We are down to the final three weeks of the session, as we wait for our legislators to pass a bill that addresses many of the important concerns facing Texas public schools. It’s critical we lobby our lawmakers on the joint education committee to pass HB 3!
On May 6, the Senate voted 26-2 on HB 3, which would increase student funding, grant teachers and librarians a $5,000 pay raise, and fund full day pre-k for low-income students. However, the bill in its current form would not increase sales tax to lower school district property taxes - the Texas House and Senate will have to compromise on their significant differences over the bill before it can be signed into law. The two key differences? How to offer teachers pay raises and property tax relief.
HB 3 also restores the G/T allotment (via an amendment made by Sen. Jane Nelson). There were major differences from the House bill regarding this, and accordingly, the chambers appointed members to negotiate the final provisions of the bill.
This conference committee will begin meeting this or next week and will likely conclude by the end of next week. Please take the time to contact the conference committee members (linked above) and show your support for the G/T allotment being included in the final bill. You can also call your own State Representative and Senator to make sure they pass HB 3 once the final provisions are negotiated by the committee.
Find your elected officials HERE. Call your representative via their Austin number, found HERE. If you don’t get your representative on the line, leave your name, details and a prepared pitch on voicemail or with a staffer. Here is a sample script:
“Hello, my name is _____, and my zip code is ______. I am calling to ask [Senator/Rep] ___________ to support HB 3 including the GT allotment amendment. This matters to me greatly because ______. Thank you for your time.”