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Monday, April 15, 2024

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25 million Blacks, Latinos missing from voter databases; major news organizations urge Biden and Trump to commit to presidential debates; NM gun-control advocates praise federal rule closing 'gun show loophole; Arkansas group raising awareness during Black Maternal Health Week.

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House Republicans want citizenship proof for federal election voting, under White House pressure Israel shows restraint after Iran's attack and Trump's hush money trial starts.

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Housing advocates fear rural low-income folks who live in aging USDA housing could be forced out, small towns are eligible for grants to enhance civic participation, and North Carolina's small and Black-owned farms are helped by new wind and solar revenues.

Texas

Gas flaring has persisted from the beginning of oil production more than 160 years ago. (supakitmod/Adobe Stock)

Monday, April 15, 2024

TX faith, environmental groups hopeful about new EPA methane rule

Oil and gas companies have until 2025 to reduce the emissions they release into the air through the practices known as venting and flaring. You may …

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The Texas Diversity Council works with various groups to foster environments where people from marginalized groups feel seen and heard. (Ana Baraulia/Adobe Stock)
Texas Diversity Council remains steadfast in face of adversity

Since 2004, April has been designated "Celebrate Diversity Month," a time to recognize, understand and honor the differences between people. One …

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It's estimated that Direct File would save the average user $160 in filing fees, and hours of their time, each year. (Parradee/Adobe Stock)
Free IRS tool can help Texans file taxes

CLARIFICATION: In last paragraph, it is estimated that 4 million Texans are eligible to use the Direct File program, not that 4 million will actually …

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All libraries that are awarded funding through Libraries for Health are part of a collaborative learning cohort. (Liz Moskowitz)
For Central Texans, libraries can be a mental health resource

This is National Library Week, honoring the many roles that libraries play in their communities. In central Texas, a pilot program is using the …

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Lake Creek runs along the northern boundary of nearly 1,000 acres to be protected within the Houston metropolitan area. (Photo courtesy Bayou Land Conservancy)
Houston metro residents benefit from conservation easement

A conservation easement nine years in the making will benefit a local Texas community by preserving almost 1,000 acres. The Bayou Land Conservancy …

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Only two humans in the U.S. have been infected with avian flu in the United States. A case in Texas this month is the first time it has been linked to exposure to cattle. (syhin_stas/Adobe Stock)
Texas officials address human avian flu case

The cattle industry and health officials in Texas are on alert after a person contracted avian flu while working around infected cattle in the Texas P…

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U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg says
TX watchdog group targets pipeline leaks, Railroad Commission priorities

A Texas group is on a mission to reform how the state monitors and repairs oil and gas pipeline leaks. More than 480,000 miles of pipeline run …

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Financial pressures, lack of mental health resources in rural areas and a stigma about using them all contribute to a suicide rate among farmers that is triple the general population, according to the National Rural Health Association. (primipil/Adobe Stock)
TX works to address wildfire survivors' mental health

Residents in the Texas Panhandle are starting to put their lives back together after surviving the largest wildfire in the state's history. The …

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Embattled Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton agrees to deal to have felony securities fraud charges dropped against him. (Alice Linahan, Voices Empower/Wikimedia)
TX Attorney General gets deal but legal issues not over

Republican Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has emerged from a long court case with another win. After nine years and multiple delays, prosecutors …

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As of Oct. 2023, the average teacher salary was $68,000 a year, which is 8% less than the average for U.S. workers overall. (Drazen/Adobe Stock)
University of Texas El Paso targets teacher shortage

It's estimated that nearly half of all schools in the country don't have enough teachers. To help change that, the University of Texas in El Paso …

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Broadband funds from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act are expected to connect more than 2.5 million households in Texas.(ThomBal/AdobeStock)
TX nonprofit helps rural towns secure infrastructure improvement grants

A lack of staff and know-how often means rural towns miss out on grants to improve their communities, and a Texas group is trying to balance the …

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The National Center for Education Statistics reports that 43% of public school students attend schools where a majority of them are eligible for free or reduced-price meals. (Adobe Stock)
Texas food bank, schools team up to help needy families

To reach more hungry families, one Texas nonprofit is setting up mini food markets in schools. The Tarrant Area Food Bank in North Texas provides 60…

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