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Medicaid cuts would hurt Texas

More than three-quarters of the patients at Christus Santa Rosa Children’s Hospital downtown rely on Medicaid to pay for their health care, which made it a fitting backdrop for a press conference called by U.S. Representative Charlie Gonzalez (D-San Antonio) to discuss the proposed Medicaid budget cuts facing Congress.

Texas already has the dubious distinction of leading the nation in the number of uninsured — 28 percent of families don’t have health insurance — and the working poor and low-income would bear the brunt of the proposed cut. Under the proposed House bill, Texas would lose $906 million in Medicaid, with San Antonio losing $70 million. “You need a healthy populace,” Gonzalez stressed, “because more cuts will not mean there are less sick people.”

Francesca Camillo

Ask him about Osama

Former Secretary of Homeland Security Tom Ridge will speak on “Homeland Security: More Than Just a Cabinet Agency,” Thursday, December 1, at 7:30 a.m. in the Tamayo Ballroom at the Doubletree Hotel, McCullough and Loop 410. The lecture is part of Trinity University’s Policy Maker Breakfast Series. Cost is $40. For reservations, call 999-7601.

Oil and water don’t mix

That was no turkey dinner: On Thanksgiving, a local citizen noticed that a harsh chemical odor hovered near the San Antonio River at the Southcross bridge and a rainbow pattern had formed on the water. The culprit? According to the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, someone apparently dumped 10 to 20 gallons of used motor oil off the bridge, contaminating part of the river below. According to the San Antonio Water System website, one quart of motor oil can contaminate up to 250,000 gallons of water.

A TCEQ crew cleaned up most of the spill; two days later, the remnants of the slick were contained near the shore.

If you need to dispose of used motor oil, all AutoZone stores accept it. For info about recycling hazardous waste, go to

Lisa Sorg

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