Andrew Weber

Digital Reporter

Andrew Weber is a digital reporter for KUT News. A graduate of St. Edward's University with a degree in English, Andrew has previously interned with The Texas Tribune, The Austin American-Statesman and KOOP Radio.

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Renee Dominguez for KUT

A new study shows immigrants have an outsized impact on Austin’s economy.

Overall, 4.8 million immigrants in Texas paid $34.8 billion in taxes and had an economic footprint of $109.9 billion, according to an analysis of 2017 census data from the bipartisan immigrant advocacy group New American Economy.

Tony Hisgett/Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Lemonade stands aren't legal in Texas, but House lawmakers gave a preliminary OK today to a bill that would undo that legislative oversight that's dragged on for 85 legislative sessions.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Note: This story includes raw data from the Austin Transportation Department. Official data would not have included trips of under a 10th of a mile or over 500 miles. 

Dockless scooters were the headliner in their first year at SXSW.

City data show the scooters outpaced rentable dockless bikes over the festival, accounting for nearly 434,000 rides over the 10 days of SXSW – 12.3 percent of the 3.5 million scooter rides since the scooters descended upon Austin last April.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Texas is lacking in low-income housing, according to a new study from the National Low Income Housing Coalition.

The availability of affordable rental housing for extremely low-income renters in Texas – those making below the federal poverty level or 30 percent of an area's median income – was 29 homes available for every 100 renters. The national rate is 37 homes.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

UT Austin has been named in a class-action lawsuit over a national, $25-million college admissions scandal that has led to scores of indictments across the country – including the university's men's tennis coach, who was fired yesterday.

Miguel Gutierrez / Texas Tribune

A day after his indictment in a wide-ranging college admissions scandal, longtime UT Austin tennis coach Michael Center has been fired.

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

UT Austin men's tennis coach Michael Center has been arrested and charged with mail fraud and conspiracy to commit mail fraud in a wide-ranging, multimillion-dollar college admissions scandal.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. for KUT

Seven out of 10 driver's license suspensions in Texas are due to drivers' inability to pay fees and surcharges from courts and the Texas Department of Public Safety, according to a new study from nonprofits Texas Appleseed and Texas Fair Defense Project.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

The effort to create a public defenders office in Travis County isn't dead after all.

At its board meeting this morning, the Texas Indigent Defense Commission OK'd a move to waive a requirement for a letter expressing interest in a $15-million grant to establish a public defender office in Travis County for adult felony and misdemeanor cases – something the county has tried and failed to do for decades.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

An audit out today of homeless service providers in Austin says the city doesn't always hold them accountable.

Gabriel C. Pérez

Austin Mayor Steve Adler sent a letter to the moon offering aliens unlimited queso. Yes, that is indeed a statement of fact.

Texans, it turns out, don't know their U.S. history. A new study from the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation found 63 percent of respondents in Texas failed a quiz based on questions from the U.S. citizenship examination.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Prepare to be shocked: People keep moving to Texas.

A new Texas Realtors study looking at Census Bureau and U-Haul rental data found more than half a million people relocated to the Lone Star State in 2017 – the second highest number of relocations in the U.S. after Florida. 

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Austin's water utility says it's continuing to flush out water lines tainted with foul-smelling water that has plagued residents since last Thursday

Drivers spent more time in traffic in Austin than in any other Texas city, according to new research from transportation data firm INRIX.

Austin ranked 14th overall in INRIX's yearly traffic analysis of the most congested cities in the U.S. and 84th in its worldwide rankings.

Travelers flying out of Austin-Bergstrom International Airport tried to bring 93 guns onto flights in 2018, according to the Transportation Security Administration's annual tally.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

A crash last week killed a 21-year-old scooter rider, the Austin Police Department says. The department says it's the first death related to a rented scooter in Austin.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Austin’s Catholic Diocese says 22 clergy members have been credibly accused of sexual abuse of minors over the past seven decades. 

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

The Austin City Council approved a new contract of Front Steps – the operator of the Austin Resource Center for the Homeless. The agreement, which was unanimously approved, aims to bring systemic changes to the city's homeless shelter.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

bill filed late last week in the Texas Legislature could allow liquor stores to sell on Sundays. 

Currently, stores are prohibited from selling then – as well as on Christmas Day, Thanksgiving and New Year's Day. House Bill 1100 from state Rep. Richard Peña Raymond would allow stores to sell from noon to 10 p.m. Sundays.

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

A new report says a third of households in Travis County struggle to make ends meet; in Austin, that number was higher, at 42 percent.

Montinique Monroe for KUT

The Texas Secretary of State says nearly 100,000 people on the state's voter rolls are not U.S. citizens.

In an advisory today, Secretary of State David Whitley told voter registrars that the Texas Department of Public Safety has identified as many as 95,000 non-U.S. citizens who have a registration record attached to their name. The agency estimates as many as 58,000 of those people have voted "in one or more Texas elections." 

Montinique Monroe for KUT

More than four years after his first election, Austin City Council Member Greg Casar can put that race behind him. The Texas Supreme Court today sided with the District 4 council member after his opponent, Laura Pressley, contested his victory in 2014. The court did, however, find her challenge wasn't frivolous. 

Julia Reihs / KUT

After years of declines in ridership, Capital Metro's ridership increased in 2018. The boost comes in a year that saw the transit operator's largest overhaul of its bus system, known as Cap Remap, which affected more than half its lines.

Overall, Cap Metro's ridership went up 5.4 percent in December 2018 compared to the previous year, with its largest individual ridership gains on its MetroRapid lines, 801 and 803.

Miguel Gutierrez Jr. for KUT

Like a mirage on a sun-beaten West Texas highway, the future of autonomous vehicles in Texas isn't altogether clear. A new state effort hopes to remedy that.  

Blue Origin

Blue Origin will launch its New Shepard rocket in West Texas this morning.

If all goes according to plan, it will be the 10th successful launch for the spaceflight venture founded by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos. This would be the fourth flight for the craft, named for famed astronaut Alan Shepard.

The mission was postponed twice previously late last year, but the New Shepard is set to launch this morning,  carrying eight NASA-sponsored payloads along with it. The launch is set for 8:50 this morning near Van Horn. 

Watch a livestream below courtesy of Blue Origin. 

Martin do Nascimento / KUT

President Donald Trump's Hail Mary offer to trade protections for recipients of the Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals program for border-wall funding could be dead on arrival as Congress heads back to work this week.

Julia Reihs / KUT

A new report from BuzzFeed News accuses President Donald Trump of directing his longtime attorney Michael Cohen to lie to Congress, and Joaquín and Julián Castro have called for impeachment proceedings or the president's outright resignation. 

Jorge Sanhueza-Lyon / KUT

Attorney General Ken Paxton doubled-down on a Texas law that bans state contractors from boycotting Israel in a court filing yesterday.

Julia Reihs / KUT

A plaque honoring the Confederate States of America in the Texas Capitol will be taken down after a vote from the Texas State Preservation Board.

In a meeting that lasted all of three minutes, board members unanimously approved the measure to remove the plaque, which was installed in 1959, though it's unclear when exactly it will be taken down. 

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