The Texas House has passed the deadline for hearing House bills on the floor. My colleagues and I are now debating Senate bills at a rapid pace, and deliberating over the amendments the Senate has attached to the House bills we have sent them. We are entering into the last week of the 83rd Legislative Session, and there are more than a couple long nights ahead of the Legislature.
This last week provided the opportunity for Senate committees to hear a few of my own important bills. House Bill 1129 would implement a pilot program to be conducted by the Secretary of State’s Office, to improve the process by which our overseas, active-duty, military personnel cast their votes. House Bill 2733 contains a number of substantive, clean-up provisions to the Texas Juvenile Justice Department enabling legislation. Both of these bills have now passed through the House and their respective Senate committees, and are one step closer to the Governor’s desk.
I am also sponsoring a few significant bills regarding Texas’s Criminal Justice System, authored by a few of my friends in the Senate. I had the chance to present these bills to the House Committees on Corrections and Criminal Jurisprudence this week. Senator West’s S.B. 1173, Senator Rodriguez’s S.B. 1769, and Senator Huffman’s S.B. 1772 all provide considerable, common sense measures for our state jail, and juvenile justice processes.
This week, Woodville’s Kree Harrison made it to the finale of American Idol. While she did not win the title of American Idol, she certainly won the hearts of many Americans. I am very proud of her hard work and persistence which helped her arrive where she is today. It is extremely gratifying to be able to represent the community that stood behind her as she went through this experience. I am confident that this is just the beginning of Kree’s singing career, and that we will see her on television and hear her on our radio for many years to come. I want to extend my sincerest congratulations to her, and I know her talent and perseverance will get her exactly where she wishes to be.
As you have heard, SpinDrift Media & Entertainment and The Dam Good Times are on a fundraising mission to save the Battleship Texas. March 14th was the Battleship Texas’ 99th anniversary. She is in need of repairs and renovations. The Newton and Jasper County Republican Clubs are sponsoring a presentation on June 21, at the Howard Civic Center in Newton: “USS Battleship Texas History.” Mark your calendars to hear Bruce Bramlett, President of the Battleship Texas Foundation, tell the story of this historic ship. Admission is free and refreshments will be served. For additional information contact Lois Lamberty at 381-8231 or Pam Wright at 397-9029.
My offices in Austin and Woodville are always ready to hear the concerns of the residents of District 19. Feedback from our constituents is vital to ensuring that your voice is heard as the Legislature conducts its business in Austin. Please contact my office in Woodville at (409) 283-3700, or my office in Austin at (512) 463-0490.