Austin Bureau Report From 1972

Here's an April 1, 1972, Austin bureau report from bureau manager Roland Lindsey to Southwest Division editor Don Reed:

AUSTIN BUREAU REPORT for period March 3-March 31, 1972.

Politics and a short legislative session dominated the Austin report this past month, but we worked in some enterprise work that has already begun to show results, and will show up even better in the next couple of weeks.

At the beginning of the month, we got good house with supreme court arguments on the filing fee case, but were outwritten on some insurance board hearings on windstorm coverage along the Texas coast. This is a problem area in which rox has consistently beaten us--simply because, I think, they've kept the same man on the insurance stories. We now have AA back on this beat. She's interested in the subject, and has kept up with it, and I think you'll see our insurance stories perking up a bit.

Ann did an outstanding job on murder charges filed in Honojosa girl stabbing, on 3/8. Her night lead had facts locals didn't have, and tt pox wouldn't admit. On 3/9, a rox man and I caught the gov in hall and he said he mite try to delay spl session til June. I pegged a lead on tt, but rox led with angle tt "spl session might not be as soon as expected." I thought our straight on approach was better, but logs about even.

We came out ahead on coverage of Demo and GOP cmte mtngs 3/13 by CH and RL. On 3/15 DA and LU had the bulk of the big Mutascher trial verdict, but we chipped in with perspots on the victims, and a mood bit on reaction in the capitol complex.

When Will Smith died and got a state funeral 3/20, CH wrote a night lead that sounded like he'd known the guy personally all his life. Unfortunately, we needed that good nighter to make up for a morning stri in which we bobbled the name and called the deceased Will Davis.

On 3/21, we were ahead on Mutscher saying he would "step aside," and not preside over the next session and even managed to get some rxn from Farenthold in the first nt ld.

On 3/25, we really had a good day. AA's stri on Smith calling session was well written and played. CH had an exclusive that everybody used on dist atty saying more indictments of officials to come; and also go good house on my Sun ayemer saying Heatly and lobby were big issues in speaker's race.

When the xgr convened, I think our staff handled it well. Our main leads fared very good except for one cycle, and our sidebars were more plentiful and better used than rox. When Rayford Price was elected speaker, rox's man in the house commented late in the afternoon "I hoped nobody starts asking for perspots on him before Sunday." Ours had already moved as a sidebar to the main lead.

On the eve of the session, we got tip fm local clients KVUE and KTBC tt Heatly quitting as appropriations chairman, and got full quotes from interview KTBC taped with Heatly. Rox had those next day.

Rox beat us on a missile being stolen fm a plane at Bergstrom AFB, and on a court stri regarding political candidates. But all in all it was a good month. We've been conducting surveys of the demo exec cmte for an upcoming series on the democrats preference for pres., gov and u.s. Senate, and have asked gubernatorial candidates for financial statements which will be the basis for another exclusive within the next week or so.

AA also has in mill a story on students getting involved in San Marcos politics, and we have a college student sentiment survey on elections also coming up.

Regards, Roland Lindsey UPI/Austin