Continuing our focus on the budget-writing process, which is where most of the early action is under way in the Texas Legislature, today we highlight two new subcommittees that will lead the drafting efforts in the state House and Senate on education funding.
In the House, the so-called Article III subcommittee of the Appropriations Committee was formed today with jurisdiction over pre-K/12 through higher education and the related retirement systems. The subcommittee has these seven members, who will hold a public hearing on education and TRS funding next Monday, February 20:
Trent Ashby, chair (R-Lufkin)
Helen Giddings (D-Dallas)
Mary Gonzalez (D-Clint)
Donna Howard (D-Austin)
Linda Koop (R-Dallas)
John Raney (R-Bryan/College Station)
Gary VanDeaver (R-New Boston)
Also newly formed today was the equivalent Article III work group of the Senate Finance Committee, with these five members:
Larry Taylor, chair (R-Friendswood)
Paul Bettencourt (R-Houston)
Kelly Hancock (R-North Richland Hills)
Kel Seliger (R-Amarillo)
Royce West (D-Dallas)
Texas AFT will be keeping a close watch on the work of these two education budget-writing teams, who will serve as gatekeepers for proposed changes in education funding. If your own senator or representative is one of these key budget players, we will let you know when you have an opportunity to weigh in and help influence their priorities.