My main reason for seeking election was to try to improve education. Much of my time in the Legislature continues to be devoted to education issues. I have served on the Higher Education Committee (80th Session) and the Public Education Committee (81st and 82ndSessions). As a member of the Appropriations Committee I have served two sessions on the Article III subcommittee. That subcommittee's task is to hear testimony and allocate resources to both Higher and Public Education.I am one of only two members of the Legislature with current experience on both the Public Education policy committee and the Article III Appropriations subcommittee. The other member, Rep. Hochberg (D-Houston), has announced he will not seek reelection. My colleagues in the Legislature will now look to me to find better solutions for school finance. That task must be Priority One for the upcoming session and will likely require one or more special sessions. During my three sessions, I have been author (including joint or coauthor) on almost twenty education related bills that have actually become law. That list includes:
*Bringing Texas A&M University-Central Texas to Killeen
*Securing funding for the first building at TAMU-CT (and tentatively a second building)
*As one of the authors of HB4 and HB275 during the 82nd Session I helped make $5.8 billion available to Public Education. Without those bills the cuts to Public Education would have more than doubled.
*Tuition exemption for children of disabled or K.I.A. veterans
*Promoted career and technical instruction and coordination between high schools and colleges
*Allowed teachers to record grievance hearings to assure fairness
*Developed a path to create more "Tier I" research universities
*Enhanced use of digital instructional material saving millions of dollars
*Extended free public pre-kindergarten eligibility to military dependent children
*And numerous others
When you vote to reelect me you can be assured that I will continue to put education as my top priority, and you can also be assured that my fellow legislators trust my judgment and experience.