Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Texas Lege Update

In Texas lege sausage-making news ... Choose Life, SBOE Attack Bill, Eminent Domain, and protecting taxpayers ...

SBOE Attack Bill passes House! This is the bill to subject the elected State Board of Education to sunset provisions. It's a Trojan Horse to reduce citizen input on state election issues and give more power to the educrats. "6:45, vote is flipped on verification, by vote of 74-68, HB 710 passes."

Choose Life for license plates passes House. The Texas House today gave preliminary approval to a Choose Life license plate as an amendment to HB 3097.

The Institute for Justice Texas Chapter issued a warning today to property owners across Texas: despite politicians’ claims to the contrary, Senate Bill 18, which passed through the Texas Senate yesterday, will not end eminent domain abuse in Texas. “As it stands, SB 18 represents a bait and switch on Texas property owners,” said Matt Miller, executive director of the Institute for Justice Texas Chapter (IJ-TX). “This bill helps protect rural property owners but leaves urban and suburban property owners exposed to private development schemes.” The definition of “public use”—which was the entire focus of the Kelo litigation—was stripped from the bill in committee. All that’s left is a collection of procedural safeguards. Although helpful, those provisions do not address the central problem of Kelo.

HB 1575 provides a trigger for automatic rollback elections when property tax revenue of a taxing entity increases more than 8 percent over the previous year. This is a common sense measure that will protect all property owners from excessive taxation while simultaneously putting a check on excessive expansion of government spending. ... It seems that HB 1575 is, for all practical purposes, dead in committee.

I score the good guys 1 for 4 on these bills. Not doing so great, mainly due to non-conservative Texas House.

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