Houston Matters

Houston Matters

Houston Matters is a radio program airing weekdays at 9 am on Houston Public Media News 88.7 FM in Houston. During each hour, we’ll investigate the issues and ideas, people and places that make Houston…well…Houston! We’ll talk about current events, politics, education, health care, the environment, business, transportation, arts and culture, literature, sports and leisure. But we also hope that what we do each day on Houston Matters serves as the beginning of a conversation — one we hope you’ll continue here, at home, at work, with family, with friends and neighbors. We hope to introduce Houstonians to one another, to celebrate our diversity, and to engage one another through stories and conversations that demonstrate depth and context. Just the sort of thing you count on from public media.

Episodes

August 8, 2022 48 min

On Monday's show: Houston and two dozen other Texas cities are suing Netflix, Hulu, and Disney. We learn why those cities think those streaming services owe them money.

Also this hour: Local organizers want HISD to reform the district’s code of conduct, saying it relies too much on law enforcement -- and too often for Black students.

Then, we learn why a state program giving out life-saving drugs to treat opioid overdoses has...

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On Friday's show: A Russian court has found WNBA star Brittney Griner guilty on drug smuggling and possession charges. The judge sentenced Griner to nine years in prison. What are the chances of the United States government arranging for her release much sooner in some sort of prisoner exchange or other diplomatic effort? An international relations expert weighs in.

Also this hour: We discuss the implications for us here in ...

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On Thursday's show: We discuss the implications of Harris County's potential lawsuit against the state over the latest audit of its elections.

Also this hour: As more businesses seek to reimburse employees for travel undertaken to get access to an abortion in another state, we explore the potential for additional state laws designed to stop them.

Then, we consider why the concept of air conditioning in Texas prisons rema...

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On Wednesday's show: Harris County Commissioners Court approved a bond proposal that will go before voters in November for around $1 billion in infrastructure spending.

Plus: Houston-area school districts will no longer provide free lunches to all students due to the expiration of a federal waiver.

Also this hour: We discuss the latest developments in politics in our weekly roundup.

Then, local food writers discuss what's...

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On Tuesday's show: Harris County could decide today whether to put a roughly $1 billion bond measure for infrastructure projects on the ballot in November.

Also this hour: Houston City Council Member Letitia Plummer answers your questions about issues facing the city.

Then, the city of Houston is often celebrated for the strides it’s made in reducing homelessness. But how effective have these efforts truly been?

And we debut...

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On Monday's show: The U.S. Senate has approved a bill that contains the long-sought-after Ike Dike/coastal barrier project. The House has passed its own bill as well. We find out what happens next.

Also this hour: We offer you your monthly chance to vent your pet peeves.

And we analyze any moves the Astros make as the trade deadline approaches and discuss the high costs of attending their games (it’s not just about the ticket...

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On Friday's show: TxDOT has announced plans to raise a portion of I-10 near White Oak Bayou, but local residents are skeptical of the project. Will TxDOT move forward with the project despite their concerns? We discuss.

MORE: TxDOT is seeking public input on the proposed project. Click here to read more about the proposal and for instructions on how to comment.

Also this hour: A recent study found Houstonians reported the hi...

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On Thursday's show: Harris County, the City of Houston, and local environmental attorney Jim Blackburn are suing Union Pacific, citing toxic pollution and soil and groundwater contamination in Kashmere Gardens and the Fifth Ward. We discuss the lawsuit with Harris County Attorney Christian Menefee.

Also this hour: In light of the Dobbs decision affecting abortion rights in Texas and across the nation, what other legal questi...

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On Wednesday's show: We discuss the status of drought conditions across the state and the forecast for the rest of the summer.

Also this hour: We discuss the latest developments in politics in our weekly roundup.

And we revisit our conversation with Jon Meacham about his biography of former Pres. George H.W. Bush, Destiny and Power.

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On Tuesday's show: We talk with Houston area Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia about her bill requiring employers to offer paid rest breaks for construction workers. And we welcome your questions and comments about other issues facing the area.

Also this hour: We preview Frontline: Facing Eviction, which takes a closer look at evictions in Texas. The episode airs tonight at 9 on Houston Public Media, TV 8.

And we reflect on the li...

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On Monday's show: The U.S. Department of Justice has launched an investigation into Houston's response to illegal dumping and whether the city is guilty of racial discrimination.

Also this hour: How do we define where “Houston” ends and “outside of Houston” begins? The loop? The beltway? The Grand Parkway? The city limits? The metro area? We talk it over and get your input.

Then, Texas may have found a compromise on pray...

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On Friday's show: We talk with a local health expert about the spread of monkeypox and what it means for Houston.

Also this hour: William Menjivar concludes a two-part exploration of the future of live music in the Houston area. Hear Part One

Then, we break down The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of the week.

And we hear an excerpt from this week's edition of I See U with Eddie Robinson, which tells the story of how a group ...

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On Thursday's show: After another day of record-breaking demand on the Texas electric grid, we ask the Houston Chronicle’s Chris Tomlinson to weigh in on efforts in the political ranks (from both sides) to blame different sources of energy for not supplying enough juice.

Also this hour: We discuss the concept of sportswashing -- how companies, governments, or other entities use sports or sponsorship of a sport to improve a tr...

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On Wednesday's show: The EPA is formally objecting to the issuance of operating permits for a Pasadena facility run by Intercontinental Terminal Company, the company responsible for a fire at a separate Deer Park petrochemical facility back in 2019. Will those permits still be issued?

And we learn about efforts to unionize some area Starbucks locations.

Also this hour: We discuss the latest developments in politics in our wee...

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Last week, HR 8297 passed the U.S. House of Representatives. The Ensuring Women’s Right to Reproductive Freedom Act would prohibit anyone from interfering with a person traveling across state lines to obtain abortion services. 

The bill is sponsored by Houston Congresswoman Lizzie Fletcher, who joins us to discuss that and other legislation introduced in response to the recent overturn of Roe v. Wade. And she answers listener que...

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On Monday's show: We learn about a gun buyback program that will allow residents of Houston and Harris County to turn in their firearms for gift cards on July 30.

Also this hour: We learn about plans to build a huge movie studio in Central Texas. One of the co-founders of Hill Country Studios is from the Houston area. We discuss what this studio might mean for the future of the Texas film industry.

Plus: Over the weekend, the...

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On Friday's show: Houston officials say dioxin has been found in a Kashmere Gardens soil sample. News 88.7's Lucio Vasquez has the latest.

Also this hour: William Menjivar begins a two-part exploration into the future of live music in the Houston area with an examination of the challenges local venues face putting on concerts.

Then: A new poll indicates the race for Harris County Judge is tight. Andrew Schneider catches u...

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On Thursday's show: Prices for consumer goods have risen 9 percent over the last year -- the highest jump in 40 years. Is a recession on the horizon? And will prices continue to rise?

Also this hour: What a chemical leak last year can teach us about what some Houston communities are up against in protecting their health and safety in the shadows of our city’s enormous petrochemical industry as revealed in a recent investigati...

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On Wednesday's show: The recent intense heat has put the spotlight back on the Texas energy grid, with the state's power grid operator asking residents to conserve energy. We discuss whether the power grid can handle the load and whether we should be concerned about another massive power failure.

Also this hour: We discuss the latest developments in politics in our weekly roundup.

Then, it’s the dual-edged sword of commun...

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On Monday's show: The COVID positivity rate in Harris County is close to 30 percent. Should we be concerned about this sharp rise in cases?

Also this hour: As NASA is releasing the first images from its new James Webb Space Telescope, we discuss what they show us and learn how the telescope works.

Then, veterinarian Dr. Lori Teller answers your pet care questions.

And Jeff Balke updates us on Houston sports.

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