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Home    Education    Legislative    Publications    Calendar    Sunbelt Builders Show    Resources Oct. 11, 2012

TAB News Briefs
Oct. 11, 2012
TAB Quick Links >    Home     Education     Legislative     Publications     Calendar     Sunbelt Builders Show     Resources

Dallas Fed: Energy, housing sectors boost regional economy
Austin American-Statesman    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Rising demand for single-family homes and the ongoing strength of the Texas energy sector helped maintain a "moderate" pace of regional economic growth over the past six weeks, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas said. The general strength of the economy lifted employment across the Dallas Fed district, according to the bank's Beige Book report, which provides a summary of regional business conditions every six weeks. More

Home foreclosures fall to 5-year low
The Associated Press via San Antonio Business Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
U.S. foreclosure filings fell to a five-year low in September. It was the second-consecutive monthly decline in filings, according to a report by RealtyTrac Inc. Overall, there were 180,427 foreclosure filings for the month, the fewest since July 2007 in the midst of the housing market bust. More

Gov. Perry appoints oil, gas agency official
Times Record News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Texas Railroad Commissioner David Porter has been appointed by Gov. Rick Perry to serve as the official representative of Texas to the Interstate Oil and Gas Compact Commission (IOGCC). The IOGCC is a multi-state government agency that works to ensure our nation's oil and natural gas resources are conserved and maximized while protecting health, safety and the environment. More

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Court hears DeLay's money-laundering appeal
Austin American-Statesman    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Former U.S. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay should not go to prison on money-laundering charges because the 2002 campaign transaction involved a $190,000 check and not cash, his lawyer argued Wednesday before the 3rd Court of Appeals. Houston lawyer Brian Wice repeated the perennial argument that DeLay, a Sugar Land Republican, and his co-defendants have used at various stages of their marathon legal battles — usually without success. More

GOP lawmaker criticizes dipping into state pensions
The Texas Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
State Rep. Kenneth Sheets, R-Dallas, has become the first GOP lawmaker to openly disparage other elected officials for collecting a state pension while receiving a government salary for their elected position, a practice that received notoriety after reports came out that Gov. Rick Perry officially retired to boost his take-home pay. "It becomes an issue when you are a current elected official that is drawing a state employee pension while receiving a salary as an elected official," Sheets wrote in an email to The Texas Tribune. More

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Big challenges ahead for inexperienced legislators
San Angelo Standard-Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The state has a crop of relatively new legislators, and between roads, water and school finances, they will have a lot to learn and do. State Rep. Drew Darby and State Sen. Robert Duncan expressed concern at a San Angelo Chamber of Commerce luncheon about guiding the relatively new legislators — 78 of 150 representatives have less than two years of experience, Darby said — through issues of fundamental infrastructure. More

Texas among states with best business-tax climates
Houston Business Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Texas has one of the top business-tax climates, the Tax Foundation's 2013 State Business Tax Climate Index shows. For the third year in a row, Texas ranks No. 9 on the overall index, according to the report released this week. For individual income tax, Texas ranks No. 7. It is among the seven states that do not tax individual income, but it ranks below the other six because it does not recognize LLCs or S corps, the report says. More

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Senator assures work will continue despite nixed committee
Valley Morning Star    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Sen. Eddie Lucio Jr. would have preferred that the Senate Committee on International Relations and Trade, which he chaired for several years, had not been dissolved, though he vowed that the committee's work would continue through other channels. Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst dissolved the IRT committee last week, characterizing it as a cost-saving move. The committee was formed in 2005 and, despite the name, dealt primarily with housing and community development legislation. More

Texas Democrats try to whittle away GOP House majority
The Associated Press via Lubbock Avalanche-Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Ninety-nine of the 150 seats in the Texas House are virtually uncontested, but the fight is on for the remaining 51 districts, with Democrats intent on whittling away at the Republican supermajority that ramrodded through legislation last year. House rules require a quorum of 100 lawmakers to do business, and with 101 Republicans last year, Democrats could only use parliamentary procedure to slow down their conservative agenda. More

State sales tax revenue up 11.5 percent for September
Austin American-Statesman    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Texas saw its sales tax collections rise in September, with revenue of $1.96 billion, an increase of 11.5 percent over the same month last year, the state comptroller's office said. It was the 30th consecutive month in which sales tax revenue has increased, the comptroller's office said. Sales tax is an important source of revenue for the state, paying for a number of services, from schools to prisons. More

The NRP Group named 2012 Development Firm of the Year in NAHB's Multifamily Pillars awards
NAHB    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The NRP Group, based in Cleveland, earned top honors as Multifamily Development Firm of the Year by the National Association of Home Builders as part of the association's Multifamily Pillars of the Industry Awards. "The NRP Group has consistently maintained profitability and financial strength in a tough economy, which speaks to the resilience of the company," said W. Dean Henry, CEO of Legacy Partners Residential in Foster City, Calif., and chairman of NAHB's Multifamily Leadership Board. More

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Many renting Austin homes for Austin City Limits may be breaking the law
Austin Business Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Most property owners renting out their homes during the Austin City Limits Music Festival may be breaking the law, since only four out of nearly 1,500 short-term rental properties have the required license to operate. More

Master Brick announces the addition of MB2 BioClay!

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Along Gulf Coast, a downside to surging oil production
KUHA-FM via The Texas Tribune    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
AudioBriefOil production along the Gulf Coast has helped cut U.S. crude imports by 20 percent since 2005. But environmentalists say the increased production isn't without drawbacks, including strain on the state's rail, pipeline and highway systems. More

$84 billion in green building residential opportunities
Designbuild Source    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
While conditions in residential construction throughout many parts of the world may be challenging right now, those seeking long term growth opportunities need look no further than the green building and energy efficient housing sector. Indeed, over the next decade, the value of work done in energy efficient residential dwellings will grow by around sixfold from around $14 billion now to around $84 billion in 2020 according to a report from Pike Research. More

ODL Offers Impact-Rated Doorglass
ODL Severe Weather® Doorglass is certified for use in a range of entrance systems to meet Texas wind-borne requirements and provides safety and security while maximizing natural light. ODL offers a wide variety of impact-rated Doorglass including: Decorative Doorglass, Light-Touch® Enclosed Blinds, Grilles Between Glass, and Privacy and Clear Glass.

Woman must close new San Antonio group home
The Associated Press via The Brownsville Herald    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A woman who ran a South Texas group home for the mentally challenged where four men died in a fire must close her new residential facility. Regulators in San Antonio said Nancy Murrah has been told to shut the site due to no certificate of occupancy. The permit requires safety inspections. Murrah did not immediately comment. More

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Fort Bend candidate voted twice in same elections, records show
Houston Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A Republican precinct chairman running for a seat on the Fort Bend County Commissioner's Court has cast ballots in both Texas and Pennsylvania in the last three federal elections, official records in both states show. Bruce J. Fleming, a Sugar Land resident running for Precinct 1 commissioner, voted in person in Sugar Land in 2006, 2008 and 2010 and by mail in each of those years in Yardley, Pa., according to election records in both states. More

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Developer, Texas reach deal to expand I-35W
Fort Worth Star-Telegram    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Hoping to speed up work to relieve the most congested stretch of highway in the state, the Texas Department of Transportation has reached a tentative $1.6 billion deal with a private developer to expand Interstate 35W in north Fort Worth. The work is expected to begin in mid-2013 and be completed by mid-2018. More

Study part of effort to save Asarco smokestacks
El Paso Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Engineers will be climbing and dangling from ropes on the Asarco smokestacks testing the concrete to determine whether the stacks are structurally sound. The $34,000 study is part of the Save the Stacks group's attempt to preserve the El Paso landmarks, said Robert Ardovino, one of the group's organizers. The two stacks, the tallest rising 826 feet, were built in the mid-1960s. More
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