Five stories that have North Texas talking: Texas senators to discuss controversial immigration bill; the latest on SXSW; U.S. Sen. Rand Paul is in Texas; and more.
State senators are renewing discussion on a divisive immigration bill banning so-called "sanctuary cities." The issue has roiled the Texas Legislature in past sessions but failed to produce concrete legislation. Republican Sen. Charles Perry has revived proposals to crack down on local police departments that take a hands-off approach on immigration laws during routine patrols. Former Gov. Rick Perry declared the measures a priority in 2011, seeking to ban locales where police don't ask detainees about their immigration status. But the proposals never passed. A Senate committee is hearing Perry's proposal Monday and may eventually approve it to the full Senate. That comes a week after committee Democrats delayed previous discussion on the measure, arguing that the public did not have enough advance notice it was being taken up. [Associated Press]
- SXSW is underway. We have a crew down in Austin covering the various events. Stephen Becker has details on David Gordon Green. And Evel Knievel, too. Alan Melson reports on the collision of design, biology and tech. That’s just a sampling. Catch up on our coverage at KERA’s Art&Seek.
- Among the prominent people at SXSW: U.S. Sen. Rand Paul. He spoke Sunday night with Evan Smith, the Texas Tribune’s editor-in-chief. Catch up on their conversation here.
- Some state legislators are interested in doing away with a ban on Sunday vehicle sales – and loosening restrictions on liquor sales. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports: “Sen. Konni Burton, R-Colleyville, has filed Senate Bill 441 to allow vehicle sales on both Saturdays and Sundays.” But the newspaper reports there’s mixed reaction to the idea. One state legislator has filed a bill to let shoppers stay in liquor stores past closing time to wrap up their purchases – and another legislator is hoping to extend hours for liquor stores on Saturdays. “The real question, some say, is whether 2015 will be the year these proposals — which come up nearly every session — finally win approval in the Legislature,” the Star-Telegram reports. [Fort Worth Star-Telegram]
- The Super Bowl XLV seating trial wrapped up last week with a $76,000 verdict against the NFL. But the trial revealed several football-related secrets. The Dallas Morning News reports: “The NFL estimated the 2011 championship would earn the league a $28 million profit based on ticket sales and other game revenue. That was about three times the amount of profit from the previous two Super Bowls combined. Dallas Cowboys and NFL officials didn’t have a standard way to report attendance at the game. In effort to hit attendance record, they included people not normally counted.” [The Dallas Morning News]