University of St. Thomas / B.A. Political Science
26 years in the Texas Legislature
I currently sit on the Ensemble Theater and Children’s Museum advisory boards.
Criminal Justice: Pass the parts of the Sandra Bland Act that did not pass including bail reform, preventing jailing for fine-only offenses, and strengthening Texas’ racial profiling laws. Eliminating racial inequality in healthcare and education: I will continue to fight for better healthcare for all and work to eliminate disparities in health outcomes based on race/ethnicity including in maternal and infant mortality. Fight for quality-full-day Pre-K, and increased public education funding.
The Economic Stabilization Fund should be used according to its original purpose. Which is too smooth out dips in incoming state revenues, so that vital services that Texans depend on such as education, healthcare, and transportation do not get cut.
Education has been and always will be the great equalizer for women, people of color and people with limited income. That is why I have filed a bill to increase quality full-day Pre-K. We need to increase state funding for public education. The goal for every child should be to attend and finish a 4-year college or complete skills training. We must make a quality education affordable. That is why I voted against tuition deregulation in 2003 and have supported legislation to reinstate it.
As chair of the House Committee on County Affairs I have worked to ensure that the State of Texas provides financial help to local governments to provide these services. Last session I helped to secure $92.5 million in matching grants for local healthy community collaboratives to help those suffering from addiction, mental health, and homelessness. I have also worked with our Federal partners to provide billions to local governments to provide these services through the 1115 waiver.
co-chair service and maintenance committee Midtown Management District, board of Houston Sister City Association Shenzhen, China, Active Member Super Neighborhood
After 27 years of status quo reactive band-aids, I WANT TO GO TO THE ROOTS OF PROBLEMS AND SOLVE THEM AT THEIR CORE. (1)Reform Affordable Housing(AH) Through Sustainable Home Ownership Initiatives By Providing Pathways To Home Ownership And Ending Generational Renters. Reduce property tax burden to homeowners and stop involuntary displacement. (2)Public Education Funding Reform - see details below. see www.HoustonUnited.com
Current triggers and methods to use ESF should be maintained. Additionally, any State of Emergency, like Harvey, should trigger an automatic Special Session to allow the state to consider the use of the ESF. Using the ESF for on-going problems is a miss-application of the ESF and results from not addressing an issue honestly. Funding ESF should come from the general funds. Additional funding should be dedicated for the negative economic impact of changing climate. see www.HoustonUnited.com
Eliminate 'property tax basis' from all public education funding; instead, appropriate general funds based on sound socio-economic data-driven per-pupil concept ensuring equitable distribution of resources for all students regardless of where they live or background, removing the “education gap” between rich/poor and urban/rural communities and jump-start a renewed effort to create the best public education system in the country. Expand Vo-Ed. No patchwork – a complete overhaul is demanded.
In Harris County, much of the mental health care and addiction treatment is funded by Harris County Health District, the Harris County Jail system and The City of Houston. This is also generally the model statewide and is grossly inadequate. (1) The state must increase funding for these problems and (2) current & future Economic Development Districts (like TIRZes & Management Districts) should be mandated to provide dedicated funds in conjunction with the affordable housing programs.