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KUT Weekend brings you our favorite stories from the KUT newsroom. Updated Fridays!

    

Image via flickr/greenplasticamy (CC BY-NC 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Mexicans consume more carbonated drinks per person than any other nation in the world, at an average of 36 gallons a year according to experts. That's 40 percent more than the average American.

Photo Illustration: Todd Wiseman/TexasTribune

It appears more likely voters will decide the future of regulations for ride-hailing companies in Austin.

Next week the Austin City Council will decide whether to adopt rules written by Uber and Lyft, or put them to a public vote. A petition by Ridesharing Works for Austin calling for those rules was certified Tuesday by the city clerk. The rules do not include fingerprint background checks for drivers – as some council members would like to see.

Image via Pixabay (Public Domain)

From Texas Standard:

Texas leads the nation when it comes to exonerating wrongfully convicted people, and the state may be adding to those numbers through closer scrutiny of DNA evidence practices.

Courts are now saying that some convictions could have been based on outdated DNA evidence, and are sending notice to defendants whose trials may have been affected.


Mike Blizzard via Twitter

The Austin Monitor reports: While the city clerk still has not received a promised petition seeking the recall of Council Member Ann Kitchen, the Texas Ethics Commission has received four complaints filed against the group behind the alleged effort.

Austin attorney Fred Lewis filed the four complaints on Friday morning. They name Austin4All PAC, Rachel Kania, Tori Moreland, and Joe Basel as respective respondents.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon for KUT News

Latino voter groups say they are seeing an uptick in legal residents applying for citizenship so they can vote in this year’s presidential election.

The organization Mi Familia Vota held citizenship workshops in six different states this year, including Texas. The group says those events are more popular than ever.

Why Barbecue Homogenization is a Good Thing

Feb 4, 2016
Photo via Flickr/wallyg (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Barbecue in the U.S. comes in all shapes and sizes. The multiple variations of sauces, cuts of meats, and rubs provide a distinction between certain regional styles of the dish. Or do they? 

Image via Pixabay/jarmoluk (Public Domain)

From Texas Standard:

Tonight at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, the owners of the new U. S. soccer team, the Spurs Sports & Entertainment group, are set to make a big announcement. But before they do, let's discuss what's in a name when it comes to sports teams.


Gallup-Healthways

Texans say they’re not as well-off as they were a year ago, according to a new Gallup-Healthways poll measuring each state's well-being. But despite the drop, Texas' well-being index number is pretty high compared to other states'.

Since 2008, Gallup-Healthways has issued its annual report, the State of American Well-Being, which analyzes five facets of wellness: Sense of Purpose, Social Relationships, Financial Security, Relationship to Community and Physical Health.

Ashley Lopez for KUT

In about a month, the race to replace retiring Democratic state Rep. Elliott Naishtat begins on Election Day and, because there are seven candidates in the field, it will most likely end in a run-off election later this year.

There are no Republicans running in the Democrat-dominated district, which covers most of Central Austin, and before then, voters will have to choose between candidates who mostly agree on everything.


Mose Buchele for KUT News

Cattle rustlers have been both reviled and mythologized in Texas since there was cattle on the range. Now, the downturn in oil prices may be giving rise to a new kind of criminal in South Texas: oil rustlers.


April King via Wikipedia

Another Groundhog Day has come and gone and, despite the predictable smattering of Bill Murray-related memes, there’s not much solace in the promise of an early spring in a state like Texas. The state has its own version of the holiday based right here in Central Texas and, as one Waco writer put, “the groundhog knows no more about the weather than a man who has only been in Texas two days.”

Nathan Bernier, KUT News

If you’re a teacher in an Austin public school, it’s hard to get a pay raise. Teachers who start out in Austin make around $45,000 a year. If they stay in the district for 20 years, on average, their annual salary increases by just $5,000 in that time, but some in the Austin Independent School District are trying to change that.


In celebration of Black History month, In Black America presents an encore presentation of "Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music," an extended interview with her that originally aired in March 1983.

Image credit Shelby Knowles/Texas Tribune

From Texas Standard:

If you want to understand what's happening in the nation at large, you need to understand the unusual politics of Texas. On Tuesday, a prominent advocate of the idea that "less is more" when it comes to government has a big head start on a voyage he hopes will end at the White House.

http://blogdailyherald.com/

In this edition of Two Guys on Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke talk about the way we make decisions when we don't have a lot of information, and the way we gain knowledge through experience that we can't always articulate.


flickr user mirsasha

Members of Austin’s Public Safety Commission are calling for changes to a city plan that aims to eliminate traffic deaths in the city. 

Commission member Mike Levy criticized the Vision Zero task force’s draft plan, which includes more than 100 recommendations aimed at making Austin’s roadways safer, calling it a "kitchen sink."

Bob Deammrich

DES MOINES, Iowa — U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas won Iowa's GOP presidential caucuses on Monday, edging out billionaire Donald Trump for the top spot in the first-in-the-nation nominating contest. 

With 99 percent of precincts reporting, Cruz led Trump by 28 percent to 24 percent, according to unofficial returns. U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida posted a stronger-than-expected showing at 23 percent. 

Mike Blizzard via Twitter

After news that a Political Action Committee had gathered enough signatures to recall an Austin City Council member, neighbors and fellow council members came out Monday to show their support.

“My experience with the Council member is that she is so hard-working and diligent and cares so much about this community,” District 4’s Greg Casar said of Kitchen.


Image via Flickr/Donnie Ray Jones (CC BY 2.0)

From Texas Standard:

Every two weeks in Bexar County, a baby dies.

That number is the highest in the state. The majority of deaths are attributed to unsafe sleep patterns or "co-sleeping," when the baby sleeps with parents or a sibling. Babies can suffocate or be smothered while sleeping with bigger people.

A San Antonio hospital is taking a cue from Finland and offering "baby boxes" to new mothers. But what are they and how do they help keep babies safe?

 


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