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Home    Education    Legislative    Publications    Calendar    Sunbelt Builders Show    Resources Mar. 28, 2013

TAB News Briefs
Mar. 28, 2013
TAB Quick Links >    Home     Education     Legislative     Publications     Calendar     Sunbelt Builders Show     Resources

House approves new approach to high school graduation
The Texas Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The challenge of finding balance between rigor and flexibility in graduation requirements dominated the recent debate over legislation that would significantly change the courses students need for a high school diploma. The measure tentatively passed the Texas House. "Every conversation I've had for months has revolved and swirled around this issue," said House Public Education Committee Chairman Jimmie Don Aycock, R-Killeen, whose bill cleared the lower chamber 145 to 2. More

Texas House approves fund to address water needs
Fort Worth Star-Telegram    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Lawmakers took a major step toward replenishing the state's dwindling water supplies over the next half-century as the Texas House voted 146-2 to create a revolving fund to develop local and regional water projects. House Bill 4, which now goes to the Senate, is part of a two-tiered legislative package to implement a 50-year water plan designed to ensure that the nation's second-largest state will have an abundant source of water to supply its burgeoning population. More
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Receivership colors legislative debate over Texas Windstorm Insurance Association
Corpus Christi Caller-Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Receivership trickled into the legislative discussion on how to reform the Texas Windstorm Insurance Association, raising the ire of some coastal lawmakers. The Senate Committee on Business and Commerce heard testimony on four bills offered by state Sen. Juan "Chuy" Hinojosa, D-McAllen and state Sen. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, that seek to shore up the association's funding structure. Taylor, who invoked receivership as a positive step in stemming the tide of litigation costs, also raised eyebrows. More

Longview-area home sales up 16 percent
Longview News-Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Longview-area home sales are off to a hot start in 2013, and real estate professionals are predicting they will continue picking up steam as spring and summer get into full swing. "The market seems to really be on fire," said Phyllis Jolley, president of the Longview Area Association of Realtors and an associate with Coldwell Banker Lenhart Properties. "January was a huge month." More

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Housing values continue to recover
Federal Savings Bank via Houston Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Federal Savings Bank is pleased to echo news that the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index showed the fastest growing rate for home prices since 2006. While prices rise and perspective homebuyers save up for a mortgage, veterans are in a better position to purchase a home. The Case-Shiller Home Price Index which is a key measure of the U.S. housing market posted an 8.1 percent rise in property values from the end of January 2012 to 2013. More

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Downtown El Paso housing on verge of taking off as developers explore area
El Paso Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Downtown revitalization experts for years have pointed to housing as a key component of redevelopment efforts in downtowns across the country. But housing in downtown El Paso has yet to take off despite the success of a handful of fairly recent downtown housing projects — the 91-unit Magoffin Park Villas apartments, the 14-unit apartments in The Mix at Union Plaza, and the nine-unit First Avenue Lofts condos and apartments. More

In budget plans, riders as telling as the numbers
The Texas Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Tucked away deep inside the budget plans proposed by the Texas House and Senate is a reference to a single exit off of Interstate 35. The passage states that the exit ramp for "IH-35 at exit number 359" cannot be moved more than 1,000 feet unless refusing to do so would cause Texas to lose federal funding or be in violation of federal law. The oddly specific provision is one of dozens of passages in the budget, commonly referred to as riders, that allow those crafting the state appropriations to guide state policy while allocating billions of dollars in public money. More

Green walls may cut pollution in cities
National Geographic    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In these pictures, a living wall bursts with vegetation at Paris's Musée du Quai Branly — a type of green wall that's catching on in some big cities. These vegetated surfaces don't just look pretty. They have other benefits as well, including cooling city blocks, reducing loud noises, and improving a building's energy efficiency. More

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Rep. Workman bills would weaken Austin's environmental laws
Austin American-Statesman    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Seemingly every session of the state Legislature arrives with lawmakers proposing to curtail Austin's environmental rules, but, unlike in many other years, an Austin politician is now carrying that banner. State Rep. Paul Workman, a Republican who represents parts of South and Southwest Austin and western Travis County, has filed a series of bills that would weaken many of Austin's development restrictions. More

Better Homes and Gardens real estate survey shows new 'kids' on the block willing to work hard to make home as unique as they are
Market Watch    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
There's a new type of home buyer on the market. They know what they want and are ready to get their hands dirty to transform a house to meet their unique needs. Stereotypical luxury and prototypical homes do not entice them; rather these consumers strive to own homes that stand apart and suit their personal lifestyle… Enter the next generation of home buyers. More

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Work begins on next Benefit Homes project in Bridgeland
Cyprus Creek Mirror    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Ground-breaking ceremonies for the next Greater Houston Builders Association Benefit Homes Project took place March 21 at 12526 Brook Cove Drive in Bridgeland. Village Builders is building the home on a site donated by Bridgeland. This is the fourth year Bridgeland has participated in the Benefit Homes Project, which brings together builders, developers and vendors to donate services and materials to build homes that are sold at market value. Hoping to raise top dollar, the homes are built with numerous upgrades and amenities and approximately 75 percent of the sale benefits the project's designated charities — the Alzheimer's Association, HomeAid Houston and Texas Children's Cancer Center. More

3 communities in Fort Bend, Katy earn top awards for quality development
Houston Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Three of the seven neighborhoods recognized by The West Houston Association as "Quality Planned Developments" are located in Katy or Fort Bend. Cinco Ranch and Wyndehaven Lake Estates, both in Katy, and Cross Creek Ranch in Katy/Fulshear were honored by the first-year awards. Other winners were Bridgeland, Cypress Creek Ranch and The Vintage in northwest Harris County and Citycentre in west Houston. More

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Best in show: Texas Pools receives highest honors at APSP Regional Awards
The Paper Magazine    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Woodlands-based Texas Pools was recently granted more distinctions at the 2013 Association of Pool & Spa Professionals (APSP) Region 3 Design Awards ceremony, where the team took home the top title of Best in Show, in addition to one Gold, three Silver and two Awards of Merit. The APSP Region 3 Design Awards distinguishes exceptional installations of pools, spas and hot tubs in a competition that highlights original work from Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, Mississippi, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming. More
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