2016-17 Legislative Budget Snapshot

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With just weeks remaining in the regular session of the 84th Legislature, House and Senate conferees are working out the two chambers’ different versions of House Bill 1, the 2016-17 General Appropriations Act. Wherever different levels of funding are proposed, the conferees may choose to go with the lower amount, the higher amount, or compromise […]

DFPS House and Senate Budget Proposals Similar, but Priorities Differ

Brakeyshia Samms, State Policy Fellow

Now that the full Senate has voted out its “marked up” version of the 2016-17 budget, we are one step closer to the end of the 2015 legislative budget process. Conferees on House Bill 1 will resolve differences between the Senate and House proposals before the regular session ends. For child protective services, foster care, […]

Funding for DARS Misses the Mark

Brakeyshia Samms, State Policy Fellow

Signaling that we are getting closer to the end of the 2015 legislative budget process, both the full Senate and the House have voted out their respective proposals for the 2016-17 biennium. This analysis looks at how the Senate and House plans differ in support for Early Childhood Intervention (ECI) services, autism, rehabilitation, disability determination, […]

Concerns Remain on HHSC Sunset Consolidation Bill

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The Health and Human Services Commission Sunset consolidation plan is less spooky than before, but still too scary for many. The House Committee on Human Services holds a public hearing today on HB 2304, the “Sunset” bill reauthorizing the Texas Health and Human Services Commission and calling for a major restructuring of Texas’ health and […]

Graduation Season Comes Early

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April might seem a little early for a graduation ceremony, but there I was handing out mock diplomas on the steps of the Texas Capitol surrounded by bright-eyed students in caps and gowns. This pretend ceremony had a very real message: Texas should continue to allow immigrant students who are Texas residents and non-citizens to […]

Let’s Keep College within Reach

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As Texans, we’re a fierce and competitive bunch, and in the last few years our state has touted its record on low taxes and economic growth. There’s no doubt that Texas has been competitive in job growth, but when it comes to higher education, we’ve lost our edge. And without a well-educated workforce, we’re risking […]

5 Things to Know As Feds Question Texas’ Uncompensated Care Waiver

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In a phone call to the state’s Health and Human Services Commission last week, the federal government told Texas that its decision on continuing the “uncompensated care” portion of the 1115 Medicaid waiver will take into account whether the state accepts new Medicaid funds. CPPP has released a helpful fact sheet on the Texas 1115 Waiver […]

Proposed Bills Expand College Savings Opportunities

Laura Rosen

Imagine if every child in Texas had a college savings account. Imagine the peace of mind and confidence that accumulated savings in this account would give to students as they make the transition to college. Representative Marsha Farney’s HB 3987, which is being considered by the House Public Education committee today, and Senator Sylvia Garcia’s […]

House Swings and Misses on School Finance

Chandra Villanueva

Earlier this week the House Committee on Public Education heard HB 1759, a proposal by Chairman Jimmie Don Aycock that would make sweeping changes to the school finance system. This bill was introduced as an effort to increase equity in the public school system and to address the concerns raised in the pending school finance lawsuit. […]

Kids Shouldn’t Have to Wait for Health Coverage

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Today Texas law requires that a child must be without private health coverage for 90 days prior to enrolling in the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), known as a CHIP waiting period. Once a child is found otherwise eligible for CHIP, they must wait to enroll for three months after the last month they had […]