Nightly Roundup: New Dallas Bridge To Open To Traffic | KERA News

Nightly Roundup: New Dallas Bridge To Open To Traffic

Mar 26, 2012


The Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge in Dallas will open to vehicular traffic Thursday as scheduled. 

The bridge’s “ribbon cutting” was earlier this month, but rain delayed completion of the ramps on and off the Santiago Calatrava-designed bridge.

City officials say the bridge will open in phases during 24 hours starting the evening of March 29th.

The phase-in is to ensure traffic flows safely one direction at a time.

The ramps to Riverfront Blvd, east and westbound, will open at a later date.  Concrete work is not completed.

BJ Austin

TEA Won’t Investigate Possible Cheating

The Texas Education Agency has no plans to investigate suspicious test scores in Houston, Dallas and other

state school districts that point to the possibility of cheating.    

And the agency is questioning the methodology of a new report that indicated suspect scores.

Agency spokeswoman Debbie Ratcliffe said authorities had contacted districts that were implicated to ensure they were analyzing necessary data and talking to school principals.

But she said uncovering wrongdoing is up to individual districts.

On Sunday, the Atlanta Journal Constitution published  an analysis of test results for 70,000 public schools and found that standardized test scores in hundreds of systems nationwide exhibited suspicious patterns. It also reported "Improbable scores were twice as likely to appear in charter schools as regular schools."

Ratcliffe questioned its methodology since the newspaper tracked scores by school, not by student. She said that could affect results by 20 percent.


Cleburne Removes Water Restrictions     

Cleburne is one of the first cities in North Texas to remove all water restrictions.

Officials say the city-owned Lake Pat Cleburne and Lake Aquilla are both beyond capacity.

Water Superintendent Bill Pannell says the restrictions on lawn watering, swimming pool maintenance, and other water uses are no longer necessary to ensure Cleburne has enough water.

BJ Austin, KERA News

One of “Texas 7” Wins Appeal

One of the infamous "Texas 7" fugitive gang has won an appeal at the U.S. Supreme Court and will have his death sentence reviewed.

Donald Newbury and another Texas death row inmate won reviews from the nation's high court Monday on claims they had deficient legal help during initial appeals.

The 49-year-old Newbury was to die Feb. 1,  but won a reprieve while the Supreme Court was considering an Arizona case that raised the same issues. That inmate won his appeal earlier this month.

Newbury and six other inmates killed a suburban Dallas police officer after fleeing a South Texas prison. Two gang members already have been executed.

The second Texas inmate, Ivan Cantu, was convicted of a fatal shooting during a 2000 robbery in Dallas.


DISD Could Pick Superintendent Thursday

Dallas School Board members interview Superintendent finalists again Thursday morning and could pick one finalist that day.  They interviewed five candidates Saturday in a marathon session at a downtown hotel.

DISD trustees, including Nancy Bingham, say they’re impressed by the hopefuls, who were narrowed from a field of 89.

Bingham: We started at 9 o’clock and finished at 10:30 at night, so it was a very long day.  I think it’s a good thing because you really vet the people and you spend a lot of time with them. You dig and get a real sense of what they’re about.

Board members say second interviews are set for 9 o’clock Thursday morning, again in the new downtown Dallas Omni hotel. Trustees have  kept candidate identities confidential.

Bill Zeeble, KERA News