814" width="100%"></iframe></p><p> Thu, 21 Nov 2013 16:11:37 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9233 at http://kut.org Where Do We Grow From Here? Urban Farms and Gentrification in East Austin Map: Which Parts of Austin Should Get Urban Rail First? http://kut.org/post/map-which-parts-austin-should-get-urban-rail-first <p>Now’s your chance to name the parts of Austin that should be served by urban rail.</p><p>This week, the City of Austin and its transportation partners are inviting the public to name the subcorridor that would benefit the most from urban rail.</p><p>Planners at <a href="http://www.projectconnect.com/">Project Connect</a>, the team coordinating the city’s rail and regional transportation efforts, have identified 10 subcorridors within central Austin. Not counting downtown’s core, they are (in clockwise order): Lamar, Highland, Mueller, MLK, East Austin, the East Riverside Corridor, South Congress, South Lamar, West Austin, and Mopac.&nbsp;</p><p> Wed, 06 Nov 2013 20:11:44 +0000 Wells Dunbar & Phoebe Flanigan 9111 at http://kut.org Map: Which Parts of Austin Should Get Urban Rail First? Williamson County Voters OK Transportation, Parks Spending http://kut.org/post/williamson-county-voters-ok-transportation-parks-spending <p>Last week, <em>Forbes</em> magazine ranked Williamson County <a href="http://www.forbes.com/sites/joelkotkin/2013/09/26/americas-fastest-growing-counties-the-burbs-are-back/">America’s fastest-growing county</a>. Although Williamson County’s 7.94 percent growth rate has had positive impacts on its economy, the boom has put a strain on existing infrastructure.</p><p>Yesterday, Williamson County voters responded by approving two bond packages aimed at helping county infrastructure keep up with growth. The two propositions:</p><ul><li>Prop 1, adding $275 million to the county’s budget for road improvements and construction, passed with 64 percent of the vote.</li><li>Prop 2, earmarking $40 million to upgrade the county’s park system, passed with nearly 55 percent.</li></ul><p> Wed, 06 Nov 2013 14:32:21 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 9107 at http://kut.org Council Preview: Putting Austin Cemetery Changes to Rest? http://kut.org/post/council-preview-putting-austin-cemetery-changes-rest <p>Earlier this month, Austin&rsquo;s Parks and Recreation Department&nbsp;took on a difficult task &ndash; cleaning up Austin&rsquo;s five city-owned cemeteries. But the cleanup policies have rankled some families of the dead.</p><p>The city received a barrage of complaints after it began citing graves adorned with extra objects for code violations: benches, birdbaths, vegetation, wind chimes, stones and more.<img alt="Description: --break-&gt;" height="3" src="file://localhost/Users/wd285/Library/Caches/TemporaryItems/msoclip/0/clip_image002.png" width="3" /></p><p>Today, the Austin City Council&nbsp;will look to revise the city&rsquo;s strategy and finally put the issue to rest. The cleanup, which was slated to begin Nov. 1, could be delayed another six months.</p><p> Thu, 17 Oct 2013 14:40:30 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan & KUT Staff 8948 at http://kut.org Council Preview: Putting Austin Cemetery Changes to Rest? Austin Film Fest: Breaking Bad's Vince Gilligan Teams with Will Ferrell http://kut.org/post/austin-film-fest-breaking-bads-vince-gilligan-teams-will-ferrell <p>Where has “Breaking Bad” creator Vince Gilligan chosen to take a post-finale victory lap? Here in Austin – resurrecting his <a href="http://splitsider.com/2013/09/before-breaking-bad-vince-gilligan-used-to-write-will-ferrell-movies-and-other-comedies/">feature-length screenplay “2 FACE”</a> with none other than Will Ferrell reading the lead role.</p><p>In honor of its 20th anniversary this year, the <a href="http://www.austinfilmfestival.com/">Austin Film Festival</a> has pulled out all the stops. Besides the staged reading of Gilligan’s “2 FACE,” the eight-day festival also recently announced feature appearances by director <a href="http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0001129/">Jonathan Demme</a>, “Freaks and Geeks” and “Mad Men” actor <a href="http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0004802/">Linda Cardellini</a>, and this year’s Extraordinary Contribution to Filmmaking Actor awardee, <a href="http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000215/?ref_=nv_sr_1">Susan Sarandon</a>.&nbsp;</p><p> Wed, 09 Oct 2013 15:30:31 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 8892 at http://kut.org Austin Film Fest: Breaking Bad's Vince Gilligan Teams with Will Ferrell South by Southwest Invites the Jocks to the Party with SXsports http://kut.org/post/south-southwest-invites-jocks-party-sxsports <p>Though its average attendee is much older, you can think about South by Southwest like it was a high school: It&rsquo;s got cool rockers, AV buffs (SXSW Film), tech geeks (SXSW Interactive), even straight-A students (SXSWedu) and crunchy granola-types (SXSW Eco).</p><p>Now South by Southwest has invited the jocks to the party.</p><p> Wed, 02 Oct 2013 16:29:50 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 8838 at http://kut.org South by Southwest Invites the Jocks to the Party with SXsports How Race & Ethnicity Could Help Shape UT's Medical School Curriculum http://kut.org/post/how-race-ethnicity-could-help-shape-uts-medical-school-curriculum <p>When the University of Texas&rsquo; new <a href="http://www.utexas.edu/dell-medical-school">Dell Medical School</a> opens its doors in 2016, it will be the first new medical school at a leading research university in over fifty years. And its creation offers significant possibilities for doctors, educators and public health advocates.&nbsp;</p><p>&ldquo;We see this as an exciting opportunity to rethink medical education from the ground up,&rdquo; says New York University professor <a href="http://anthropology.as.nyu.edu/object/anthro.helenahhansen">Helena Hansen</a>,&nbsp;one of the participants at this week&rsquo;s&nbsp;<a href="http://conferences.la.utexas.edu/healthdisparities/">conference on racial and ethnic health disparities</a>.&nbsp;&ldquo;Because you&rsquo;re starting a program from scratch here in Austin, you can think very big.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p><p> Wed, 25 Sep 2013 21:53:59 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 8788 at http://kut.org How Race & Ethnicity Could Help Shape UT's Medical School Curriculum A Dispute Brews in Austin Over 'Namaste' Beer Trademark http://kut.org/post/dispute-brews-austin-over-namaste-beer-trademark <p>An Austin beer emporium may be forced to change the name of its line of brews.</p><p>First opened in 1986, South Austin&rsquo;s <a href="http://whipin.com/">Whip In</a> has evolved from a convenience store into a &ldquo;Dhabapub&rdquo; offering Indian cuisine and 72 beers on tap.&nbsp;It&rsquo;s also launched an in-house line of beers: Namaste Brewery. &nbsp;But this week, Whip In announced it was being asked to surrender the Namaste name.</p><p> Wed, 25 Sep 2013 18:30:57 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 8783 at http://kut.org A Dispute Brews in Austin Over 'Namaste' Beer Trademark County Commissioners Approve Some Proposed Roads Near F1 Racetrack (Update) http://kut.org/post/county-commissioners-approve-some-proposed-roads-near-f1-racetrack-update <p><iframe frameborder="0" height="375" marginheight="0" marginwidth="0" scrolling="no" src="https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msa=0&amp;msid=201079182274657105434.0004e6a9c8c4df667ade0&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;t=h&amp;ll=30.162494,-97.628632&amp;spn=0.055657,0.077248&amp;z=13&amp;output=embed" width="451"></iframe><br><em><small>View <a href="https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msa=0&amp;msid=201079182274657105434.0004e6a9c8c4df667ade0&amp;ie=UTF8&amp;t=h&amp;ll=30.162494,-97.628632&amp;spn=0.055657,0.077248&amp;z=13&amp;source=embed" style="color:#0000FF;text-align:left">Proposed Roads Near F1 Racetrack</a> in a larger map</small></em></p><p><strong style="line-height: 1.5;">Update:</strong><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Travis County Commissioners have agreed to fund the construction of a new road in Del Valle near the Circuit of the Americas track using non-taxpayer approved bonds. Commissioner Margaret Gomez, who represents the area where the road will be built, says the project is critical for economic development.</span></p><p> Tue, 24 Sep 2013 14:56:57 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan & Mark Gwin 8731 at http://kut.org It’s National Preparedness Month: Here Are 4 Ways to Be Ready for Emergencies http://kut.org/post/it-s-national-preparedness-month-here-are-4-ways-be-ready-emergencies <p></p><p>According to a survey from Austin’s <a href="http://austintexas.gov/department/homeland-security-and-emergency-management">Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Management</a>, less than 10 percent of Austinites are ready for an emergency or natural disaster.&nbsp;</p><p>“People just don’t think anything’s going to happen here,” explains spokesperson Candice Wade Cooper.&nbsp; “Even though Austin may not be prone to sudden emergencies like earthquakes or tsunamis, there are all kinds of things that can catch you off guard – flooding, fires, burglary.&nbsp;It’s important to be prepared.”</p><p> Tue, 17 Sep 2013 18:42:16 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 8715 at http://kut.org It’s National Preparedness Month: Here Are 4 Ways to Be Ready for Emergencies Learn More About Plan to Bury MoPac's Downtown Exit Ramps http://kut.org/post/learn-more-about-plan-bury-mopacs-downtown-exit-ramps <p>There are few things most drivers despise more than sitting in traffic.&nbsp; Add the sweltering heat of a Texas summer day, and you’ve introduced even more suffering.</p><p>That’s bad news for Austin, a city that was ranked fourth-worst nationally for traffic in 2013.&nbsp; A good deal of this infamous congestion is born along MoPac.&nbsp; Designed in 1961 to meet the needs of less than a quarter of a million people, MoPac has been under strain since the beginning of Austin’s demographic boom.&nbsp; Today, the design is simply incapable of meeting the needs of the city’s burgeoning population.</p><p> Thu, 05 Sep 2013 20:33:56 +0000 Phoebe Flanigan 8615 at http://kut.org Learn More About Plan to Bury MoPac's Downtown Exit Ramps