Riane Roldan | KUT

Credit Courtesy of Riane Roldan

 Riane Roldan is the Hays County reporter for KUT. Previously, Riane covered politics, immigration and the environment during internships at The Texas Tribune and the Austin American-Statesman.

Riane graduated from Emerson College with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and grew up in Miami, where she attended Miami Dade College. Born to Cuban and Chilean families, she speaks Spanish and is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.

Riane is also an alumnus of the Chips Quinn Scholars Program for Diversity in Journalism and won the first place award for in-depth reporting from the Florida College Press Association Miami.

Ways to Connect

Early voting runs until Oct. 30 in Texas.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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El condado de Hays tiene unos 150,000 votantes registrados que podrían participar en las elecciones generales de 2020. Además de votar por el próximo presidente, los votantes del Condado de Hays tienen la oportunidad de decidir sobre un número de posiciones estatales y locales.

Early voting runs until Oct. 30 in Texas.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Lee esta historia en español. 

Hays County has about 150,000 registered voters who could participate in the 2020 general election. In addition to voting on the next president, Hays County voters have the chance to decide on a number of state and local races.

An otter pokes its head out of the San Marcos River in August.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

River otters have been making a comeback in Central Texas for the past few years. But this past summer, otters were spotted where they typically haven’t been seen before: in the San Marcos River.

Michael Minasi / KUT

UT Austin is reversing its decision to deny a local indigenous group’s request for three sets of Native American remains housed in the school’s archeological research laboratory.

A Texas State student walks on campus at the start of the fall semester.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Active COVID-19 cases in Hays County are on a steady decline, but there’s one age group still seeing small spikes in cases.

Katya Guzman takes part in a ceremonial dance last week in front of UT's J.J. Pickle Research Campus. The Miakan-Garza Band in San Marcos believe centuries old remains held by the archeological research lab are their ancestors.
Michael Minasi / KUT

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Los tambores y el rítmico tintineo de las vainas de semillas de madera ahogaron el sonido de los autos que pasaban por el campus de investigación de J.J. Pickle un lunes por la noche.

Katya Guzman takes part in a ceremonial dance last week in front of UT's J.J. Pickle Research Campus. The Miakan-Garza Band in San Marcos believe centuries old remains held by the archeological research lab are their ancestors.
Michael Minasi / KUT

Lee esta historia en español. 

Drumming and the rhythmic clinking of wooden seed pods drowned out the sound of cars rushing past the J.J. Pickle Research Campus on a Monday evening.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Kyle City Council voted Tuesday to scrap plans to rename a 2-mile stretch of road that lies west of I-35 "Fajita Drive."

The name was meant to replace the road’s original name, Rebel Drive, as the city reexamines the memorialization of racist symbols. Fajita Drive was chosen as the new name last week to honor the late Juan Antonio “Sonny” Falcón, who was credited with introducing the first fajita in Kyle during the 1960s.

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La ciudad de Kyle está reconsiderando su decisión de cambiar el nombre de Rebel Drive a Fajita Drive.

Lee esta historia en español. 

The City of Kyle is reconsidering its decision to change the name of Rebel Drive to Fajita Drive.

Council members unanimously voted Tuesday on the name change for the 2-mile road that cuts through the city west of I-35. The decision was made as Kyle reexamines parts of the city that memorialize racist symbols. Last month, Hays High School similarly agreed to retire the rebel as its school mascot because of its association with the Confederacy.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

College towns across the country could face major losses in population and revenue if students don’t return to campus this fall, a new study finds. One of the most at-risk towns? San Marcos.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Después de décadas de representar a la Escuela Secundaria Hays en Buda, la mascota rebelde pasará a retiro.

El Concejo de Administración del Distrito Escolar Consolidado Independiente (CISD, en inglés) de Hays votó unánimemente este jueves para que deje de utilizarse. En una reunión especial, muchos miembros de la junta dijeron que era "imposible" separar a la mascota de su historia racista.

A water tower in Buda
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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After decades of representing Hays High School in Buda, the rebel mascot will retire.

The Hays Consolidated Independent School District Board of Trustees voted unanimously Thursday to discontinue its use. At a special meeting, many board members said it was "impossible" to separate the mascot from its racist history.

Via the campaign websites

Two Hays County Republicans are vying for a chance to represent Texas House District 45, a swing district in Hays and Blanco counties that GOP leaders are targeting this year.

The winner will take on incumbent state Rep. Erin Zwiener, who was elected in 2018, becoming the first Democrat to win the seat since 2010.

Jenny Garcia Sharon (left) and William Hayward (right) are competing in the Republican primary runoff election for Texas' 35th Congressional District.
Courtesy of the candidates

Texas Democrat Lloyd Doggett is running for his 14th term as a congressman this year, in Texas’ 35th Congressional District. But there are still two candidates vying to be his Republican challenger in November — William Hayward and Jenny Garcia Sharon.

The Hays County Historic Courthouse
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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El condado de Hays implementará un programa de “Citar y Eludir” a partir del 1 de septiembre, anunció este miércoles la oficina del sheriff.

La decisión de seguir adelante con el programa llega después de más de un año de discusión.

The Hays County Historic Courthouse
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Lee esta historia en español. 

Hays County will implement a cite and divert program starting Sept. 1, the sheriff's office announced Wednesday.  

The decision to move forward with the program comes after more than a year of discussion.

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

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Deana Piñales trabaja como doula de postparto cuando no enseña a niños en la Iglesia de la Fraternidad Unitaria Universalista de San Marcos. Se llama a sí misma, en broma, una "doncella de todos los oficios" debido a sus diversos intereses y dice que trata de mantenerse involucrada en la comunidad tanto como sea posible a través de su hijo de 9 años. 

Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Lee esta historia en español. 

Deana Piñales works as a postpartum doula when she’s not teaching children at the San Marcos Unitarian Universalist Fellowship Church. She jokingly calls herself a “jane-of-all-trades,” because of her varying interests, and says she tries to stay involved in the community as much as possible through her 9-year-old son. 

A sign at a protest reads "End Police Brutality"
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

The City of San Marcos is promising to do more to address calls for an end to police brutality and systemic racism within law enforcement.

At a special meeting Thursday, council members passed a series of resolutions to address reform on a local and national level.

Texas State University
Texas State University

Texas State University is moving forward with plans to have students back on campus for summer classes that start July 6. But as the number of COVID-19 cases in the county grows, many students are concerned about going back to school.

A sign on a business in Austin during the coronavirus pandemic urges people to wash their hands frequently.
Gabriel C. Pérez / KUT

Dozens of local businesses in San Marcos could receive up to $5,000 of federal funding in the latest round of efforts to relieve communities that have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.