Thursday, May 23, 2024

The Roundup

Article Icon 1Uvalde Families Suing State Police

The City of Uvalde agreed to pay $2 million to settle claims by the families of 19 students and two teachers killed during the May 24, 2022 mass shooting at Robb Elementary. A similar settlement with the school district is also in the works.

The families are also suing the manufacturer of the gun used in the massacre, the Texas Department of Public Safety, and each of its 92 officers who responded to the shooting. According to the lawsuit, the families are seeking at least $500 million in damages.

Although a total of 360 officers from 23 local, state, and federal agencies were on the scene, it took 77 minutes before a tactical Border Patrol team confronted and killed the 18-year-old gunman.

“We’ve been let down so many times,” said the father of 9-year-old victim Jacklyn Cazares during a news conference on Wednesday. “The time has come to do the right thing.”

Article Icon 1Texas Schools Using Google Tech To Monitor Students

Hundreds of school districts throughout Texas are using surveillance software to monitor student activity on school-issued devices.

Although the intent is to alert school authorities about mental health crises, cyberbullying, and threats of violence, critics contend the technology is ineffective and an invasion of privacy.

One of the most popular surveillance tools is Gaggle, a Google product used by 1,500 school districts nationally and over 200 in Texas.

Article Icon 1Trump Campaigns In Houston And Dallas

Donald Trump attended fundraisers in Houston and Dallas on Wednesday after headlining the NRA’s annual meeting in Dallas last weekend.

The Houston event was hosted by executives from Continental Resources, Energy Transfer Partners, and Occidental Petroleum. Last month, Trump urged a group of Houston business leaders to contribute $1 billion to his campaign so he could return to the White House and roll back Biden’s energy policies.

Tickets to the Dallas fundraiser started out at $100,000, with proceeds going to the Trump campaign, the Republican National Committee, and 41 state GOP parties.

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The ballpark isn’t the only place to look for home runs. Best Buy has a proven record of placing early bets on home technology products that go on to dominate the market. For example:

  • Ring – acquired by Amazon for $1.2B

  • Nest – acquired by Google for $3.2B

Pay attention, because Best Buy just unveiled a new smart-home product in 100+ stores with massive potential – RYSE Smart Shades. RYSE is positioned to dominate the smart shades market (currently growing 50% annually) and there’s still time to invest in their $1.50/share public offering.

Current investors’ share value has risen 20% year-over-year, with strong upside as they scale into retail. Missed out on Ring and Nest? This is your chance to secure your stake in the smart home market.

Invest in RYSE before they become a household name.
Around Texas

➤ Houston: Over 2,500 windows in downtown were damaged in last week’s storm, and several roadways remain closed, according to officials with the Houston Downtown Management District. As of Wednesday afternoon, around 60,000 residents were still without power. (See details)

➤ Austin: The demolition of UT’s iconic Frank Erwin Center was completed Sunday, making room for a new medical school building. Built in 1977 for $34 million, the Drum, as it was called, was the site of countless college basketball games, concerts, and special events. (See video)

➤ Dallas: Twin brothers who operated a pain management clinic pleaded guilty Tuesday to healthcare fraud totaling at least $45 million. Doctors Desi and Deni Barroga billed insurance providers for giving patients fake injections, sometimes up to 80 at a time. (More)

➤ Sinton: San Patricio County opened its new emergency operations center after 18 months of construction, just in time for hurricane season. The dome-shaped building has two levels and contains the servers running the county’s computer systems. (See photos)

➤ Fort Worth: The city council voted unanimously to transfer emergency medical services from a third-party contractor to the city’s fire department. In the agreement with ambulance provider Medstar, its employees will go on the fire department’s payroll after the company is dissolved. (See details)

➤ San Antonio: A man charged with murder was found in Mexico after eluding capture for 22 years. Jose “Nene” Armando Mejia, 46, was extradited earlier this month after U.S. Marshals determined he was living in Nava, about 30 miles from Eagle Pass, Texas. (See video)

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Texas Sports

➤ San Antonio’s Our Lady of the Lake University is headed to its second straight NAIA Softball World Series after winning its regional tournament last week. Led by standout pitcher Cassie Valdez, the Saints won 45 games in a row this season and went into postseason play ranked No. 1 in the nation. (More)

➤ Kyle Tucker homered twice Tuesday to become the league leader and help the resurgent Astros notch their tenth win in the last thirteen games. The two-time All-Star right field now has 17 home runs on the year. (More)

➤ Texas A&M was eliminated from match play at the NCAA Women’s Golf Championship on Tuesday after finishing third through four rounds. Meanwhile, the University of Texas finished tied for eleventh, and Baylor failed to make the cut after three rounds of play. (See details)

Yesterday’s results: MLB | NBA | NHL | WNBA | U.S. Open Cup

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The Business Of Texas

➤ Zachry Holdings, a multibillion-dollar San Antonio construction company, filed for bankruptcy protection Tuesday, blaming difficulties related to its work on the Golden Pass LNG export terminal just south of Port Arthur. The company has about 20,000 employees. (See details)

➤ Dallas-based Southwest Airlines is being sued for giving free tickets to Hispanic college students, which plaintiffs argue discriminates against non-Hispanic students. Southwest has offered four free round-trip tickets to Hispanic college students for 20 years. (See details)

➤ Subaru is relocating its U.S. sales and marketing team from Illinois to the Metroplex city of Coppell. The automaker plans to expand its existing distribution and training facility by 200,000 square feet to house the new central office. (More)

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Venture capitalists know how difficult it is to spot promising early investment opportunities, and the story of the Ring doorbell is the perfect example. Even the all-knowing Sharks from Shark Tank declined the offer to buy 10% of Ring for $700,000, and now the company has blown up (acquired by Amazon for $1B), all thanks to retail distribution. 

Next, let’s turn our attention to RYSE: the brand set to follow a similar trajectory. The founder pitched on Canada’s version of Shark Tank, Dragons’ Den, received two offers, and now their patented smart shades tech is currently sold in over 100 Best Buy stores.

Here’s how you can follow the Dragons’ lead and become an early investor in RYSE.

Et Cetera

➤ Some Austin restaurants are using autonomous robots to deliver orders to customers. The robots are manufactured by Austin-based Avride, and according to Colleen’s Kitchen owner Ashley Fric, they’ve helped her keep up with delivery demands while saving money. (See photos)

➤ A rare tropical bird was spotted on Quintana Island in Brazoria County on Tuesday. According to a member of the Gulf Coast Bird Observatory, the yellow-chested piratic flycatcher could have been displaced by severe weather in recent weeks. (See photos)

➤ More than a dozen drivers on Central Expressway in Dallas were recently clocked traveling over 100 mph, according to an investigation by the local NBC affiliate. The report led to calls for a reduced speed limit and better enforcement from police. (More)

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➤ The FlipFork makes grilling easier and more convenient than ever before. With the combination of a fork, flipper, knife, bottle opener, and more, FlipFork is useful and effective. (See It Here)   
The Polling Station

What is your favorite month of the year for Texas weather?

  1. January
  2. February
  3. March
  4. April
  5. May
  6. June
  7. July
  8. August
  9. September
  10. October
  11. November
  12. December

Wednesday’s Results:

Have you ever visited the State Capitol in Austin?

    1. Yes: 70.1%
    2. No: 29.9%
Texas Trivia

What was the population of Texas when it gained its independence from Mexico?

Show me the answer

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