Columns/Opinions

Fri
15
May

Hey, get off my flag!

By Dennis Phillips

My grandfather, father and I all fought for this country. As many American families; sacrifices have been made to protect this country and the flag that represents her. Sacrifices continue to be made every day to keep this country safe from foreign and domestic threats. However, hot on social media is something called “stomp the flag challenge” and it has a lot of Americans upset. Eric Sheppard, a member of the New Black Panther Party, started this protest. Sheppard disappeared from the Valdosta campus around May 1 and is being sought by the police on the gun charge. Sheppard reportedly “self-identifies” as a “terrorist against white people.” College officials cancelled classes and ordered all non-essential staffers off campus in later April due to concerns that Sheppard, who was deemed “armed and dangerous,” would appear on the grounds.

Fri
15
May

Conferees struggle toward budget compromise

By Ed Sterling

For the Texas Legislature to accomplish its main purpose, the passage of a state budget for fiscal years 2016 and 2017 must be achieved. The five House and five Senate members of the Conference Committee on the budget, House Bill 1, have been working together since late April. They must angle their philosophical pathways to something mutually acceptable to take back to their respective chambers for consideration.

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Fri
08
May

House, Senate bills show disparate visions of tax relief

By Ed Sterling
 
Legislation approved by the House and Senate last week reveal widely differing views on how to bring about tax relief to Texans in fiscal years 2016 and 2017. Speaker Joe Straus lauded the preliminary approval of House Bill 31, legislation to reduce the state sales tax from 6.25 percent to 5.95 percent, resulting in a $2.66 billion revenue decrease, and House Bill 32, legislation cutting the franchise tax paid by many businesses by 25 percent and resulting in a statewide revenue decrease of $2.56 billion.
 

 

Fri
01
May

House, Senate state budget conferees roll up sleeves

With barely more than a month left in the regular session of the Texas Legislature, it’s time for the House and Senate to do
whatever can be done to reach an all-points agreement on House Bill 1, the state budget for fiscal years 2016 and 2017..
 
Fri
01
May

Is it a simple matter of civil unrest?

The United States has a history of civil unrest. In fact, this nation was formed by civil unrest. In the evening of Dec.16, 1773 founding father Samuel Adams along with the Sons of Liberty boarded three ships in the Boston Harbor and threw 342 chests of tea overboard. This act of civil unrest would spur the American Revolution.
 
Fri
24
Apr

Senate approves bill to remake Public Integrity Unit

Senate passes version of 2016-2017 state budget The Texas Senate on April 14 passed its version of the 2016-2017 state budget. Because the House- and Senate-approved budgets  are $1.6 billion apart, five Senate members and five House members will be appointed to a conference committee to resolve differences.
 
Fri
24
Apr

Why remove 4A and 4B sales tax board members?

Mark your calendars for two upcoming activities. Walk-in early voting for the next Hearne City Council election is Monday, April 27, through Friday, May 1, at city hall, 8:00 a.m. till 4:30p.m. On Saturday, May 2, city halls early voting hours are 10:00 a.m. till 6:00 p.m.
 
Fri
17
Apr

Two Democrat presidents; two different outcomes

By Dennis Phillips

 

In 1962, the United States and President John Kennedy faced the threat of mid-range Russian ballistic missiles being built on the island of Cuba. This threat was real, and many Miami residents along with the rest of the Southern United States rehearsed bomb drills at schools and workplaces. Shelters were built, provisions were stocked and the United States came within just days of a real cold war heating up.

 

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Fri
17
Apr

Senate approves bill to remake Public Integrity Unit

By Ed Sterling

 

Statewide authority to investigate and prosecute public corruption would be moved out of the Travis County District Attorney’s Office under Senate Bill 10, legislation approved by the Senate on April 9. Sen. Joan Huffman, chair of the Senate State Affairs Committee, wrote the legislation under which the Texas Rangers, a division of the Department of Public Safety, would reestablish and support the state’s Public Integrity Unit and assume the initial investigatory role when a complaint is filed against a public official. Cases would be prosecuted in the county where a public official resides.
 
Fri
10
Apr

Water ruling cuts state’s power in droughts

by Jim Malewitz

The Texas Tribune
Editor’s note: This story has been updated with a statement from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. A state appeals court has sided with farmers, ranchers and other longstanding water rights holders in a Brazos River case with widespread implications for future water battles in drought-prone Texas.

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