texas supreme court

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Nothing puts the brakes on Austin drivers like winter weather. In a freeze last year, emergency services responded to more than 250 accidents, none of which were fatal, in one day. While the late starts at schools and offices across the city this morning preempted a slew of pileups, drivers in North Texas could see as much as four inches of snow from a cold snap that’s expected to last until tomorrow morning.

Suffice to say, there are sure to be a few accidents in Texas over the next few days, but, snow or no, a recent ruling from the Texas Supreme Court could affect court cases handling everything from fender benders to fatal accidents to faulty airbag lawsuits in courts.

Frank Swift for Texas Tribune

Robert Kinney says his former boss wrote false and defamatory things about him online, and he wants the state's highest civil court to order the remarks be deleted.

In a case that could have far-reaching effects on individual freedom to post online, the Texas Supreme Court will hear arguments from both sides on Thursday about whether the Texas Constitution allows the court to force Kinney's former boss to unpublish negative postings about his former employee.

Filipa Rodrigues for KUT News

Can you put a price tag on man’s best friend?

The Texas Supreme Court heard oral arguments Thursday morning in a case that could answer that question.  An animal shelter employee is appealing a lower court’s ruling that found her accidental euthanasia of a family dog gave the pet’s owners grounds to recover damages related to the dog’s “sentimental or intrinsic value.”

Bob Daemmrich via Texas Tribune

Jeff Boyd, chief of staff to Gov. Rick Perry, is the governor’s choice for an open spot on theTexas Supreme Court.

Jillian Schantz Patrick for KUT News

Did you see the Space Shuttle Endeavor fly over Austin this morning? Send us a picture to news@kut.org. Here's a look at what else is happening in the area:

Central Texas Ozone Watch

The Clean Air Force of Central Texas is predicting “Level Orange” ozone levels for today. The areas affected by this Ozone Watch include Hays, Travis, Williamson, Caldwell and Bastrop Counties.

According to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s Air Quality Index, Austin’s air quality is currently “good."

Individuals with chronic lung disease, the elderly and young children are particularly sensitive to ground-level ozone. They should attempt to avoid exposure by minimizing exertion outdoors today.

The Clean Air Force of Central Texas encourages everyone to reduce air pollution by carpooling or riding the bus, tuning up vehicles and waiting to refuel until after 6 p.m.

Texas Supreme Court Justice Resigns

A Texas Supreme Court Justice is resigning and will go into private law practice in Austin.

Photo courtesy usgs.gov

The perennial issue of Texas water rights may soon reach a boiling point.

Today, the Texas Supreme Court handed down a ruling stating property owners can be compensated for water underneath their property, if a limit has been placed on the amount they can pump by a water authority.

KUT’s Mose Buchele, reporting for StateImpact Texas, writes: