Texas

Texas AG Says Counties Can Spend Covid Relief Funds on Extra Pay for Elected Officials Without Public Notice

The nonbinding legal opinion states local elected and appointed officials can receive up to $25,000 for work done during the Covid-19 pandemic on top of their regular salaries. Unlike other pay raises, these “premium pay” bonuses don’t need to be declared to the public ahead of time.

Texas has Banned More Books Than Any Other State, New Report Shows

Across the country, more books have been challenged and removed as religious and conservative groups target LGBTQ and race issues.

The Fighting Over Online Sales Taxes Isn’t Finished

Deals worked out between local governments and companies before the Supreme Court cleared the way for taxing e-commerce are drawing increased scrutiny. If the agreements fall apart, it could blow a hole in some city budgets.

What Brought Down One Texas County’s Entire Elections Department? It Was Something in the Water

Aggrieved anti-fluoride activists, low pay and understaffing eventually drove away Gillespie County’s election officials.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Joins Key Republicans in Supporting Repealing 'Tampon Tax'

Advocates have previously called for repealing the sales tax on products like tampons, sanitary pads and pantyliners. Menstrual products are already tax-free in 24 states.

A Mom’s Campaign to Ban Library Books Divided a Texas Town — and Her Own Family

Weston Brown thought he had fully come to terms with his mother's anti-LGBTQ beliefs. Then he saw the video of her speaking at a school board meeting. “I couldn’t stay quiet about that.”

Texas Governor Escalates Feud with NYC Mayor by Sending Buses of Migrants to City

The move follows New York City Mayor Eric Adams' refusal to accept Gov. Greg Abbott’s invitation to visit the Texas border towns where migrants are crossing into the U.S.

Texas Skirting Federal Environmental Law to Push For Highway Expansion

The state department of transportation says many of its highway projects have “no significant impact.”

State Turns to Data Tools to Root Out Social Services Fraud

Data modeling, analytics and visualizations are helping the Texas HHS inspector general detect and prevent fraud, waste and abuse within state programs.

21 killed in Texas’ Deadliest School Shooting Ever

Robb Elementary teaches second, third and fourth grade students in Uvalde, which is about 85 miles west of San Antonio. Gov. Greg Abbott said the shooter is believed to have been killed by responding law enforcement.

Treasury Department Opens Investigation Into Texas Governor's Use of Federal Funds for Border Mission

Texas has been employing coronavirus relief money to help pay for the multibillion-dollar deployment.

The US Cities Most Attractive to Renters

There was a 10% increase in rental applications nationwide last year, and millennials were the generational group that moved around the most, a new report shows.

A City Government Begins Mining for Bitcoin

Fort Worth, Texas, has installed three bitcoin mining machines in its data center as part of a six-month pilot to assess the implications and opportunities of minting cryptocurrency.

Homeless Camping Bans Are Spreading. This Group Shaped the Bills

A Texas-based think tank is promoting a ban on unofficial encampments.

Covid Underscores Lack of Whistleblower Protections

It can take years for complaints to be investigated.

Texas National Guard Troops Call Abbott’s Rushed Border Operation a Disaster

The governor has sent waves of troops to the border as Guard officials scramble to execute a massive mobilization that would normally take months to plan.

Black Texas Farmers Were on Track To Get Federal Aid. The State’s Ag Commissioner Is Helping Stop That

Sid Miller is challenging a debt relief program that the U.S. Department of Agriculture saw as a way to correct historic discrimination. An advocate for Black Texas farmers says the challenge “pushes us back even further.”

Librarians Decry GOP Moves to Ban Books in Schools

A Texas lawmaker called for schools to review 850 books for possible removal.

The Push to Ban Books in Texas Schools Spreads to Public Libraries

Some Texas residents are asking for greater say in what titles appear on public library shelves.

Bills Modeled on Texas Abortion Law Target Sex Abusers, Gun Sellers

California’s governor wants to use Texas tactics to go after assault weapons sold in his state, while an Illinois state lawmaker seeks to penalize sex offenders.