Author: Marcos Duran

The Fight Over the Climate

Photo Credit: The Texas Tribune The most intriguing panel discussion I attended at the Texas Tribune Festival this year was called “The Fight Over the Climate.” There were a total of six panelists: Dr. Andrew Dessler, Professor of Atmospheric Sciences at Texas A&M University; James Marston, VP for U.S. Climate and Energy at the Environmental Defense Fund; John Nielsen-Gammon, Texas State Climatologist; Bryan Shaw, Chairman of the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality; U.S. Representative Lamar Smith. At first, the discussion was innocuous. The panelists discussed their understanding of the science of climate change and its interpretations. I found it...

Read More

The Great Texas Land Grab: Municipal Annexation and the “Right” to Decide Where You Live

Back in August, I attended a Policy Primer titled “The Great Texas Land Grab” hosted by the Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF). The majestic offices were appropriate for a group that can (through its affiliation with the State Policy Network) trace a significant portion of its funding to the Koch brothers. There were three panelists scheduled to speak about the issue of municipal annexation: State Senator Donna Campbell, State Representative Dan Huberty, and Mayor Art Martinez of Von Ormy, Texas. Director James Quintero of the Center for Local Governance was the moderator and he began by reminding everyone of...

Read More