Midterms In West Texas: What Ector County ISD’s Tax Election Means For You

We’re days away from the start of early voting in the November elections. Leading up to that, Marfa Public Radio is bringing you coverage of what you can expect to see on the November ballot.

In Alpine, Odessa and Midland, voters will see their local school district will have issues up for a vote, from bond elections to school board elections.

Marfa Public Radio’s Sally  Beauvais talks about one of those elections.

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The bulk of a $22.5 million bond Alpine voters will decide on in November would go towards a new academic building for the high school. (Elizabeth Trovall / Marfa Public Radio)

Midterms In West Texas: What You Need To Know About Alpine ISD’s November Bond Election

Midterm elections are just around the corner. And over the coming weeks, Marfa Public Radio will be bringing you coverage of local races across West Texas — from the Big Bend Region up to the Permian Basin.

On the Ballot this election for voters within the Alpine Independent School District: a roughly $20 million bond. Marfa Public Radio’s Sally Beauvais explains what’s at stake.

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Laila Lalami ; courtesy April Rocha

Thursday Interview: Laila Lalami

On this edition of West Texas Talk, Rachel Monroe sits down with current Lannan fellow, Laila Lalami.

Lalami, born in Rabat and educated in Morocco, Great Britain, and the United States, is the author of the novels Hope and Other Dangerous PursuitsSecret Son, as well as a regular columnist and contributor for The Nation and Los Angeles Times.

Lalami’s most recent work, The Moor’s Account, won the American Book Award, the Arab-American Book Award, the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award, was on the Man Booker Prize longlist, and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.




West Texas Talk is each Thursday at 6:00 PM and each Friday at 9:00 PM.

Democratic challenger Beto O'Rourke, left, and incumbent Sen. Ted Cruz participated in a debate Tuesday in San Antonio. MARJORIE KAMYS COTERA/BOB DAEMMRICH

WATCH: Cruz, O’Rourke Debate In San Antonio

Rep. Beto O’Rourke, who trails Sen. Ted Cruz in the polls of a senate race that has garnered national attention, turned markedly more aggressive, while the two clashed on topics ranging from the judicial confirmation of Bret Kavanaugh and the makeup of the U.S. Supreme Court to trade wars and border security Tuesday night in San Antonio.

WATCH | Rebroadcast of Cruz-O’Rourke debate in San Antonio

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U.S. Rep. Beto O'Rourke, D-El Paso (left), and U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas. Marjorie Kamys Cotera: O'Rourke/Robin Jerstad: Cruz

With Polls Showing Cruz Ahead, Second Debate Could Be O’Rourke’s Last Chance To Change Minds

The Texas Senate race is one of the closest-watched midterm contests in the country.

The Democratic challenger, Beto O’ Rourke, has been skateboarding through Facebook Lives, dueting with Willie Nelson and collecting a record $38 million in the last quarter — more than three times the total of incumbent Republican Ted Cruz.

Still, polls show Cruz leading by as many as nine points.

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A Health and Human Services-operated tent shelter housing migrant children in Tornillo, TX will remain open until at least the end of the year. (Courtesy HHS)

Tornillo’s “Tent City” Now Holds 1,500 Migrant Children

By Sally Beauvais

The children don’t go anywhere on the grounds unaccompanied. Boys sleep in groups of 20, in rows of insulated tents. In one, shelter Alpha 11, the tightly-made bunk beds are adorned with Halloween decorations. Nearby are shower trailers with hot running water, emergency medical services, and an on-site meteorologist.

Across the country, the government is running out of beds to shelter a record number of detained migrant children currently in its custody  over 13,000 as of October 2. That’s part of the reason kids are still living in tents in Tornillo, the small border town hosting what was supposed to be a temporary installation.

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A natural gas flare in the Delaware Basin near Orla, Texas. (Travis Bubenik / Houston Public Media)

Drillers Burn Off Record Amounts Of Gas As Focus Remains On Oil

In West Texas, natural gas flares dot the horizon, a sign of how oil drilling is growing faster than pipelines and other infrastructure.

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Artist Boyd Elder, celebrating a pledge drive for Marfa Public Radio in April 2013 (Tom Michael / Marfa Public Radio).

Valentine’s Boyd Elder Has Died At Age 74

Legendary West Texas artist Boyd Elder has died.

His daughter, Shaula Elder, confirmed the 74-year-old’s death on Facebook Saturday night.

“The rumors are swirling about our father passing into the cosmos,” the post reads. “It breaks my heart to say it is true. He is stardust.”

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(Carlos Morales / Marfa Public Radio)

How Did West Texas Ranches Get SO BIG?

In Texas, 95 percent of the land is privately owned, much of it by ranchers. And if you drive out West, the swaths of private land holdings get even bigger. But how did these parcels of land get to be … Continue reading

Ted Cruz Leads Beto O’Rourke In New Poll By Nine Points

The Quinnipiac University poll also took a snapshot of Texas’ gubernatorial race, showing Republican Gov. Greg Abbott with a prohibitive lead over his Democratic rival, former Dallas County Sheriff Lupe Valdez, 58 percent to 38 percent.

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Thu. Oct 11 Interview: Mai Der Vang Describes Being A “Literary Orphan”

Ryan Paradiso speaks to Lannan resident Mai Der Vang about her collection of poetry, Afterland. The work explores the Hmong (an ethnic group in Southeast Asia) exodus from Laos after The Secret War.

In this conversation, Paradiso and Vang discuss the writer’s decision to break the rules of grammar, the influence a grassroots writing circle had on Vang’s writing, and what it means to create a body of work from the perspective of a Hmong Person.

“[F]or me, it means so much to be able to have written this book, and  be able to offer my own kind of truth about the experience of the war, and the experience of growing up Hmong, and the experience of not having a written language or a definitive literary history,” Vang says. 

West Texas Talk is broadcast each Thursday at 6:00 PM and each Friday at 9:00 PM.
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Paul Ryan Says A Debate Over The Border Wall Is Coming – After The Midterms

Were it not for the Kavanaugh confirmation spectacle, there may have been a very different fight on Capitol Hill over the last few weeks – and Texas would have been at the center of it. We’re talking about President Donald Trump’s promise to build a southern border wall.

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Conservationists Are Working With Ranchers To Restore Grasslands and Bird Population

The disappearance of grasslands from the Chihuahuan Desert is exacerbating the problem of dwindling grassland birds. Conservationists with The Bird Conservancy of the Rockies have been working to understand why this is happening, and how to restore grasslands.

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The Deadline To Register To Vote In Texas Is Oct. 9. Here’s Everything You Need To Know.

Oct. 9 is the last day to register to vote in the November elections in Texas. It’s also the last day to update your address if you’ve moved since the last time you voted.

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