texas

A man was arrested Wednesday afternoon near the Naval Observatory and charged with several counts related to weapons and ammunition, according the Washington, D.C., Metropolitan Police Department. The Naval Observatory is the vice presidential residence, though Vice President Harris and her family do not live at the estate yet.

Paul Murray, 31, of San Antonio was first detained by the U.S. Secret Service based on an intelligence bulletin originating from Texas. He was later formally arrested by Washington police. A rifle and ammunition were recovered from his vehicle.

Nearly 10 million Americans are behind on their rent payments, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. And Stephanie Graves is seeing that play out first hand. She's a landlord in the Houston area and says tenants in most of her buildings are struggling.

"I have a small property in town," she says. "It's about 22 units and eight residents have not been able to pay over 6 months on and off." She says she might get a $100 partial payment on a $1,000 rent.

The largest power cooperative in Texas filed for bankruptcy protection Monday, citing a massive bill from the state's electricity grid operator following last month's winter storm that left millions of residents without power for days.

Brazos Electric Power Cooperative filed for Chapter 11 in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Texas, according to court documents reviewed by NPR.

For Texas, it's looking like a daunting power bill.

The Lone Star State racked up tens of billions of dollars in electricity expenses, as a free-wheeling market design sent prices skyrocketing. It tallied tens of billions more in damage and economic losses from blackouts.

The state could spend years paying down those costs — costs that many experts say were avoidable had Texas taken pre-emptive steps to leave its independent, isolated power system better prepared for this month's winter storms.

As Texas thaws from the unexpected deep freeze that knocked out power to millions and killed dozens, its residents are continuing to grapple with a secondary peril: lack of safe drinking water.

Texans across the state have reported water outages and burst pipes after water lines froze solid. Other residents once again have water coming through their faucets, but at low pressure.

A fundraising effort spearheaded by New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to help storm-battered Texans has raised more than $4 million in just a few days.

On Saturday, Ocasio-Cortez was on the ground in Texas to celebrate the success of the fundraising effort, which will go to local organizations providing Texans food assistance, homelessness relief and elder care. She was joined by Democratic Texas Reps. Sylvia Garcia and Sheila Jackson Lee, all of whom helped fill boxes at the Houston Food Bank.

Many Texans who faced days of near-freezing temperatures without electricity to keep warm were breathing a sigh of relief Friday as the lights and heat came back on. But millions are still without water, and the state's governor is warning that the crisis isn't over.

The extreme weather conditions in Texas, where a winter storm has caused widespread power outages, should serve as a reminder that climate change is real and the United States not fully prepared to deal with its impact, said White House homeland security adviser Liz Sherwood-Randall on Thursday.

Texas officials are cracking down on businesses they say have hiked the prices of food, water, and hotel rooms while the state continues to deal with shortages caused by unprecedented winter weather.

Harris County Attorney Christian Menefee, the chief civil attorney for Texas' largest county, and Linda Hidalgo, the Harris County Judge, said Houston area residents have complained of hotel rooms and bottled water being sold at exorbitant prices.

Nearly a half-million Texans are without electricity for a third-straight day as the effects from historic winter storms that have blasted the state and many other parts of the country this week are still being felt.

And more severe weather is ahead for many of the same areas already hit hardest, with 100 million people in the path of the latest storm forecast to bring freezing rain and snow from the Plains to the East Coast on Thursday.

Pages