The Brookfield subdivision in Pflugerville, north of Austin, lies two miles from Interstate 35 in a bland patch of suburban sprawl, the kind that sprouts like clover on the edge of cities. Cookie-cutter homes line winding streets with tea-themed names like Earl Grey Lane and Darjeeling Drive. Two playgrounds, erected in the middle of circular intersections, fill with children when school lets out. In the summer a fenced-in swimming pool—for Brookfield residents only—provides a break from the punishing Texas heat.
Let’s Do Launch
South Texas is one step closer to becoming the home of the world’s first “commercial Cape Canaveral” this week after legislators pushed forward a bill that helps clear the way for construction of a spaceport on the Gulf Coast.
J. Kyle Bass has a knack for forecasting economic trouble. Back in 2006 the Dallas-based investor observed that there was a seemingly unstoppable market for sub-prime mortgages. But research convinced him the market was wildly overvalued, that it was a quasi-pyramid scheme built on low interest rates, inflated home prices and bundles of shaky loans made to people who couldn’t really afford the payments. Wouldn’t many of these people eventually default on their debt and cause the entire market to crash?
Some Like it Bot
Director Michael Bay will shoot portions of the fourth “Transformers” movie in a handful of Central Texas towns including Elgin, Pflugerville, Taylor and Lockhart, the Austin American-Statesman reported this week.
Whole Lotto Confusion
I Put a Spill on You
As ExxonMobil continues its efforts to contain the damage caused by the March 29 rupture of its pipeline in Mayflower, Arkansas, the company is now facing a lawsuit from the town’s residents. The homeowners filed the class-action suit late last week, seeking $5 million in damages, CNN reports.
You want to know what I do every day? I go rig-hopping. Wherever they’re drilling, that’s where I head. I rent forklifts and man lifts to both the drilling and the completion sides of each operation. It’s like any other sales position. Sometimes you can’t sell something the first time you meet somebody; you have to build a relationship. So I visit the rig sites a lot. This is a highly competitive field.
Texas cable TV customers may get a break on their monthly bills thanks to a proposed measure working its way through the state legislature. An attempt to level the playing field between cable companies and rival satellite providers, HB 1900 would exempt subscribers from paying the 6.25 percent state sales tax on the first $75 of their bills, the Austin Business Journal reports.
Lege Your Bets
Mad About Brew
Texas craft brewers are butting heads over proposed legislation that would allow them to increase their annual production while also limiting their ability to make large distribution deals. Senate Bill 639 is part of a series of bills aimed at forging a compromise between microbrewers and distributors, Austinist reports.