Austin

Austin
10:40 am
Fri January 18, 2013

Livestrong Foundation: Disappointed but Moving on (Updated)

Livestrong Foundation employees react to Armstrong's doping confession in official statement.
flickr.com/altera

(Updated at 10:40 a.m. to include Livestrong Foundation's CEO comments on The Today Show.)

The Livestrong Foundation—the Austin-based non-profit that Lance Armstrong founded to help people battling cancer—has been a major part of the conversation in the fallout surrounding the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency's report on Armstrong's doping. Now, it's also a player after Armstrong's confession.

The Livestrong Foundation released a statement following the first part of Armstrong's interview with Oprah Winfrey.

The statement says employees are disappointed that Armstrong misled them during and after his cycling career. But it also says employees accept Armstrong’s apology from earlier this week and want to move on.

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Arts and Culture
9:58 am
Fri January 18, 2013

'So You Think You Can Dance' Comes to Austin

So You Think You Can Dance, Fox's reality dance competition, is holding auditions in Austin.
flickr.com/44549151@N03/

Fox has a question for you Austin: Do you think you can dance?

So You Think You Can Dance,” that long-running televised dance competition that airs on Fox during the summer, is holding auditions in Austin today and Saturday at the Long Center for the Performing Arts. Doors for the auditions open at 8 a.m.

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Lance Armstrong
5:37 am
Fri January 18, 2013

Many Austinites Question Sincerity of Armstrong's Confession to Oprah

Lance Armstrong's Mellow Johnny's bike shop in downtown Austin. Bar watch parties, complete with drinking games, assembled last night to watch Armstrong's interview.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Lance Armstrong admitted to using performance-enhancing drugs in an interview with Oprah Winfrey last night. For many Austinites, the much-anticipated confession was worth a special viewing appointment. And for some, it even called for a watch party.

A few dozen watch party attendees crowded around picnic tables on the patio and at the u-shaped wood bar at Little Woodrow’s on Sixth Street as they waited for the tell-all from the Texas native on his decade-long doping cover up.

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Sports
10:40 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

Lance Armstrong Admits To Using Performance-Enhancing Drugs (Updated)

Originally published on Fri January 18, 2013 7:14 am

(We updated the top of this post at 10:40 p.m. ET.)

Disgraced cyclist Lance Armstrong publicly confessed to cheating on all his seven Tour de France victories.

In an interview with Oprah Winfrey, the second part of which airs Friday, Armstrong said he was never afraid of getting caught and attributed his actions to a "ruthless desire to win."

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Health
4:24 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

Fees Waived for Water Coolers' Return to Hike and Bike Trail

Water coolers are poised to return to Austin's hike and bike trails, after the city waived permitting fees for the inspection process.
flickr.com/leftymgp

The familiar orange water coolers are poised to return to Austin’s hike and bike trail, after the city council agreed today to waive permitting fees for the businesses that operate the watering stations.

RunTex has been bringing water to Lady Bird Lake since 1990, but the coolers were removed last November after concerns about their security and sanitation. 

Paul Carrozza of RunTex estimates that his store spends $100,000 a year transporting water and ice to the trails. The store spends $3,000 a month in paper cups alone. 

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Business
4:10 pm
Thu January 17, 2013

Austin No. 2 in Economic Growth

Tech is the main driver of Austin's growth, a report says.
Callie Hernandez/KUT News

Austin has come out on top, almost, in an economic ranking of U.S. cities.

The Milken Institute said Austin is the second best performing city, based on measures like job growth and wage increases. The study’s author, Ross De Vol, say technology is the region’s big wealth driver.

De Vol says what Austin needs to catch No. 1 city San Jose is more money for growing businesses.

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The Lead
8:48 am
Thu January 17, 2013

The Lead: Mayor Applauds Obama’s Gun Measures; APD Looks for Shooting Witnesses

Austin Police are looking for witnesses to Monday's officer-invloved shooting.
Nathan Bernier, KUT News

Good morning. Austin’s warming trend continues today; the National Weather Service says Austin’s due for a high near 60, with slightly warmer temperatures expected this weekend.

Lead story: President Obama’s call for a series of stronger gun control measures has met with immediate opposition from state officials. Governor Rick Perry issued a statement soon after the President’s speech calling for prayer, and stating that “guns require a finger to pull the trigger.” 

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Arts and Culture
6:15 am
Thu January 17, 2013

Sundance Festival has Texas Tinge

Elise Gardner in "Spark," playing at Slamdance Film Festival.
Annie Silverstein

The Sundance Film Festival gets under way today in Park City, Utah. The 10-day festival features more than 100 films by directors from around the world. Ten of those are Texas filmmakers, and Austin’s film community helped bring those films to the silver screen.

A group of local filmmakers and critics assembled in a screening room at Austin Studios last week. They were there to watch short films and clips from a full-length feature making its debut at Sundance. But it was a little hard keep track of just who did what.

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The Lead
9:00 am
Wed January 16, 2013

The Lead: Mayor Leffingwell Standing By Lance Armstrong

Mayor Lee Leffingwell says Lance Armstrong's charitable work has been “a great contribution to our community and to the entire country.”
Leffingwell photo Jeff Heimsath for KUT News; Armstong photo flickr.com/farber

Good morning! Austin’s in for a chilly but sunnier day today, with highs in the lower 50s according to the National Weather Service.

Lead story: Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell is standing by Lance Armstrong. Oprah Winfrey says Armstrong admitted in an interview that he used performance-enhancing drugs to win the Tour de France. But Mayor Leffingwell says he’s still supports Armstrong. 

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Business
12:59 pm
Tue January 15, 2013

Survey: Texas an 'Oasis' for Businesses, Austin Shows 'Overall Friendliness'

http://www.flickr.com/photos/schidambara/

Texas has been courting businesses for some time now, attracting job creators and corporations to the state in droves.

State and city officials have lured corporations in with sales tax incentives. That's prompted accusations of corporate welfare and ill-gotten subsidies, but the state’s dance card is full when it comes to reeling in businesses. In fact, the state’s attracted more businesses than most.

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Geographic Representation
11:51 am
Tue January 15, 2013

Comment Ending on Auditor’s Read of Geographic Representation

The city auditor's office extedned the comment period on its interpretation of Prop 3's charter langauge through tomorrow.
Wells Dunbar, KUT News

There’s still time to voice an opinion on the city’s switch to geographic representation.

The deadline for public input in City Auditor Kenneth Mory’s interpretation of voter-approved language calling for 10 single-member districts was initially last week. But the auditor has since extended the comment period through tomorrow, Jan. 16. 

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The Lead
9:11 am
Tue January 15, 2013

The Lead: Oprah Says Armstrong Confesses to Doping

Lance Armstrong biking in Hawaii. A confession may clear the way for Armstrong's return to professional sports.
flickr.com/larryobrien

Good morning. Austin’s facing a chilly and drizzly Tuesday morning. The National Weather Service says we'll warm to a high in the low to mid 40s. The rest of the state is not so lucky: the AP reports flights have been suspended at Dallas’ Love Field. (Update: the AP reports Love Field is open again.)

Lead story: The fever pitch around Lance Armstrong’s interview with Oprah Winfrey continues to build. Now after anonymous reports surfaced that Armstrong confessed, a reported round of apologies to the Livestrong staff, and a panoply of media trucks descended on Armstrong’s West Austin home, the talk show titan herself confirms it: in an appearance on CBS This Morning today, Winfrey said Armstrong did indeed confess to doping in their three-hour long interview.

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Austin
12:37 pm
Fri January 11, 2013

Faces of Austin 2013: Experience Inspired By City Life

The deadline for submission is January 15, 2013.
City of Austin

Well-known as a place that boosts creativity, music and art, Austin is always searching for new talent and inspiration. 

Faces of Austin 2013 is calling for short-films, fiction and nonfiction alike, that reflect the "voices, faces and experiences of our city". Faces of Austin is a short-film program of the Cultural Arts Division of the City of Austin Economic Growth and Redevelopment Services Office, which has showcased short films by local filmmakers since 2005. This year the City of Austin is inviting all Austin-area filmmakers to submit their work to Faces of Austin 2013.

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The Lead
9:03 am
Fri January 11, 2013

The Lead: Gun Show Pressure, Water Bills at the Texas Lege

Weapons for sale at a gun show in Houston.
flickr.com/glasgows

Good morning, and happy Friday. Austin’s in for a temperature boost today, with warm and breezy weather bringing in a high in the 70s, according to the National Weather Service.

Lead story: As KUT News reported yesterday, the Austin City Council may get involved in efforts to halt gun shows at the Travis County Expo Center. Council member Mike Martinez says a subcommittee will meet next Tuesday to see what it can do at the local level to stop gun violence and illegal trafficking.  While the Expo Center is owned and operated by the county, it sits on city land.

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Crime
11:49 am
Thu January 10, 2013

TABC Yanks Liquor Licenses at Yassine Bars

The revocation of liquor licenses for several shuttered bars downtown means new nightclubs can open in their wake.
flickr.com/tiemposdelruido

In the wake of an ongoing drug and money laundering scandal, the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has canceled the liquor licenses of nine downtown clubs operated by the Yassine family.

As KUT News previously reported, the clubs have been closed since March of last year, when the Yassine brothers were arrested on federal drug, weapon and money laundering charges.

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The Lead
8:57 am
Thu January 10, 2013

The Lead: Confusion Over UT Assault Investigation; Whither the Planetarium; ABIA’s Busy Month

Austin Bergstrom rolled out the red carper for F1 visitors in November.
Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Good morning. Don’t be scared by that bright stuff outside – it’s called sunshine, and you’re forgiven for forgetting it after this week’s rainy weather. The National Weather Service says Austin’s in for a mild day, with a high in the mid-60s.

Lead story: There are conflicting reports this morning on whether charges will be brought against two UT football players accused of sexually assaulting a woman in San Antonio last month.

In a statement yesterday, UT linebacker Jordan Hicks’ lawyer says the investigation is now closed and no charges will be filed in the matter. But a San Antonio Police spokesperson told KUT News yesterday that the investigation is still open.

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Real Estate
1:15 pm
Wed January 9, 2013

Average Cost for a New Condo in Downtown Austin: $1 Million

Old and the new: The Austonian towers over an alleyway in downtown Austin.
flickr.com/atmtx

If you need more proof of a changing Austin, try this: average prices for a new “luxury” condominium downtown passed $1 million for the first time last year.

That’s according to Charles Heimsath, whose company, Capitol Market Research, compiled the numbers.  He says prices are high because supply is limited to only four buildings – the Four Seasons Residences, the Austonian, the W Residences, and the Spring Condominium tower– with no new ones under construction.

Heimsath says there are no downtown condo projects currently under construction, because it’s hard for developers to borrow money.

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Weather
5:04 pm
Tue January 8, 2013

Flash Flood Watch: Turn Around, Don't Drown (But Try to Tweet)

Austin and Travis County may bear the brunt of the region's storm system.
National Weather Service

Austin’s in for a good soaking.

Central Texas' daylong rain is expected to continue overnight and through tomorrow. The National Weather Service says a flash flood watch is in effect through noon Wednesday for several counties: Bastrop, Caldwell, Dewitt, Fayette, Gonzales, Lavaca. Lee, Travis and Williamson. NWS is still expecting up to six inches in the Austin area.

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The Lead
8:55 am
Fri January 4, 2013

The Lead: Austin’s Frosty Morning, LCRA May Cut Off Rice Farmers

A chilly day on Lady Bird Lake's Hike and Bike trail. Austin should warm up this weekend.
flickr.com/mcalderon

Good morning, and congratulations on reaching another Friday. It’s a cold and wet one out there, so drive carefully.

The weather outside is frightful: The National Weather Service says most precipitation will be cold rain, albeit with some light sleet will briefly mixed in. That rain won’t be helping out much with the drought either: accumulation is expected to be below an inch, with a dry and warmer weekend forecast.

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The Lead
9:25 am
Thu January 3, 2013

The Lead: Texas Pols Sworn In, Last Night at the Alamo Drafthouse

Texas' new senator Ted Cruz will be sworn-in today.
Michael Stravato, Texas Tribune

Good morning. The National Weather Service says we can expect cloudy and cool weather today before a storm system moves in tonight bringing  chances for rain and, yes, even snow.

Swearing-in day: U.S. Senator Ted Cruz will be sworn into office today. Tea Party favorite Cruz won decisively over well-funded and politically connected Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst last year. Other congressional freshman being sworn in today include former Texas Secretary of State Roger Williams and former Texas House member Pete Gallego.

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