AUSTIN – The Texas Tribune reports that for nearly two years, Texas has led the country in job growth, most recently adding more than 400,000 new jobs between August 2022 and 2023, according to a Department of Labor Statistics report released Sept. 19. So why is the state’s unemployment rate tied for fifth-worst in the country? Texas unemployment has stagnated at 4.1% for four consecutive months, falling below the August national average of 3.8%. It hit 4% in February, and still has not returned to pre-pandemic levels, according to data from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Far from a sign of trouble, however, economic experts say the state’s unemployment rate is actually a promising measure of the economy’s growth. The higher unemployment rate is a reflection of an expanding labor force, which has been bolstered by rising domestic migration into the state and more native residents opting to remain in Texas than any other state in the country, experts said. (more…)
WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar of Texas is back at work after being carjacked by three armed attackers less than a mile from the Capitol. Cuellar said Tuesday he was “good” and even joked about the frightening experience, saying his car was recovered but what really upset him was that they had taken his sushi. The Democrat says the robbers “came out of nowhere” and pointed guns at him. Monday night’s carjacking is the second assault on a member of Congress in the District of Columbia this year. In February, Minnesota Democrat Angie Craig was assaulted in her apartment building. Craig suffered bruises while escaping serious injury.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court has opened its new term with a case about prison terms for drug dealers and rejections of hundreds of appeals, including one from an attorney who pushed a plan to keep former President Donald Trump in power. The only case argued Monday concerns the meaning of the word “and” in a federal law dealing with prison terms for low-level drug dealers. The length of thousands of sentences a year is at stake. The term is shaping up as an important one for social media as the court grapples with applying older laws and rulings to the digital age.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The federal government has joined 21 former rail workers in suing Union Pacific over the way it used a vision test to disqualify workers the railroad believed were color blind and might have trouble reading signals telling them to stop a train. The lawsuit announced Monday by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission is the first by the government in what could eventually be hundreds — if not thousands — of lawsuits over the way Union Pacific disqualified people with a variety of health issues. Union Pacific has vigorously defended itself in court, arguing it needs to disqualify these workers to preserve rail safety.
ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York City Mayor Eric Adams says he’s traveling to Latin America to discourage people from seeking asylum in the city as it struggles to handle a massive influx of migrants. The Democratic mayor detailed the trip in a news conference Tuesday. He says he wants to give an honest assessment of the situation and tell people in the region that the city’s shelter system has been overwhelmed and is at capacity. Adams has made a series of urgent pleas for a shift in federal immigration policy and for funding to help the city manage the arrival of migrants.
AUSTIN – The Texas Tribune reports that a lingering drought affecting more than 80% of Texas is causing wildfires, hurting agriculture and drying up water supplies throughout the state. This year’s drought comes less than a year after Texas experienced one of its worst droughts on record in 2022. “Last year we were lucky enough to start getting widespread rain during the last three weeks of August,” Texas State Climatologist John Nielsen-Gammon said. “This time around, August didn’t bail us out and September’s been a bit better but certainly not enough to cause widespread improvements.” (more…)
AUSTIN (AP) — A California man who says he was harassed after Elon Musk amplified social media posts that made false claims about him is suing the billionaire. The lawsuit was filed Monday in Austin by the same attorney who won a defamation case last year against conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. The new lawsuit accuses Musk of amplifying false claims on his social platform, X, that 22-year-old Benjamin Brody was involved in a confrontation that involved far-right protesters in Oregon. Brody says he was in California at the time. Attorneys for Musk did not immediately respond to requests for comment left through a spokesperson.
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