Lead Stories

Texas News
1:51 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Dallas Coffee Lover Orders Most Expensive Starbucks Drink: $54 Frappuccino With 60 Shots

This 128-ounce glass held the most expensive Starbucks drink ever: a $54 concoction that included 60 shots of espresso.
Anderw Chifari/Twitter @ACIFH

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 7:29 am

Five stories that have North Texas talking: a Dallas Starbucks drink order goes viral; prominent choreographer Bruce Wood has died; Sriracha is staying put; and more.

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Politics
1:50 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

Gay Conservatives Denied 'Official' Spot at Texas GOP Convention

Log Cabin Republicans want an official spot at next week's Texas GOP convention.
logcabin.org

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 11:48 am

The Texas Republican Party has denied the Log Cabin Republicans a space at next week's state convention. Log Cabin Republicans represent gay conservatives and supporters of marriage equality in the party. 

Log Cabin Republican Executive Director Gregory Angelo says the state party denied the group’s application for a booth at the convention because, as homosexuals, they disagree with a plank in the party platform. The plank reads, in part, that "homosexuality tears at the fabric of society."

"It was our obligation to let the voters of Texas know and to let members of the Republican Party in Texas know that that language is in the party platform and it is being used to intentionally exclude gay Republicans from formal participation in the state GOP convention," Angelo says.

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Texas News
1:50 pm
Fri May 30, 2014

How Prisoners Are Reigniting the Debate Over Texas Medicaid Expansion

The debate over Medicaid expansion in Texas came up at the Capitol at a hearing on May 29, 2014, because of concern over rising costs of inmates' health care.
Nick Cowie for Texas Tribune

Originally published on Fri May 30, 2014 11:20 am

The debate over Medicaid expansion in Texas came up at the Capitol today in a new way: there’s concern about how to pay the rising costs of health care for prison inmates.

Costs related to infectious diseases like Hepatitis C and HIV are on the rise in the Texas correctional system. Another number on the rise: the amount of Texas inmates older than age 55.

State Rep. Sylvester Turner, D-Houston, says it’s another reason why the state should consider expanding Medicaid eligibility as offered by the Affordable Care Act.

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Politics
11:41 am
Thu May 29, 2014

In Texas Statewide Elections This Fall, 'Voters Will Certainly Have A Choice'

Originally published on Thu May 29, 2014 3:16 pm

The Tea Party had its share of success in Tuesday’s primary runoffs, and more may lie ahead. KERA's Sam Baker looks ahead to the fall elections with Texas Tribune Executive Editor Ross Ramsey.

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Healthcare
11:40 am
Thu May 29, 2014

Texas Pilot Program Combines Medicare, Medicaid Into One Plan

A 2015 pilot program in Texas for people on both Medicaid and Medicare would help them get the care they need in an appropriate facility.
Spencer Selvidge/KUT

Originally published on Wed May 28, 2014 4:10 pm

In Texas, about 400,000 people are on both Medicare and Medicaid. Right now, they’re on separate health plans: the state handles Medicaid, while the federal government oversees Medicare. 

But a pilot effort is underway to shed some redundancy and unnecessary cost – by folding the plans into one.  

Combining services under one plan would help people get the care they need in an appropriate facility – a nursing home instead of a hospital, for example, according to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission. Spokesperson Stephanie Goodman says it increases cost-saving incentives if one plan is not making decisions that are paid for by the other plan. "By combining it, you can get people better care in the right setting, lower costs generally, and the savings can be shared by both the state and federal government," Goodman says.

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