Artists Want Mural Project in El Paso and Juárez to Bring Hope to Community

Our daily roundup of Texas headlines.

By Becky FogelNovember 30, 2016 11:11 am

The Standard’s news roundup gives you a quick hit of interesting, sometimes irreverent, and breaking news stories from all over the state.

Standing in a historic El Paso neighborhood, Robby Gray has a clear view of the El Paso-Juarez Magico Project underway in Mexico. He’s an assistant editor for El Paso Inc., and has been following the project. 

“I can see the border fence from here and I can see the ribbon of water that’s the Rio Grande and right across the border in Juarez, Mexico, there’s a neighborhood called Anapra where there are some non-profits that have put together a neighborhood revitalization project,” Gray says. “And the most visible feature of that will be a giant-rainbow-colored mega mural across 210 homes.”

One of the non-profits helping to fund the project is the El Paso Community Foundation. CEO Eric Summerford Pearson says his organization is proud to help fund the massive mural because as he puts it: the two border cities are in it together.

“I can look out my window and look into Juarez where my grandfather came across in 1915 to escape the revolution, so we all have a connection,” Pearson says. “Everybody in El Paso and Juarez – we are all one community and so I think that’s such a big part of what we do and who we are despite what you hear in Washington D.C., and in Austin, Texas.”

Plans for a corresponding 60,000-foot mural along I-10 in El Paso are also in the works.

Guns won’t be allowed in the Waller County Courthouse – for now. A district judge has ruled that local governments can legally prohibit guns and weapons in courthouse buildings. Houston Public Media’s Ed Mayberry has more:

The District Court ruling finds that it is legal to prohibit guns and weapons in courthouse buildings in Waller County. Elton Mathis,  District Attorney there, explains: “It doesn’t matter if there’s only one court in the building. There are no guns in that building regardless of what other offices are in that building.”

Under the state’s open carry law, a licensed gun owner sued Waller County saying that he should be allowed to bring weapons into a courthouse building or court office.

Mathis says, however, that this new opinion doesn’t have any binding on any other part of the state: “Unfortunately, the Attorney General decided to sue us in Austin. So we’re still going to have to deal with that lawsuit there to hopefully get some clarity for all the counties and cities across the state of Texas.”

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton says in a statement that the Waller County court has not only made a mockery of legislative democracy by gutting the plain language of the statute, but also exposed Texans to retaliatory lawsuits. He predicts the Court of Appeals will reject the trial judge’s decision.

In a couple of years, San Antonians will be able to pick up Norsborgs, Karlstads, and Billy bookcases in their own backyard – Swedish furniture purveyor IKEA is set to open in Live Oak in 2019, making it the fifth store in Texas.

You can learn more about IKEA’s San Antonio plans at Texas Public Radio.