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Home   About Us   Membership   Education   Events   Contact Us           January 15, 2015


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Perry says goodbye to the Legislature
The Texas Tribune
Gov. Rick Perry will close the door on 30 years of state government work with a farewell address to the Legislature. In that speech, Perry plans to tout the state's successes during his tenure as governor, the longest in Texas history. That would include the state's use of drug diversion programs to cut crime as well as the high job growth rate of recent years, reported the Tribune's Reeve Hamilton.
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2015: An agenda for transportation
The Texas Tribune
With the 84th Texas Legislature now underway, our elected officials are recognizing what drivers in our state have known for years: Texas infrastructure needs more of their attention. For too long, state policymakers have treated transportation as an afterthought. Now, thanks in large part to the special sessions in the summer of 2013, in which a constitutional amendment dedicating additional road funds was sent to the voters, and Gov.-elect Greg Abbott's high-profile plan to secure an additional $4 billion in transportation funding, transportation is one of the top issues as the session begins.
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House speaker calls for bipartisanship as Legislature opens
The Dallas Morning News
Amid many changes to its leadership, the Legislature started a new session with ceremony, deeply felt emotions and a summons by one chamber's chief for bipartisan solutions to urban Texas' growing pains. Large freshman classes in both the Senate and the House drew to the Capitol hundreds of family members and friends, gussied up in their Sunday best. They drank in hours of opening day musical performances, orations and oath-takings and no shortage of picture-taking.
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House proposes committee changes
San Antonio Express-News
The Texas House would create a new committee specifically for juvenile justice and family issues and get rid of a committee that focuses on technology under a measure filed recently. The House is scheduled to debate and vote Thursday on a set of proposed rules for the lower chamber, most of which involve realigning committees and their responsibilities in some way.
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The 84th Texas Legislature, by the numbers
The Texas Tribune
What does the Texas Legislature look like? On average: white, male, middle-aged, Christian — and educated at a public university. That's according to a Texas Tribune analysis of demographics in the Texas Capitol. While lawmaker demographics are changing by the session, it's safe to say the makeup of the 84th Legislature is out of whack with the state's overall population.
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1st test for Abbott's case against immigration policy
The Texas Tribune
A federal judge will hear the state's argument to forestall the Obama administration from granting deportation relief to the bulk of Texas' 1.46 million undocumented immigrants, including more than a half million whose children are in the country legally.
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Slowdown seen in San Antonio, Texas housing markets in 2015
WOAI-AM
The red hot San Antonio and Texas housing markets are expected to cool off significantly this year, but housing economist Dr. Mark Dotzour told the annual San Antonio Board of Realtors Housing Forecast that a gradual decline from unsustainable valuation increases is good for the overall economy, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports. Dotzour heads the Real Estate Center at Texas A&M University.
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If you want an affordable home, head to these states
CBS News
If you want to own a cheap home, you may want to head to Texas. That's according to a new study by financial technology company SmartAsset, which found that the 10 most affordable places to buy a home can be found in Texas, Pennsylvania, Oklahoma and Illinois.
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Home builder breakouts point to strong foundation
Barron's
In the home-building sector, most, if not all of the major indexes and exchange-traded funds tracking stock performance now sport major upside technical breakouts. Considering the tepid performance of the economy, save for the most recent reports, this may come as a surprise but the stock market is definitely sending a message.
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The future of the Dallas mortgage market
Housing Wire
The Dallas-Fort Worth region will be one of the top real estate markets in the country in 2015, according to forecasts from industry insiders. As a mortgage provider serving the area (among others), we are keeping a close watch on the market, and here's what we've learned about what to expect.
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Cities where houses are most undervalued (and overvalued)
MarketWatch
U.S. house prices are only undervalued by around 2 percent on average, according to the latest research, but they're still overvalued — and undervalued — by double-digit percentages in some metro areas.
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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Caitlin McNeely, Senior Editor, 469.420.2692 
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