The 86th Legislative Session is done. There were great challenges. We had some wins, losses, and missed opportunities. Overall, I believe my record will reflect that I stood firm in the core values that are shared by so many in East Texas.
Rice University just ranked me the 6th most conservative member of the Texas House out of 150. That score echoes the conservative nature of East Texas.
In the weeks ahead I will be providing greater detail about what happened (good and bad) in Austin via email, social media, and in meetings around Smith County. There is a lot to cover. But, for now, let me list just a few positive things that are noteworthy:
- Property tax reform, and some actual relief will be delivered.
- Funding for public schools has been improved and reformed.
- Teachers, both current and retired, will see a positive financial boost.
- Involuntary annexation has been abolished for the entire state.
- Religious liberty was protected by the passage of a very strong bill (aka the Chick-fil-A bill).
- Planned Parenthood will no longer be able to sign leases for basically free rent from cities.
- Most state agencies will be required to go through an in-depth financial review on a rotating basis (I sponsored this bill through the Texas House).
A few local matters I worked on passed, and are awaiting action from Governor Abbott:
- Cutting some really bad red tape for Breckenridge Village and other facilities that serve adults with intellectual disabilities.
- Creating the Rose City Municipal Utility District to hopefully someday provide competition and relief to people living under the monopoly known as Liberty Utilities sewer company.
- Helping UT Tyler close a potential costly legal liability loophole, and resolving an issue related to student recreational fees.
- Ensuring teachers at programs like Rose City Summer Camps at Tyler ISD can receive funding through the new public education funding formula.
Thank you to everyone who came to visit your Capitol office in Austin, or reached out to let your voice be heard. Your input matters. I am so glad to be at home in Tyler—and really glad to be back in real Texas!
Honored to serve,
State Representative – House District 6