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Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 85,724

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Probe: 1,800 wild horses sent to slaughterhouse instead of pasture

The government’s largest sale of wild horses was to a rancher who sent almost 1,800 mustangs to slaughterhouses across the Mexican border and lied to federal officials, a new report concludes, finding lapses with a federal program that’s supposed to find the animals safe homes.

The Colorado rancher and livestock hauler admitted to investigators from the Interior Department’s Inspector General’s Office that “probably close to all” of the horses were resold for slaughter and that he assumed they would be killed.

There was “only one place to go … to the kill plant,” Tom Davis of La Jara, Colo., told investigators, whose findings confirmed long-standing fears of animal welfare groups, wild-horse activists and officials with the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse and Burro Program, which manages thousands of horses that roam wild in the West.

“Managers … failed to enforce {Bureau of Land Management} policy of limiting the sales of horses and ensuring that the horses went to good homes,” said the report, released late last month.

Read more: http://www.santafenewmexican.com/news/local_news/probe-wild-horses-sent-to-slaughterhouse-instead-of-pasture/article_51916b8c-2614-50ba-9ed0-13ed1d6df94e.html#user-comment-area
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 11:48 PM (0 replies)

New Mexico recovers $1 million from Google

Google Inc. deposited nearly $1 million in a state account this week to repay New Mexico for an economic development grant the government made for infrastructure upgrades at the Moriarty Municipal Airport.

The upgrades helped pave the way for Google to build a 60,000-square-foot facility at the airport to house Titan Aerospace, a Google subsidiary that was developing a solar-powered drone there.

But Google moved Titan’s operations to California this summer, prompting New Mexico to impose clawback provisions to recover the state’s money, Economic Development Secretary Jon Barela said.

“I’m happy to report that Google has made the payment,” Barela told the Journal on Wednesday. “It deposited just over $995,000, which cleared on Monday.”

Read more: http://www.abqjournal.com/670809/news/google-pays-nm-1-million-clawback-on-titan-pullout.html
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 11:44 PM (0 replies)

Appeals Court Backs Ethics Commission Over Activist

In the latest twist of a long-running dispute between the state's ethics watchdog and conservative activist Michael Quinn Sullivan, a state appeals court has overturned a lower court's ruling and sent the case back to Travis County.

Sullivan and the Texas Ethics Commission have been sparring for years over whether Sullivan's past political activity makes him a lobbyist under state law. Following a 2012 complaint filed by Republican state Reps. Jim Keffer of Eastland and Vicki Truitt of Keller, the commission ruled last year that Sullivan acted as an unregistered lobbyist in 2010 and 2011 and fined him $10,000.

Sullivan, who has long claimed that his actions communicating with lawmakers as head of Empower Texans do not qualify as lobbying, filed for a judicial review of the commission's action in Denton County, where Sullivan claimed to reside. The appeal favored Sullivan, prompting the Ethics Commission to appeal.

The Second Court of Appeals in Fort Worth focused its ruling Thursday on the Ethics Commission's argument that Sullivan was a Travis County resident and that the transfer of the case to conservative Denton County was based on the false claim that he had moved there. The commission offered evidence from a hired investigator, including Sullivan's repeated claiming of a Travis County property as his primary residence for a homestead exemption.

Read more: http://www.texastribune.org/2015/11/05/appeals-court-sides-ethics-commission-over-activis/
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 11:41 PM (1 replies)

Ozzy Osbourne arrives in San Antonio to apologize for urinating on the Alamo

SAN ANTONIO — Rocker Ozzy Osbourne visited the Alamo and City Hall Thursday during the filming of a television show for The History Channel.

Osbourne was greeted at 4 p.m. by more than a hundred fans and onlookers who cheered his name and took cellphone photos while the rocker stood outside the Alamo with his son Jack.

He was expected to apologize to for an incident in 1982 in which he was arrested for urinating on the shrine's Cenotaph. Osbourne hardly said a word during his visit, said Steve Hardin, an Alamo docent who guided him on his tour.

Prior to the Alamo visit, Osbourne met with District 1 Councilman Roberto Treviño, whose district includes the Alamo, at City Hall.

Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/Ozzy-Osbourne-San-Antonio-Alamo-6613410.php
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 11:40 PM (0 replies)

Dozens of cats removed from Northeast Side home in San Antonio

SAN ANTONIO — Workers with Animal Care Services are working to remove dozens of cats found in a home on the Northeast Side Thursday morning.

ACS spokeswoman Lisa Norwood said workers had gone to the home in the 2800 block of Shadow Way around 11:45 a.m. after receiving complaints about foul smells and numerous cats in the area.

Norwood said officials have not yet determined exactly how many animals were being kept at the property, but there appears to be somewhere between 30 and 50.

D’ann Trethan, who lives in the house with the cats, said Animal Care Services came to the house on Wednesday to see if it would pass an inspection.

Read more: http://www.mysanantonio.com/news/local/article/ACS-working-to-remove-dozens-of-cats-from-6612990.php#photo-8911844
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 11:37 PM (3 replies)

20 nightmare-inducing creatures that live in Texas

Some aquatic creatures are beautiful, but others are so gnarled and horrifying that you will want to hug dry land and never even think of dipping in a toe.

In a state the size of Texas, there are more than just a few of these nightmare-inducing critters.

See the actual pictures at http://www.chron.com/lifestyle/travel-outdoors/article/20-nightmare-inducing-creatures-that-live-in-6606170.php#item-38488 .
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 10:38 PM (5 replies)

Prosecutors criticize AG Paxton’s attempts to throw out indictments

The prosecutors appointed to pursue criminal charges against Attorney General Ken Paxton say efforts to quash the indictments are desperate, calling out his “Grassy Knoll-like conspiracy” involving a Collin County district judge to be without merit.

“Paxton’s motion is a tale of sound and fury calculated to cast himself as a victim, and not a criminal defendant, in the court of public opinion,” states the motion filed Thursday. “That Paxton’s motion is not only desperate, but utterly without merit is predictable; that it recklessly and unnecessarily tars both a respected jurist and his spouse without legal or factual basis to do so is unconscionable.”

Last week, Paxton’s team filed multiple motions in an attempt to get the criminal indictments thrown out. The most serious allegations involve the actions of Collin County District Judge Chris Oldner, who presided over the grand jury that indicted Paxton in July.

Paxton’s defense team issued a statement, saying, “Professionalism and orders of court prevent us from giving an appropriate response. We stand by our serious pleadings.”

Read more: http://thescoopblog.dallasnews.com/2015/11/prosecutors-criticize-ag-paxtons-attempts-to-throw-out-indictments.html/
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 10:26 PM (0 replies)

Gov. Abbott declares emergency to get more flood-detection funding

Gov. Greg Abbott declared a statewide emergency Thursday in response to recent flooding around the state, a move intended to free up millions of dollars to enhance Texas’ flood-preparation efforts.

State officials haven’t decided which of the flood-prone areas around the state will be first in line for the money. The governor’s office announced it will be spent on measures such as more rain gauges, better early warning systems and risk evaluation — a series of improvements for which Abbott and state Sen. Kirk Watson, D-Austin, had secured funding earlier this year, only to see it held up.

The recent rainstorms “have caused massive flooding throughout Texas, placing the safety and economic prosperity of Texans at severe risk,” according to a letter from Abbott’s office. The letter also states that 20 Texans died in this year’s Memorial Day weekend floods, after which 122 counties were declared state disaster areas and an additional 113 were designated federal disaster areas.

“Immediate funding is needed to create a sophisticated technological network of water stream gauges and enhance floodplain management planning,” according to the letter, which was sent to Comptroller Glenn Hegar, the state’s top financial officer.

Read more: http://www.statesman.com/news/news/governor-abbott-declares-emergency-to-get-more-flo/npG4Y/
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 10:21 PM (1 replies)

UT Chancellor McRaven’s priorities: Houston, diversity, brain health

University of Texas System Chancellor Bill McRaven outlined a sweeping strategic plan Thursday that calls for establishing a campus in Houston as well as a national security initiative to address cyber, biological and other threats.

McRaven’s five-year plan also calls for boosting literacy rates among elementary school students, the leadership skills of students graduating from the system’s schools and brain health for residents of Texas and beyond.

The chancellor’s speech at a Board of Regents meeting was long on vision and short on such details as cost. He said he would seek the board’s approval and funding for the various initiatives in the coming months and years as the proposals are fleshed out. The UT System’s multibillion-dollar endowment is the likely source of much of the money.

McRaven made it clear that a top priority of his administration is stepped-up collaboration among the system’s 14 campuses, an operational philosophy that he learned from 37 years in the military. The retired four-star admiral and Navy SEAL, who coordinated the raid in which Osama bin Laden was killed, told the Board of Regents that it was “a bold gamble” on the board’s part to hire “this old sailor,” but one that he was confident would pay off.

Read more: http://www.statesman.com/news/news/chancellor-bill-mcraven-to-unveil-his-strategic-pl/npGpC/
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 10:16 PM (0 replies)

Houston May Have A New HERO Before Mayor Annise Parker Leaves Office In January

Houston could have a new Equal Rights Ordinance before the end of the year.

Mayor Annise Parker, who’s term-limited after six years in office, said Wednesday it’s possible the City Council will approve an amended HERO before she steps down in January.

The original version of HERO, approved by the council 11-6 in May 2014, was resoundingly repealed by voters on Tuesday following an 18-month legal battle.

“Several council members have talked to me about bringing it back up, perhaps bringing it back up in segments, such as the nondiscrimination in employment and housing and public accommodations separately, so that we could directly deal with those aspects of the ordinance,” Parker said at her weekly press conference. “There may be other ideas.

Read more: http://www.thenewcivilrightsmovement.com/johnwright/houston_may_get_a_new_hero_before_mayor_annise_parker_leaves_office_in_january?recruiter_id=838695
Posted by TexasTowelie | Thu Nov 5, 2015, 09:58 PM (0 replies)
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