Houston Matters Houston Matters is a radio program airing weekdays at 9 am on Houston Public Media News 88.7 FM in Houston. During each hour, we'll investigate the issues and ideas, people and places that make Houston...well...Houston! We'll talk about current events, politics, education, health care, the environment, business, transportation, arts and culture, literature, sports and leisure.
Houston Matters

Houston Matters

From Houston Public Media News 88.7

Houston Matters is a radio program airing weekdays at 9 am on Houston Public Media News 88.7 FM in Houston. During each hour, we'll investigate the issues and ideas, people and places that make Houston...well...Houston! We'll talk about current events, politics, education, health care, the environment, business, transportation, arts and culture, literature, sports and leisure.

Most Recent Episodes

City suing streaming services, and HISD's code of conduct (Aug. 8, 2022)

On Monday's show: Houston and two dozen other Texas cities are suing Netflix, Hulu, and Disney. We learn why those cities think those streaming services owe them money. Also this hour: Local organizers want HISD to reform the district's code of conduct, saying it relies too much on law enforcement — and too often for Black students. Then, we learn why a state program giving out life-saving drugs to treat opioid overdoses has been out of money for months and what it means for emergency responders. And Justin Verlander has returned from injury to pitch very well this season. We talk about why some athletes are continuing to excel into their late 30s, even early 40s, and if that's something we didn't used to see in baseball with sportswriter and podcaster Jeff Balke.

City suing streaming services, and HISD's code of conduct (Aug. 8, 2022)

What it would take to bring Brittney Griner home, and Indian composer and violinist L. Sub...

On Friday's show: A Russian court has found WNBA star Brittney Griner guilty on drug smuggling and possession charges. The judge sentenced Griner to nine years in prison. What are the chances of the United States government arranging for her release much sooner in some sort of prisoner exchange or other diplomatic effort? An international relations expert weighs in. Also this hour: We discuss the implications for us here in Houston and across Texas of a recent Supreme Court ruling signaling dwindling power for the EPA. Then, we break down The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of the week, including a man using 3D-printed guns to make a point at the city's recent gun buyback event, and an award-winning songwriter finding herself in over her head after a comment about Beyoncé on Twitter. And renowned Indian composer and violinist Dr. L. Subramaniam is in Houston this week preparing for a concert Saturday with the Houston Symphony in the world premiere of his Mahatma Symphony, written to celebrate 75 years of Indian independence.

What it would take to bring Brittney Griner home, and Indian composer and violinist L. Sub...

Harris County takes issue with latest election audit (Aug. 4, 2022)

On Thursday's show: We discuss the implications of Harris County's potential lawsuit against the state over the latest audit of its elections. Also this hour: As more businesses seek to reimburse employees for travel undertaken to get access to an abortion in another state, we explore the potential for additional state laws designed to stop them. Then, we consider why the concept of air conditioning in Texas prisons remains controversial with Keri Blakinger of The Marshall Project. And we take a tour of downtown to learn the stories behind the city's skyline.

Bond proposal headed to voters, and previewing Houston Restaurant Weeks (Aug. 3, 2022)

On Wednesday's show: Harris County Commissioners Court approved a bond proposal that will go before voters in November for around $1 billion in infrastructure spending. Plus: Houston-area school districts will no longer provide free lunches to all students due to the expiration of a federal waiver. Also this hour: We discuss the latest developments in politics in our weekly roundup. Then, local food writers discuss what's on tap for Houston Restaurant Weeks in this month's installment of The Full Menu. And, long before the deadly Astroworld festival concert, New York had its own disaster of a concert event: Woodstock '99. A new documentary about it debuts today on Netflix. Local film critic Joe Leydon was there and reflects on what he saw.

Bond proposal headed to voters, and previewing Houston Restaurant Weeks (Aug. 3, 2022)

A billion dollar county bond measure, and rebuilding after Harvey (Aug. 2, 2022)

On Tuesday's show: Harris County could decide today whether to put a roughly $1 billion bond measure for infrastructure projects on the ballot in November. Also this hour: Houston City Council Member Letitia Plummer answers your questions about issues facing the city. Then, the city of Houston is often celebrated for the strides it's made in reducing homelessness. But how effective have these efforts truly been? And we debut the first episode of Below the Waterlines, a new four-part podcast series from News 88.7 reflecting on lessons from Hurricane Harvey, five years later. In the first installment, reporter Matt Harab finds out what's keeping one Houston senior from getting back into her home.

A billion dollar county bond measure, and rebuilding after Harvey (Aug. 2, 2022)

Ike Dike bills moving closer to reality, and Houston pet peeves (Aug. 1, 2022)

On Monday's show: The U.S. Senate has approved a bill that contains the long-sought-after Ike Dike/coastal barrier project. The House has passed its own bill as well. We find out what happens next. Also this hour: We offer you your monthly chance to vent your pet peeves. And we analyze any moves the Astros make as the trade deadline approaches and discuss the high costs of attending their games (it's not just about the tickets) with sportswriter and podcaster Jeff Balke.

Ike Dike bills moving closer to reality, and Houston pet peeves (Aug. 1, 2022)

Plans to raise part of I-10, and Houston's stress level (July 29, 2022)

On Friday's show: TxDOT has announced plans to raise a portion of I-10 near White Oak Bayou, but local residents are skeptical of the project. Will TxDOT move forward with the project despite their concerns? We discuss. MORE: TxDOT is seeking public input on the proposed project. Click here to read more about the proposal and for instructions on how to comment. Also this hour: A recent study found Houstonians reported the highest stress levels of any community surveyed in the last year. We find out why. Then, we discuss three stories that are bad news for ice cream lovers in The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of the week. And Megan Cavanagh, the actress who played Marla Hooch in the movie A League of Their Own — who now lives in Houston — reflects on the role and the film, which celebrated its 30th anniversary this month.

Other legal questions spawned by the Dobbs ruling (July 28, 2022)

On Thursday's show: Harris County, the City of Houston, and local environmental attorney Jim Blackburn are suing Union Pacific, citing toxic pollution and soil and groundwater contamination in Kashmere Gardens and the Fifth Ward. We discuss the lawsuit with Harris County Attorney Christian Menefee. Also this hour: In light of the Dobbs decision affecting abortion rights in Texas and across the nation, what other legal questions have arisen its wake? We talk it over with a legal expert. Then this month's installment of The Bigger Picture explores why we're drawn to sprawling, connected cinematic universes. What is it about tying stories together that speaks to us? And longtime NFL coach Wade Phillips has been named the head coach for Houston's new XFL football team, which begins play next year. We revisit a 2017 conversation with him about his memoir, Son of Bum, which chronicles what it was like growing up the son of iconic Houston football coach Bum Phillips.

Drought conditions, the week in politics, and the life of George H.W. Bush (July 27, 2022)

On Wednesday's show: We discuss the status of drought conditions across the state and the forecast for the rest of the summer. Also this hour: We discuss the latest developments in politics in our weekly roundup. And we revisit our conversation with Jon Meacham about his biography of former Pres. George H.W. Bush, Destiny and Power.

Drought conditions, the week in politics, and the life of George H.W. Bush (July 27, 2022)

Rep. Sylvia Garcia on paid rest breaks for construction workers (July 26, 2022)

On Tuesday's show: We talk with Houston area Congresswoman Sylvia Garcia about her bill requiring employers to offer paid rest breaks for construction workers. And we welcome your questions and comments about other issues facing the area. Also this hour: We preview Frontline: Facing Eviction, which takes a closer look at evictions in Texas. The episode airs tonight at 9 on Houston Public Media, TV 8. And we reflect on the life and career of Jack Brooks, the late Texas lawmaker who some called "the meanest man in Congress."

Rep. Sylvia Garcia on paid rest breaks for construction workers (July 26, 2022)