BC-TX--Texas Enterprise Digest, ADVISORY, TX
Here is the list of enterprise stories in Texas. If you have questions, please call Texas News Editor Kim Johnson at 972-991-2100 or, in Texas, 800-442-7189.
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MOVING ON Saturday, Dec. 8:
BEAUMONT, Texas _ Officials in Beaumont are trying to bolster their municipal water operations after what was then-Tropical Storm Harvey in 2017 swamped a pump station and halted water service to the public for more than a week. The Beaumont Enterprise reports a new pump station and pipeline could help. UPCOMING; 250 words. Pursuing photos.
MOVING ON Sunday, Dec. 9:
SPOT MEMBER EXCHANGE-DAY CARE OVERSIGHT
AUSTIN _ Each day, parents send more than 1 million children to Texas day care facilities, assuming they will be safe and secure until it is time to come home. But more often than publicly posted state numbers indicate, children are victims of molestation, physical abuse or neglect at child care centers, including some with long histories of trouble. A yearlong Austin American-Statesman investigation for the first time reveals the dangerous conditions that exist inside many Texas day cares, leaving hundreds of children with serious injuries and nearly 90 dead as a result of abuse or neglect since 2007. By Andrea Ball and Tony Plohetski, Austin American-Statesman. UPCOMING: 900 words, photos.
SAN ANTONIO-CATFISH FARM
SAN ANTONIO _ The San Antonio Water System has begun a $1.4 million project to seal off a well formerly used by a catfish farm in an environmental effort to return the area to its native brushland. The San Antonio Express-News reports the two-week project involves a well once used by the Living Waters Artesian Springs Catfish Farm. UPCOMING: 300 words, pursuing photos.
FOR IMMEDIATE USE:
GEORGE HW BUSH
COLLEGE STATION, Texas _ Thousands waved and cheered along the route as funeral train No. 4141 _ for the 41st president _ carried George H.W. Bush’s remains to their final resting place on Thursday, his last journey as a week of national remembrance took on a decidedly personal feel in an emotional home state farewell. Some people laid coins along the tracks that wound through small town Texas so a 420,000-pound locomotive pulling the nation’s first funeral train in nearly half a century could crunch them into souvenirs. Others snapped pictures or crowded for views. By Nomaan Merchant, Juan A. Lozano and Will Weissert. SENT: 1,260 words, with photos, audio, video. SENT on Thursday.
_ GEORGE HW BUSH-SECRET SERVICE _ The U.S. Secret Service on Friday ended its detail for George H.W. Bush after nearly 40 years of protecting the former president, who was known by the code name “Timberwolf.” SENT: 130 words, with photos.
DALLAS _ The cost to curtail damaging flooding across Texas over the next 10 years is more than $31.5 billion and state officials are urging lawmakers to adopt legislation meant to end a cycle of “repairing and rebuilding,” according to a series of recommendations released Thursday. The Texas Water Development Board provided the recommendations to lawmakers ahead of the legislative session that begins next month. They’re part of an updated TWDB flood assessment report that says coastal and river flooding alone is expected to cause more than $6.8 billion in property losses over the next five years. By David Warren. SENT: 550 words. SENT on Thursday.
TEXAS-BUS CRASH-NTSB REPORT
DALLAS _ A bus driver with “acute sleep deficit” failed to stay in his lane and caused his vehicle to careen out of control, resulting in a wreck that killed nine people and injured nearly 40 others in 2016, federal safety investigators said in a report released Tuesday. The National Transportation Safety Board determined the bus left the road and rolled when the 29-year-old driver overcorrected and abruptly braked. The highway north of Laredo was wet from a recent rain and the bus had an inoperable antilock braking system, according to the NTSB report. By David Warren. SENT: 490 words, with photo. SENT on Tuesday.
SAN DIEGO _ U.S. Border Patrol arrests on the Mexican border jumped 78 percent in November from a year earlier to the highest level in Donald Trump’s presidency, with families and children accounting for a majority for a third straight month. The numbers are the latest sign that people who cross the border illegally are increasingly families and children traveling alone, a trend that began several years ago but has accelerated since summer. The Border Patrol made 25,172 arrests of people who came as families in November, nearly four times the same period last year, parent agency Customs and Border Protection said. There were 5,283 arrests of unaccompanied children, up 33 percent from a year earlier. By Elliot Spagat. SENT: 440 words, with photo. SENT On Thursday.
HONDURAS-US-A MOTHER’S WAIT
SAN PEDRO SULA, Honduras _ In the past four years alone, almost 4,000 migrants have died or gone missing along the route through Mexico to the U.S., The Associated Press has found. That’s 1,573 more than the previously known number, calculated by the United Nations, and even the AP’s estimate is likely low. These migrants are among about 56,800 worldwide who died or disappeared over the same period, the AP found. By Maria Verza. SENT: 2,480 words, with photos. SENT on Tuesday.
_ HONDURAS-US-A MOTHER’S WAIT-ABRIDGED version, 1,040 words.
BEIRUT _ The parents of journalist Austin Tice of Houston, who went missing in Syria in 2012, said Tuesday they are hopeful the Trump administration will work on releasing their son, in the same way it did with Americans held in North Korea. Marc and Debra Tice told reporters in Beirut that they have met U.S. officials including President Donald Trump and “they have each made a commitment to us that they’re determined to bring Austin home safely.” Austin Tice disappeared at a checkpoint in a contested area west of Damascus on Aug. 14, 2012. By Bassem Mroue. SENT: 380 words, with photos. SENT on Tuesday.
LAS VEGAS _ Nevada is suing the federal government in a bid to stop plans to ship plutonium cross-country next year from South Carolina to the nation’s former nuclear proving ground north of Las Vegas. Outgoing Gov. Brian Sandoval and Attorney General Adam Laxalt repeated a vow that the state will fight “at every level” the U.S. Department of Energy plan to store radioactive bomb-making material at the Nevada Nuclear Security Site. The material will be “temporarily staged” at the Nevada National Security Site and the Pantex Plant in Texas, two facilities that already handle and process plutonium, before eventually being sent to the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico “or another facility,” officials said. By Ken Ritter. SENT: 540 words, with photos. SENT on Tuesday.
WEEKEND MEMBER EXCHANGES/MOVED IN ADVANCE:
FOR USE Sunday, Dec. 9, and thereafter:
HOUSTON _ The right book, Dieter Cantu believes, can change your life. The Houston Chronicle reports when Cantu was growing up in San Antonio, getting shipped off to foster care and sent to live with relatives, he never had the books he was hungry to read. Cantu spent four years in the Texas juvenile justice system after pleading guilty to aggravated robbery. He landed at three different detention centers, but the only books he could find were outdated, fiction or written for kids. Today, at 29, Cantu has a career and a college degree. And he’s collected thousands of nonfiction volumes to fill the shelves at juvenile detention facilities and underserved libraries. By Alyson Ward, Houston Chronicle. SENT IN ADVANCE: 1,190 words, with photos.
WACO, Texas _ Near the peaceful banks of the Middle Bosque River, Daniel Kieninger put a radar to use this week to hunt for graves in a cemetery that dates back to just after the Civil War. The Waco Tribune-Herald reports Kieninger and fellow cartographer Tosh Murchison recently walked more than 4 miles inside the 1.5-acre Evergreen Cemetery, west of Lake Waco. Pushing a three-wheeled contraption that looked like a jogging stroller, they employed ground-penetrating radar in a foot-by-foot search for at least 48 unmarked graves believed to lie underfoot. The workers with Texas Cemetery Restoration were summoned as a precautionary measure to prevent new graves from disturbing old ones in the still-active cemetery. By Tommy Witherspoon, Waco Tribune-Herald. SENT IN ADVANCE: 770 words, with photos.
TEXARKANA, Ark. _ After about four months of construction work, the first Habitat for Humanity home in Texarkana, Arkansas, could likely be finished soon. “We’ve had a couple weekend weather delays, so we are looking at having the home finished for a dedication in about mid-December,” said Mary Wormington, Habitat for Humanity-Texarkana executive director. HFH conducted a groundbreaking ceremony at the site on Aug. 24. By Greg Bischof, Texarkana Gazette. SENT IN ADVANCE: 329 words, pursuing photos.
FOR USE Monday, Dec. 10, and thereafter:
LONGVIEW, Texas _ Larry Bennett knows when to ho, ho, hold back after nearly a half-century of coaxing little ones who get intimidated by their big moment with Santa. The Longview News-Journal reports having portrayed Santa since 1970, the Longview man knows how to bide his time and wait for young souls to get comfortable with the bearded man in the official uniform of Christmas. “I’ll watch them and start using my fingers to get them to come to me,” he said, demonstrating deft come-hither flicks of the hand he knows from experience will coax a timid child. “They’ll touch your fingers, and they’ll just lighten up. You try to get the parents to let them have some time. I’ll be here.” By Glenn Evans, Longview News-Journal. SENT IN ADVANCE: 730 words, with photos.
SMILEY, Texas _ After many years, Darla Cherry decided she’d had enough of training horses and wanted to save them instead. The San Antonio Express-News reports so about a decade ago, she took over what is today the nonprofit Meadow Haven Horse Rescue and Sanctuary, a 45-acre spread in Smiley. Some horses are surrendered by owners who, due to financial difficulties, infirmary or other circumstances, can no longer care for them. Others are removed from places where they’ve been mistreated. And not a few were rescued before they could be taken to Mexico where horses are slaughtered and sold as meat for humans or as pet food. By Richard A. Marini, San Antonio Express-News. SENT IN ADVANCE: 730 words, with photos.
^The AP, Dallas