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Weekly Roundup: Jun 10-16, 2012

Illustration by Jeremiah TeutschGilbert Garcia recapped the political dreams of three former Council members that were cut short primary night.

He relayed the tragic tale of a high-school student who became a model Texas Youth Commission ward only to have the judge send him to prison for 20 more years.

Greg Jefferson sat down with Von Ormy Mayor and up-and-coming Latino Republican Art Martinez de Vara to talk about his party's immigration platform.

He also wrote about the economic pressure facing Christus Santa Rosa.

Elaine Wolff examined the Maruchan noodle plant deal, which is receiving incentives from the City and County to create 400+ minimum-wage jobs.

She also weighed the Symphony's fundraising prospects in light of the ongoing musician negotiations and Rackspace CEO Graham Weston's offer of assistance.

Ben Judson looked at the innovative means other cities have used to support community development.

Jake Muncy reviewed culture critic Chuck Klosterman's new novel, The Visible Man.

And in his second installment of Shelf Life, Muncy wrote about his personal relationship to a new collection of poetry inspired by America's prison culture.  

Sarah McClung dropped in on Sean FitzGibbons' farewell show/Father's Day tribute at Lone Star Studios.

Top Chisme included news that Texas Public Radio won't support a Fronteras reporter in Texas and the revelation that South San ISD officials ignored early theft warning signs.

Weekly Roundup: Jun 3-9, 2012

Mission San Jose y San Miguel de Aguayo, founded 1720. Photo by Bob Howen, courtesy NPS.Elaine Wolff outlined the case the San Antonio Missions (churches, not baseball) team needs to make for getting a much-coveted spot on the World Heritage List (and the serendipitous political timing of the push to get them there).

She also weighed Blue Star’s decision to start charging admission and the Witte’s recent ticket increase.

Gilbert Garcia explained the difference Frio County is making in Ciro Rodriguez’s primary campaign.

Randy Bear crunched recent election numbers to demonstrate that the North Side bloc isn’t as conservative as everyone assumes, which might be good news for the liberal Council members who have to absorb some of their voters in the ongoing redistricting process.

Greg Jefferson interviewed Dr. William Henrich, president of the UT Health Science Center San Antonio.

Jefferson also reported on Ken Mireles’ decision to back former HD 117 rival Tina Torres in her primary runoff against Philip Cortez.

Tom Payton argued that, intentionally or not, SA is poised to take advantage of the latest thinking in urban design and quality of life. And it's time to be bold.

Jade Esteban Estrada visited blogger and Justice of the Peace Steve Walker, who lost his post in the May primary.

Author and critic Rod Davis reviewed Gerald Duff’s Dirty Rice: A Season in the Evangeline League.

And Wolff tweeted several sessions of the Americans for the Arts conference that was in town this week. You can find her snippets and others' w/ #afta12.

Weekly Roundup: May 27-Jun 2, 2012

Elaine Wolff compared and contrasted how Council members Elisa Chan and Leticia Ozuna handled two devilishly difficult zoning cases – a new Walmart next to Hardberger Park in Chan's case, the redevelopment of a golf course in Ozuna's. And the winner is ...

Wolff also wrote about Mayor Julian Castro's apparent move to save CPS Energy's solar rebate program.

Gilbert Garcia reported on the sharpest plot twists of an election night that provided a lot of them. He followed up with a column on one of the oddest – a retired San Antonio teacher named Grady Yarbrough who forced Paul Sadler into a runoff for the Democratic nomination for the U.S. Senate. Garcia also reported on Ken Mireles' impending endorsement in the Texas House District 117 runoff between Phil Cortez and Tina Torres.

Greg Jefferson detailed the last fight over a children's hospital in San Antonio and, the next day, wrote about how the politics are shaping up this time around. He also examined why respected SBOE board member Michael Soto lost so badly at the polls. (Clue: gender and names had something to do with it.)

Ben Judson argued for clearing away City impediments to the revitalization of downtown.

Top Chisme included Texas A&M's partnership talks with Christus Santa Rosa, a bogus story about Sheriff Amadeo Ortiz driving drunk, an old City Hall hand lands in Chan's office, and Harlandale Superintendent Robert Jaklich leaves for Victoria.

Weekly Roundup: May 20-26

Joaquin Castro is on a fundraising bender, Greg Jefferson reported, even though no one is challenging him for the Democratic nomination in the 20th Congressional District and he's widely expected to have an easy time in the general election next fall. Castro's aim: to build clout before stepping foot on Capitol Hill as a lawmaker.

Jefferson also wrote about the conservative Texans for Lawsuit Reform's late arrival in Delicia Herrera's race in the Democratic primary for Texas House District 125.

Elaine Wolff broke down Councilwoman Elisa Chan's deal with Walmart, which includes goodies for Hardberger Park. Wolff also reported on a flood of cats overwhelming the new San Antonio Pets Alive! kennel – another wobbly step on the City's path to achieving a no-kill policy for strays.

Gilbert Garcia wrote about Ron Paul's stealthy, super-secret plan (as some of his SA supporters describe it) for dominating the Texas GOP primary. Garcia also described Tennessee lawyer John Wolfe's stealthy, super-secret plan for beating President Obama in the Texas presidential primary, which boils down to not being Obama.

Randy Bear told you about Geekdom's Department of Education, which plans to build a robotics program for high school kids.

Tom Payton ruminated on San Antonio's so-so skyline.

Brian Collister broke the news that CVB Director Casandra Matej and other top staffers entertained friends and family on the taxpayers' dime, and that someone in her office apparently tried to mask it by altering expense reports. Collister also reported that a judge OK'd a temporary restraining order stopping the SAPD from enforcing a cap on towing fees.

Guest columnist Joan Korte wanted voters to punish former Councilmen Philip Cortez and Justin Rodriguez at the ballot box for the Durango Boulevard name change.

Top Chisme included a lesser known contender for the planned children's hospital, a JP candidate who's had a couple run-ins with the State Bar, and Mayor Julian Castro's tentative support for talks between the troubled and troubling Museo Alameda and Texas A&M.

Weekly Roundup: May 13-19

Gilbert Garcia described how the Spurs have moved from tired dynasty to powerhouse – again.

Garcia also examined a redistricting SNAFU that may have affected several NEISD board elections, and looked at State Senator Jeff Wentworth's zeal for filing lawsuits against opponents in overheated contests, and the local Tea Party's new leader.

Elaine Wolff wrote about Prosecutor Kevin O'Connell's campaign for Judge Mary Roman's bench, Texas A&M's talks with the Museo Alameda, and a Texican opera for elementary-school kids.

Greg Jefferson chronicled the decline of City South and reported on the City's unusual decision to grant incentives for a hotel.

Brian Collister reported on how diploma mills for teenagers hide behind Texas' home-school law. He also wrote about the City looking to take action against exorbitant towing fees.

Ben Judson returned from his wedding/honeymoon break with a thorough analysis of VIA's financials (they're meager).

Justin Isenhart reviewed the SOLI chamber ensemble's performance on Prelude to the End.

Top Chisme included Trinity's zoning win at the Board of Adjustment, more City South squabbles, and Jennifer Ramos' residency complaint against Chico Rodriguez.

 
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