Tuesday, May 7, 2024

The Roundup

Article Icon 1 Heavy Rains End

Flood waters have started to recede in Southeast Texas and other parts of the state after a week of heavy rains that finally subsided Monday, allowing recovery efforts to begin.

Polk County received around 23 inches of rain, displacing residents and flooding around 700 homes.

First responders rescued 233 people and 186 pets in Harris County, which got up to 17 inches.

Although the rain has stopped, area rivers will likely remain above flood stage throughout the week, which is expected to bring above-average temperatures to much of the state.

Article Icon 1USAA Sued For Favoring Officers

San Antonio-based USAA is facing a potential class-action lawsuit after six of its members accused the veterans-focused insurance company of providing preferential treatment to officers while pushing enlisted members to lower-level subsidiaries.

The company’s business model requires customers to be veterans or related to one. The plaintiffs — two of whom are from Texas — say they were relegated to second-class “fake member status” because they haven’t received annual distributions from the subsidiaries.

The lawsuit claims that officers are insured instead through the USAA parent company and do receive those benefits. In January, a federal judge in California granted class-action status to a similar lawsuit against USAA.

USAA is denying the allegations, noting in a statement that it “is well known for its exceptional service to the military community and their families.”

Article Icon 1 World-Record Angler Lands Rare Giant Turtle 

A fisherman angling for alligator gar on Sam Rayburn Lake instead reeled in a rarely seen 200-plus-pound alligator snapping turtle that looks like a creature from prehistoric times.

The reclusive alligator snapping turtle is a protected species, so fisherman Art Weston had to carefully remove the hook from its foot and put it back into the lake.

“The entire time, the turtle was tracking my movements and had its mouth open ready to strike if I made the wrong move,” Weston said.

Weston made headlines last year at the same lake for landing a nearly 300-pound world-record alligator gar.

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Around Texas

Houston: Democrat State Rep. Jarvis Johnson was defeated Saturday by emergency room nurse Molly Cook, and she will serve the remainder of Mayor John Whitmire’s term in the Texas Senate. They’ll face off again in a few weeks to determine who will be the Democrat nominee for a full four-year term in November’s election. (See details)

Lubbock: The race for mayor is headed to a runoff after no candidate received a majority of votes in Saturday’s election. City councilmen Mark McBrayer and Steve Massengale will face off next month for the two-year term. (More)

➤ Houston: Bellaire High School’s yearbook is receiving a makeover after publishing a feature that downplayed Hamas’s attacks last October. Principal Michael Niggli said the school would be “enforcing new editorial protocols” going forward. (See Photos)

➤ Allen: A permanent monument was unveiled Monday at the outdoor mall where eight people were shot and killed exactly one year ago. The 11-foot-tall memorial weighs 1,800 pounds and holds eight wind chimes. (See Photo)

➤ San Antonio: ERCOT is offering to pay San Antonio’s biggest electricity users to cut back this summer to help solve power issues. The agency is seeking to free up 500 megawatts of electricity. (More)

Texas Sports

The Dallas Mavericks signed head coach Jason Kidd to a multiyear contract extension Monday. Kidd was a member of the team’s 2011 championship squad and has taken the Mavericks to the playoffs in two of his first three years. (More)

Retired NFL linebacker J. J. Watt says he’s willing to play for the Houston Texans next season if they “absolutely need it.” During his 12-year career, Watts racked up 114.5 sacks and won Defensive Player of the Year three times. He’s currently an NFL analyst for CBS Sports. (See details)

The Texas Longhorns softball team won their 16th game in a row Sunday to finish the regular season ranked No. 1 in the nation. Their last series included a 23-0 run-limited win against the Texas Tech Red Raiders. (More)

The Business Of Texas

➤ Dallas-based Steward Health Care announced Monday that it was filing for bankruptcy. The company rapidly acquired dozens of community hospitals and is now millions of dollars in debt. (See Details)

➤ Zier Solar + Storage, a 208-megawatt solar farm with 80 megawatt-hours of storage, has come online in Bracketville, with capacity to supply enough energy to power over 40,000 homes. (See Photo)

➤ CPS Energy agreed to acquire a greater share of ownership of the South Texas Nuclear Project from Constellation. Once completed, CPS will own 42% of the project, Constellation will own 42%, and Austin Energy will have 16%. (More)

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Et Cetera

El Rio Grande Latin Market, a local Dallas grocery chain, set a new world record for the largest fruit display ever with a gargantuan stand of 301,000 avocados that weighed 86,764 pounds. (See Video)

Forbes Magazine named The University of Texas at Austin and Rice University to its list of “New Ivy League” universities that companies are turning to as they sour on graduates from the traditional Ivy League. (More)

The 60-ton sail of the decommissioned nuclear submarine USS City of Corpus Christi has arrived in the city that inspired its name. It took drivers four days and four truckloads to get all the pieces to Corpus Christi. (See photos)

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The Polling Station

How many U.S. states have you visited?

  1. Every single one
  2. All but a few
  3. 30 to 40
  4. About half
  5. A dozen or so
  6. Less than 5
  7. Just Texas

Monday’s Results:

Do you like to fish?

    1. Yes: 66.1%
    2. No: 33.9%
Texas Trivia

What was the first licensed radio station in Texas?

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