Laura Rice

Producer, Texas Standard

Laura first joined the KUT team in April 2012. She now works for the statewide program Texas Standard as a reporter and producer. Laura came to KUT from the world of television news. She has worn many different hats as an anchor, reporter and producer at TV stations in Austin, Amarillo and Toledo, OH. Laura is a proud graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia, a triathlete and enjoys travel, film and a good beer. She enjoys spending time with her husband and pets.

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Chris Blakeley/Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

From Texas Standard.

Few modern creations match the convenience of online holiday shopping – that is, unless you’ve had a package stolen from your front porch. Across the country, mail and delivery burglaries are on the rise, but one central Texas Police chief knows just the place place to send packages this holiday season.

Last week, the Round Rock Police Department launched Operation Front Porch, a program aimed at reducing the number of front door burglaries during the holiday season. Residents can ship packages directly to the city’s police department address and pick them up during normal business hours once they arrive.

Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA 3.0)

From Texas Standard.

The Dallas Morning News conducted an investigation this summer about what happens to kids after a mother’s arrest. In the process, they stumbled on an interesting fact – more women are being jailed in Texas, even though arrests of women have dropped.

Investigative reporter Cary Aspinwall found that the number of women in county jails across Texas awaiting trial has increased about 50 percent since 2011.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon/KUT News

From Texas Standard:

This Election Day, school bond measures are on the ballot for many communities across Texas. More than 50 school districts are asking voters to approve around $8 billion in bonds. More than $1 billion is for just one school district, Austin ISD. Spring Branch ISD in Harris County is asking for about $900 million.

Joe Smith, a retired superintendent from East Texas who now runs the website Texas ISD, says Texas schools are growing quickly and more bonds would help to build new facilities.

KUT News

From Texas Standard:

Two Houston-area high school students protesting the Pledge of Allegiance say their constitutional rights have been violated by their school districts – and they’re taking their protest to court.

stephenvelasco/Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

From Texas Standard.

Travis County, home to Austin, has been working to build a better voting system – one that satisfies the need to maintain security and accessibility for voters. Travis County Clerk Dana DeBeauvoir, the chief election official, has been a part of developing the system, called STAR Vote, which would have replaced the current Hart InterCivic eSlate system that has been in use since 2001. That system cost roughly $7 million, and has seen several security augmentations over the years.

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