In this Sept.30, 2018, file photo, New York Jets tight end Chris Herndon warms up before an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars in Jacksonville, Fla. Herndon has been suspended without pay by the NFL for the first four regular-season games for violating the league's substance abuse policy. Herndon pleaded guilty in January to driving while intoxicated in New Jersey in June 2018. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack) NEW YORK — Jets second-year tight end Chris Herndon was suspended without pay by the NFL on Friday for the first four regular-season games for violating the league’s substance abuse policy. Herndon pleaded guilty in January to driving while intoxicated in New Jersey in June 2018. The incident occurred about a month after he was selected by the Jets in the fourth round of the NFL draft out of Miami. Herndon is eligible to participate in offseason and preseason practices and games. He can return to the Jets’ active roster on Oct. 7. Herndon could … [Read more...] about Jets TE Chris Herndon suspended 4 games by NFL for DWI arrest
The president’s annual economic report card reveals high scores. President Donald Trump has completed his second year in office, and 2018 generated rapid growth in gross domestic product, historically low unemployment rates and rising wages. He has delivered on those campaign promises. When the president took the oath of office, I promised to track several key performance indicators, including GDP growth, stock market indexes, unemployment rates, workforce participation and wage growth. I am also watching manufacturing jobs and unemployment in the heartland, where Trump promised workers special attention. On HoustonChronicle.com: Economy runs strong in Trump’s first year Love him or hate him, only one of these metrics has fallen in the past two years. And while economists will eternally debate how much credit Trump deserves, he certainly did not tank the economy as many analysts, including myself, warned. Faster economic growth was always central to Trump’s 2016 … [Read more...] about Trump continues to get high scores in annual economic report card
One of the most significant problems faced by workers is when a company misclassifies them as independent contractors when they should be employees. The Texas Workforce Commission wants to make it easier to deny workers their legal rights. By a 2-to-1 vote, the Texas Workforce Commission approved a rule that would classify almost anyone hired from a website as an independent contractor. The public has until Jan. 21 to comment, but if enacted, the rule would guarantee that companies like Uber, Handy.com and others will not have to follow the same labor regulations as brick-and-mortar companies. Lobbyists have pushed for similar regulations across the country, though typically they’ve asked lawmakers to pass bills rather than rely on obscure commissions to promulgate rules. But after lawmakers in four states rejected these so-called marketplace contractor bills last year, the lobby decided on a backdoor approach in Texas. The rule’s purpose is simple: help companies maximize … [Read more...] about Workforce commissioners stack the deck against workers
More than 620,000 people will rejoin the workforce this year, some with training and experience, and almost all looking for a career. But most hiring managers will reject them out of hand. “When they let me out of prison, I held my head up high, determined I would rise above the shame,” Merle Haggard sang in 1967 of his experience as a convicted felon. “I paid the debt I owed them, but they’re still not satisfied, now I’m a branded man out in the cold.” President Donald Trump and Congress have realized the error in locking people up too long for too little. Trump signed the First Step Act last month, the most significant criminal justice overhaul since Haggard recorded “Branded Man.” The act gives federal inmates reduced time for completing job-training programs that reduce recidivism. It also evens out sentencing guidelines that punished crack cocaine offenses more severely than powdered cocaine crimes, a blatantly racist policy. On … [Read more...] about Former felons deserve a chance to prove themselves
Texas politicians promise the moon, the sun and the stars: Teachers will receive raises, schools will get more money and property taxes will be reformed. No one, though, is proposing a plan that will lower your property taxes. The best anyone can promise is that property taxes will not rise as fast as they would without action. Remember that when Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, House Speaker Dennis Bonnen and other politicians talk about overhauling public school finance and property taxes, they are only offering tweaks to the existing system. They are not recommending the kind of bold change that would reduce the average person’s property taxes or assess taxes in fairer ways. On HoustonChronicle.com: Texas taxes may be low, but they're poorly imposed Taxes and schools are two sides of the same problem. Texas’ school finance system is the product of an archaic state constitution, numerous lawsuits and politicians incapable of resisting the allure of tax cuts for the … [Read more...] about Texas politicians promise property tax reform, just don’t expect lower taxes.