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Texas' Economic Miracle Beginning To Tarnish & Nightly Roundup

By KERA News & Wire Services

Dallas, TX – Most states have budget problems but Texas is among the few that pledged to solve its deficit with budget cuts alone.

Those political promises collided with reality this week, and Texas became the latest state to take fiscal steps it had fiercely resisted.

Conservative Republican leaders, including Gov. Rick Perry, agreed to tap the state's Rainy Day Fund to help solve a $27 billion budget shortfall. They relented in face of warnings that the hole was too deep to fill with cuts to education, social services and other programs.

The solution won't last long though. The legislature will soon turn to its next two-year budget, which could require another $23 billion reduction. Perry declared this week that no money from the reserve fund would be used next time.

Texas man gets 54-year prison term in mom's death

Jurors in San Antonio have sentenced an El Paso man to 54 years in prison for murder in the 2009 killing of his mother.

The Bexar County jury sentenced David Marmolejo on Wednesday. The sentence came in his second trial in the death of 54-year-old Gloria Huerta Marmolejo. He was convicted of murder Tuesday and could have gotten a life sentence.

His first trial, in October in El Paso, ended in a mistrial when jurors deadlocked on a verdict.

The mother's body was found in the desert near El Paso, and a medical examiner determined she had been strangled. Testimony indicated the mother was upset her son was dating his stepsister.

The trial was moved to escape extensive media coverage of the first trial

Dallas Police Plan Spring Cleaning

Dallas Police have launched "Operation Spring Cleaning".

The focus is on five, predominantly single-family neighborhoods identified as high crime areas.

Officers say the goal is to have an immediate impact on crime in these five neighborhoods by engaging community leaders and crime watch, as well as increasing drug, prostitution and fugitive arrests.

Operation Spring Cleaning will last about three weeks. Targeted areas include the neighborhoods around Beacon Street and Columbia Avenue in East Dallas, as well as Polk and 12th Streets in Oak Cliff.