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City council shrinks window on agenda for comments by public

Q: Our city council cut down on the public comment period in its meetings by restricting the subject matter of comments to items on the meeting agenda. Also, no matter how many people are signed up to speak, the council is limiting the total amount of time allotted for any agenda item to 10 minutes. Are these changes in compliance with the Texas open meetings law and are they somehow tied to the governor’s COVID-19 order?

A fond farewell, debt of gratitude to Ed Sterling

As I write this, TPA is preparing to say goodbye to Ed Sterling after 28 faithful years of service to the Texas Press Association. 
No one who has been involved in TPA any length of time doesn’t know Ed. 
From his weekly legislative update column to putting the Messenger together, there isn’t much within TPA’s walls that Ed hasn’t had a hand in.
Ed is probably one of the few people in the state who reads the Texas Register, the weekly notice from the Secretary of State that includes many changes to the Texas Administrative Code, cover to cover. 

Journalists’ guide to COVID data

Journalists reporting on COVID, however, have a particular obligation to understand the data, to add context and to acknowledge uncertainty when reporting the numbers.
This guide to common COVID metrics is designed to help journalists know how each data point is calculated, what it means and, importantly, what it doesn’t mean.