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Top Morning Stories March 16, 2011

Sixth Street shuts down for SXSW starting today.
Photo by Jeff Heimsath for KUT.
Sixth Street shuts down for SXSW starting today.

More Streets Closing for SXSW Today

Downtown Austin has been packed for South by Southwest and you can expect more street closures.  The city’s shutting down East Sixth Streetfrom Brazos to I-35 starting today through Sunday.  For those of you who work downtown, keep in mind Sixth Street will be open for the morning commutes from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m through Friday.  Streets that intersect with Sixth from San Jacinto to Sabine will also be closed.  Find more street closure details here

Rep. Howard Wins Another Round in Election Contest

A special House committee Tuesday ruled against Republican challenger Dan Neil for the contested House District 48 race.  The committee unanimously voted to recommend that incumbent Democrat Donna Howard is the winner.  The next step is for the election challenge to move to the full House.  On his Twitter, Neil said he will sit down over the next couple of days and decide whether or not to withdraw.

AG: Watch Out for Japan Charity Scams

Japan’s still trying everything to cool the nuclear reactors at its troubled Fukushima plant. Texans are generously opening their wallets to the relief efforts for Japan’s earthquake and tsunami disaster. 

The Texas Attorney General is warning people to beware of charitable scams and people trying to capitalize on the tragedy.  The AG says to ask relief organizations for credentials, make checks out directly to charities and not to individual solicitors, and find out how your donation will be used.  Click herefor more smart giving tips from the AG.