Gov. Perry Signs HB 4114 Placing Tejano Monument on Historic Capitol South Grounds
*Note - Gov. Perry frequently departs from prepared remarks.
Good morning, buenos dias, and thank you all for being here today.
It is a pleasure to stand with such a distinguished group of Texas leaders to celebrate the essential role Tejanos have played throughout our state's history.
This day has been a long time coming. It has been nearly 500 years since Alonso Alvarez de Pineda first explored the Texas coastline, just over 300 years since the first Spanish mission was established near El Paso, and eight years since our Legislature approved this project.
Since Representative [Kino] Flores and Senator [Mario] Gallegos carried the bill to passage in 2001, the Tejano Monument Foundation has been working hard to raise funds and clear the way for this richly-deserved recognition.
It is fitting that we should devote space on the historic south grounds of our state capitol to commemorate the contribution of our Latino brothers and sisters throughout the ages.
I'm talking about contributors ranging from José Antonio Navarro, a signer of the Texas Declaration of Independence, to Hope Andrade, our first Latina Secretary of State.
Although I credit our state's relative economic strength to the conservative fiscal policies we have defended over the years, I believe that the main source of our strength is the unmatched work ethic of our people.
Be they Anglo, Tejano or any of the other diverse cultures that call Texas home, our state is strong, dynamic and continually moving forward because of our people.
Standing here today, surrounded by supporters of this bill, leaders in our state and proud members of the Latino community, I want to congratulate you for your persistence.
I also want to commend Armando Hinojosa for your remarkable effort on this impressive work of art.
You have not only captured the essence of our state's Hispanic history, but also the independent spirit of our entire state.
In my mind, they are the same thing.
This beautiful collection of sculptures will make the historic grounds of our capitol even more beautiful, and tell an important part of our state's history for years to come.
Dr. [Cayetano] Barrera, I want to thank you for starting this process and guiding it to this next step. You should be proud.
I look forward to joining you at the dedication.