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Push for HB275

HB275 is the bill by Rep. Jim Pitts to spend money from the Rainy Day Fund to close the budget shortfall from the 2010-11 biennium. Here’s an update about it from a group called Spring Branch Speaks, sent to me via email:

UPDATE ON HB  275:

We were informed late last night that the hearing for HB 275 (use of the “Rainy Day Fund”) has been postponed.  We are concerned about this action.

If you have not made advocacy phone calls or emails to the Representatives of the House Appropriations Committee, it’s even more important to do so now.

We must keep up the pressure!  Make your voice heard by contacting the members of the House Appropriations Committee at the email addresses/phone numbers below and ask them to:

  1. Send HB 275 to the House of Representatives for consideration.
  2. Spend the “Rainy Day Fund” to protect this year’s budget and the next two year’s budget for funding public education.
  3. Don’t pass up this investment in the future of Texas and our community schools.

Thank you to those of you who already emailed or called.  We appreciate the quick work – the path of legislative bills is unpredictable; information regarding the process is often at the last minute as political changes occur.

FYI – RALLY ON SATURDAY

If you are in town for Spring Break, please consider attending the “Save Texas Schools” rally in Austin this Saturday, March 12th (see details below).  Free transportation is available if you RSVP by Friday!

The House Appropriations Committee:
Rep. Jim Pitts Jim.Pitts@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0516
Rep. Sylvester Turner Sylvester.Turner@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0554
Rep. Jimmie Don Aycock Jimmie.Aycock@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0684
Rep. Angie Chen Button Angie.Button@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0486
Rep. Warren Chisum Warren.Chisum@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0736
Rep. Myra Crownover Myra.Crownover@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0582
Rep. Drew Darby Drew.Darby@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0331
Rep. Dawnna Dukes Dawnna.Dukes@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0506
Rep. Craig Eiland Craig.Eiland@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0502
Rep. Helen Giddings Helen.Giddings@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0953
Rep. Lance Gooden Lance.Gooden@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0458
Rep. Scott Hochberg Scott.Hochberg@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0492
Rep. Eric Johnson Eric.Johnson@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0586
Rep. Susan King Susan.King@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0718
Rep. Dee Margo Dee.Margo@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0728
Rep. Armando Martinez Mando.Martinez@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0530
Rep. Ruth Jones McClendon Ruth.McClendon@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0708
Rep. Doug Miller Doug.Miller@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0325
Rep. Geanie Morrison Geanie.Morrison@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0456
Rep. John Otto John.Otto@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0570
Rep. Diane Patrick Diane.Patrick@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0624
Rep. Debbie Riddle Debbie.Riddle@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0572
Rep. Charles Schwertner Charles.Schwertner@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0309
Rep. Mark Shelton Mark.Shelton@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0608
Rep. Raul Torres Raul.Torres@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0484
Rep. Mike Villarreal Michael.Villarreal@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0532
Rep. John Zerwas John.Zerwas@house.state.tx.us 512-463-0657
For additional information please click on these links:
Save Texas Schools

**Parents for Public Schools of Houston, a non-profit, is providing 2 buses for interested persons to attend the rally. Buses Leave at 7:00 am from the Hattie Mae White HISD Administration Bldg. located at 4400 West 18th St. (across from Northwest Mall)  Buses expected to return by 5:30 pm.

To ride these buses you must RSVP by Friday, March 11, to Nancy Lomax by email at rlomax@comcast.net, or call 713-668-7075.  This is a family friendly event.  Children over the age of 4 may accompany their parent on the bus.  Please bring: a pillow, a sack lunch, drinks, and snacks because there will be no opportunity to buy food in Austin.  (These items may be left on the bus during the Rally.)  And don’t forget your umbrella or signs!  It’s raining on the future of Texas.

Statewide March & Rally Austin, TX
Saturday, March 12
March: 11:00 a.m. starting at 12th & Trinity

Rally: Noon-2:00 p.m. at State Capitol Bldg, 11th & Congress

Texas students are tough, but they’ve never faced a crisis like this. In communities across the state, the same grim headlines repeat: campus closures, teacher layoffs, deep cuts to core academic programs.

There is help for Texas students – IF our leaders have the courage to use it – and you can make a difference.

On Saturday, March 12th, join thousands of Texans for a march and rally at the State Capitol to send a clear message to our leaders:

*  Make education a top priority!

*  Use the $9.3 billion Texas “Rainy Day” Fund to support schools.

*  Sign the paperwork for $830 Million in federal aid for teachers.

*  Fix school funding laws to be fair to all districts and to our growing student population.

Plan now to be part of this historic event! Talk to your family, friends, students, co-workers, teachers, neighbors, business leaders, members of your faith community and more. Ask them to join you in Austin on March 12th to show our leaders what matters to Texas.

Together, we can make a difference. Please stand up for Texas schools on March 12th at the State Capitol.  Our future depends on it!

————————————————————————————-

For more information on how you can get involved in spreading the word please visit the Save TX Schools website for more information.

Thank you,

Spring Branch Speaks

Parent-organized community outreach with SBISD in mind.

Also sent to me in email, the following call for those in Rep. Dwayne Bohac’s district (HD138) to call his office and let him know that you support using the Rainy Day Fund to help mitigate the cuts to public education:

If you live in zip code 77018- Garden Oaks, Oak Forest, Shepherd Park Plaza, Candlelight Plaza, and the surrounding neighborhoods you are most likely in district 138. It also includes people living in 77043, 77080, 77092 and some in 77040 and 77041. His district includes parts in Houston ISD, Cyfair ISD and Spring Branch ISD,
it stretches all the way to HWY 6. Please call Dwayne Bohac today. 512-463-0727 dwayne.bohac@house.state.tx.us

He is not getting enough calls from constituents. Please call or email him and call the office to tell them your name and that you just emailed. Governor Perry just addressed the Republican caucus and pleaded with them not to use the rainy day fund. Bohac needs to hear from his constituents, the real people who made him an elected official. You can also go to the state capitol Monday-Thursday, with or without an appointment. Arrive early. Call ahead if you want to make sure you see him personally. Be prepared to speak to a staffer if he is not available. Staffers are important and will relay your message.

He needs to know what you want him to do:

In 2006, a structural deficit was created when they lowered property taxes and restructured the business enterprise taxes. In theory, the business taxes were suppose to generate enough revenue to make up for the loss revenue in lowered property taxes. This has never happened and a 10 billion structural deficit occurs. It will continue to occur until they fix it. You can find more about this at

http://sunshinereview.org/index.php/Texas_state_budget
For the short term they need to utilize the rainy day fund, a fund that replenishes and whose purpose is to help in lean years. They can also accept $830 million in federal money to help supplement public education funding.

For the the long term they need to close exemptions and loopholes for large businesses, restructure taxes to generate the revenue they lost when they cut property taxes. They can also find additional sources of new revenue, such as taxing voluntary goods/ services ( cigarettes, sodas, etc.).

Please let your friends, neighbors and community members know the importance of this issue and urge them to contact Bohac soon. Please forward this email. Below is a District map. It is a fairly large district. Please share this info with anyone in these areas. If you want to help efforts in your area please contact mlwomack@gmail.com or llomax-bream@comcast.net or martha@meyers-hamilton.com

Thank you again for helping support our public schools.

http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/saveourschools_investpublic_edutx_bohac138/
For constituents in House District 138. This petition list will be given to Representative Dwayne Bohac in person. If you live in zip code 77018- Garden Oaks, Oak Forest, Shepherd Park Plaza, Candlelight Plaza, and the surrounding neighborhoods you are most likely in district 138. It also includes people living in 77043, 77080, 77092 and some in 77040 and 77041. His district includes parts in Houston ISD, Cyfair ISD and Spring Branch ISD. If you know people in any of these zip codes please send them the link to the district 138 petition. (Please also sign the general list for all HISD delegates)

The rally in Austin is Saturday. The more noise we make, not just then but all through the session, the better.

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