John Engel
John Engel
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Weeks without water: Many Austin apartment residents still suffering after extreme winter storm

Weeks without water: Many Austin apartment residents still suffering after extreme winter storm

AUSTIN (KXAN) — It was the best news Lindsey Hyde had received in three weeks — a drop of water fell from her kitchen faucet on Wednesday.“Save it!” she yelled.In the nearly three weeks since an extreme winter storm first hit Texas, leaving millions without power and water for days, Hyde’s North Austin apartment complex, Westdale Creek, has been without water — a scenario familiar to many apartment residents in the city.Still, Hyde’s rent payment on March 1 didn’t change.“They only respond with the part of the lease that says we’re not liable when snow or weather destroys something,” Hyde...

March 3, 2021
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Gov. Abbott holds news conference on bill to prohibit ‘social media censorship’

Gov. Abbott holds news conference on bill to prohibit ‘social media censorship’

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott is leaning into a rallying cry of conservatives: something must be done to stop social media companies from censoring political views.Abbott held a news conference Friday regarding his legislative proposal to ban social media platforms from censoring Texans. Abbott says “too many social media sites silence conservative speech and ideas and trample free speech.”Abbott joined Sen. Bryan Hughes in Tyler, Texas to discuss .  “Conservative speech will not be cancelled in the state of Texas,” Abbott said. “(This bill) would allow any Texan who has ben...

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March 5, 2021
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Sen. John Cornyn was stranded in D.C. during Texas’ extreme winter weather, spokesperson says

Sen. John Cornyn was stranded in D.C. during Texas’ extreme winter weather, spokesperson says

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) worked with state and local emergency officials from Washington, D.C. last week after he was unable to return to Texas during extreme winter weather, according to his staff.The phrase “Where’s John Cornyn” was trending on Twitter over the weekend as users questioned his whereabouts. Cornyn’s staff told KXAN on Monday he was stranded in D.C. due to airport closures and flight cancellations because of the storms.“He worked from there and was in touch with state and local emergency officials throughout the week,” a spokesperson for Cornyn said.Questions...

February 23, 2021
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Top aide to Texas AG Ken Paxton met with senior White House officials week of U.S. Capitol riot

Top aide to Texas AG Ken Paxton met with senior White House officials week of U.S. Capitol riot

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton stood alongside then-President Donald Trump at a rally before the deadly riot at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6.Two top aides to Paxton traveled to Washington that week, too: First Assistant Attorney General Brent Webster and Communications Deputy Director Kimberly Hubbard.Webster visited to meet with senior White House officials nearly one month after Texas’ lawsuit to overturn election results in four battleground states was rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court, according to his travel records.Webster was hired in October after an exodus of top...

February 9, 2021
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Ambush of Biden campaign bus in Central Texas could play a role in Trump impeachment trial

Ambush of Biden campaign bus in Central Texas could play a role in Trump impeachment trial

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Days before the November election, Wendy Davis, an Austin congressional candidate, was on board the Biden-Harris campaign bus as it was of President Donald Trump’s supporters in Central Texas.Trump would later praise the group, tweeting: “I LOVE TEXAS.”“It was unnerving for everyone,” Davis told KXAN on Tuesday. “I would hope that we never get numb enough to that kind of behavior that it’s normal and that it’s okay and, really, that’s what this impeachment trial is about right now.”While the incident on I-35 occurred months before Trump supporters breached the U.S. Capitol,...

February 9, 2021
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Gov. Abbott says White House was ‘unaware’ of COVID-19 mitigation steps in Texas when it called for more restrictions

Gov. Abbott says White House was ‘unaware’ of COVID-19 mitigation steps in Texas when it called for more restrictions

AUSTIN (KXAN) — In a , the White House Coronavirus Task Force warned Texas leaders of its “red zone” coronavirus positivity rate and encouraged them to implement further restrictions to slow community spread.The report sharply called on state and local leaders in Texas to “increase physical distancing through significant reduction in capacity or closure of public and private indoor spaces, including restaurants and bars” to stunt increasing hospitalizations across the state.A spokesperson for Gov. Greg Abbott said the governor spoke with Dr. Debra Birx, coordinator of the White House...

December 14, 2020
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Texas has $3 billion of federal coronavirus relief funds to spend before the end of the year

Texas has $3 billion of federal coronavirus relief funds to spend before the end of the year

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Facing a deadline at the end of the year, Gov. Greg Abbott is determining how to spend the remaining $3 billion Texas received when Congress approved the CARES Act for coronavirus relief.Texas received $11.24 billion from the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act in March, which has to be spent by Dec. 30. Cities and counties with a population greater than 500,000 automatically received a combined $3.2 billion under state law.Abbott’s office told KXAN, of the $8 billion left for the state to distribute, $4.5 billion has already been spent.The state plans to...

December 1, 2020
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North Austin woman expecting quiet Thanksgiving cooks for 20 families in need

North Austin woman expecting quiet Thanksgiving cooks for 20 families in need

AUSTIN (KXAN) — With both of her sons out of town for the holiday, Mary Pierce of north Austin expected to have a quiet Thanksgiving.She didn’t expect to lead a group of her neighbors in providing Thanksgiving dinners — complete with all of the necessities — for more than 20 families in need.“It is overwhelming,” Pierce told KXAN. “It’s no exaggeration to say that I had tears of joy in my eyes two or three times a day.”Pierce posted in a Northwest Hills neighborhood Facebook group last week to see if there were any families who needed a little help this Thanksgiving — food, money, help...

November 26, 2020
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More than 2,500 healthcare providers sign up to administer coronavirus vaccine in Texas

More than 2,500 healthcare providers sign up to administer coronavirus vaccine in Texas

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin-area healthcare providers are forming plans to administer an eventual coronavirus vaccine after pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced it will deliver trial data to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for approval in the coming weeks.The Texas Department of State Health Services has so far received 2,520 applications from healthcare providers willing to administer the vaccine.Dr. Mezgebe Berhe, an infectious disease physician for Baylor Scott & White, helped lead Pfizer’s coronavirus vaccine trial, which has shown to be one week after a second dose. Even he was...

November 12, 2020
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Judge lets Austin keep mask mandate in legal battle with Texas AG Ken Paxton

Judge lets Austin keep mask mandate in legal battle with Texas AG Ken Paxton

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Masks are still required in Austin-Travis County.On Friday, Travis County District Court Judge Lora Livingston ruled in favor of Austin-Travis County in a lawsuit brought by Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. Paxton sued the city after Gov. Greg Abbott rolled back COVID-19 safety orders, including a state-level mask mandate, March 10.Travis County Judge Andy Brown said in a statement that the county remains committed to following science and health experts’ advice.“Today’s court ruling allowing the Health Authority’s rules to remain in place and keep the mask requirements...

March 26, 2021
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