Take a look at the news in and around Odessa on Monday, April 16. Find complete local news coverage in the Odessa American every day, online at oaoa.com and our daily E-Edition at myoaoa.com.
1. District Judge W. Stacy Trotter has slated a 9 a.m. Oct. 22 trial for the high-profile lawsuit in the Jan. 14, 2015, collision of a state prison bus and a freight train in which two Texas Department of Criminal Justice guards and eight inmates died 15 miles west of Odessa at the oilfield ghost town of Penwell.
2. Texas Tech University officials released plans last week to about 1,400 people for an in-district charter school at Ector Middle School meant to lift it out of improvement required status under state accountability standards.
3. The 20th Mudbug fundraiser is set for Tuesday this year on the grounds at Ector County Coliseum, where Meals on Wheels of Odessa will look to raise a sizable chunk of its income for the year.
4. After teaching thousands of students during his 30-year career with Ector County Independent School District, Odessa High School Director of Bands Billy Harden is stepping down from the podium.
5. Permian Basin Opera is reaching for those high notes. On a bit of a risk, and with big dreams in mind, the organization is putting together the area’s first locally produced full-stage professional opera in at least 40 years — offering its production of “Tosca” on April 20 at the Wagner Noel Performing Arts Center.