BG Note | News - What We're Reading (February 7, 2018)


[Austin Metro]

Travis County Judge Sarah Eckhardt endorses Sheryl Cole in HD 46 race (Austin American-Statesman) LINK TO STORY

Travis County Judge Sarah Eckhardt is siding against longtime state Rep. Dawnna Dukes in the Democratic primary, announcing Tuesday an endorsement for Dukes’ challenger Sheryl Cole. Eckhardt, who presides over the county’s Commissioner’s Court, released a statement through Cole’s campaign, saying residents of Dukes’ House District 46 “deserve to share in the prosperity of our region.”
Dukes for 24 years has represented the district that includes parts of East Austin, Pflugerville and Manor. Eckhardt’s endorsement comes one month before the March 6 Democratic primary. In addition to Cole, those looking to unseat Dukes are Jose “Chito” Vela III, Ana Cortez, Casey L. McKinney and Warren Baker...

Texas Monthly denies pay-for-play allegations, hires ombudsman (Austin American-Statesman) LINK TO STORY

Texas Monthly has made a high-profile hire as the magazine continues to push back against allegations its February cover story on the CEO of Austin-based dating site Bumble was the result of a pay-for-play arrangement.

The Austin-based magazine said it has hired former American-Statesman editor Rich Oppel to serve as a “third-party ombudsman.” Oppel, whose news team won three Pulitzer Prizes when he led the Charlotte Observer earlier in his career, “will review our processes and organizational structure and make recommendations for implementing every appropriate safeguard to protect our work,” according to a written statement from Texas Monthly chairman and CEO Paul Hobby...

City busking program brings public music performance into question (Austin Monthly) LINK TO STORY

Austin’s long-debated policy concerning the legality of paid acoustic street performance – widely referred to as “busking” – returned as an issue of some discussion Monday, with the city’s music office attempting to change both the perception and enforcement of the practice.
Busking is an issue that has long bedeviled music proponents in Austin because musicians soliciting donations for their performances can technically be cited for violating the city’s anti-panhandling ordinance as a way to run them off from businesses or residences who complain...


At East Texas debate, embattled Texas agriculture chief Sid Miller in hot seat (Texas Tribune) LINK TO STORY

Embattled Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller spent the better part of a Republican primary debate Tuesday night defending a volley of perceived missteps that have plagued his first term. And the pressure wasn’t just coming from his opponent, Trey Blocker, a longtime Austin lobbyist and conservative podcast host.
Moderator JoAnn Fleming, one of the state’s most prominent Tea Party activists, peppered Miller, a former state lawmaker, with questions about a variety of actions he’s taken during the past three years that would appear to stray outside the bounds of traditional conservatism...


Julián Castro says he has "every interest" in running for president in 2020 (Texas Tribune) LINK TO STORY

In an interview this week, former San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro gave the strongest indication yet that he's interested in running for president in 2020.

Castro, a Democrat who led the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development under President Barack Obama, told NBC News that he has "every interest in running." His speech next week at an awards dinner in New Hampshire will help him take the temperature of voters in the early primary state...

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