Texas Lunch Links: Dark Money, Needle Exchange and Michael Morton

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Texas Lunch Links is a lunchtime buffet of Texas News and Views with a heavy emphasis on happenings at the Texas Legislature.

TEXAS HAS GAME: The University of Texas at Austin is launching a video-gaming academy.

CANCER AGENCY: The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas, which has been embroiled in a controversy dealing with favoratism in its grant-awarding proces, may be funded if it does some major reorganization.

DARK MONEY: A bill that would require issue advocacy groups to report their high-level donors to the Texas Ethics Commission won tentative approval in the House on Monday.

MICHAEL MORTON ACT: The Texas House gave tentative approval on Monday to two bills that may reduce the likelihood that innocent people are wrongly convicted.

TEXAS REGENTS: The Texas House gave preliminary approval to a measure that would diminish the power of boards of regents at public universities across the state in the wake of the University of Texas board of regents botched bout at micromanagement of Austin's flagship university.

Read more Texas Lunch Links below the fold!TAXES: In a strong Op-Ed in Sunday's Statesman, Scott McCown of the Center for Public Policy Priorities takes aim at Texas' antiquated system of taxation. He writes, “We aren't putting enough money into the public sector. Both education and infrastructure are to an economy like oxygen to an athlete. If we want Texas to have a world-class economy, we must increase the oxygen flow, not cut it.”

WEST WAS PREVENTABLE: The Houston Chronicle Editorial Board argued on Monday that the deadly and damaging West, Texas explosion was entirely preventable.

NEEDLE EXCHANGE: The San Antonio Express-News Editorial Board thinks, “Texas needs to decriminalize needle exchange programs.”

Affordability: Does Austin have an affordability problem?

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