Texas Decides 2018 Voters Guide
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Voters Guide

State Representative District 15

What Do They Do? A short video explanation of state elected offices:https://youtu.be/uqd9IWpSqXI2-year term. The House is one of two chambers that make up the Texas Legislature. The representative is one of 150 representatives. They make and vote on laws, decide where the money goes within the state government, serve on committees such as agriculture and livestock, business and industry, elections, higher education, energy resources, etc. Bills for raising money must originate in the House. Only the House can impeach a statewide officer. Current salary: $7,200 plus $190 per diem when in session.Plazo de 2 años. La Cámara de Representantes es una de las dos cámaras que conforman la Legislatura de Texas. El representante es uno de 150 representantes. Hacen y votan por leyes, deciden a dónde va el dinero dentro del gobierno estatal, sirven en comités como los de agricultura y ganadería, negocios e industria, elecciones, educación superior, recursos energéticos, etc. Los proyectos de ley para recaudar dinero deben originarse en la Cámara. Sólo la Cámara puede impugnar a un oficial estatal. Salario actual: $7,200 más $190 por día cuando esté en sesión.

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  • Candidate picture

    Lorena Perez McGill
    (Dem)

  • Candidate picture

    Steve Toth
    (Rep)

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Biographical Information

Background: What training, experience, and background qualify you for this position?

Education: What specific changes should be made to public school financing and why?

Economy: What state legislation would you support to help Texas residents improve their economic positions?

Health care: What state legislation is needed to increase availability of affordable health care for Texas residents? If none, please explain.

Other Issues: What other issues do you believe will be most pressing in the next session of the Texas Legislature, and what is your position on these issues?

As legal counsel at the Organization of American States in Washington, D.C., I gained expertise in resolving disputes involving governments, private entities, and individuals. I also believe a representative must engage everyone across her community, from both ends of the political radius, and the bedrock of our democracy is an informed electorate.
The state’s contribution to public education must be restored to pre-2011 funding levels and the 86th legislative session must tackle school finance reform. This should include re-tooling the failing recapture, or "Robin Hood," funding program and controlling property tax increases on homeowners and small businesses. Closing the "Equal and Uniform" corporate tax loophole that allows large corporations to under-pay on property taxes would adequately fund education at the state level.
Texas already offers great opportunity to improve residents' economic positions; this is only one piece of the prosperity puzzle. Our citizens' health and bright futures should be considered, and right now our education and health-care systems are in crisis. I support school finance reform to restore public education funding to its fullest without raising property taxes. And Medicaid expansion will save hospitals and local governments millions while offering Texas families crucial healthcare.
Health care is a basic human right not a privilege, and pre-existing conditions shouldn't limit the healthcare one can afford. I will fight to expand Medicaid to protect our most vulnerable neighbors: children, the disabled and the elderly. Medicaid expansion and incentives to encourage insurers to participate in health care exchanges will result in reduced health care costs for all Texans by improving the uncompensated care crisis bankrupting our public hospitals.
Texans deserve to see property tax reform made a priority by our legislators. However, to enact successful property tax reform, we must first find another source of revenue to fund our schools. Closing a tax loophole called the "Equal and Uniform" provision, which shifts tax responsibility away from thousands of big corporations onto the shoulders of homeowners and small businesses, will result in billions of property tax dollars and potential school funding revenue.
I have 34 years of experience in the marketplace. I am a small business owner here in Montgomery County. I have been doing marriage and family life counseling in our community for over 20 years as a Pastor and Elder. I served House District 15 in the past as your State Representative garnering the 5th most conservative voting record in the House.
The Maintenance and Operations of our public schools should be shifted away from local property owners to the State of Texas. Funding our schools through the property tax is taxing elderly people on fixed incomes out of their homes. The shift would lead to a 60% decrease in property taxes with a small increase in the sales tax which would be carried by a broader portion of the tax base. There would also be more accountability on the part of the ISD’s on how money is spent at the local level.
Property tax reform; 1) Move ISD M&O to the State. 2) Elliminate Apprail Districts and base a home’s value at the purchase price.
Healthcare is federally controlled. Buying across State lines, Tort Reform, perscription drug pricing and free market solutions can only be drafted at the Federal level. While expanding Medicaid looks initially like a viable option it would eventually cripple the Texas budget.
School safety. Hardening our local schools towards anyone who wishes to harm our kids is imperative. Coordinating local law enforcement as we have done here in Montgomery County is an exercise that needs to happen Statewide.