Today, members of the Texas congressional delegation, led by Congressman Michael C. Burgess, M.D. (TX-26), introduced legislation to repeal language in last summer's education funding bill that solely discriminates against the state of Texas, and could prevent the Lone Star State from receiving $830 million in federal education funding.
The legislation calls to strike the paragraph, written by Congressman Lloyd Doggett (TX-25), which calls for the state of Texas during the fiscal years 2011 to 2013 to maintain state support for elementary and secondary education at a level is that equal to or greater than the percentage provided for fiscal year 2011. This provision places requirements on Texas beyond what all other states are required to make in order to qualify for funding.
"Preventing our children and teachers from receiving their share of available funding is unreasonable," said Dr. Burgess. "The Doggett language must be repealed so that Texans are provided the same opportunities as residents in every other state. Requiring only Texas to meet additional requirements puts Texas schoolchildren at a disadvantage."
Texas Governor Rick Perry also wants to see the Doggett language removed.
"It's time for Congress to eliminate the anti-Texas Doggett Amendment, for the Obama Administration to finally approve the application Texas submitted last September, and for our hardworking teachers and schools to get the $830 million they deserve," said Governor Rick Perry. "Texas is the only state unfairly singled out for punishment under this bill. I applaud Rep. Burgess and Sen. Hutchison for introducing legislation repealing the anti-Texas amendment and will continue working with congressional Republicans and Democrats to get the $830 million in Education Jobs funds flowing to Texas schools."
Along with the Texas congressional delegation, Dr. Burgess is working with Texas Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn to ensure Texas school children receive this important funding. Senator Hutchison and Senator Cornyn recently introduced Senate Bill 151, Fairness for Texas Schools Act of 2011.
"We should all be concerned about how Texas's students and teachers will be affected by legislative language that singled out our state and disadvantaged our schools' access more than $800 million in education funds. With local school budgets strained to the limit, it is time for Congress to pass Cong. Burgess' bill in the House and my bill in the Senate putting Texas schools on a level playing field and allow our state to be eligible to apply for this education funding just as every other state can," said Senator Hutchison.
Texas Republicans joining Dr. Burgess in introducing the legislation are:
· Congressman Joe Barton (TX-06)
· Congressman Kevin Brady (TX-08)
· Congressman Quico Canseco (TX-23)
· Congressman John Carter (TX-31)
· Congressman Michael Conaway (TX-11)
· Congressman John Culberson (TX-07)
· Congressman Blake Farenthold (TX-27)
· Congressman Bill Flores (TX-17)
· Congressman Louie Gohmert (TX-01)
· Congresswoman Kay Granger (TX-12)
· Congressman Ralph Hall (TX-04)
· Congressman Jeb Hensarling (TX-05)
· Congressman Sam Johnson (TX-03)
· Congressman Kenny Marchant (TX-24)
· Congressman Michael McCaul (TX-10)
· Congressman Randy Neugebauer (TX-19)
· Congressman Pete Olson (TX-22)
· Congressman Ron Paul (TX-14)
· Congressman Ted Poe (TX-02)
· Congressman Pete Sessions (TX-32)
· Congressman Lamar Smith (TX-21)
· Congressman Mac Thornberry (TX-13)