Texas Standard for February 8, 2022

As primaries approach, an effort to unseat incumbent Texas Democrats, led by Democrats. Who’s in the political hot seat and why? We’ll explore. And: What happens to oil wells that are no longer productive? Concerns grow about the environmental impact of abandoned production sites, now millions coming to Texas for cleanup. Also: How cyber attacks on small Texas towns have rewritten the rules of engagement for Russian hackers. Plus: Fresh allegations that pro football intentionally sidelines Black coaches. Former NFL coach Daron Roberts of UT-Austin’s Center for Sports Leadership and Innovation with a close-up. Those stories and more today on the Texas Standard:

By Texas StandardFebruary 8, 2022 9:30 am,

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Tuesday, February 8, 2022.

A primary challenge from the left for two Texas Democrats   

Early voting in the 2022 Texas primaries starts February 14 – Valentine’s Day –  and a new political coalition has no love for two Democratic House members. The Texas Tribune reports the group wants to install what it calls “better Democrats” in the Texas Legislature. Patrick Svitek, primary political correspondent for The Texas Tribune, joins us with the story.

Texas is getting hundreds of millions of dollars to clean up ‘orphan wells’

The Biden administration will start allocating funds to states to help clean up abandoned oil and gas wells. Texas is set to get $343 million, more than any other state. For more on the effort against these “orphan wells” we’re joined by Ben Wermund, Washington D.C. correspondent for the Houston Chronicle.

Victims, family from Sutherland Springs shooting awarded $230 million

A federal judge has awarded victims of the 2017 Sutherland Springs church shooting and their families more than $230 million dollars. The award is a repudiation of the federal government – which was found mostly liable because the Air Force had failed to report the gunman’s criminal history. The shooting left 26 people dead, and 20 others injured. Texas Public Radio’s Paul Flahive has more.

A 2019 Texas ransomware attack was the start of something much bigger

In 2019, a gang of Russian-speaking hackers locked up computers in the tiny town of Borger, Texas, and 23 other places across the state. It was one of the biggest coordinated ransomware attacks against the U.S. On her new podcast “Click Here,” reporter Dina Temple-Raston, says it also played a role in the growth of something called “ransomware as a service” – and is a lesson in the future of cybersecurity. She joins us today.

No charges for county clerk who sorted jurors by race 

Instead of selecting jurors randomly, former Brazoria County Clerk Rhonda Barchak would sort potential jurors into four categories: white Pearland residents, non-white Pearland residents, and white and non-white Brazoria county residents who lived outside Pearland. Now a grand jury has weighed in on the matter. Here to tell us more is Anna Bauman, who’s been covering this story for the Houston Chronicle.

Texas Olympic medal-winner has a passion for running

With the Olympics underway halfway around the world, we’re revisiting this Show ID with Leo Manzano.

What a Black coach’s lawsuit says about coaching culture in the NFL

When the Miami Dolphins fired head coach Brian Flores last month, he said there was more at play than wins and losses – in fact, he had more wins than losses. Flores recently interviewed for other head coach openings, but he hasn’t landed one. Now he’s suing the NFL, the Dolphins, and two other teams (the Broncos and the Giants). Flores, who is Black, says he was discriminated against. Daron Roberts is a former NFL coach and the founding director of UT-Austin’s Center for Sports Leadership and Innovation. He joins us today.

Cold fronts continue to kill pelicans on South Texas highway

Last week’s freeze brought strong gusts to the coast of the Rio Grande Valley. That, combined with the airflow of bridges along Highway 48 in Brownsville, causes pelicans to crash into the ground as they fly over. Texas Public Radio’s Gaige Davila reports that despite improvements to the bridges, pelicans are still struggling.

All this and Texas News Roundup, plus Social Media Editor Wells Dunbar with the talk of Texas.

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