News | KERA News


Dallas, TX – Ambient sound of a sidewalk cafe.

Dallas, TX – Ambient sound of a Dallas City Council meeting, with Council members yelling at each other and the mayor banging a gavel on the table

Suzanne Sprague, KERA 90.1 Reporter: Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk said early in the day that if the ethics code debate were a horse race, all of the City Council's horses would run out of the gate and stop in their tracks.

Dallas Mayor Ron Kirk: We have a couple of members of the Council that want to use this as a way to say, "We have ethics. They don't. They're against it."

Fort Worth, TX – Suzanne Sprague, KERA 90.1 Reporter: For nearly two hours, patients of Tarrant County's public hospital system told of wading through a maze of confusing lines, of receiving the wrong prescriptions, and of sharing the few chairs and one bathroom at the new centralized pharmacy.

Fort Worth, TX – Ambient sound of a crowd gathering in a large hall.

Suzanne Sprague, KERA 90.1 Reporter: The Tarrant County Convention Hall was filled with vendors trying to sell Democrats anything from merchandise to ideas.

Sound from a videotape begins to play.

Sprague: At the booth sponsored by the Texas State Rifle Association, Executive Director Randy Gibson was screening a video about gun safety starring the cartoon character Eddie the Eagle.

Fort Worth, TX – Suzanne Sprague, KERA 90.1 Reporter: Texas Democratic Party Chairwoman Molly Beth Malcolm was elected in 1998, the same year her party was wiped clean from statewide offices.

Molly Beth Malcolm, Texas Democratic Party Chairwoman: What I think happened over the last decade is while Democrats were in the Legislature and they were working with the Republicans that were over there, the Republicans began to organize and jump out and pretend and take credit for things that they weren't doing.

Fort Worth, TX – Sam Baker, KERA 90.1 Morning Edition host: The 2nd International Piano Competition for Outstanding Amateurs reaches its crescendo today and tomorrow in Fort Worth, as finalists play for top prizes. But, as 90.1's Bill Zeeble reports, the tension that accompanies typical music contests has given way to a more relaxed atmosphere.

Music fade

Dallas, TX – Sam Baker, KERA 90.1 Morning Edition host: The Dallas Stars stand on the brink of elimination tonight as they face the New Jersey Devils in game five of the Stanley Cup Finals. If the Devils win, they take the best-of-seven series. From the National Hockey League's perspective, though, the Stars have already scored a success of sorts, as 90.1's Bill Zeeble reports.

Dallas, TX – Sam Baker, KERA 90.1 Morning Edition host: Plans for the new Nasher Sculpture Garden and Center have been unveiled by award-winning landscape designer Peter Walker and architect Renzo Piano. 90.1's Bill Zeeble has more on the art space in downtown Dallas.

Dallas, TX – Sam Baker, KERA 90.1 Morning Edition host: Dozens of shareholder-activists lobbied the ExxonMobil board during its annual meeting yesterday. They hoped to change corporate policies on everything from global warming to gay rights. On every count, they failed, but say they won't give up. 90.1's Bill Zeeble has more.

Ambient sound of protestors chanting: When do you want ExxonMobil to protect America's Arctic? Now! When do you want Exxon to stop global warming? Now! And when...

Arlington, TX – [There is sound here of people milling around the museum and talking.]


Mesquite, TX – (Children are playing and squealing on a playground.)

Suzanne Sprague, Reporter: Cascade Park is now Westlake Village. Raw sewage no longer flows through the grounds. The security gate has been fixed. Everyone has a new air conditioner. And there's a brand new playground for the dozens of children who call these apartments home.

(Here, more sound of children on the playground)

Dallas, TX – (Music from the television show "Dragnet" is playing)

Suzanne Sprague, KERA 90.1 Reporter: Okay. It might sound a little cheezy, but this is your welcome to the "Scene of the Crime" exhibit. Black and white photographs fill two rooms at the Photographs Do Not Bend gallery with sobering images from the world of crime. Gallery owner Burt Finger spent more than a year putting this exhibit together.

Burt Finger, Gallery Owner: About two years ago, I was at a photography sale and found this photograph.

Dallas, TX – MBIENCE: jet bridge]

Bill Zeeble, KERA 90.1 reporter: This is a prototype: only one of two automated jetways in the world that links customers to the plane's front door, and also to the plane's back door.

John Chaussee, Southwest Airlines Operations Security Director: It's an audible alarm, when the entire bridge is in motion to let everybody know down here on the ramp that the bridge is in motion and be mindful of it.

Fort Worth, TX – Bill Zeeble, KERA 90.1 reporter: FAA officials readily declare U.S. aviation the safest in the world. 600,000 pilots perform 68 million takeoffs and landings every year, at 464 airports where a million people are authorized to operate ground vehicles. There were only about 320 runway incursions last year, some in bad weather. But pilots, like this 16-year veteran who did not want his name or company mentioned, say many could've been avoided.

Dallas, TX – Ray Williams III, brother of Mary Richardson: We are relieved that justice was served.

Bill Zeeble, KERA 90.1 Reporter: Ray Williams, Mary Williams Richardson's oldest brother, spoke for the family who'd waited in the 6th floor court room all week, and through the weekend, for the decision.

Williams: I saw no remorse at any time from him. That's a disturbing revelation. We feel sadness for his family and know it wasn't their fault.

Dallas, TX – [A whirring sound is heard.]

Stephen Myers, SMU mechanical engineering student: When you push forward, it pushes the wheel forward; and when you pull back, the rear gearing mechanism forces the wheel forward as well.

Dallas, TX – Suzanne Sprague, KERA 90.1 Reporter: Each year in Tarrant County, the lives of some 2,000 children are painstakingly investigated and analyzed. These are the children state officials have reason to believe are abused or neglected. And if Child Protective Services deems their home is unsafe, then these children can be removed by the courts.

Dallas, TX – Suzanne Sprague, KERA 90.1 Reporter: When the 1996 Telecommunications Act became law, the local phone service market exploded with new carriers. So when you make a phone call, you may start out on a Southwestern Bell line but end up on the network of one of its competitors. All the phone companies had to negotiate a way to determine who would absorb the costs for such a call. They came up with something called reciprocal compensation. Bill Maddox with Southwestern Bell explains.