Austin buys $469M power plant, sidesteps 20-year contract
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Energy officials say Austin has bought a wood chip-fueled biomass power plant in East Texas for $460 million to break away from a punitive contract, calling it one of the largest single purchases in the city's history. Southern Company, owner of the Nacogdoches Generating Facility, accepted the offer made by Austin Energy on Wednesday. The Austin American-Statesmen reports that Austin Energy General Manager Jackie Sargent says the city is now off the hook for escalating annual payments under a 20-year, $2.3 billion agreement slated to run through 2032. Austin Energy is also acquiring the plant's holding company. Sargent added the utility projects to save $275 million in purchasing the plant. The city has been the plant's lone client since 2012. The City Council approved the plant's purchase in March. ___ Information from: Austin American-Statesman, http://www.statesman.com
Winning numbers drawn in 'All or Nothing Night' game
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) _ The winning numbers in Thursday evening's drawing of the Texas Lottery's "All or Nothing Night" game were: 01-02-03-04-07-08-10-14-15-16-17-23 (one, two, three, four, seven, eight, ten, fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, seventeen, twenty-three)
Texas bill toughening voting crimes advances over protests
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Putting false information on a Texas voter registration form would become a felony offense under a sweeping elections bill advancing through the Legislature over protests from civil rights groups. Republican say the measure that tentatively passed the Texas Senate on Monday would safeguard elections. The bill would also make it a misdemeanor to impede access to a polling location. Democrats say the bill threatens people who make honest mistakes on their registration forms with jail time. The bill is advancing at a time when Texas' elections are under scrutiny. A federal judge in February ordered Texas to halt a bungled search for illegal voters after state elections officials wrongly questioned the U.S. citizenship of tens of thousands of people.
Police again step in as Texas lawmaker halts abortion bill
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - A Texas sheriff's department said Thursday it had "security concerns" over social media posts targeting a Republican lawmaker, who has come under fire by some conservative activists after blocking a bill that could lead to a woman being charged with homicide if she has an abortion. It marks the second time this month that Texas law enforcement has taken protective measures involving Republican lawmakers, who in both cases have been blamed by frustrated groups for torpedoing divisive measures, first over guns and now abortion. Last week, House Speaker Dennis Bonnen said a gun-rights advocate went to his family residence over displeasure that lawmakers weren't seriously considering efforts to legalize carrying a handgun without a permit. State troopers met the man at the home of Bonnen, who said lawmakers and their families were being "incessantly harassed by fanatical gun rights activists." The latest episode involves Republican state Rep. Jeff Leach, who earlier this week refused to advance the anti-abortion bill in his committee. He said Thursday that local authorities were monitoring his house near Dallas but declined further comment, referring questions to authorities. "We have notified Representative Jeff Leach that we are currently looking into some security concerns related to him and are taking appropriate measures," Sgt. Nick Bristow of the Collin County sheriff's office said in a statement. He would not elaborate about what measures sheriff's deputies have taken or provide details about the nature of the posts. Leach, who chairs the House committee that held a public hearing on the measure, known as House Bill 896, said in a statement posted on Twitter that the bill would not advance. Prominent anti-abortion groups in Texas have also come out against the measure, including the Texas...
O'Rourke fundraising remains strong, with $9.4M in 18 days
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Democratic presidential candidate Beto O'Rourke says he raised $9.4 million in donations during his first 18 days of campaigning, taking in more than $500,000 a day. The ex-Texas congressman didn't release his total number of contributions but announced Wednesday that 98% of his donations were less than $200 and 99% came online. He says the average donation was $43. O'Rourke raised $6.1 million during his first 24 hours of presidential campaigning beginning March 14, edging Bernie Sanders' $5.9 million over the same period to top the Democratic field. That was seen as O'Rourke passing a key early test of his national appeal. Sanders entered the race in February and announced raising $18.2 million in 41 days of campaigning. O'Rourke says his haul means he "remains the highest per-day raising candidate."
Texas House OKs school finance bill, but tax fight may loom
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - The Texas House is debating a bipartisan plan to pump $9 billion more into public schools, attempting to fix a funding scheme that the state Supreme Court has deemed barely constitutional. It seeks to increase annual, per-student funding by nearly $900 to $6,030, boosts funding for children who need to learn English and gives school districts discretion on allocating funds. The bill is expected to pass the House on Wednesday, but may face hurdles in the Senate, where lawmakers differ on how to tamp down ever-growing property taxes. Schools rely heavily on property taxes. But lawmakers have promised to increase classroom funding while cutting property taxes. Disagreements over both issues sank a school finance bill in 2017 - and could hinder efforts this session, despite broad support from both parties.
FalconStor Software: 4Q Earnings Snapshot
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) _ FalconStor Software Inc. (FALC) on Monday reported a fourth-quarter loss of $77,000, after reporting a profit in the same period a year earlier. The Austin, Texas-based company said it had a loss of less than 1 cent on a per-share basis. The software-defined storage company posted revenue of $4.8 million in the period. For the year, the company reported a loss of $907,000, or 5 cents per share, swinging to a loss in the period. Revenue was reported as $17.8 million. In the final minutes of trading on Monday, the company's shares hit 6 cents. A year ago, they were trading at 9 cents. _____ This story was generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on FALC at https://www.zacks.com/ap/FALC
A Texas scientist was called foolish. Then he won the Nobel Prize.
AUSTIN, Texas - It was Christmas Eve 1994, and Jim Allison was testing his theory that T cells, a type of white blood cell that fights viral and bacterial infections, could help the immune system fight cancer. That week, he was covering for a postdoctoral aide on a European trip, who'd injected cancerous mice with an antibody to activate T cells to go after tumors. The results were stunning: all of those given the antibody became cancer-free, while the mice not provided with the antibody saw their tumors grow until they eventually died. Allison ran back the experiment. But this time, the cancer didn't respond. Allison grew frustrated. "I was being told, 'You're just foolish, this is never gonna work,' " he said in an interview with The Washington Post. "That was one that really pissed me off." But when he returned four days later to check on his furry subjects, the tumors in the mice injected with the antibody had totally disappeared. "I went, 'Wow,' " said Allison, 70. "That was a real turning point. I said, 'Okay, we're onto something here.' I never expected that to happen. I did have a notion that if we could figure that out, then we might have a shot at cancer." Almost a quarter-century later, after countless medical trials, doubt from his peers and uncertainty of whether a product based on his discovery would ever be available to the public, Allison was a co-recipient of the 2018 Nobel Prize in physiology or medicine for his work on how to use the body's immune system to combat cancer. To date, Ipilimumab, known as "Ipi," and other immuno-oncology drugs have treated nearly 1 million patients worldwide. Sipping on a light beer in a hotel restaurant overlooking downtown Austin, Allison reminisced about his road from small-town Texan who lost multiple family members to cancer to barrier-breaking doctor whose story...
Analysis: Collins is most likely to work across aisle
WASHINGTON (AP) - Democrats say Republican Sen. Susan Collins tows the party line too often. But a Georgetown University think tank says she's the most likely to work across party lines. The Lugar Center says this is the third time Collins was the most bipartisan senator based on its ranking system. Maria Cancian, dean of Georgetown's McCourt School of Public Policy, said Congress seems more polarized than ever before, but the analysis "points to more cooperation." The index measures how often a lawmaker introduces bills that attract co-sponsors from across the aisle, and how often a lawmaker signs onto bills from the other party. Collins has long talked about the need for Republican and Democratic lawmakers to work together. She was named an honorary chairwoman of the bipartisan group "No Labels" in 2017.
El sábado se llevó a cabo la final de competencia Regional de Deletreo Scripps del 2019, donde Mia Cuevas del sexto grado de primaria resultó ganadora del primer lugar. Ella será la representante del área en la competencia nacional en Washington D.C. Mia, estudiante de la escuela Lamar Middle, estuvo dentro de los 65 estudiantes que compitieron en el evento organizado por Texas A&M International University. Después de 16 rondas, obtuvo el primer lugar al deletrear correctamente la palabra "feasible". En el 2018, Mia obtuvo el cuarto lugar en la final regional del Scripps. Ella es un claro ejemplo que el trabajo duro y la práctica dan buenos resultados. Mia dijo que estaba sorprendida de haber ganado y explicó que se interesó profundamente en la competencia de deletreo cuando estaba en cuarto grado. "Comencé a interesarme en las palabras y su significado, y cómo deletrearlas", dijo Mia. "Me atrajo debido a que comencé a escribir libros. Soy la autora de dos libros, me encanta la literatura, y es muy emocionante pararse en el escenario y deletrear palabras difíciles". También comentó que estaba orgullosa de haber ganado y le dio las gracias a sus padres, Eduardo y Anahí; sus entrenadores, Mary García, maestra de octavo grado en la escuela Lamar Middle, y Herlinda Y. Treviño, maestra de dislexia en la primaria Alma Pierce Elementary; sus mentores, Michelle Martínez, asistente directiva en la escuela primaria Alma Pierce Elementary, y Verónica Orduño, fundadora de Familias por el Apoyo y la Conciencia del Autismo. La madre de Mia, Anahí Cuevas, dijo, "Estoy muy feliz y soy una madre orgullosa. Le aconsejo a los padres inculcarles a sus hijos disciplina, amor por las artes, la lectura, a impulsar su imaginación y llevarlos a la...