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Current Articles & Research Resources, February 22, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Learn what some misleading language on food labels really means. (Consumer Reports, February 17, 2024)
  • Consider how the way tech gadget batteries are charged impacts their lifespan. (iFixit, February 14, 2024)
  • Search for federal financial assistance programs. (Office of Management and Budget, accessed February 21, 2024)
  • Explore police department social media policies by city or state. (Brennan Center for Justice, updated February 7, 2024)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

Current Articles & Research Resources, February 15, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Track power outages across the United States. (Bluefire Studios LLC, accessed February 13, 2024)
  • Map plant hardiness zones across the United States. (U.S. Department of Agriculture, accessed February 12, 2024)
  • Consider whether defensive gun use deters crime. (National Bureau of Economic Research, February 2024)
  • Read about the risk of distracted driving. (Insurance Information Institute, January 22, 2024)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

Current Articles & Research Resources, February 8, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Review DPS’s new Violent Offender Database. (Texas Department of Public Safety, February 1, 2024)
  • Read the Annual Energy & Economic Impact Report of Texas’ oil and gas industry. (Texas Oil & Gas Association, January 30, 2024)
  • Consider how police departments may use AI to examine footage from body-worn camera video. (ProPublica, February 2, 2024)
  • Note that the FCC plans to make AI-generated robocalls illegal. (Federal Communications Commission, January 31, 2024)
  • Search for or report unsafe consumer products. (U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, accessed February 2, 2024)
  • See how Americans’ use of Facebook has evolved over the past 20 years. (Pew Research Center, February 2, 2024)
  • Check how long it might take to read a particular book. (How Long to Read, accessed February 2, 2024)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

New & Noteworthy Books and Reports: February 2024

In honor of Black History Month, we are highlighting books by or about Black members of the Texas Legislature from our collection. For previous New & Noteworthy lists celebrating Black History Month, click on the following links: 2020, 2019, and 2017.

Below are the titles from our February 2024 New & Noteworthy list.

Check out of New & Noteworthy titles is available to the Texas legislative community. To arrange access to any of these items, you can submit an online request through the New & Noteworthy page on our website or contact the library at 512-463-1252.

 

1. I'll Learn to Love Again
By Christian Manuel
Traces a fictional multicultural, multigenerational love story whose characters navigate through the challenges of cultural norms and are eventually empowered to learn the true meaning of love, loss, grief, and family ties. Written by Representative Christian Manuel, who was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in November 2022, named Freshman of the Year by the Texas Legislative Black Caucus in 2023, and served as former Representative Joseph Deshotel’s Chief of Staff for a decade.
Xlibris, 2020, 199 pages
813 M294 2020

 

 

2. A Historic Bombshell All Wrapped Into One, "The Cinderella Kid," My Life and Times: A History of Blacks in Fort Worth
By Reby Cary
Details former Representative Reby Cary's rise to the Texas House of Representatives as a prominent Black community member from Fort Worth, Texas. Written by Cary, he discusses his work in the Legislature from 1979-1985, his various successful and challenged legislation like the anti-discrimination bill HB 1052, 66th Legislature, R.S., and the struggles he faced fighting for equal rights in Texas. Includes brief accounts of important people, places, and organizations in Fort Worth, focusing on their contributions to improving the Black community.
Includes former Representatives Leonard Edward Briscoe, Glenn Lewis, Garfield Thompson, Marc Veasey, and Bobby Webber.
Library Use Only. Call us or place an online order through the New & Noteworthy website to make arrangements to view this book in the library.
R. Cary, 2008, 277 pages
976.4531 C333H 2008

 

 

3. Barbara Jordan: Speaking the Truth with Eloquent Thunder
By Max Sherman, editor
Compiles a collection of speeches by Barbara Jordan, a former State Senator, U.S. Representative, and distinguished professor at The University of Texas at Austin Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs. Focuses on speeches that articulate her values concerning democracy, civil liberties, government ethics, immigration reform, the military, and the U.S. Constitution. Includes a brief biography and context-setting introductions for each speech by editor and former State Senator Max Sherman, her colleague and friend.
University of Texas Press, 2007, 96 pages
923.2764 J761S

 

 

4. Barbara Jordan: American Hero
By Mary Beth Rogers
Explores the life of former U.S. Representative Barbara Jordan, from her Southern Baptist roots to her final months. Details Jordan’s journey to the Texas Senate and her rise to the U.S. House of Representatives as the first Black Texas congresswoman, including how her personal experiences influenced her political career. Follows Jordan’s life after political retirement, from her dedicated teaching to her battle with leukemia. Highlights the lasting impact that Jordan’s political advocacy had for both women and Black Americans.
Bantam Books, 1998, 414 pages
923.2764 J761R 1998

 

 

5. Time of Hope, Time of Despair: Black Texans During Reconstruction
By James Smallwood
Examines the first decade of Black freedom during Reconstruction in Texas through the use of primary materials including correspondence. Outlines efforts by Blacks to improve the status of their communities in economic, educational, social, and political spheres despite the significant barriers and racial opposition. Focuses on the effect racism and the rejection of Black equality had on the emancipated slaves’ endeavors. Highlights Black members of the Texas Legislature and their attempts to protect Black Texans from repressive laws and harm.
Includes former Senators Walter Moses Burton, Matthew Washington Gaines, and George Thompson Ruby.
Includes former Representatives Richard Allen, Giles Cotton, Jeremiah J. Hamilton, William H. Holland, Robert A. Kerr, Robert James Moore, Sheppard 'Shep' Mullens, Meshack R. 'Shack' Roberts, and Benjamin Franklin Williams.
National University Publications, 1981, 202 pages
325.26 SM19

 

 

6. Negro Legislators of Texas and Their Descendants
By John Mason Brewer
Chronicles the Black experience in Texas from the emancipation to Reconstruction and the enfranchisement and registration of Black voters. Presents a roster, biographical information, genealogy, and legislative activities of Black members from the 12th to 24th Texas Legislatures (1871-1895) and the Constitutional Conventions of 1868-1869 and 1875. Highlights a brief personal testimony given by former Representative Robert Lloyd Smith on what it was like to serve in the 24th Legislature as a Black man. This publication is a reprint of the original 1935 edition with the addition of a new foreword and an addenda that describes major events affecting Black Texans since 1935, notably the election of three Black members to the Texas Legislature in 1966.
Includes former Senators Walter Moses Burton, Matthew Washington Gaines, Barbara Jordan, and George Thompson Ruby.
Includes former Representatives David Abner, Sr., Richard Allen, Alexander 'Alex' Asberry, Thomas Beck, Edward 'Ed' Brown, Giles Cotton, J. Goldsteen Dupree, Robert J. Evans, Jacob Esan Freeman, Harriel G. 'Hal' Geiger, Curtis M. Graves, Bedford Green Guy, Nathan H. Haller, Jeremiah J. Hamilton, William H. Holland, Zan W. Holmes, Jr., Mitchell Kendall, Robert A. Kerr, Joseph E. Lockridge, Elias Mayes, John Mitchell, Henry Moore, Robert James Moore, Sheppard 'Shep' Mullens, Edward A. 'Ed' Patton, Henry Phelps, Meshack R. 'Shack' Roberts, Alonzo L. 'Andrew' Sledge, Robert Lloyd Smith, Henry S. Sneed, James H. Stewart, James H. Washington, Allen W. Wilder, Benjamin Franklin Williams, Richard Williams, and George W. Wyatt.
Jenkins Pub. Co., 1970, 154 pages
325.26 B758N 1970

 

 

 

Current Articles & Research Resources, February 1, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Explore state legislation related to children and social media. (National Conference of State Legislatures, updated January 30, 2024)
  • See how Regional Mitigation Program funds have been distributed to certain counties in Texas for natural disaster mitigation. (Texas General Land Office, January 30, 2024)
  • Read about the nation’s first Tower Simulation System at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. (Federal Aviation Administration, January 29, 2024)
  • Search for information regarding elevators in Texas. (Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, accessed January 31, 2024)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

Current Articles & Research Resources, January 25, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Explore by state the number of state lawmakers who are women. (ProPublica, January 11, 2024)
  • Consider whether remote work boosts growth in productivity. (Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, January 16, 2024)
  • Read about the surveillance economy. (Consumer Reports, January 2024)
  • Follow updates on respiratory illnesses in Texas. (Texas Department of State Health Services, accessed January 24, 2024)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

Current Articles & Research Resources, January 18, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Read about how tall front ends of vehicles may affect pedestrian safety. (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, November 14, 2023)
  • Explore an online field guide to police surveillance technologies. (Electronic Frontier Foundation, accessed January 17, 2024)
  • Consider the findings of a survey of registered voters related to crime and public safety. (Center for American Progress, December 2023)
  • Follow press releases from the Texas Military Department. (Texas Military Department, accessed January 17, 2024)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

New & Noteworthy Books and Reports: January 2024

The Library is continually adding new books to its collection. Below are the titles from our January 2024 New & Noteworthy list.

Check out and delivery of New & Noteworthy titles is available to legislative staff in Capitol and District offices. To arrange check out and delivery of any of these items, you can submit an online request through the New & Noteworthy page on our website or contact the library at 512-463-1252.

 

1. The Common Flaw: Needless Complexity in the Courts and 50 Ways to Reduce It
By Thomas G. Moukawsher
Posits that the U.S. legal system contains needless layers of complexity that slows down cases and causes Americans to lose faith in their courts. Proposes 50 changes to make trials more efficient, fair, and transparent; including remote courtrooms and jury trials, involving judges in jury selection, deciding cases more on the facts than the law, and prioritizing the parties involved over the lawyers. Argues for replacing the formalism of the legal system to a more humane and accessible one. Includes a legal cartoon in each chapter.
Brandeis University Press, 2023, 265 pages
347.731 M925C 2023

 

 

2. Getting Elected is the Easy Part: Working and Winning in the State Legislature
By Karen Keiser
Offers practical and political advice from Washington State Senator Karen Keiser to help first-time state lawmakers achieve policy goals. Combines documented research with Keiser’s personal experiences and observations from over 28 years in the state legislature on the “sausage making of lawmaking.”
Basalt Books, 2023, 155 pages
328.37 K27 2023

 

 

3. The School Voucher Illusion: Exposing the Pretense of Equity
By Kevin Welner, Gary Orfield, and Luis A. Huerta, editors
Compiles a collection of essays on the history and evolution of school voucher programs and policies in the U.S. Examines state legislation, key federal court decisions, and profiles implementations in Indiana, Ohio, and Washington, D.C. Discusses how political and legal forces have influenced the programs from the proposed intent, including shifting subsidies from disadvantaged to wealthy students and other negative consequences. Offers recommendations to recapture the original vision of providing equitable access to quality education and civil rights protections.
Teachers College Press, 2023, 316 pages
379.1 W457 2023

 

 

4. Tell-tale Texas: Investigations in Infamous History
By E.R. Bills
Recounts tragedies from across the state, presenting stories and evidence overlooked, concealed, or forgotten by the annals of Texas history. Exposes tales of violence against minority peoples, including the Slocum massacre, post-Civil War lynchings, and the mass murder of a Black family from Mart, Texas. Highlights the lives and actions of activists like Jovita Idar, Frank J. Robinson, and Ida B. Wells.
The History Press, 2023, 173 pages
976.4 B599 2023

 

 

5. Write and Communicate Like a Professional
By Kathryn Rosser Raign and Jake VanderVaate
Provides strategies for improving professional writing and communication skills. Examines how to develop instructional, informational, and persuasive professional documents; work in teams; and plan and execute projects. Focuses on a variety of written communication types, including: emails, memos, letters, texts, handbooks, reports, agendas, press releases, and newsletters.
University of North Texas Press, 2023, 191 pages
808.06 R149 2023

 

 

6. Public Debt and the Common Good: Philosophical and Institutional Implications of Fiscal Imbalance
By James Odom
Presents a scholarly discussion of factors contributing to the significant growth of public debt in the last 25 years by examining state debt and fiscal policy. Explores the moral dimension to public debt, including the claim that it has become unjust. Offers quantitative analysis that supports the theory that centralization and the lack of justice, or the common good, can help explain state indebtedness.
Routledge, 2019, 172 pages
336.3 OD25 2019

 

 

7. The Texas Chronicles: The History of Texas From Earliest Times to the Present Day
By Mark Skipworth
Highlights over 100 important moments throughout Texas’ history in chronological order. Briefly discusses the start of the state constitution, the legislature, and the creation of the State Capitol building. Mentions Former Representative José T. Canales and his pursuit to reform the Texas Rangers and their practices. Includes a six-foot long fold-out timeline with references to other legislators.
What on Earth Books, 2019, 23 pages
976.4 SK628 2019

 

 

 

Current Articles & Research Resources, January 11, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Review and compare tax systems in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. (Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, January 2024)
  • Consider the implications of absenteeism in primary and secondary schools. (Electronic Frontier Foundation, September 12, 2023)
  • Read about the presence of plastic chemicals — phthalates — in food. (Consumer Reports, January 4, 2024)
  • Search the PLUM Book, a database of federal civil service leadership and support positions in the legislative and executive branches of the U.S. federal government. (U.S. Office of Personnel Management, accessed January 10, 2024)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

Current Articles & Research Resources, January 4, 2024

In this weekly post, we feature helpful research tools and recent articles of interest to the legislative community.

  • Try the new sales tax rate locator. (Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts, accessed December 20, 2023)
  • Consider the new SEC (U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission) rule requiring publicly owned companies operating in the U.S. to disclose cybersecurity incidents such as data breaches within 96 hours. (TechCrunch, December 18, 2023)
  • Read about the history of blasphemy laws in the U.S. (In Custodia Legis, December 19, 2023)
  • Explore the state judicial retirement plans database. (National Center for State Courts, updated December 2023)

 

Librarians review and select articles from more than 1,000 print and online sources to compile a weekly annotated list of Current Articles of interest to the legislative community. View this week's Current Articles.

 

Members of the Texas legislative community may request articles by using our online form or by calling 512-463-1252.

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