Headlines / Quote of the Week

Protesters gather at UT-Austin April 25
Protesters gather at UT-Austin April 25 (photo by Lina Fisher)

Nate Paul Not Paying Up: For the third year in a row, infamous local real estate mogul Nate Paul topped the list of delinquent taxpayers in Travis County with more than $3 million owed in 2023, the Austin Business Journal reported Wednesday. Paul and his company are at risk of losing several properties as a result. (BTW, two entities tied to a company Paul heads declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy in April.)

Israeli police confiscate broadcast equipment from Al Jazeera
Israeli police confiscate broadcast equipment from Al Jazeera (screenshot via YouTube / Al Jazeera English)

Felony Gun Charge for Protester: After last week’s arrests of 79 peaceful protesters by police in riot gear, the University of Texas released a statement claiming that “weapons have been confiscated in the form of guns, buckets of large rocks, bricks, steel enforced wood planks, mallets, and chains.” Days later, the UT Police Department filed a felony gun possession charge for allegedly illegally carrying a loaded semi-automatic pistol, the Statesman reported.

Israel Shuts Down Al Jazeera Offices: Israel raided the offices of the Al Jazeera news network over the weekend, ordering it to cease operations in the country and confiscating some of the network’s broadcasting equipment. Al Jazeera has angered Israeli leaders by broadcasting 24-hour-a-day coverage of the war against Hamas and airing videos of injured Palestinians and statements from Hamas and other militant groups. Hours after the order, the network was off Israel’s cable and satellite providers.

An old plan for the former Statesman property
An old plan for the former Statesman property (rendering by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill)

Texas Lawsuit Over Colorado Abortion: A Texas man asked a court for permission this week to investigate his ex-partner’s alleged out-of-state abortion in Colorado. His lawyer is the prolific anti-abortion attorney Jonathan Mitchell, who helped write Texas’ six-week abortion ban. If a judge allows it to move forward, this suit would be the first to target a person who helped another leave the state for an abortion, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Carbon Plan Restart: Austin Energy is incorporating new voices in the utility’s second effort to update its Resource, Generation and Climate Protection Plan. The proposed plan will establish the city’s energy policy for at least the next six years as it strives to become carbon neutral. A redo was deemed necessary after the first draft of the proposal was criticized for advocating the creation of a new power plant that initially would run on natural gas. Now AE will consider bringing nonprofit groups into the planning process, the Austin Monitor reports.

Shows like <b><i>RWBY</i></b> from Rooster Teeth have changed streaming entertainment
Shows like RWBY from Rooster Teeth have changed streaming entertainment (courtesy of Rooster Teeth)

Whatever Will We Do With That Statesman Property: City Council is considering revisions to the plan for the South Central Waterfront District, the city’s effort to transform the former property of the Austin American-Statesman to help facilitate affordable housing, pedestrian infrastructure, and park space. According to reporting in the Austin Monitor, one of the project’s principal planners criticized proposals from the Planning Commission at a Council work session last week, specifically applying the Downtown Density Bonus Program to the redevelopment.

Hey, Pass The Talking Stick: A City Council rule allocating two minutes instead of three to those wishing to speak during a public meeting of the council has been ruled illegal for the second time. Last week, District Judge Daniella Deseta Lyttle agreed with the Save Our Springs Alliance in its lawsuit against the city, ruling that the two-minute limit, in effect since 2023, violates the Texas Open Meetings Act as well as the city charter. We’ll learn more from a July hearing.

Texas Congressman Indicted: U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Laredo) faces decades in prison after being indicted along with his wife on charges of accepting $600,000 in bribes from Azerbaijan and a Mexican bank, The Texas Tribune reports. According to court documents, Cuellar allegedly accepted payments that had been laundered through fake consulting companies owned by Cuellar’s wife, Imelda. In exchange, Cuellar allegedly advocated for U.S. policy that favored Azerbaijan over its neighbor, Armenia. The congressman has proclaimed his innocence.

Goodbye Rooster Teeth: Rooster Teeth, the Austin online studio that pioneered online entertainment, wrapped up 21 years of streaming mayhem with a final, tear- and laughter-filled livestream on April 26. This final hurrah came after owners Warner Bros. Discovery announced that the company, which had been losing money for several years, will be shutting down on May 10. However, it’s not all over for the Austin institution: the 19th and final season of machinima smash comedy Red vs. Blue arrives on May 7. In even better news, there’s hope for its anime-influenced megahit, RWBY: in a stream two days earlier, series director Kerry Shawcross hinted that the show (which was left on a cliffhanger) might be getting a new home and an eagerly awaited 10th season.

Headlines / Quote of the Week
photo by Fuzheado / CC BY-SA 4.0

Quote of the Week

“Say Drake, I hear you like ’em young. ... Tryna strike a chord and it’s probably A minor”

– Kendrick Lamar, accusing Drake of pedophilia in the wildest rap beef of the 21st century so far

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