Five stories that have North Texas talking: Lawmakers deem Rockwall the free live music capital; there’s something in the water in Texas; Canton is collecting photos lost in the tornadoes; and more.
Lawmakers in the Texas House Thursday voted to make Rockwall the official Free Live Music Capital of North Texas. State Rep. Justin Holland filed a concurrent resolution in January to designate Rockwall as the official Live Music Capital of North Texas. The “free” distinction was added later after review by the Culture, Recreation and Tourism committee.
In both versions, Holland says Rockwall “has long been committed to fostering a dynamic arts scene in its community, and live music has played a vital role in that mission.” He goes on to outline the successful music events the community has held since 1999, like the Concert by the Lake Series.
The Rockwall Republican says nearly 130 live music events are held each year and “the town’s growing reputation as an important music hub has made it a popular destination for travelers from across Texas and beyond.” The resolution will be sent through the Senate, where Holland expects it to be approved. If so, Rockwall will get to keep the designation for 10 years. [KERA News]
- A new report finds Texas leads the nation in Safe Drinking Water Act violations. The report from Natural Resources Defense Council says almost 5 million people in Texas – or just over 18 percent of the state population – drink from water systems with health-based violations. KUT reports: “A violation of those EPA guidelines can stem from a water system’s failure to report or test water, or if the water itself contains contaminants above a certain level.” [KUT]
- A group of Texas lawmakers spoke out Thursday against the shooting of Jordan Edwards. Former Balch Springs police officer Roy Oliver, who is white, shot at a vehicle leaving a party Saturday night, killing Edwards, a 15-year-old black teenager. Oliver has since been fired. Texas lawmakers like state Sen. Royce West and Rep. Rafael Anchia — both of Dallas — called on state leadership like Gov. Greg Abbott to address Edwards’ death. Below is a statement sent to WFAA. [KERA News]
— Jason Whitely (@JasonWhitely) May 4, 2017
- Canton city leaders are working to reunite people with the photos that blew away in the East Texas tornadoes. This week photos recovered in the wreckage have been taken to the old Canton City Hall building located on Tyler Street downtown, according to KYTX. “Tornadoes are so crazy,” Mayor Lou Ann Everett tells the station. “After everything I’ve seen, I would think anything is possible.” Seven tornadoes hit East Texas on Saturday, killing four people. [KYTX]
- The city of Dallas can now inspect the inside of rental properties — something that wasn’t possible before code enforcement standards were tightened last fall. Mayor Mike Rawlings hopes that policy means higher living standards for everyone, especially low-income families. Khraish Khraish runs HMK Ltd, which owns 305 rental houses in West Dallas and nearby. He says he can’t afford to fix those houses. Unless something dramatic happens, those families will have to leave their homes by early June. Explore our One Crisis Away series, “No Place To Go.” [KERA News]