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Texas Jobless Rate Up For 2nd Month & Midday Roundup

By KERA News & Wire Services

Dallas, TX – The state's employment agency says the jobless rate in Texas has increased for the second straight month despite continued improvement in the number of jobs.

The Texas Workforce Commission said Friday the unemployment rate for December was 8.3 percent, up from 8.2 percent in November. The agency said the state also had its fourth consecutive month of job growth, adding 20,000 positions.

The state's jobless rate remains below the national rate of 9.4 percent, and Texas job growth is outpacing the U.S. as well. Commission figures indicate Texas has added 230,800 jobs since December 2009 and has an annual growth rate of 2.3 percent compared to 0.9 percent nationally.

The strongest growth was in construction, which added 8,700 jobs in December.

Texas lawyer honored as oldest worker dies at 102

A North Texas attorney honored for being America's oldest worker has died at age 102.

Up until his death, Jack Borden had worked daily at his Weatherford law practice, handling real estate and probate cases. Borden died Wednesday. His law partner and nephew, John Westhoff, says he insisted that Borden go to a hospital for treatment of fluid on his lungs after Borden arrived at work Monday.

He was named America's Outstanding Oldest Worker for 2009 by Experience Works, the nation's largest nonprofit training center for older workers. Borden told The Associated Press in 2009 that he had no plans to retire.

He was known recalling with vivid details his childhood during the Great Depression and chasing draft dodgers when he was an FBI agent in the 1940s.

Ohio drug distributor supplies Texas' lethal drugs

Amid a national shortage of a key execution drug, the country's busiest death penalty state is identifying for the first time its supplier for all three of its lethal injection drugs.

Texas previously fought to shield the information, saying the revelation could be "an embarrassing fact" and prompt the supplier to stop shipping the drugs.

The state said releasing the information could also put the company's employees in danger from death penalty opponents.

Besse Medical is a large pharmaceutical distributor that says it has no way to determine what its customers, including the Texas corrections department, do with its products.

The Associated Press obtained the company's name through an open records request.