Gus Contreras | KERA News

Gus Contreras

Digital Producer, Reporter

Gus Contreras is a digital producer and reporter at KERA News. Gus produces the local All Things Considered segment and reports on a variety of topics from, sports to immigration. He was an intern and production assistant for All Things Considered in Washington D.C.

He is a first-generation American from El Paso, and attended UT-Arlington. He was the sports and managing editor of The Shorthorn, UTA’s student newspaper.

A sports nut, he enjoys traveling and spending time with friends and family. When he’s not trying to cook Mexican food at home, Gus enjoys finding new taco places in North Texas.

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The top local stories this evening from KERA News:

Two Texas cities have made Amazon's list of 20 finalists for its second headquarters in North America. The company says the $5 billion project would include more than 50,000 jobs and be comparable to Amazon’s Seattle campus.

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School kids in Bonham, an hour northeast of Plano, are getting a week off school starting Wednesday. The reason? The flu.

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Coming soon, Dallas Maverick fans will have a high-tech option to pay for tickets.

Owner Mark Cuban says the team will become the first pro sports franchise outside of California to accept bitcoin.

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Students in the Bonham school district won’t be able to go to school for a week. The district Tuesday afternoon said it decided to cancel school beginning Wednesday through next Tuesday because of the number of students and employees who are experiencing flu-like symptoms.

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Another round of cold weather has made its way back to North Texas. The region could see temperatures dip below freezing, a wintery mix and a chance at some light snow, according to the National Weather Service in Fort Worth.

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The top local stories this morning from KERA News: Dallas County is suing drug companies and doctors over their alleged roles in the deadly opioid epidemic.

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Six Dallas-area locations were among nearly 100 7-Eleven convenience stores targeted by federal immigration agents on Wednesday. They served the stores with audit notifications and conducted employee interviews to verify employees as eligible to work legally in the United States.

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Texans are reacting to a federal judge's decision to temporarily block President Donald Trump from ending protections for nearly 800,000 young immigrants. The judge granted a request to prevent the president from ending the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA, while various lawsuits play out in court.

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A jury sentenced a former Farmers Branch police officer to 10 years in prison for the shooting death of a 16-year-old who had burglarized his SUV. Former officer Ken Johnson received the sentence Tuesday from the same Dallas County jury that found him guilty of murder and aggravated assault last month.

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The top local stories this evening from KERA News:

What was billed as a region-wide celebration of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., has drawn fire from civil rights groups and community activists. As KERA’s Christopher Connelly reports, they’re angry over the inclusion of Gov. Greg Abbott as an honorary grand marshal of the North Texas MLK Parade in Arlington.

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North Texas health departments are tracking a steep uptick in the number of positive flu tests. This year's vaccine is thought to be about 32 percent effective, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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The director of Dallas County Health and Human Services has been fired. Zachary Thompson was terminated Wednesday, according to Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins. The judge gave no explanation in a statement issued on Thursday afternoon. Thompson had been set to retire at the end of the month. 

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A battle is brewing in the city of Dallas over school crossing guards. Dallas County Schools bus agency said it doesn’t have the money to continue paying for crossing guards past this month.

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The top local stories this evening from KERA News:

The new year brings new laws to Texas. More than a couple dozen new laws are now in effect, and they include revisions to the state's controversial voter ID law.

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Sports news coming out of North Texas made a lot of national headlines in 2017. Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones made a lot of people mad, the nation’s longest winning streak came to an end and a local legend was enshrined by his sport.

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A big chill is expected to pass through North Texas this holiday weekend. The National Weather Service in Fort Worth is predicting freezing temperatures for the area.

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Federal charges have been filed in an investigation into the financial losses at Dallas County Schools.

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Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones says coach Jason Garrett will return for an eighth full season. This comes after Dallas were eliminated from playoff contention in a year marred by the six-game suspension of star running back Ezekiel Elliott.

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A new report out today says the state of Texas is at the lowest monthly unemployment rate in four decades. Texas Workforce Commission data shows the unemployment rate has improved for the seventh month in a row with November unemployment slipping to a record 3.8 percent.

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Last week, a Dallas auditor released a scathing report about the city’s response to its growing homeless problem. As KERA’s Stephanie Kuo reports, the findings have shaken up the city’s largest homeless service providers. 

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SMU's football team plays its first bowl game in five years on Wednesday night. The Mustangs take on Louisiana Tech in the re-booted DXL Frisco Bowl at Toyota Stadium. The bowl game's a newcomer to North Texas. It was formerly called the Miami Beach Bowl before the local pro soccer team and ESPN partnered up to move the game to Frisco.

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Marian Brown was named Dallas County's acting sheriff on Tuesday. The department's chief deputy, a Dallas native, takes over for Sheriff Lupe Valdez at the end of the month. Valdez is stepping down to run for Texas governor. As KERA’s Bill Zeeble reports, Brown’s also running for Valdez’s old job.

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Federal officials have identified the proposed route of a high-speed train between Dallas and Houston. In Dallas, a future train station could be located downtown near the Trinity River floodplain. 

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A new survey shows black adults in Texas and around the country have a lot of concerns about health care, including reproductive health. As KERA’s Stella Chavez reports, experts came together Thursday in Dallas to talk about the findings and their implications. 

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Fort Worth is one of the last major cities in Texas that still allows smoking in bars, but that's soon about to change. The City Council voted 8-1 on Tuesday to ban smoking and electronic cigarettes in bars and bingo centers in 90 days, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram

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The top local stories this evening from KERA News:

Hurricane Harvey, and the devastating rainfall that came with it, changed hundreds of thousands of people's lives. Some lost loved ones, while others watched the floodwaters invade their homes. Thousands of families were displaced, and some landed in North Texas. 

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A new study commissioned by Dallas officials shows the city has a ways to go in providing more frequent and more equitable public transportation to people across the city, and especially low-income people. 

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The top local stories this evening from KERA News:

It’s been over three months since Hurricane Harvey slammed into the Texas coast. For people from areas hit the hardest, a return to normal life seems far away. That’s especially true for those still staying in hotels, often miles and miles from the community they left behind, and with no home to go back to.

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The son of a former Texas governor has launched his bid to unseat the current governor. Andrew White held a rally Thursday in Houston, where the investor promised to campaign as a conservative Democrat. The party hasn't captured the Texas governorship since Ann Richards won in 1990.

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The long-time Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez, the daughter of South Texas migrant workers, said Wednesday she will resign to challenge Gov. Greg Abbott. Observers say Valdez is the strongest Democratic challenger in the race, but winning office will be an uphill battle.

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