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by bblhd672
Wed Aug 16, 2017 2:03 pm
Forum: 2017 Texas Legislative Session
Topic: 2017 Special Session called
Replies: 80
Views: 11055

Re: 2017 Special Session called

flechero wrote: You have a simple view of an issue that's not so simple.

My kid is districted for the same school my wife was districted for as a child- it was so bad then, that her parents had her adopted by her grandparents to get into a decent school. In 30+ years they have not fixed the schools... still under performing and downright scary. Why should we be forced to send our kid to a crappy school? Out of district transfers can choose school- in district we can not.

Those against allowing some conversion of tax to school choice are typically in good districts. I'd love to have a public school choice I was comfortable with... but I don't. We pay over a grand a month, plus uniforms, and all the other private school stuff on top of all the same taxes you pay, for and education that may actually be a little behind the good public schools.

The better question might be why do I have to pay 3-5 times what you pay for the same basic education your kid gets, on tax dollars alone?

I don't claim to have all the answers but I do know when a school sucks for over 30 years, it's time to start over or give the people in that district a choice of some kind.

And public transportation doesn't run out here either! :lol:
Can you identify the political party of the majority ruling the school system for the last 30 years? Probably full of the same people who are against school choice, vouchers and any other idea that actually improves the children's' education.
by bblhd672
Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:34 am
Forum: 2017 Texas Legislative Session
Topic: 2017 Special Session called
Replies: 80
Views: 11055

Re: 2017 Special Session called

talltex wrote:
ELB wrote:
Texas legislators are among the lowest paid in the nation. I suspect with high probability that 100% of them would make more money doing their regular jobs over what they get paid for a Regular Session, and if it's not 100% then it's 98%. Nobody is stringing out the Regular Session just so he can go back to Austin in June or July. They get NOTHING in salary for attending a Special Session.

A legislator gets $7200 salary per year, so $14,200 for a two year term, regardless of how many session days there are, plus all the non-session politicking and constituent service stuff. So no pay for a Special Session.

They also get $190/day for each session day Regular or Special, plus for any day they are on Legislature business, e.g. committee or special studies or whatever between sessions. If you look at what it costs to stay in a decent hotel in Austin, plus eat, that per diem is not a gold mine.

I would be surprised if any legislator gets more than about $50K for a two-year term.

They do get a rather nice pension deal they become eligible for after eight years as a legislator. I don't know the current numbers but it is tied to judicial salaries somehow and amounts to about $1200 or $1500 for each year's service as a legislator after eight years -- starting at age 50, if they "retire" and are not currently serving as a legislator.

Human society and politics being what they are, no doubt some other opportunities and business relationships become available as a result of being a legislator.

However, I can see no financial advantage whatsoever to trying to string out a Regular Session into a Special Session.
The salary that the legislators are paid is just for public consumption. The salary has always been kept very low and they are quick to point out how little they are paid and how it's a labor of love to serve. The monetary rewards come indirectly and never as salary. Each legislator is given an annual budget to operate their office and it is considerable. That money can be spent anyway they see fit. Texas Senators receive $38,000--per month--to run their office. They pay for furniture and fixtures--a one time expense plus salaries for whatever staff they determine necessary to operate their office. In addition, they can use all campaign funds received pretty much anyway they see fit--and that's where some of them really hit the jackpot. They receive hundreds of thousands of dollars annually from lobbyists who donate money to their re-election campaign fund. That money can be spent on anything they determine is needed to help them remain in office. Housing, vehicles, meals, transportation, clothing, etc. As an example, Lt. Governor Dan Patrick announced in January that he was running for re-election next year and that he already (in his first term as Lt. Gov.) had amassed over $14,000,000.00 in his campaign fund. THAT is what allows him to jump on chartered jets to show up all over the country at every primary last year--or anywhere else he can get in front of a camera. Once in office, that campaign fund makes it very difficult to defeat an incumbent legislator. As ELB said, they also get a pension based on years served after 8 years. The amount they receive is not based on the meager salary they received as a legislator, but based on the salary of a state district judge ($125,000)--they came up with the plan and voted on it for themselves and they also get to keep their state health benefits. They can start collecting the pension of $2875.00 per year for each year of service, after 8 years service at the age of 60 or with 12 years service they can start collecting at age 50--pretty sweet deal.
So to me these two posts prove to me that elected officials in Texas are the same as those in every other state. Despite their platitudes about helping the people their primary reason for being is to ensure their own permanent place at the taxpayers' teat.
They dole out freebies and pieces of our freedom to us in return for our continued support of their largess. Local, state and federal governments are corrupt and self serving to the core. They make King George look like an amateur.
by bblhd672
Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:07 am
Forum: 2017 Texas Legislative Session
Topic: 2017 Special Session called
Replies: 80
Views: 11055

Re: 2017 Special Session called

The Annoyed Man wrote:Maybe they'll learn to quit pickin' around so much on unimportant bull that has nothing to do with anything for the first half of the session.
:iagree: It's annoying to see dozens of House and Senate Continuing Resolutions honoring or recognizing this or that, yet now the taxpayers have to foot the bill for special session to get important budget and operating bills passed.

Perhaps the law needs to be changed so that the legislators receive no income during Special Sessions that are called to address bills that they didn't get to during regular session.

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