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Home    Education    Legislative    Publications    Calendar    Sunbelt Builders Show    Resources July 12, 2011

US tackles housing slump
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Obama administration is ramping up talks on how to revive the housing market, which is weighing on the economic recovery — and possibly the president's re-election in 2012. Last year, advisers considered several housing policy prescriptions but rejected them in favor of letting the market sort things out. Since then, weak demand and a stream of foreclosed properties have put renewed pressure on home prices, prompting concern within the White House. More

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Home construction for Texas veteran continues; Organization needs donations
KFOX-TV    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Construction began on a home for wounded veteran Adrian Garcia earlier this year in March. However, work has come to a standstill because the nonprofit organization that is building the house, Homes for our Troops, hasn't received enough donations and is now seeking more. More

Wind insurer has shortfall for Ike claims
Houston Chronicle    Share    Share on
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The state windstorm insurer of last resort is short $200 million to cover Hurricane Ike claims, and its choices for raising the money present new problems. One approach could tighten the state's general revenue and its home insurance market for up to five years, and the other could reduce the windstorm insurer's reserves for paying future hurricane claims. More

Central Texas home foundations feeling effects of drought
KVUE-TV    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail
When homeowner Scott Roszel tested his doors, he noticed something wrong — an uneven door sill. That's a telltale sign his South Austin home's foundation has slipped. It can be blamed on the drought. At least that door closes, because others aren't so fortunate. More

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Texas eyes renewable energy zone
Benzinga    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A joint venture between American Electric Power Company and MidAmerican Energy has recently begun construction on a major renewable zone with in Texas. The partnership, called Electric Transmission Texas, plans to invest $1.4 billion in the Competitive Renewable Energy Zone project by 2013. These projects were awarded by the Public Utility Commission of Texas and this investment will help construct nearly 450 miles of transmission lines and substations across West Texas. More

Perry appoints new railroad commissioner    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Three months after Midland native Michael Williams left the Railroad Commission to run for the U.S. Senate — and now for the U.S. House — the commission again has three commissioners. Gov. Rick Perry on Friday appointed Barry Smitherman to the commission. Smitherman stepped down from his post as chairman of the Public Utility Commission following the appointment. More

Texas fight with EPA grows with power plant rule
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail
Texas Governor Rick Perry and two top state regulators blasted the U.S. environmental agency for including Texas in a rule to slash sulfur dioxide emissions from power plants, warning that the last minute action could threaten the state's electric supply. The Environmental Protection Agency finalized a rule to reduce air pollution from coal-fired power plants in states east of the Rocky Mountains. More

New housing program is aimed at the unemployed
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Help is on the way from the federal government for some homeowners struggling to make their mortgage payments because of prolonged joblessness. The Obama administration has announced a beefed-up program that will allow eligible homeowners to skip part or all of their monthly payments for 12 months or more while they search for a new job. More

Submit an entry to the
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Few lawmakers turned down taxpayers' help with living expenses during special session
Austin American-Statesman Postcards Blog    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Absenteeism was a big problem during the Legislature's recent 30-day special session, but dozens of lawmakers who didn't show up continued to collect taxpayer money to cover their living expenses. More

Drought spreads pain from Florida to Arizona
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Drought has spread across 14 states, from Florida, where severe water restrictions are in place, to Arizona, where ranchers could be forced to sell off entire herds of cattle because they simply cannot feed them. In Texas, where the drought is the worst, virtually no part of the state has been untouched. City dwellers and ranchers have been tormented by excessive heat and high winds. In the Southwest, wildfires are chewing through millions of acres. More

University of North Texas to build zero energy research laboratory
UNT News Service    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The University of North Texas is leading the charge to produce a quality green collar workforce by building a state-of-the-art Zero Energy Research Laboratory, where students and faculty will get first-hand experience with sustainable energy technologies of tomorrow. The facility is designed to test emerging technologies that allow building systems to have a net-zero consumption of energy, and once completed will be the first of its kind in the United States. More

The next big boom towns in the US
Forbes    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
To determine the next boom towns in the U.S., Forbes, with the help of Mark Schill at the Praxis Strategy Group, took the 52 largest metro areas in the country (those with populations exceeding 1 million) and ranked them based on various data indicating past, present and future vitality. More
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