State Senator Kirk Watson Supports Plans for an Austin Medical School

Austin, Texas is the latest city to join a growing trend in banning disposable bags. Staring in March of 2013, Austin retailers will not be allowed to use disposable plastic or paper bags when customers buy something from their stores. Instead, customers must use more “green” multi-use bags to carry home their purchases. Most stores now offer these reusable bags for a low cost, and by March of next year all of Austin’s residents and visitors will be familiar with them. Should a store use a disposable plastic or paper bag, the retailer will then face a penalty. The Austin City Council just recently agreed on the ban, and will continue talks to decide on what fines or penalties the retailers will face. Customers will not be penalized by using disposable bags. Austin is the first city in Texas to take this step, and is investing 2 million dollars into educating its residents leading up to the March deadline. Disposable bags will be allowed in use when wrapping meat, fish, produce, carry-out foods, and dry-cleaning. Aside from these exceptions, retailers of Austin will need to comply with using reusable bags and will be working on plans to avoid penalties. While this may take an adjustment period for stores and customers, natural gas service, in the long run the environment will benefit.

Austin Health Officials Say Prescription Drug Shortage Is the Worst Ever

Austin, Texas is currently suffering from a severe prescription drug shortage. Painkillers, antibiotics, and other prescription drugs are in short supply, making it hard for doctors to properly treat their patients.

One reason for the drug shortage is contamination of the factories that make the medications. Other reasons include shortages of raw drug-making materials and pharmaceutical companies stopping production of certain medications in pursuit of more lucrative endeavors.

While no deaths have resulted from the prescription drug shortage, it has certainly made treating patients more difficult. Some medical Read the rest of this entry »

Teachers and Students in Austin Rally Against Standardized Testing

Conventional educational methods that have made use of standardized testing to provide an accurate assessment of student understanding and facility-wide performance have a number of limitations when it comes to teaching methods. Teachers and students alike in Austin have recently undertaken major efforts to bring this matter to greater attention and replace conventional methods with more effective alternative. Relying on standardized testing alone in order to gauge the effectiveness of a school or student population may fail to outline a number of important educational issues and challenges that would benefit from being addressed.

Next-generation teaching methods and facilities that Read the rest of this entry »

Austin Man Who Killed One in Bus Stop Crash Gets 25 Years

Charles Roberts Jr. veered off of Manchaca Road when he lost control of his van while evading a sheriff’s deputy last year in Austin, Texas. He was pulled over by police for traffic law violations in Austin, when he reportedly decided to flee from the scene.

Someone near the area stated Robert’s told him, “I have warrants and I need to get home to my wife and kids before disappearing.” When leaving the sheriff’s deputy behind Charles Roberts Jr. hit and killed Read the rest of this entry »

Austin Locals Torn on Effectiveness of Deer Feeding Ordinance

Austin’s ongoing war on deer is receiving mixed reviews. Its attempt to curb deer feeding has had questionable success since its implementation in August of 2009. While some argue that the ordinance prohibiting the intentional feeding of deer has worked, others complain that it is too difficult to enforce.
With only one person having received a fine since its inception, DeerAustin, a neighborhood group, says the ordinance is doing its job. Pointing to the reduction Read the rest of this entry »

Austin, Texas Couple Loses 400-Pound Bronze Elephant

Local ABC affiliate, KVUE, is reporting that a 400 pound bronze sculpture of an elephant was stolen from the Darnell family during broad daylight Friday, April 28 during the hours of 10:30AM – 12:0PM CST just outside their home in Garland. It’s reported that there were no signs to indicate a vehicle or heavy equipment lifting device was used to lift and take the sculpture away. From all appearances, it may be that the thief or thieves lifted the bronze pachyderm up and walked off with it. Mrs. Darnell Read the rest of this entry »

Investigation Into the Austin Police Crime Lab Suggested by State Panel

Recent complaints regarding the Austin Police Crime Lab have lead officials to a possible investigation. The complaints alleged were regarding how the drug evidence is tested. The complaints stated that there was negligence or possible misconduct. One of the complaints came from a worker who was fired. She stated there were difference results when running the same evidence at another lab.

Though an investigation was suggested, it is still unclear as to whether an actual investigation will happen. A meeting on Friday, March 2, 2012, regarding these issues still left matters unattended. The former employee, Debra Stephens, stated that she had told Read the rest of this entry »

Austin Retailers Facing Penalties for Offering Disposable Bags Under New Law

Austin, Texas is the latest city to join a growing trend in banning disposable bags. Staring in March of 2013, Austin retailers will not be allowed to use disposable plastic or paper bags when customers buy something from their stores. Instead, customers must use more “green” multi-use bags to carry home their purchases. Most stores now offer these reusable bags for a low cost, and by March of next year all of Austin’s residents and visitors will be familiar with them. Should Read the rest of this entry »

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