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TexasTowelie

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Gender: Male
Hometown: Texas
Home country: United States
Current location: Red Hell Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 69,644

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Free college? It would be possible under new Pennsylvania Promise legislation

Pennsylvania legislators are again pitching a proposal to make college free for many low- and middle-income students.

On Wednesday, lawmakers reintroduced the Pennsylvania Promise Act, which would create a grant program to cover up to four years of tuition at a state-owned or state-related university or a community college for students with a household income of $110,000 or less. For students whose families earn $48,000 or less, room and board also would be included.

It would also provide need-based aid for adult learners seeking a higher education degree or certificate.

“We cannot continue to allow the government to break the promise to our young people,” state Rep. Jordan Harris, a Philadelphia Democrat and Millersville University graduate, said during a news conference Tuesday in Harrisburg.

Read more: https://lancasteronline.com/news/local/free-college-it-would-be-possible-under-new-pennsylvania-promise/article_a507e678-24c6-11e9-9dfb-ab6837c58583.html

Gov. Wolf to ask lawmakers for new $4.5B capital program

Gov. Tom Wolf’s administration is planning to ask lawmakers to approve a multibillion-dollar plan to borrow money for a wide range of projects, from controlling floodwaters to fighting blight.

Wolf, a Democrat, is unveiling the plan Thursday in more detail. The administration is proposing to borrow $4.5 billion and spend it over four years on a plan that ties together projects for both rural areas and downtowns.

Approval will be up to the Republican-controlled Legislature.

The administration says the money would go to expand high-speed internet access, improve storm water and flood control and clean up brownfields and blight in hopes of luring new businesses.

Read more: https://www.pennlive.com/news/2019/01/gov-wolf-to-ask-lawmakers-for-new-45b-capital-program.html

Failed abortion bill draws GOP outrage against Va. Gov. Northam, Democratic legislators

RICHMOND — President Trump, Republican lawmakers in Virginia and conservatives across the country attacked Gov. Ralph Northam and other state Democrats on Wednesday after they defended a failed bill that sought to reduce restrictions on late-term abortions.

The furor escalated quickly after Republicans circulated a video of Del. Kathy Tran (D-Fairfax) acknowledging that her bill, like current law, would allow abortions up to the point of delivery in cases when the mother’s life or health was at serious risk. Northam, a pediatric neurologist, was asked about the issue in a radio interview and gave an answer that was later used by Republicans to suggest he favored killing live babies.

“I’m surprised that he did that. I’ve met him a number of times,” Trump told the Daily Caller when asked about Northam’s remarks. He said he had not seen the governor’s words but had watched the video of Tran.

“I thought it was terrible,” Trump said. “Do you remember when I said Hillary Clinton was willing to rip the baby out of the womb? That’s what it is. That’s what they’re doing. It’s terrible.”

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/virginia-politics/failed-abortion-bill-draws-gop-outrage-against-va-gov-northam-democratic-lawmakers/2019/01/30/4a18f022-24b2-11e9-ad53-824486280311_story.html

Maryland man gets 420 years for 'horrific' child abuse

A Maryland man was sentenced Wednesday in Baltimore to 420 years in federal prison for a series of sexual assaults on three girls who were 2 to 4 years old when they were targeted for abuse.

The U.S. Attorney for Maryland, Robert Hur, described Kyle Thompson's assaults on the young children as "horrific." The 33-year-old Burtonsville man took video recordings of his assaults, which occurred from May 2015 to January 2017.

Police were first alerted to Thompson by a confidential source who told investigators the man showed him several of his abuse videos. Investigators detained Thompson, obtained a search warrant and scoured his Maryland home. Montgomery County officers recovered a memory card hidden in Thompson's laundry room. Forensic analysis revealed 18 videos of Thompson abusing the three young girls.

An affidavit filed in the case says Thompson could be seen on one video assaulting a child who was restrained on a bed and crying for her mother. The court document says Thompson's voice could be heard saying: "Your mommy can't save you."

Read more: https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/crime/bs-md-maryland-man-sentenced-to-420-years-burtonsville-0131-story.html

As fond as I am about making 420 jokes, there is nothing to laugh about here.

Johns Hopkins drafts proposed police bill for Maryland legislators; it has transparency, oversight

Johns Hopkins drafts proposed police bill for Maryland legislators; it has transparency, oversight provisions


The Johns Hopkins University released its own draft Wednesday of a proposed state law that would allow it to establish a campus police force, including measures to address concerns about transparency and accountability by the private institution.

The 14-page draft bill spells out civil rights protections and oversight mechanisms that the university would have to follow if the General Assembly permits the creation of the force.

The document emphasized that the proposed bill could change before a legislator formally introduces it.

Susan Ridge, a Hopkins spokeswoman, said the draft bill would establish a university police department with “more public and community accountability than any other Maryland law enforcement body.”

Read more: https://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/politics/bs-md-ci-hopkins-police-bill-20190130-story.html

Delaware lawmakers, governor not on same budget page

Gov. John Carney is urging lawmakers to avoid going on a spending spree with the $148 million surplus the state is expected to reap this year.

But members of the Legislature’s budget-writing committee this week were already feeling out plans to direct more money toward certain education initiatives and entitlement programs for state pensioners than the governor proposed in his $4.4 billion spending plan.

That proposal recommends giving raises to state workers, making a sizable investment in infrastructure and modestly increasing allocations to most state agencies and services.

Some lawmakers, however, believe the state can do more and their interest in adjusting Carney's spending plan could foreshadow a clash over how much to spend now and how much to save for the future.

Read more: https://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/politics/2019/01/30/delaware-lawmakers-governor-not-same-budget-page/2711583002/

Newark company to hand over $2.75 million in fraud settlement

A Newark software company agreed to pay $2.75 million to resolve claims that it defrauded the Navy, Air Force, NASA, and other federal agencies, according to a statement from the U.S. Department of Justice.

Prosecutors claim E.M. Photonics Inc. and its CEO, Eric Kelmelis, carried out two schemes.

The company directed its employees to lie on timesheets, to submit false invoices and to file inaccurate public vouchers for federally funded work. It also sought out government money for projects that already had been funded by other programs.

Those acts, which were designed to inflate the amount of taxpayer dollars flowing to the Newark company, are a violation of the False Claims Act, federal investigators said in a statement on Tuesday.

Read more: https://www.delawareonline.com/story/news/crime/2019/01/29/newark-company-hands-over-2-75-million-fraud-settlement/2715822002/

Texas liquor stores could open on Sundays under proposed law

There used to be a handful of things you just couldn’t do on Sundays in Texas. In fact, they were outright banned through “blue laws.” Most blue laws in Texas have been abolished, but Sunday liquor sale prohibitions have lingered.

Those restrictions would change in part under a bill filed by state Rep. Richard Peña Raymond, D-Laredo. House Bill 1100 would allow the state’s “package stores” — in other words, liquor stores — to open their doors every day of the week, between noon and 10 p.m. on Sunday and between 9 a.m. and 10 p.m. on Monday through Saturday.

“Allowing Sunday sales in Texas is long overdue. I’ve heard from many constituents — including small business owners — who have asked me to file this bill to let the free market be free,″ Raymond said in a news release about the bill. “Now is the time for Texas to repeal this outdated law.”

Currently, selling spirits on Sundays is permitted in 42 states. And bars, restaurants, grocery stores, convenience stores and hotels are legally allowed to sell other alcoholic beverages on Sundays in Texas. (Liquor, however, can’t be sold in grocery and convenience stores any day of the week.)

Read more: https://www.austin360.com/entertainmentlife/20190130/texas-liquor-stores-could-open-on-sundays-under-proposed-law

Presidential contender Julian Castro's message in Dallas: I'd get things done

Julián Castro on Monday said his executive and life experiences make him the ideal choice to challenge Donald Trump in 2020.

"I have a track record of getting things done," Castro told The Dallas Morning News. "I have executive experience. I've lived a life where I appreciate the struggle that Americans throughout the country go through to make sure they can reach their dreams. "

The former San Antonio mayor was in town for a fundraiser at Mercado 369, a Latino cultural center, art gallery and artisanal shop in north Oak Cliff's bustling Jefferson Boulevard corridor.

The fundraiser featured a mix of emerging Dallas political leaders, young voters and Latino activists.

Read more: https://www.dallasnews.com/news/politics/2019/01/28/presidential-contender-julin-castros-message-dallas-get-things-done

Cleric among 13 arrested in Denton County sting targeting online solicitation of minors

Thirteen men, including a cleric who was also employed at the University of North Texas, were arrested last week in a two-day sting operation targeting people thought to be using the internet to solicit minors for sex.

The operation took place Jan. 23 and 24. Eleven of the men were arrested in places they agreed to meet children, and two others who didn't show up for prearranged meetings were arrested on warrants, Denton County Sheriff Tracy Murphree said Wednesday in a written statement.

-snip-

Because of his arrest, Noska was fired from his position as administrative coordinator in the Department of Audiology and Speech Language Pathology at UNT, spokeswoman Leigh Gullett said.

Noska is also listed as a cleric on The Celtic Christian Church's website.

Read more: https://www.dallasnews.com/news/crime/2019/01/30/cleric-among-13-arrested-denton-county-sting-targeting-online-solicitation-minors
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