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Top Stories: Redrawing Texas Voting Maps Put On Hold; Texans Turn To Alternative Medicine

Mark Thomas
U.S. Supreme Court Building

The top local stories this morning from KERA News:

The U.S. Supreme Court has dealt a serious setback to the efforts toward reconfiguring Texas' congressional district map before next year's elections.

Justices voted 5-to-4 to put on hold a lower court order to redraw some congressional and legislative districts, which were found to have discriminated against voters of color.

The decision means Texas almost certainly will hold elections next year in districts that were struck down as racially discriminatory. Those include voting maps drawn by the state Legislature for five state House districts in Dallas and Tarrant counties 

The high court could also choose to delay the March primary elections – a decision that’s likely months away.

A three-judge panel in San Antonio ruled last month that the state’s congressional and state House maps needed to be redrawn to address voting rights violations.

The high court's order remains in effect while it considers an appeal from Texas.

Other stories this morning:

  • The Dallas City Council will vote today on an agreement for the State Fair of Texas to pay the full cost of police overtime pay. The agreement has been in the works for months. For years, the State Fair paid the city a flat fee of $550,000 to reimburse police overtime expenses. But police last year estimated the overtime actually cost more than a million dollars – meaning taxpayers ultimately paid about half the tab.
  • Depending on who you ask, there are lots of ways to cure a cold. Some people turn to brand name cough syrup, others, to herbal teas. In Texas, there’s a long tradition of combining both modern and alternative medicine – a tradition that patients rarely discuss with their doctors. As part of KERA’s Breakthroughs project, exploring the leading edge of health, science and technology, Lauren Silverman reports on a high tech way of learning about traditional medicine.

You can listen to North Texas stories weekdays at 8:22 a.m. and 6:20 p.m. on KERA 90.1 FM.

Former KERA staffer Stephanie Kuo is an award-winning radio journalist who worked as a reporter and administrative producer at KERA, overseeing and coordinating editorial content reports and logistics for the Texas Station Collaborative – a statewide news consortium including KERA, KUT in Austin, Houston Public Media and Texas Public Radio in San Antonio.