Week of April 16-22, 2018
Officials see room for improvement in criminal history reporting
AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott and Attorney General Ken Paxton on April 11 sent a joint letter to eight state criminal justice agencies and associations, urging them to review their processes for reporting criminal history to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System, or “NICS.”
Open Government Seminar series heads to Houston
The 2018 series of regional Open Government Seminars continues May 1 in Houston.
President orders task force to study USPS finances, operations
President Trump signed an executive order April 12 creating a task force to study the financial difficulties of the US Postal Service and recommend restructuring the agency.
Most news reports indicate the move was prompted by the President's assertion that online retailer Amazon's deal for low shipping rates is hurting the postal service financially.
Newsprint tariffs and why you should care
In 1787 Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter to Edward Carrington, whom he had sent as a delegate to the Continental Congress. In the letter, Jefferson stressed the importance of a free press, specifically newspapers.
Jefferson understood that one of the most important checks on government power was a well-informed electorate.
Community newspapers fear newsprint tariffs will put some of them out of business
WASHINGTON—Rural newspaper publishers from all over the country came to Washington in March to plead their case against new tariffs that will increase the cost of newsprint—still a key cost for newspapers, which depend on print advertising even as they try to increase their digital revenue.
By Al Cross
Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues
Week of April 9-15, 2018
Decision to send troops to border draws mixed reactions
AUSTIN — Gov. Greg Abbott on April 4 welcomed the announcement by Secretary of Homeland Security Kirstjen Nielsen that the federal government would deploy some 4,000 National Guard personnel to the U.S.-Mexico border to assist in stemming the flow of illegal immigration.
Interesting facts about Newsprint Tariffs from NNA
• Newsprint is one of the grades of paper in a category called Uncoated Groundwood paper or UGW.
TPA joins effort to STOPP duties on imported paper
The Texas Press Association has joined a new coalition fighting proposed countervailing duties and anti-dumping duties on imports of Canadian uncoated ground wood papers, including newsprint and other papers.
Sunshine Coalition forms to promote open government in Texas
As part of the celebration of Sunshine Month in March, several Texas organizations joined forces to promote government in the sunshine.
Week of April 2-8, 2018
Question to appear on upcoming census stirs opposing viewpoints
AUSTIN — Ted Cruz of Texas was one of three United States senators who requested that respondents to the 2020 decennial census be asked if they are citizens of the United States.
Week of March 26 - April 1, 2018
Bombing suspect ends own life as officers approach him
AUSTIN — The primary suspect in a string of terrorist-style bombings died in his pickup truck on March 21.
Week of March 19-25, 2018
Appellate court’s ruling on immigration law draws reactions
AUSTIN — Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton on March 13 praised a ruling by a panel of the 5th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals upholding a new state law that bans sanctuary cities.
DOC adds heavy tariffs on North American paper supply
A second blow against community newspapers was announced this week by the U S Department of Commerce in the form of heavy tariffs on the North American paper supply.
Newsprint tariff at the discretion of DOC
WASHINGTON — The Department of Commerce can legally use its discretion to mitigate the impact of proposed tariffs on newsprint so that job loss from a proposed set of duties on Canadian paper is minimized, a group of publishing organizations told the DOC in February.
Week of March 12-18, 2018
More Texans than usual cast ballots in primary elections
AUSTIN — In early voting, Texans participated in greater numbers in the state Democratic primary than the Republican primary, but on Election Day, March 6, the Republican turnout exceeded the Democratic turnout by half a million votes.