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Flooding puts plants at Bayou Bend in survival mode

Spring-blooming plants that are flowering this fall in the Houston area aren’t happy. Nor are they confused by the warm weather into thinking spring has sprung. They’re fighting for their lives after Hurricane Harvey’s flooding, says Bart Brechter, the curator of gardens at Bayou Bend Home & Gardens. Buffalo Bayou rose so high out of its banks during the storm, …

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Residents worry trees could fall victim to bayou flood control efforts

A Harris County study to reduce flooding along Buffalo Bayou between Texas 6 and Beltway 8 is drawing fire from local groups who say flood control improvements could destroy forests there. Commissioners Court on Tuesday voted unanimously to let the Harris County Flood Control District sketch out what exactly a study of that segment of the bayou would examine. Susan …

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Houston undergoing a green-space renaissance

When Beth White looks at a map of Houston’s expansive stretch of bayous, trails and park, she sees an elaborate jigsaw puzzle of sorts. Some of the pieces fit together but many do not. It will be up to White and her colleagues at the Houston Parks Board to ultimately make those pieces come together as Bayou Greenways 2020, a …

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Emmett calls for more funding from state, less interference

Harris County Judge Ed Emmett on Tuesday used his annual State of the County speech to blast state leaders who he said attack local governments and seek to cut needed taxes but offer no real solutions to the myriad problems Texas’ large urban counties face. In addition to helping with the county’s flood control efforts, Emmett called on the state …

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More verbal sparring between Senate leaders and Harris County Judge

AUSTIN — They never mentioned each other’s name, but it was clear State Sen. Paul Bettencourt and Harris County Judge Ed Emmett were ready to resume jabbing at one another over tax policies and hurricane recovery at a conference in Austin on Friday. “We have a problem that local property taxation is just rising too quickly,” Bettencourt said as he …

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State asks for $90 million to keep CHIP alive through February

AUSTIN – Nearly 400,000 Texas children could lose healthcare coverage in late January unless Congress renews funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, a decades-old federal program that provides health care to millions of children across the country. Congress allowed the program to expire on Sept. 30, leaving Texas and other states with dwindling coffers. CHIP typically receives bipartisan support, …

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Was rare brain surgery the right choice? A mother has her answer

It’s a decision no parent would want to make: Either go against your neurologist and put your child through a controversial brain surgery, or do nothing to stop his unending headaches. In April, Jessica Large and her husband Jeff made the call for their 11-year-old son, Brayden: The pineal cyst in his brain was going to be removed in Houston, …

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Why I spent a year reporting on severe brain injuries

In December 2016, three months after starting a job writing about health care for the Houston Chronicle, I attended a news conference at TIRR Memorial Hermann, where rehab-hospital staffers would be giving an update on a deputy who’d been shot months earlier during an ambush on police in Baton Rouge, La. At first, I thought I’d misheard when Dr. Sunil …

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