Austin
8:47 am
Mon April 9, 2012

AM Update: Funeral for Fallen Officer, Ron Paul's Texas Tour, Wal-Mart and Workers Compensation

Funeral for Slain Officer

The public is invited to salute fallen Austin Police Officer Jaime Padron.

Padron was shot to death on Friday while responding to a call at a North Austin Wal-Mart.

Visitation is tomorrow from 6 to 8:00 p.m. at Cook-Walden Funeral Home at 6100 North Lamar Blvd. The funeral will be held this Wednesday at 11 a.m. at Shoreline Church on Burnet Road. Austin Cops for Charities, a local group that provides aid and support for the family of Austin officers, has created a donation fund for Padron’s family.

Padron is the first APD Officer killed in the line of duty since 2004.

The man accused in his death—Brandon Montgomery Daniel—is facing a charge of capital murder.

Ron Paul to Tour Texas

Republican presidential candidate Ron Paul begins a three-day campaign tour of Texas  tomorrow.

Paul’s first stop on his Texas tour will be at A&M University and will continue on to the Will Rogers Memorial Center in Fort Worth and wrap up at the Main Plaza in San Antonio.

Paul’s visit to the Lone Star State is being organized by “Youth for Ron Paul,” a group that attempts to boost youth involvement in Paul’s 2012 presidential campaign.

Registration for the events is free and open to the public.

Wal-Mart and Workers Comp

Wal-Mart’s recent switch from a state-governed workers compensation system to a privatized one has caused a swirl of controversy in Texas.

Texas, according to an article by the Texas Tribune, differs greatly from the rest of the country when it comes to workers’ compensation:

Texas is the only state in the country that allows employers of any size to decline to carry state-regulated workers’ compensation coverage. Businesses administer their own injury benefit programs, reaping big cost savings in exchange for exposing themselves to heightened liability risks.

Some opponents like Rick Levy, a lobbyist for the AFL-CIO see the privatization of worker’s compensation as a “real threat” to the state’s system.  Others claim that under a private firm, companies like Wal-Mart can provide significantly less coverage for their workers.

But some proponents claim that the move will allow Wal-Mart and similar companies to create a balance between benefits and employee responsibility.