The Daily Texan

All content by Joshua Fechter

Texas House to hear campus carry legislation

May 3, 2013

Concealed handgun license holders could carry on university campuses if the Texas Legislature approves a bill going before the House of Representatives on Saturday. The bill, authored by State Rep....

Investigators may find cause of West explosion soon

May 2, 2013

Investigators may find the cause of the fire and subsequent explosion in West by May 10, the state fire marshal told lawmakers Wednesday. The West Fertilizer Co. plant explosion killed 15 people, injured...

Texas House approves fixed tuition

May 2, 2013

The Texas House of Representatives tentatively approved a bill Wednesday requiring universities to offer students the option of a four-year fixed tuition plan in a move similar to one taken by the UT System...

State struggles to fund Texas’ volunteer fighters

May 1, 2013

Nearly two weeks before the April 17 explosion in West killed 15 people, including 12 volunteer first responders, Texas lawmakers voted against providing additional funds to the state’s 1,505 volunteer...

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President Barack Obama, officials promise recovery from West explosion

April 26, 2013

WACO — President Barack Obama told mourners remembering the 12 first responders killed in the explosion in West last week that the country stands with them as they attempt to restore their town. “You...

Bill would allow concealed handguns in vehicles on campus

April 25, 2013

Universities would not be able to prohibit students with concealed handgun licenses from storing handguns and ammunition in their vehicles on university property if a proposed law passes the Texas Legislature. The...

Appropriations Chairman Pitts: amendments limiting UT System spending will stay

April 25, 2013

The Texas House of Representatives’ chief budget writer said Wednesday he intends to keep amendments to the proposed state budget limiting the spending power of the UT System Board of Regents and...

Texas legislators await answers in West explosion

April 23, 2013

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst said last week the Texas Legislature would support West in the aftermath of the explosion, but the region’s representatives said they are waiting for more answers before submitting...

Gov. Rick Perry declares West area disaster zone

April 19, 2013

When marketing senior Hannah Hutyra got a call from her mom, who said there had been an explosion, Hutyra said she didn’t understand why her mom sounded upset. “Nothing ever happens in a...

Student leaders, gay rights group testify against controversial bill

April 18, 2013

Student leaders and a Texas-based gay rights advocacy group voiced opposition Wednesday to a bill that would allow student organizations to exclude members based on race, gender or sexual orientation. As...

Regents’ behavior may be reaction to national events, part of trend

April 17, 2013

The UT System Board of Regents’ increased involvement in UT affairs may be influenced by events at other universities, according to education analysts. Controversies such as the 2011 sex abuse...

Regent behavior prompts reexamination of state’s open records law

April 16, 2013

The UT System Board of Regents’ decision last week to disclose information requested by Texas lawmakers has not stopped legislative efforts to clarify regents’ proper adherence to the state’s...

Political, economic climates affect regent-legislator relations, officials say

April 15, 2013

Conflicts between members of the UT System Board of Regents and the Texas Legislature are nothing new to the two bodies, but their relationship changes with differing political and economic climates, according...

Regents vote to supply information to legislators, allow Texas AG to conduct law school investigation

April 12, 2013

Complying with requests from several Texas lawmakers, the UT System Board of Regents unanimously voted Thursday to release documents requested by legislators and allow the Texas Attorney General’s...

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Groups struggle to preserve habitat of West Texas lizard

April 12, 2013

Environmental groups and governmental agencies are wrestling with how to properly protect a type of lizard that resides on oil-producing lands owned by the UT System. The 3-inch dunes sagebrush lizard...

House committee approves campus carry bill

April 12, 2013

UT administrators continue their opposition to allowing concealed handguns on campus after a House committee approved a bill Thursday to permit licensees to carry on university grounds. The House Homeland...

Bill would clarify regents’ duty to disclose information

April 10, 2013

Under legislation filed Monday in the Texas Senate, the UT System Board of Regents would have to disclose information to legislators despite objections by regents that disclosure may hinder their investigative...

Statewide water shortage threatens Texas economy, population growth

April 5, 2013

Austinites hit by the downpour this week may not realize Texas faces a water shortage that threatens the state’s long-term ability to provide water for citizens and businesses. Dan Hardin, water...

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Lawmakers prepare for ramifications of Fisher case on UT admissions

April 4, 2013

The Texas Legislature is trying to ensure UT can pursue diversity if the U.S. Supreme Court strikes down a portion of its admissions policy that considers race. The Senate Higher Education Committee...

Bill limiting regents moves to Texas Senate

April 4, 2013

The Senate Higher Education Committee voted 4-1 Wednesday to move a bill before the Texas Senate that would limit the power of university boards of regents over individual institutions within a system. The...

Foundation that supports Texas cancer agency to shut doors in 60 days

April 3, 2013

The state’s troubled cancer agency suffered another blow Tuesday after the foundation that supports the agency announced it would close its doors within 60 days. The CPRIT Foundation, which is...

Differing views of regents’ roles cloud governance discussion

April 3, 2013

Following controversy surrounding the UT System Board of Regents’ alleged micromanagement of President William Powers Jr., Texas lawmakers must navigate differing philosophies about the proper governance...

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Vice Chancellor Barry McBee bridges gap between Texas Legislature and UT System

April 1, 2013

While university presidents and the chancellor may be the public faces in front of the Texas Legislature, one UT System official plays a more behind-the-scenes role in the lawmaking process. Since 2006,...

Lawmakers seek end to B-On-Time loan tax

March 29, 2013

Students who receive forgivable loans under the B-On-Time program receive something in addition — an income tax form. Under federal law, forgivable loans such as the B-On-Time loan count as taxable...

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Lt. Gov. Dewhurst joins senators, community members in critique of regents’ decision

March 28, 2013

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst said Wednesday that Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott’s office should conduct a “duplicative investigation” of the UT Law School Foundation’s relationship...

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Senate of College Councils backs bill to limit regents, elects president

March 22, 2013

The Senate of College Councils showed unanimous support Thursday for legislation to limit the powers of university system boards of regents across the state and elected a new president after the previous...

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Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst shares story of lost father, World War II veteran

March 21, 2013

When a drunk driver killed David Dewhurst, Jr., his 3-year-old son, Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, was deprived of the opportunity to learn about his father’s past. Nearly 60 years after the accident,...

Lawmakers request information regarding regent, UT employee

March 20, 2013

A joint legislative committee announced Tuesday that they have requested information from the UT System Board of Regents necessary to investigate allegations that the board is “micromanaging”...

Texas House approves consolidated UT System school in Valley

March 20, 2013

The Texas House of Representatives unanimously passed a bill Tuesday to establish a new UT System university in the Rio Grande Valley. Lawmakers voted 149-0 to combine UT-Brownsville, UT-Pan American...

Lawmakers request information regarding regent, UT employee correspondence

March 20, 2013

Members of a joint legislative committee announced Tuesday that they have requested information from the UT System Board of Regents necessary to investigate allegations that the board is “micromanaging”...

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Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice reaffirms Iraq War support on eve of 10th anniversary

March 19, 2013

Two days before the 10th anniversary of the start of the Iraq War, a conflict that resulted in the deaths of 4,488 U.S. soldiers and thousands of civilians, former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice reaffirmed...

Legislative decisions to impact UT, UT System

March 18, 2013

Spring break saw a reaffirmation of the UT System’s opposition to guns on campus and legislative action that may determine how the state would fund UT. This week, the Texas Legislature will decide...

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Committee recommends funding increase for TEXAS Grants, universities

March 8, 2013

The Texas Legislature could boost TEXAS Grant funding to historical levels if it follows recommendations unanimously approved by the House Appropriations Committee on Thursday. The committee approved...

Sequestration impacts UT work-study program

March 7, 2013

The University’s work-study program may face cuts after the federal government failed to agree to a plan that would forestall $85 billion in automatic budget cuts, commonly referred to as sequestration. In...

Committees approve consolidation of UT System schools in South Texas

March 7, 2013

Texas lawmakers will consider consolidating UT System institutions in South Texas after two legislative committees unanimously approved it Wednesday. The bills, approved separately by the House and...

Bill seeks to reverse Austin bag ban

March 7, 2013

Austin’s recent bag ban could face an early demise if the Texas Legislature approves a bill that would abolish it. The bill, filed by freshman state Rep. Drew Springer, R-Muenster, would invalidate...

Voters split on concealed carry for universities

March 6, 2013

Texas voters are largely split on whether or not to allow concealed handguns on college campuses, according to a poll conducted by UT and The Texas Tribune. Three bills in the Texas Legislature would...

Consolidated school in Rio Grande Valley may include law school

March 4, 2013

A law school may join the proposed consolidated UT System institution in the Rio Grande Valley despite claims by the state’s higher education agency that Texas does not immediately need another law...

Texas Legislature may lower number of credit hours required for an associate degree

March 1, 2013

In January, UT and Austin Community College announced a partnership that would allow students who transfer from ACC to the University to earn an associate degree from their previous institution.  Now,...

UT System presidents support fixed tuition, despite mixed results

February 28, 2013

Fixed-rate tuition has been implemented at UT System institutions with varying success, UT System officials told Texas lawmakers Wednesday. The Texas House Higher Education Committee considered a bill,...

Peer, rival universities discourage romantic relationships between faculty, students

February 27, 2013

A brief survey of some peer institutions’ policies regarding consensual romantic relationships between university employees and students found that universities discourage student-employee relationships...

Board chairman Powell calls Dewhurst’s remarks ‘result of misinformation’

February 25, 2013

Capping off a week of drama between the Texas Legislature and the UT System Board of Regents, board chairman Gene Powell released a statement saying Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst’s remarks that the regents...

Texas Legislature targets regents’ authority over universities

February 21, 2013

After allegations arose earlier this week that the UT System Board of Regents is micromanaging President William Powers Jr., the Texas Legislature took steps Wednesday to limit regents’ powers over...

Consolidating South Texas schools would boost economy, officials say

February 21, 2013

Consolidating UT System institutions in the Rio Grande Valley would greatly benefit the economy of South Texas, UT System officials and Texas lawmakers said Wednesday. The Texas Legislature is considering...

Lt. Gov. to announce Board investigation

February 20, 2013

Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst is expected to release details Wednesday on the Texas Legislature’s involvement in the ongoing tension between President William Powers Jr. and members of the UT System Board...

Lawmakers defend, praise Powers in time of strain

February 19, 2013

At a time of strain between President William Powers Jr. and members of the UT System Board of Regents, Texas lawmakers defended Powers’ record and heaped praise upon him at a ceremony on the floor...

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Powers to lawmakers: increase support for research

February 18, 2013

Restoring state funding cuts to UT may best be done through funding research projects at the University, President William Powers Jr. told Texas lawmakers Friday. Powers told a subcommittee of the House...

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Texas may meet some higher ed goals, officials say

February 14, 2013

While Texas is currently on track to reach targets intended to improve higher education in the state, some hurdles remain. The Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board is the state agency charged with...

House Higher Education considers bill to consolidate Valley schools first

February 14, 2013

A bill to consolidate three UT System institutions in the Rio Grande Valley into one university will be the first piece of legislation considered by the Texas House Higher Education Committee during this...

Proposed changes could expand access to TEXAS Grants

February 12, 2013

Texas could expand access to a financial aid program that benefits thousands of low-income students at UT if it enacts recommendations passed down by the state’s higher education agency. Raymund...