2:59 PM Feb 25, 2021 CST

‘It’s been a rough year for us’: Expert explains economic effects of winter storm, ongoing pandemic in Houston region

“It's been a rough year for us economically; it's been a rough year for us public health wise. It's just been a rough year for us psychologically—first the coronavirus and then the freeze," said Patrick Jankowski, senior vice president of research with the Greater Houston Partnership.


Fry's Electronics calls it quits after nearly 36 years in business

As many as 31 stores across nine states will be shuttered as Fry's Electronics shuts down due to market changes and the pandemic.


Greater Houston area could see economic relief from pandemic around mid-2021, economist says

Emerging technology and alternative-energy sectors could help ease the blow of the downturn in Houston's oil and gas industry caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.



With new partners, Greentown Labs Houston set to open on Earth Day

Greentown Labs and its partners have raised $8.3 million but still need $1.7 million more.


U.S. Rep. Dan Crenshaw files oil and gas legislation in response to Biden executive order

If passed into law, the congressman's bill would override the president's order, according to a statement.


Pandemic-induced retail conveniences are here to stay, official says

According to Jazz Hamilton, first vice president with the Retail Brokerage Services group for CBRE, between January and November of 2020, consumers spent almost $550 billion online—a 33% increase from 2019.


Higher minimum wage coming to Houston airport workers

Employees at George Bush Intercontinental, William P. Hobby and Ellington airports will see a boosted minimum wage following an executive order signed by Mayor Sylvester Turner on Oct. 9.



Imelda hovers over first public hearing on proposed Harris County tax rate increase

With Harris County commissioners poised to adopt the first tax rate increase the county has seen since 1996, court Democrats and Republicans remained at odds following the first public hearing on the proposed increase Sept. 20. In the wake of Tropical Depression Imelda, disaster recovery was also at the top of mind for people on both sides of the debate.


Developer: Revitalized Houston Farmers Market will retain its character

Just over two years after purchasing the historic Houston Farmers Market, developers broke ground on a project Aug. 6 that they said will turn the fresh produce marketplace into an even bigger food destination without leaving its 76-year heritage behind.


Texas shoppers to save millions during tax-free weekend, Aug. 9-11

Editor's note: This post has been updated to clarify the 8.25% sales tax charge refers to the state and local charges.


Coming soon: 20+ restaurants and businesses to keep an eye on in 2019 in the Heights, River Oaks, Montrose

With 2019 halfway over, Houston has plenty of new businesses and restaurants coming to the Heights, River Oaks and Montrose. It might be impossible to list them all, but here are over 20 on our radar.



Airbnb: Agreement with Houston could raise $3 million a year for tourism, arts funds

Under an agreement with the city of Houston effective July 1, Airbnb is now automatically collecting the city's hotel occupancy tax, yielding a potential annual windfall of $3 million for tourism and arts initiatives, the company said.


Two Allen Parkway buildings could receive state funds for renovations

Two buildings located near Buffalo Bayou and owned by American General Life Insurance are now eligible to receive state funding for widespread renovations.


Texas shoppers pay no sales tax on emergency preparedness supplies this weekend, April 27-29

As hurricane season approaches in Texas, state Comptroller Glenn Hegar announced a statewide sales tax holiday this weekend, April 27-29, on emergency preparedness supplies.


Greater Houston Partnership: energy industry stabilizing but will not drive job growth in Houston

Following two years of recovery in 2017 and 2018, job growth in Houston is expected to level off and remain stable for 2019, said Patrick Jankowski, senior vice president of research at the Greater Houston Partnership. Houston will see an increase of 71,000 jobs this year compared to 73,000 last year, Jankowski said.