Texas Standard for Aug. 10, 2023: Meet ire’ne lara silva, Texas’ poet laureate

Since 1932, Texas has been designating poets laureate, a prestigious honor that this year goes to Austin’s ire’ne lara silva, reflecting her literary accomplishments.

By Texas StandardAugust 10, 2023 9:36 am,

Here are the stories on Texas Standard for Thursday, Aug. 10, 2023. Check back later today for updated story links and audio.

Texas has seen more wildfires than average this year. Here’s how to be prepared.

It’s been a hot, dry summer. The Texas A&M Forest Service has raised the state wildfire preparedness level to Level 4 – one level below the highest possible – due to the recent increase in wildfire activity. The Austin area alone has seen three brush fires this week: One broke out Tuesday evening in Cedar Park and destroyed an apartment building, leading to the evacuation of hundreds of homes and businesses.

Kari Hines, a program coordinator at the Texas A&M forest service, joins Texas Standard with tips on how to be prepared.

Slow release from jail is common in Texas

Three former inmates of Smith County, east of Dallas, say they were held for weeks past the end of their sentences and are now suing the county. The attorneys bringing the lawsuit say over-detention is a problem throughout Texas.

KERA’s Bret Jaspers reports that more Smith County inmates are speaking up.

Things to think about when selecting home or apartment insurance

Wildfires are top of mind for many Texans during this extremely hot and dry summer. Currently 173 counties across the state are under burn bans, with exceptions primarily in the Panhandle. But while prevention is of upmost importance, so is preparedness.

KUT’s Corey Smith spoke with an insurance expert who says getting your house or apartment covered is an important precaution:

Houston ISD families fear state takeover will tear up their public schools

As the school year commences, concerns are rising about preserving community ties within the Houston Independent School District after a Texas Education Agency takeover. New superintendent Mike Miles has implemented substantial reforms at approximately one-third of district campuses.

Houston Public Media’s Dominic Anthony Walsh examines the impact – particularly on schools predominantly situated in working-class, Black and Latino neighborhoods.

Fear and questions surround AI in Zoom’s new terms of service

Artificial intelligence’s expanding influence is generating concerns, and its latest touchpoint is the widely used video conferencing app Zoom. Despite the pandemic’s ebb, Zoom remains a vital communication tool for many. Recent news highlighted changes in Zoom’s terms of service, raising alarms about potential AI utilization of users’ words and images for model training.

The Standard’s tech expert Omar Gallaga joins us with his insights.

Meet Austin’s ire’ne lara silva, Texas’ poet laureate

Since 1932, Texas has been designating poets laureate, a prestigious honor now extended to artists and musicians as well.

This year, Austin’s ire’ne lara silva was chosen as the poet laureate, reflecting her literary accomplishments. Joining us in the Texas Standard studios, ire’ne sheds light on the significance of being a poet laureate, delves into her latest work, “FirstPoems” and more.

Texas Democrats prepare to challenge Ted Cruz in 2024

With 2024 on the horizon, Texas politics is heating up as some notable figures face formidable opponents. In the race for the Democratic nominee to challenge Republican U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, state Sen. Roland Gutierrez of San Antonio and U.S. Rep. Colin Allred of Dallas are set to compete in the March primary. While they share Democratic stances on gun control, immigration and healthcare, they differ on their approaches to address these critical issues.

The Texas Tribune’s Patrick Svitek joins us to discuss distinctions between the Democratic contenders.

All this, plus the Texas Newsroom’s state roundup and Wells Dunbar with the Talk of Texas.

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