Order photos

Chief election officer encourages Texans to register before deadline

by | Oct 3, 2019 | Opinion

Texas Secretary of State Ruth Hughs invited eligible Texans to celebrate and participate in National Voter Registration Day — the fourth Tuesday in September — by ensuring they are registered to vote before the Oct. 7 registration deadline.

Hughs, the state’s chief election officer, issued a final call to action to voters, community leaders and elected officials to encourage their fellow Texans to register and prepare to vote in the upcoming Nov. 5 election.

“An active and engaged citizenry plays an essential role in ensuring the continued well-being of our democracy,” Hughs said.

The number of registered voters in Texas stood at 15,823,406 in September. For more information on voting in Texas, visit www.votetexas.gov

E-cig cases are counted

The Texas Department of State Health Services on Sept. 24 announced the agency had identified 54 Texas cases of severe lung disease in people who report “vaping” before developing symptoms.

State health officials are gathering more information about 35 other possible cases to determine whether they are consistent with the symptoms and substance use seen in cases in Texas and 37 other states. About half of the Texas cases have been in teens, and more than half required hospitalization.

Respiratory symptoms include difficulty breathing, shortness of breath and coughing. Some people have also experienced nausea, vomiting and diarrhea. DSHS said clinicians should ask patients with those symptoms about a history of vaping, gather as much information as possible about suspected cases, and report them to the agency.

Unemployment rate holds

The Texas Workforce Commission on Sept. 20 reported that the state’s economy added 18,200 seasonally adjusted total non-farm positions in the month of August.

Notably, the Lone Star State’s unemployment rate held steady at 3.4 percent, matching the all-time record low set in June. The rate of 3.4 percent is the lowest since the agency launched this method of tracking in 1976.

The state’s lowest unemployment rate among metropolitan statistical areas in August was the Midland MSA with a non-seasonally adjusted rate of 2.2 percent, followed by the Amarillo MSA at 2.7 percent.

TxDOT asks for input

The Texas Department of Transportation on Sept. 23 started asking citizens what they think will be the most pressing transportation needs for the next 30 years.

TxDOT is hosting a second round of public meetings that the agency says will be essential to developing the state’s long-range transportation plan, which helps inform the direction for the future of Texas’ multimodal transportation system.

The Texas Transportation Plan 2050, or TTP 2050, will guide TxDOT’s planning and programming for the next 30 years and set long-range goals for all forms of transportation.

Texans who can’t get to the meetings in person may participate online by visiting www.txdot.gov and searching for “TTP 2050”. TxDOT is providing an interactive survey to gather public input. The virtual open house also features a transportation usage survey.

Online surveys will close Nov. 15, 2019, and public comments will be accepted throughout the development of the TTP 2050 until early 2020, the agency said.

RRC tops cleanup goal

In fiscal year 2019, which ended Aug. 31, the Texas Railroad Commission cleaned up more than 400 abandoned oil field sites.

On Sept. 27, the state’s energy-regulating agency said the number of cleaned-up sites is more than double the goal set by the Texas Legislature.

While most operators clean up their own oilfield sites when the wells are no longer productive, the Railroad Commission uses industry fees to clean up abandoned sites through the State-Managed Cleanup Program. The fees include regulatory fees, permit fees, enforcement penalties and bond amounts assessed on oil and gas operators.

Since the State-Managed Cleanup Program was established in 1992, the RRC has assessed, investigated and — if cleanup was determined necessary — completed cleanup activities at 6,821 abandoned oilfield sites, restoring land used in energy production back to a safe condition.

Governor goes to Japan

Gov. Greg Abbott toured Japan in an economic development mission last week, visiting with top government and industry officials in various cities.

Among the topics Abbott discussed with his hosts were trade, manufacturing, transportation, energy, infrastructure and tourism.

 

For more stories like this, see the Oct. 3 issue or subscribe online.

 

By Ed Sterling • Member Services Director, Texas Press Assocation

Subscribe Love

0 Comments

Related News

Hold, please

Hold, please

It appears that telephone landlines may be on their way out. CNN Business reported that recently, AT&T applied for a waiver in the state of California to stop servicing traditional landlines. Both AT&T and Verizon have both said they want to move away from...

read more
Dewey or don’t we?

Dewey or don’t we?

On Christmas Eve 2008, there were just three of us working in the office. Well, technically, there was one of us working, the other two were there. A couple of the young ladies on staff either didn’t have enough vacation time built up or they were saving it for...

read more
A range of options

A range of options

My great grandparents lived on a homestead. They cooked on a wood stove. Most of us today have no idea how good we’ve got it. For my great grandparents’ generation, remodeling the kitchen meant picking a different place to stack the wood. By John Moore For more on...

read more
A word from our sponsors

A word from our sponsors

Commercials used to be great. They used to be an art form. They used to be fun. Today’s advertising is boring in comparison. Television commercials were something to which I looked forward when I was a kid. Some were better developed and more interesting than the...

read more
On the road again

On the road again

We often hear someone say they just want to leave the world a better place than they found it. That’s a great goal, but rarely is it the case. Unless you were Charles Kuralt. For those of us who grew up during his time on the CBS News segment, On The...

read more
The Walking Dad

The Walking Dad

It's obvious that I have to wait to die until after everyone else in my home goes. Otherwise, every light in the house will be left on for all of eternity. My dad used to say that I could leave on all of the lights whenever I started paying the bills. By John Moore...

read more
Small town living: some leave, some come back

Small town living: some leave, some come back

You learn things when you grow up in a small town. Things you don’t learn if you grow up anywhere else. Things that are special. I was born in a small town. But I didn’t stay. I left for the same reasons other folks leave their hometown. Education, better jobs, and...

read more
There’s ‘snow’ ice cream quite like it!

There’s ‘snow’ ice cream quite like it!

It didn’t snow much in Ashdown, Arkansas in the 1960s. It doesn’t snow there much now. But when it did, and when it does, kids there know exactly what to do. Beg their moms to make snow ice cream. By John Moore For more on this story see the December 21, 2023 print,...

read more
Sears catalog was ‘our’ Amazon in the 1950s and 60s

Sears catalog was ‘our’ Amazon in the 1950s and 60s

As a young kid, I thought that every family did exactly the same things ours did. That included what and how we did Christmas. Turned out, there were two ways to approach collecting your loot. That is to say, seeing what Santa brought. One, which was more traditional,...

read more
Former bridge brought fear to travelers

Former bridge brought fear to travelers

When you first learn to drive, there are a few things that are, shall we say, intimidating. For me, there was parallel parking and changing lanes at high speeds. Both of which were challenging in a 1971 Buick Electra 225 Limited, which was one of Detroit’s longer...

read more
Subscribe Love