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Capitol Update February 19, 2015

This week the Legislature heard from the other branches of government.  In joint sessions of the House and Senate, we heard the State of the State from Governor Greg Abbott and the State of the Judiciary from Chief Justice Nathan Hecht.


Gov. Abbott laid out his priorities for the legislative session, which included expansion of pre-k programs, tax cuts, increasing transportation funding, border security, and funding for higher education. 


I agree with Gov. Abbott that we need to secure the border, especially in light of the failure of the federal government to do so.  We need to make sure that we are listening to our commanders on the ground about the most appropriate way to tackle this crisis.  I look forward to making sure that we have a sensible, appropriate plan for achieving permanent solutions to our border crisis.


I am also looking forward to working on the issue of transportation funding.  The Transportation Committee met for the first time this morning to hear from the Department of Transportation, the Department of Motor Vehicles and the Department of Public Safety on many of the issues we will be addressing this session.  I am confident that by eliminating diversions from the gas tax fund and dedicating other revenues to transportation, we will be able to solve the funding problem without raising your taxes.


This week, I also continued to file and co-author legislation ranging from allowing probation officers to obtain concealed handgun licenses to alleviating expenses currently paid by DPS and the Department of Motor Vehicles.  These measures will allow for reduced expenditures by the government and more efficient use of your tax dollars.


As always, if you have any ideas for legislation or any comments or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact me at 512-463-0556 or


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