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News-Telegram: State News

Plans progress for seawater desalination plant in Texas

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) — Texas and a private company have agreed to explore building a seawater desalination plant in the San Patricio-Nueces  County region.

The Corpus Christi Caller-Times reported Tuesday that the memo of understanding involves the Texas General Land Office and Seven Seas Water Corporation. The privately financed plant, using water from the Gulf of Mexico, is projected to cost up to $150 million.

State Rep. Todd Hunter of Corpus Christi says the plant would be a huge boost for the area.

Company CEO Doug Brown says the plant would sell water exclusively to industrial customers, with projected output of up to 20 million gallons of freshwater daily. Tampa, Florida-based Seven Seas Water would be operator and majority owner.

The General Land Office plans to seek public and business input.

 

Man in Brazos County sheriff's custody dies at hospital

BRYAN, Texas (AP) — Authorities say a homeless man in the custody of the Brazos  County Sheriff's Office has died after getting sick and being taken to a hospital.

Officials say 44-year-old Melvin Earl Jones died Tuesday at St. Joseph Hospital in Bryan.

Sheriff Chris Kirk says the death apparently was due to natural causes. Authorities ordered an autopsy. Texas Rangers will help investigate.

Jones was arrested Aug. 2 after allegedly assaulting an emergency room worker at the hospital. He was charged with assault on a public servant.

The sheriff says Jones asked to see a doctor Tuesday morning. Jones was being examined by a jail physician when the inmate vomited and fell from a chair. Jones was transported to the hospital, where he died.

Foyt to miss final 2 races after surgery for staph infection

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HOUSTON (AP) — A.J. Foyt will miss the final two races of the IndyCar season following surgery to treat a staph infection in his right knee.

The four-time Indianapolis 500 winner had surgery Aug. 10 on his artificial knee. He had a similar procedure in 2012 on his left knee.

This latest surgery required the removal of the prosthesis so an antibiotic-infused cement spacer could be inserted to clear the infection. It is expected to remain in place for six weeks, then Foyt will require another procedure to have a new artificial knee implanted.

"Well, this is one of the worst things I've gone through in my life," Foyt said. "Knowing I have five or six weeks dealing with this and then having to get operated on again to take the spacer out and put in a new knee ... this staph infection, it's the second time I've had it and it's really beat me down.

"I don't know if I'll ever be like I used to be but I'm sure hoping, so I'm fighting awful hard."

The 80-year-old had a triple bypass last November that caused him to miss the first five races of the year.

Foyt Racing fields IndyCar entries for Takuma Sato and Jack Hawksworth.

Travis County voters to consider bond issue, new courthouse

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AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Voters in the Austin area will consider whether to spend $287 million to build a 14-story civil courthouse.

Travis County commissioners voted Tuesday to place the courthouse bond issue on the Nov. 3 ballot.

The Austin American-Statesman  reports the proposed 52,000-square-foot courthouse would be built on county property currently used as a parking lot.

Backers say the new structure would free up space at the Heman Sweatt Travis County Courthouse, which county officials say is dilapidated and overcrowded. A political action committee, funded primarily by the legal community and organized by the Austin Bar Association, backs the bond proposal.

Body of missing Lufkin boy, 3, found in pond near home

LUFKIN, Texas (AP) — Searchers have found the body of a missing 3-year-old East Texas boy in a pond near his family's home.

Authorities say the body of Mason Cuttler was located before dawn Tuesday east of his residence near Lufkin.

Angelina County Sheriff Greg Sanches says a deputy walking the property and searching for the boy spotted the body near the surface of the pond.

Mason was last seen Monday afternoon playing outside his home. Authorities believe the child wandered away while his parents were cleaning the residence.

The father, Kevin Cuttler, says his son was allergic to some cleaning products so the boy had been playing outside.

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Dallas/Ft. Worth News

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