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PNS Daily Newscast - January 23, 2018. 


Did Democrats cave to end the shutdown? Some immigrant groups are making that case; also on our rundown states are fighting back against Trump environmental actions; right to work in the news in New Mexico; and we will take you to one of the worst states for animal-protection laws.

Daily Newscasts

Public News Service - TX: Budget Policy & Priorities

A federal office has been created to protect doctors, nurses and other healthcare providers who refuse to provide medical services based on their religious beliefs. (westend61/GettyImages)

HOUSTON – A Trump administration plan to protect healthcare workers who refuse to provide services on religious grounds is raising the concerns of civil rights advocates. A presidential order has authorized the creation of a "Conscience and Religious Freedom Division" of the Department of He

A new report shows that children of color comprise 68 percent of the 7.3 million kids in Texas. (Arcurs/GettyImages)<br /><br />

AUSTIN, Texas -- A new report on the "State of America's Children" shows that large numbers of kids living in Texas confront poverty, homelessness, hunger and violence in their daily lives. The report by the Children's Defense Fund found that in Texas, children face major challenges: 1-in-5 live in

The Austin State Hospital was opened in 1857 as the Texas State Lunatic Asylum. It will be replaced with a new $235 million facility in 2019. (THHSC)

AUSTIN, Texas – After decades of neglect, Texas has begun a two-year, $300 million project to rebuild and renovate the state's antiquated psychiatric hospital system. In 2017, the Texas Legislature appropriated the funding to begin bringing the state's network of 10 facilities up to current

While Texas has consistently refused to expand Medicaid, the state has received an extension of a Medicaid-based program that helps cover health-care costs for lower-income residents. (Klimek/GettyImages)

AUSTIN, Texas – Health care providers in Texas are getting a $25 billion shot in the arm with the five-year extension of a Medicaid program by the federal government. The plan, known as an 1115 Demonstration Waiver is considered a low-cost alternative to traditional Medicaid. It provides h

A volunteer assists a mother and daughter in signing up for health insurance through the Affordable Care Act. (Raedle/GettyImages)

AUSTIN, Texas – With the help of a coalition of consumer and faith-based groups, 1.1 million Texans have signed up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act for 2018. The Cover Texas Now coalition stepped in after the Trump administration eliminated most of the funds for signup assi

The Texas Regional Haze Plan is designed to protect the air quality in Guadalupe Mountains National Park and other areas of Texas from coal-fired power plant emissions. (Button/GettyImages)

EL PASO, Texas – A coalition of conservation groups is taking the Environmental Protection Agency to court over changes to the Texas Regional Haze Plan. The suit maintains that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt violated the agency's own regulations by replacing the plan with a new agreement tha

About 400,000 children in Texas could lose health coverage if Congress fails to renew the Children’s Health Insurance Program. (PeopleImages/Getty Images)

AUSTIN, Texas – Almost 9 million families – 400,000 in Texas alone – are anxiously waiting to hear if their children will have health insurance in 2018 and beyond. Congress has passed a two-week, stop-gap budget to avoid a government shutdown, but again failed to fund the Childre

Many scientists believe the heavy floods that accompanied Hurricane Harvey last summer were caused, in part, by climate change. (Platt/GettyImages)

HOUSTON - Municipal officials could be forced to deal with climate change sooner rather than later, or have their bond ratings downgraded. Moody's Investor Services, a bond rating agency, says one element of how it now will determine a city's credit rating in Texas and across the country will be t

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