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Whats on in Texas – Local News
Effort to Kill State Vehicle Safety Inspections Advances in Texas Senate
The Texas Senate voted Sunday night to advance a bill that would kill vehicle safety inspections. But, an amendment added to the bill would push back the end of inspections by two years, until 2025. Some Republican lawmakers have tried for years to shut down the state’s inspection program, saying inspections are an inconvenience to drivers and do not improve road safety. On the floor of the Senate Sunday, Sen. Nathan Johnson (D-Dallas) urged his colleagues to keep inspections, saying lives are at stake. Johnson pointed to a new American Society of Civil Engineers study that found inspection programs have reduced car crash deaths across the country. “It found that states that have vehicle safety inspections have 5.5% fewer fatalities per year than states that don’t have inspection programs. In Texas that’s 261 dead people every single year,” Johnson said. But with a 20-11 vote the Senate opted to end inspections. The amended bill now goes back to the House for consideration. Even if Texas eliminates safety inspections, drivers in major urban areas like the large DFW counties would still need annual emissions inspections which are mandated under federal rules. As lawmakers have debated the effectiveness of inspections, a monthslong NBC…
Precautionary shelter-in-place lifted after chemical fire in Bellaire area, officials say
Investigators believe a chemical fire at a plating and chroming facility in the Gulfton-Bellaire area was accidental, but crews are still working to determine the cause of the fire.
Country’s Divisive Issues, From Guns to Immigration, Play Out in Texas in Just Two Weeks
Thirteen people dead in two mass shootings. Eight immigrants killed when an SUV slams into a crowded bus stop. The likely approval of legislation that would let the Republican governor overturn elections in the most populous county, a Democratic stronghold. All in the past two weeks. These issues and the forces behind them – anger and guns, immigration turmoil, deep political divisions about what democracy means – are playing out across American life in various ways. But in Texas, with its immense size and a population that grows by more than 1,000 people a day, the stage is far bigger – and often louder. It’s enough to make even the proudest Texan wrestle with how he sees the state. “This is out of control right now,” said Jay Leeson, an illustrator and cartoonist who lives in Lubbock, a city in the Texas High Plains. He describes himself as a “conservative West Texan” whose kids “know how to handle guns, know how to ride horses, know how to do all the Texas things.” The “Texas things.” Texans have heard this all before. They’ve been hearing it for generations. That everyone is armed. That it’s a wildly conservative place full of oil…
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott Faces Backlash as Search for Mass Gunman Drags On
Authorities on Monday still had not captured a gunman in Texas who killed five neighbors, and as the search dragged into a third day with false alarms and few apparent leads, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott faced backlash over drawing attention to the victims’ immigration status. An FBI agent on the scene near Houston acknowledged they have little to go on in the widening manhunt for 38-year-old Francisco Oropeza, who has been deported four times since 2009, but who neighbors say lived on their street for years prior to Friday night’s shooting. Abbott offered a $50,000 reward over the weekend for any tips that might lead to Oropeza, and while doing so, the three-term governor described on Twitter all the victims as “illegal immigrants” – a potentially false statement that his office walked back and apologized for Monday. Critics accused Abbott, who has made hardline immigration measures a signature issue in Texas, of putting politics into the shooting. KPRC in Houston reported that at least one of the victims was a permanent legal resident, despite the governor’s claim. “We’ve since learned that at least one of the victims may have been in the United States legally,” Abbott spokeswoman Renae Eze said…
Manhunt for ‘armed and dangerous’ gunman enters day 2 as officials announce $80K reward for arrest
The search intensifies as officials reach a dead end on Francisco Oropesa’s whereabouts, but officials hope an $80K reward for information leading to his arrest can help.Courtesy of ABC13 Texas …
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