Kelly Krupa http://kut.org en Governor Perry Facing Possible Grand Jury Indictment http://kut.org/post/governor-perry-facing-possible-grand-jury-indictment <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A Travis County grand jury is considering whether or not to indict Gov. Rick Perry over his veto of funding for the county's Public Integrity Unit.</span></p><p>Gov. Perry could be charged with several offenses, including bribery, coercion of a public servant, and abuse of power after vetoing more than $3 million in state money for the unit that investigates political corruption.</p><p>Perry's veto came as the result of an ultimatum given by Perry to Travis County District Attorney Rosemary Lehmberg.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">Last April, </span>Lehmberg<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> was arrested for drunk driving. She </span><a href="http://kut.org/post/travis-county-da-lehmberg-pleads-guilty-gets-45-jail-days-0" style="line-height: 1.5;">pleaded guilty</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and served jail time, but </span><a href="http://kut.org/post/judge-allows-lehmberg-stay-district-attorney" style="line-height: 1.5;">refused to step down</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span></p><p> Wed, 23 Apr 2014 14:48:58 +0000 Ben Philpott & Kelly Krupa 10282 at http://kut.org Governor Perry Facing Possible Grand Jury Indictment Water Main Break Causes Continued Closures http://kut.org/post/water-main-break-causes-continued-closures <p><strong>Update: </strong>Some lanes remain closed on 2222 Thursday morning after a water main break Wednesday caused part of the roadway to collapse.</p><p>Eastbound 2222 is closed between Parkcrest Drive and Balcones. The westbound lanes are open – and traffic on Balcones is open.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;"><strong>Update </strong>(April 9, 12:13 p.m.): Austin Water crews are still working to determine the cause and location of the break. Once that is done they can determine some sort of timeline for when repairs will take place, says Austin Water's Jason Hill.</span></p><p>"We brought the water pressure down, so there are a number of customers with low pressure or without water – not a lot at this particular point," Hill says. "Once we get to where the break is we’ll have a better idea of what needs to happen and how many people will actually be shut out during the repair."</p><p> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 12:40:59 +0000 Kelly Krupa & Laura Rice 10175 at http://kut.org Water Main Break Causes Continued Closures Texas Facing 'Judicial Vacancy Crisis,' Report Claims http://kut.org/post/texas-facing-judicial-vacancy-crisis-report-claims <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Texas is in a judicial vacancy crisis </span><a href="http://www.americanprogress.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/TexasJudges-brief.pdf" style="line-height: 1.5;">according to a report</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> released today by the liberal</span><a href="http://www.americanprogress.org/" style="line-height: 1.5;"> Center for American Progress</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> in Washington and Austin-based </span><a href="http://progresstexas.org/" style="line-height: 1.5;">Progress Texas</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">.</span></p><p>The report shows Texas has the most vacant federal judge seats of any state, with 10 spots open as of March 19. The report warns those 10 vacancies could grow to 13 if no action is taken, since three more seats are set to open up next year.</p><p></p><p>Those 10 vacant seats translate into backlogged cases, with especially high caseloads along the U.S.-Mexico border, the report notes. The majority of current and future vacancies also happen to be concentrated in the southern and western parts of the state.</p><p> Wed, 02 Apr 2014 16:04:50 +0000 Kelly Krupa 10088 at http://kut.org Texas Facing 'Judicial Vacancy Crisis,' Report Claims No Surprise: Austin Ranks Among Fastest Growing Metros - Again http://kut.org/post/no-surprise-austin-ranks-among-fastest-growing-metros-again <p>Once again, Austin ranks among the fastest growing metropolitan areas in the nation.</p><p>According to the most recent data from the Census Bureau, Austin ranked eighth nationally on a list of rapidly expanding metro areas, growing 2.6 percent from July 2012 to July 2013.</p><p>This should come as no surprise, since Austin has been near the top of the list since 2010. But what may be surprising is that the city’s growth could finally be leveling off.</p> Thu, 27 Mar 2014 05:01:00 +0000 Kelly Krupa 10038 at http://kut.org No Surprise: Austin Ranks Among Fastest Growing Metros - Again City Spends $9.6 Million to Buy Southwest Austin Golf Course http://kut.org/post/city-spends-96-million-buy-southwest-austin-golf-course <p>The Austin City Council approved the acquisition of the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.greyrockgolfclub.com/">Grey Rock Golf Club's </a>courses and tennis facility today, allocating $9.6 million of the Parks and Recreation Department’s budget for the purchase.</p><p>The course sits on 292 acres of south of Lady Bird Lake, adjacent to the Circle C subdivision. The course lies in the environmentally sensitive Edwards Aquifer Recharge Zone.</p><p>City Deputy Chief Financial Officer Greg Canally called the Grey Rock purchase a “unique opportunity to acquire a piece of land that actually comes with an existing revenue stream.” Some of that existing revenue will be leveraged to pay off an estimated $400,000 in debt service; the department estimates the revenue will cover half of that amount.</p><p> Thu, 20 Mar 2014 20:58:29 +0000 Kelly Krupa 10010 at http://kut.org City Spends $9.6 Million to Buy Southwest Austin Golf Course Council Member Mike Martinez Joins Race for Austin Mayor http://kut.org/post/council-member-mike-martinez-joins-race-austin-mayor <p>Austin City Council member&nbsp;<a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/biography/council-member">Mike Martinez</a>&nbsp;announced this morning he will run for mayor.</p><p>His campaign will officially kick off April&nbsp;5, with Martinez planning campaign announcements in each of Austin's 10 new City Council districts.</p><div>"Because of the new district system and because we have moved our election to November, obviously it‘s going to be the highest voter turnout in a mayoral election than we have ever seen in the history of Austin," Martinez says. "Typically in May we see 30 to 40 thousand voters. We anticipate well over 200,000 voters in this November election, so that will be a major, major difference this year.”&nbsp;</div><p> Wed, 19 Mar 2014 16:22:23 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9996 at http://kut.org Council Member Mike Martinez Joins Race for Austin Mayor On to November: The Winners in the 2014 Texas Primaries http://kut.org/post/november-winners-2014-texas-primaries <p>The results are in for the&nbsp;<a href="http://kut.org/post/live-blog-texas-travis-county-primary-results-coming">2014 Texas Primary Elections</a>. We now know who most of the candidates will be in the November general election, but several statewide races are headed to a runoff on May 27.</p><p>We've compiled a list of the top vote earners for the major statewide and Travis County races. The percentage of votes received (as of this writing) is shown next to each candidate's name. Races with an asterisk are heading to a runoff.</p> Wed, 05 Mar 2014 17:21:48 +0000 Kelly Krupa & Laura Rice 9894 at http://kut.org On to November: The Winners in the 2014 Texas Primaries Cutting Down on Traffic With an App: Austin Introduces Carma Carpooling http://kut.org/post/cutting-down-traffic-app-austin-introduces-carma-carpooling <p><em>Disclosure: Carma is a sponsor of KUT.&nbsp;</em></p><p>The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.mobilityauthority.com/">Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority</a>&nbsp;cut the ribbon today on a&nbsp;<a href="http://www.mobilityauthority.com/monkeewrench/files/resources/Carma_Austin_Press_Release_Feb__27_2014.pdf">new project</a> that could reduce traffic congestion while saving drivers money.</p><p>The project is a public-private partnership between the city and state transportation officials, the CTRMA, Texas A&amp;M and a ride-sharing app: <a href="https://car.ma/index.html">Carma.</a></p><p>Carma is based on the concept of "casual carpooling." Paul Steinberg, vice president of business operations for Carma, calls it a mutually beneficial model that affords people rides and grants drivers access to cheaper toll roads and high occupancy vehicle lanes.</p><p> Thu, 27 Feb 2014 21:35:02 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9867 at http://kut.org Cutting Down on Traffic With an App: Austin Introduces Carma Carpooling What's a Bitcoin ATM Doing in a Downtown Austin Bar? http://kut.org/post/whats-bitcoin-atm-doing-downtown-austin-bar <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The first cash-dispensing&nbsp;</span>Bitcoin<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> ATM machine in the U.S. launched today, and it’s right here in Austin.</span></p><p>Bitcoin is a form of digital currency that was first developed in 2009; it is a peer-to-peer payment system that operates outside of a central authority or bank. As&nbsp;<a href="http://kut.org/post/austin-bitcoiners-bring-online-currency-offline-stores">previously reported by KUT</a>, Bitcoin was created for and traditionally used as a web-based currency, but some are attempting to move the currency offline.</p><p>The new Bitcoin ATM represents a big step in the process of trying to brand Bitcoin as a more “mainstream” form of currency.</p><p> Thu, 20 Feb 2014 23:43:01 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9820 at http://kut.org What's a Bitcoin ATM Doing in a Downtown Austin Bar? Prescribed Burn Could Have Austin-Area Residents Seeing Smoke http://kut.org/post/prescribed-burn-could-have-austin-area-residents-seeing-smoke <p>Austin area residents may see some smoke today as the result of a prescribed burn.</p><p>Officials warn that smoke may be visible west of Buda and south of FM 1826 from mid-morning until sunset. Citizens are urged to keep the prescribed burn in mind and exercise caution when contacting emergency services about any smoke.</p> Wed, 19 Feb 2014 18:14:37 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9809 at http://kut.org Prescribed Burn Could Have Austin-Area Residents Seeing Smoke Video: Site of Fort Hood Massacre Demolished, Memorial to Be Built http://kut.org/post/video-site-fort-hood-massacre-demolished-memorial-be-built <p>It was over four years ago when Army psychiatrist Nidal Hasan entered the troop-filled soldier processing room at <a href="http://kut.org/term/fort-hood" target="_blank">Fort Hood</a> and opened fire with a laser sighted pistol.</p><p>Yesterday, the Fort Hood Directorate of Public Works confirmed demolition of Building 42003, the soldier processing room where most of the attack took place.</p><p>Video of the demolition&nbsp;–&nbsp;seen below&nbsp;–&nbsp;shows a backhoe tearing into an exterior wall of the building and pulling pieces of it to the ground.&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">The November 2009 attack left 13 people dead and more than 30 wounded.</span></p><p> Wed, 19 Feb 2014 14:04:47 +0000 Nathan Bernier & Kelly Krupa 9807 at http://kut.org Video: Site of Fort Hood Massacre Demolished, Memorial to Be Built Schools Will Have to Make Up Snow Days Starting This Monday http://kut.org/post/schools-will-have-make-snow-days-starting-monday <p>The harsh winter weather this year has left local school districts with a mounting number of cancelations and delays. Most school districts in the region canceled classes on Jan. 24 and 28, and delayed start times on Feb. 6 and 11 due to icy conditions.</p><p>Those snow and ice days may have seemed like welcome "free days," but they come with a price. The Texas Education Agency requires that canceled class days must be made up. For most school districts, this means giving up holidays such as Good Friday, Memorial Day and Presidents Day (this Monday) to make up for lost time. Below, you can see a full list of make-up days for Austin-area schools.</p><p> Thu, 13 Feb 2014 20:41:52 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9781 at http://kut.org Schools Will Have to Make Up Snow Days Starting This Monday Infographic: Texas Leads the U.S. in Technology Exports, Jobs http://kut.org/post/infographic-texas-leads-us-technology-exports-jobs <p>In a neverending battle of one-upmanship it seems&nbsp;<span style="line-height: 1.5;">—&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">for now at least&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">—&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Texas has the upper hand over the rest of the nation in the tech game. &nbsp;</span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">A report from the <a href="http://www.techamericafoundation.org/">Tech America Foundation</a> found that <a href="http://www.techamerica.org/Docs/TechAmerica%20Foundation%20-Tech%20Trade%20in%20the%20States%20Updated%202.10.14.pdf">Texas surpassed</a> long-time tech export leader California with a total $45.1 billion in tech exports, compared to California's $44.8 billion in exports in 2012. Texas and California also led the nation in tech jobs with 330,977 and 328,301 jobs — 22 percent and 21 percent of the 1.4 million tech jobs in the U.S.</span></p><p>To illustrate the data, we've created an infographic you can see below.&nbsp;</p><p> Wed, 12 Feb 2014 18:13:28 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9768 at http://kut.org Infographic: Texas Leads the U.S. in Technology Exports, Jobs Too Many SXSW Events? City Stops Accepting Permit Applications Before Deadline http://kut.org/post/too-many-sxsw-events-city-stops-accepting-permit-applications-deadline <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">For the first time ever, the City has <a href="http://www.austintexas.gov/news/city-no-longer-accepting-applications-events-during-sxsw-2014">stopped accepting permit applications </a>for the week of <a href="http://sxsw.com/">South by Southwest</a> before the actual application deadline.</span></p><p>The application cut-off announced this morning applies to all temporary use, temporary change of use, and music permits.&nbsp;</p><p>Multi-day permit applications have a deadline of one month before the event, so the city’s early cut-off only shortened that application window by one day.</p><p> Thu, 06 Feb 2014 23:28:08 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9734 at http://kut.org Too Many SXSW Events? City Stops Accepting Permit Applications Before Deadline Four Texas Athletes Representing U.S. in Sochi Games http://kut.org/post/four-texas-athletes-representing-us-sochi-games <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The Winter Olympics kick off in&nbsp;the Russian city of </span>Sochi<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> – and Texans will have four homegrown athletes to cheer for.</span></p><p>San Antonio's Justin Olsen and McKinney, Texas' Johnny Quinn are competing in two-man and four-man bobsled events. Houston's Jonathan Garcia is competing in the long track, 1000-meter&nbsp;speed skating&nbsp;event. And Denton, Texas' Jordan Malone Malone will race in speed skating's short track 500-meter and 1,500-meter competitions, and its 5,000-meter relay event.</p> Thu, 06 Feb 2014 19:24:17 +0000 Kelly Krupa 9729 at http://kut.org Four Texas Athletes Representing U.S. in Sochi Games