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Joaquin Castro

Pre-filed amendments to budget bills set the stage for culture wars on spending

Mar 30, 2011 By R.G. Ratcliffe

The next several days of Texas House budget debate may be as much about the culture wars as state spending. Pre-filed amendments to the three budget-related bills before the House contain limitations on private school vouchers, funding for Planned Parenthood and directives to higher education to fund centers for traditional family values if they provide funding for support centers for gay students. Debate is set to begin Thursday on House Bill 4 to erase a deficit in the current budget and on House Bill 275 to take $3.2 billion out of the state's so-called rainy day fund. Debate is set for Friday and into the weekend on House Bill 1, a bare bones spending plan for the next two years. Some of the pre-filed amendments may never be debated because there is a possibility that they are not procedurally proper for an appropriations bill. But they do show state spending is about more than just spending – or in this case cutting.

Alamo Heights

Apr 30, 2010 By Jan Jarboe Russell

One year into his first term as mayor of San Antonio, Julián Castro is emerging as perhaps the most prominent young Hispanic politician in Texas. Get ready to get used to him.

Dueling Education Debates

Apr 29, 2009 By Patricia Kilday Hart

First, here’s an update from Abby Rappaport on the House: Dawnna Dukes just lost the most exciting battle thus far on her amendment to eliminate school closures. Dukes spoke at length about the troubles at Webb Elementary School and argued that some school districts don’t mind school closure.  “That just…

Let the speculation begin

Jan 19, 2009 By Paul Burka

Committee appointments will be the first real test of the Straus speakership. How many of the 149 members can he satisfy? Here are some of the problems he will face: —Straus has said that there will be no retaliation against Craddick loyalists. Good luck in keeping that promise. The ABCs…