Daily Progress, Jacksonville, TX

May 6, 2013

Rep. Clardy’s Capitol update

Rep. Travis Clardy
Jacksonville Daily Progress

AUSTIN — Last session, we saw the adverse impact a $27 billion shortfall brought on by a floundering economy, has on our ability to provide services. Due to the fact that nearly 38 percent of our undedicated general revenue goes directly toward the financing of education, the Legislature had to make the tough cuts to weather the storm. There are those who would claim the cuts were made out of spite for our children, that we shouldn’t pay for water or transportation because of last year’s education cuts, and those who would rather play politics than help make the right decisions. Realistically, however, when you’re in a deep hole, you must have a balanced approached so you don’t cut into the bone of any essential services. Texas made it through the tough times and now the skies are clearer, but moving forward, isn’t it wiser to take the right steps to grow our economy and ensure prosperity for years to come?  If we don’t have a flourishing economy at the end of the day, the state revenue collected from taxes will not be enough to pay for both education and the other crucial state services. All politics aside, you’ve got to have a horse to pull the cart.

We want to take bold steps to overcome the biggest challenges our state faces. To that end, the best way to ensure that our state can fulfill our basic needs and provide for future economic prosperity is by making a one-time investment in the essential water and transportation infrastructure projects - not by raising taxes and not by taking out more debt through bonds. We must use the money that we have in general revenue and the economic stabilization fund to meet our emergency needs. By using money we already have, we will save enough money to maintain our favorable bond ratings which, in turn, keep interest rates down and help us service our debt with greater ease. This is the best plan to pay for water and new roads and my fellow legislators and I will work to make it reality.

Next week, I will carry Senate Bill 778 by Senator Corona through the House chamber along its path to the Governor’s desk. S.B. 778 grants any bank that serves as a trustee (an entity responsible for the management of a beneficiary’s money and property) the ability to purchase insurance from a bank’s affiliate so that competitive pricing can lower the costs of insuring the multitude of trusts being managed throughout the state. The finest point of this bill is that the trustee can only purchase insurance from an affiliate when it is solely in the best interest of the trusts’ beneficiaries to do so. Ultimately, this bill is about providing the best deal and greater security for the people whose money is managed by banks.  

Visit my official member page at: http://www.house.state.-tx.us/members/member-page/?district=11 to view all the legislation we're working on and please reach out to my Capitol or District office to share your thoughts on the issues.