Gov. Rick Perry

Will he or won't he?

The Texas political class has been abuzz this week about more than just Democratic state Sen. Wendy Davis' abortion bill filibuster-heard-round-the-nation.

The other occupying parlor game: Whether three-term Republican Gov. Rick Perry intends to seek an unprecedented fourth full term.

CNN and other news organizations reported Tuesday afternoon that Perry, a failed 2012 GOP presidential candidate, plans an announcement Monday about his "exciting future plans."

Veronica Zaragovia for KUT News

What happens when the whole world tunes in to watch the end of a Texas legislative session? In the few days since the first 2013 special session ended last week -- and the new one that starts today, Texas politicians have been using the abortion issue to raise money or assess how much support they have.  

U.S. Navy/LaTunya Howard

This year the Texas Legislature passed HB 3068, banning the surcharge placed on debit cards. The bill was championed by The Independent Bankers Association of Texas (IBAT), an organization that provides resources to the state’s smaller, community banks.

IBAT Executive Vice President Stephen Scurrlock says the law will have a positive impact on Texas’ small businesses – and that by scuttling the additional cost of using a card not affiliated with a giant bank, payment by debit card will no longer discriminate against community banks. 

Bob Daemmrich, Texas Tribune

With just two days before the Sunday deadline for Rick Perry to veto bills passed by the state legislature, the Texas Governor has blocked more than two dozen pieces of legislation that passed both chambers and made it to his desk.

Public Integrity Unit

Gov. Rick Perry's outsized Texas swagger is coming to the heart of blue state America.

Bob Daemmrich, Texas Tribune

Gov. Rick Perry is again expanding the agenda of the ongoing special session, and this time he has added a issue that is sure to spark partisan warfare.

Perry on Tuesday added “legislation relating to the regulation of abortion procedures, providers and facilities.” Perry also added the issue of life sentences for 17-year olds who commit serious crimes, a big issue for prosecutors but less likely to trigger divisive debate.

KUT News

Governor Rick Perry's office announced late Monday that the focus of the current special session of the Texas Legislature is being expanded to include funding for transportation infrastructure.

"Texas' growing economy and population demand that we take action to address the growing pressure on the transportation network across the state," Gov. Perry said in an emailed statement. "As we enjoy the benefits of a booming economy, we have to build and maintain the roads to ensure we sustain both our economic success and our quality of life."

Gov. Rick Perry is launching an ad campaign in Connecticut and New York, trying to lure businesses to the Lone Star State.

The move comes after Gov. Perry made similar efforts in California and Illinois. But this time, Perry’s taking his message to television screens instead of radio.

Hurricane Season Begins

May 31, 2013

Hurricane season officially starts Saturday, June 1, and Texas leaders are calling on Texans to be prepared.

Emergency response agencies staged their annual hurricane exercise Friday at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport.

Andrew Weber for KUT News

A Texas advocacy group took some less than subtle steps today to get a meeting with the governor.

Members from the healthcare advocacy group Texas Organizing Project interrupted Gov. Rick Perry multiple times during a speech at the Texas Global Business Summit this afternoon, repeating a call for Texas to accept federal Medicaid dollars.

Veronica Zaragovia

A Republican state senator wants Texas to limit the terms of elected officials like the governor and the attorney general. His bill has made it from the Senate to the Texas House floor, but will it head for the Governor’s desk? 

Liang Shi/KUT News

The Texas House will take up what is likely to be its most sweeping attempt at tax reform this year on Tuesday, though for some critics, it doesn’t go far enough.

Lawmakers have been waiting for weeks for House Bill 500, from state Rep. Harvey Hilderbran, R-Kerrville, to reach the floor. The bill would spend nearly $400 million to reduce the burden of the state's franchise tax on businesses, also known as the margins tax. Along with addressing how the tax applies to a handful of industries, the bill would make permanent a popular provision that exempts businesses with less than $1 million in gross receipts from paying the tax annually. The provision is set to expire next year.

Bob Daemmrich, Texas Tribune

Texas Gov. Rick Perry says a lack of state oversight is not to blame for the deadly fertilizer plant explosion in the town of West.

Gov. Perry told the Associated Press the explosion would not have been prevented if the state had earmarked more money for inspections. The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality inspected the West Fertilizer Company for an air quality permit in 2007.

Bob Daemmrich, Texas Tribune

Every morning, people in Texas politics stand in front of their sinks, brushing their teeth, staring at someone they think could someday be the president of the United States.

It is the nature of these beasts.

Before they can proceed with those dreams, however, they need to know what Rick Perry, the governor of Texas, is going to do. He has said he will lay out his political plans in June.

Filipa Rodrigues, KUT News

Gov. Rick Perry is trying to convince more businesses to move to Texas. Now he’s targeting Illinois with aggressive print ads comparing the business climate in that state to a “burning building on the verge of collapse.”

Today, Perry also launched a 30-second radio ad on four stations in Chicago.

Bobby Blanchard for KUT News

On tax day, Gov. Rick Perry called for tax cuts for businesses amounting to $1.6 billion over the biennium.

Perry called for $1 million tax deduction for business earning under $20 million annually. He also called for a five percent cut on the franchise tax, which all corporations chartered in Texas pay.

KUT News

Three bills related to Gov. Rick Perry are getting a vetting today.

The Texas Senate is set to hear two bills scrutinizing the use of money from the Texas Enterprise Fund. The Texas Enterprise Fund is Perry’s economic development program that gives taxpayer money to private business. Some Austin recipients include Apple and Visa.

Todd Wiseman, Texas Tribune and Pedro Moura Pinheiro, Texas Tribune

With the drought getting worse by the day, a Texas mayor is turning to a higher power.

He’s asking people to pray for rain.

Odessa Mayor David Turner is calling on community and church leaders to make this Sunday, April 14th, a day of prayer for rainfall.

Nicolas Raymond / Todd Wiseman, Texas Tribune

Is this about Bill Powers or UT’s tower?

Tensions between Gov. Rick Perry’s administration and Powers, the president of the University of Texas at Austin, are rising, sucking up legislative time and pitting lawmakers, prominent alumni and higher-education critics against one another in a running argument over politics, rivalries and what a public university is supposed to be.

Tyler Pratt for KUT News

The U.S. Supreme Court continues its examination of same-sex marriage today, taking up arguments in one part of the federal Defense of Marriage Act.

Yesterday, as the court took a look at Proposition 8 – the constitutional ban on gay marriage in California– two rallies hit the Texas State Capitol: one to promote traditional values and another to support same-sex marriage.