by Chuck Hempstead, TACT Executive Director
We’d like to say that the 87th Texas Legislative Session is off to the races, but, like so much during these times, it’s limping along. Committees have been appointed and are beginning their organizational meetings via Zoom. TACT has shared its Legislative Agenda with important individuals and met electronically with Senate State Affairs Committee Chair Bryan Hughes. We will meet via Zoom with other legislative contacts during the TACT Legislative Day on March 11, of which you are invited to attend.
Possibly good news during the Big Slowdown of 2020-21 is that due to late census data, the majority of the redistricting work may occur during a Special Session, rather than slowing down everything else during Regular Session. If indeed the most important work to a legislator is to be re-elected, redistricting is the most important and most political issue every ten years.
Senator Hughes agreed that this was informally expected to be “the higher education session”, though all bets are off with declining state revenues. He also agreed that next session may be worse. It is yet to be seen what federal stimulus monies might do for colleges and universities. It would certainly help our cause if you were to write or email your state representative and senator thanking them for their time and service during these difficult times. (Find your TX Representative and Senator here). It matters less what you say than that that they are aware that a college professor is watching.