Chad’s Morning Brief: Lubbock City Council, Sex Offenders in Louisiana and Facebook, & More
Here is your Morning Brief for the morning of June 22, 2012. Give us your feedback below and tune in to Lubbock’s First News with Chad Hasty for these and many more topics from 6-9 am.
It's Friday! Need a place to go this weekend? Check out my latest restaurant review over Blue Mesa Grill
1. Lubbock City Council
The Lubbock City Council will begin to hold evening meetings starting in August. According to KFYO News the Council was unanimous on the decision. The Council will meet around 3pm for executive session and then begin the public part of the meeting no earlier than 6:15pm. I applaud the City Council for this move and believe it will be a good thing for the citizens of Lubbock. I don't believe that attendance will increase much, if at all, but the key is people will have more access. For too long, we have had a lack of leadership on this issue.
“I think it’s a good thing, and if we see that we’re not having any attendance, then we can always go back,” said District 5 Councilwoman Karen Gibson. “We are their council, this is their city, and I think we should at least give them the opportunity to be involved.”
I agree with Councilwoman Gibson. Just see how it works. Who knows, maybe more will get involved.
The council also approved the new Courtyard by Marriott, even though Councilman Victor Hernandez wanted to hold off so he could have yet another meeting about it. I still have no idea what his complaints are about.
KFYO also reported that the City Council denied a rate increase to Atmos Energy and approved a move for the Health Department. You can read about those moves in detail here.
Mayor Glen Robertson will join LFN from 7-8am this morning to discuss and take questions over yesterday's City Council meeting.
2. Louisiana, Sex Offenders, and Social Media (link)
I have mixed feelings on the new law that Louisiana passed that requires sex offenders to label themselves on Facebook and other social networking websites. On one hand it's a great tool for parents to know who their kids are following. It's also great public humiliation. On the other hand, why should sex offenders be allowed on social media?
A new Louisiana law requires sex offenders and child predators to state their criminal status on their Facebook or other social networking page, with the law's author saying the bill is the first of its kind in the nation.
State Rep. Jeff Thompson, a Republican from Bossier City, Louisiana, says his new law, effective August 1, will stand up to constitutional challenge because it expands sex offender registration requirements, common in many states, to include a disclosure on the convicted criminal's social networking sites as well.
3. Advocates Worry About Food Stamps (link)
Food Stamps are a big part of the Farm Bill and some advocates are worried that proposed cuts could hurt families in Texas. Still others say the SNAP program, also known as food stamps, has grown too large.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, also known as food stamps, provides food for 3.6 million Texans each year. But some lawmakers argue that the program has grown too large and become too expensive, and they are looking for ways to cut SNAP in the 2012 Farm Bill.
"A lot of Texas families rely on SNAP, especially now," said Jonathan Lewis, food policy specialist for the Center for Public Policy Priorities, an Austin-based liberal think tank. "Families that already are having trouble paying for their electrical bill, rent and the gas in their car could struggle even more."
Will people be impacted? Yes, but maybe it's the motivation some of them need.
4. Inside the Supreme Court Healthcare Decision (link)
Financially, how important is the Supreme Court ruling on Obamacare? It could be pretty big. According to CNBC:
At this very moment, the economic basis of the entire health-care system is up in the air, as a result of the imminent U.S. Supreme Court opinion in the health care reform law cases. Court observers expect the decision any day now, and most likely before the end of June.
"This is going to be one of the biggest decisions to come down in our lifetime," said Robert Litan, vice president for research and policy at the Kauffman Foundation. "The economic impact could be tremendous."
For American entrepreneurs and employees so far, the waiting has been the hardest part. That's because the decision is likely to have so many ramifications and third-order effects that it's nearly impossible for business owners to forecast all the possible outcomes.
"As the person responsible for setting up health care for our 70-employee company, what I want most is some certainty," said Josh King, vice president of business development and general counsel at Avvo.com, a company for which health care is the second-largest expense after salaries.
Check out the in-depth story above.
5. Dumb Story of the Morning (link)
There is nothing more offensive than kids drawing with chalk on the sidewalks.
However, the homeowner's association in Cohen's neighborhood feels differently. They say Emerson's drawings -- usually of hearts and flowers -- are distracting and offensive blights on their community.
"My initial reaction was, 'You have to be kidding me," Cohen said.
The association, called Innovations and Courtyard Traditions at Stapleton, temporarily banned children from drawing on sidewalks, saying anything that offends, disturbs or interferes with the peaceful enjoyment is not allowed on shared spaces.
They said neighbors have been complaining about chalk drawings like Emerson's.
The group's attorney told the station that the association is going down a path of "do no harm" and is temporarily banning the chalk art until it is discussed in depth at a later meeting. It will then be up to the residents to decide if the art will be permanently banned.
The internet community has pulled together to send Karen Huff, the bus monitor who was bullied by kids, on a great vacation. Well, actually more than a vacation. So far people have raised over $380,000 for her.
The magical moment comes at 4:45 below. It’s unclear whether she already knew that people were donating and is shocked to learn how much they’ve kicked in or whether she’s finding out for the first time about the donation webpage, but either way, this is pure gold. If you suffered through yesterday’s bus ride through hell, watch this and be made whole again.
Needless to say, it’s not really about the money.
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These and many more topics coming up on today’s edition of Lubbock’s First News with Chad Hasty. Tune in mornings 6-9am on News/Talk 790 KFYO, streaming online at kfyo.com, and now on your iPhone and Android device with the radioPup App. All guest interviews can be heard online in our podcast section after the show at kfyo.com.