Well, if it's not one thing, it's another!
A new bill has recently emerged in the Texas legislature. HB 281 is a bill that prohibits any political subdivision (including school districts) from providing money or other compensation to any organization that attempts to influence legislation. Texas PTA's understanding is that the primary intent of the bill was large municipalities; however, school districts are clearly implicated and legal opinion has concluded that this would extend to in-kind services such as meeting space, use of school property, electrical or other services.
HB 281 was proposed primarily to curb publicly-funded lobbying, but because Texas PTA and Travis PTA advocate on behalf of students and families, an unintended consequence means that local parent organizations like Travis PTA will not be able to use the school for meetings or events. This puts fun community-building endeavors like World Cultures Night, Family Movie Night, and Dinner in the Garden in jeopardy, but it also means that fundraising efforts like the beloved Travis Carnival would be prohibited, costing us valuable fundraising dollars as well as cutting off a vital source of funds for teacher supplies and resources.
Please CLICK HERE to send a message (sample language available) to all your state representatives to let them know that HB 281, while well-intentioned, will cripple parent groups like PTA. Contact Travis PTA President Jenny Teague with any questions.