Texas Lunch Links: Payday Lending, Carona's Cat and Texas High School Football

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Texas Lunch Links is a lunchtime buffet of links to Texas-related news and views.

PAYDAY LENDING: “I'll leave it to the will of the body. I just want to go home and feed my cat” was the resigned expression, which you can watch below the fold, by Dallas Republican Senator John Carona on Monday evening after an intense a floor debate on his payday lending reform bill, SB 1247. Carona lost control of the bill on the floor of the Senate as amendments to strengthen consumer protections were tacked on. Carona had a heated exchange with Senator John Whitmire, and he suggested the amendments would probably end up killing the bill he carefully negotiated.

CARONA'S CAT: Following Senator John Carona's cat comment, some jokester created the twitter account @CaronasCat, to which Senator John Carona tweeted:

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AFTER WEST: Inadequately monitored industrial sites may represent health and safety risks to nearby residents and tempting targets for terrorists.

Read more Texas Lunch Links below the fold.GREG ABBOTT: I wasn't the only person who thought Attorney General Greg Abbott's visit to West, Texas was unusual. AP Correspondent Chris Tomlinson thinks it could be a sign that Abbott is running for governor.

FISH OUT OF WATER: As drought conditions persist, the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) has been forced to release water from the Highland Lakes to maintain the spawning habitat of a threatened fish.

TEXAS FOOTBALL: Full-contact practice for Texas high school football players may be limited to 90 minutes if a recommendation by the University Interscholastic League's Medical Advisory Committee aimed at reducing concussions is approved by the UIL Legislative Council and Texas Education Commissioner, Michael Williams.

SOLITARY YOUTH: Juvenile detention centers in Texas locked young offenders in solitary confinement more than 35,000 times last year.

STATE PENSIONS: Republican Senate State Affairs Committee Chairman Robert Duncan is proposing that the state balance its pension funds on the backs of current workers by increasing the retirement age for about half of current school teachers and 64 percent of other state employees. “We didn't get in this position overnight, and we really shouldn't expect to get out of it overnight,” said Gary Anderson, executive director of the Texas Public Employees Association.

WENDY DAVIS: State Senator Wendy Davis' statement that “we in the state of Texas are 49th in the country in what we are doing to support our per-pupil investment in education in the state” received a mostly true rating by PolitiFact.

PRISON BOARD: Governor Rick Perry's decision to appoint Annette Raggette to the Texas Board of Criminal Justice is catching heat.



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