FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 06/01/2015
Schubert and the Texas Legislature End Successful Session
AUSTIN – In January of odd numbered years, members of the Texas Legislature gather in Austin for a 140 day legislative session. Through those 140 days, Representatives and Senators from across the state work on crafting policy that is intended to improve the state and the lives of the people who elected them to office. State Representative Leighton Schubert (Caldwell) joined the other members of the Legislature in March after winning a special election to replace now Senator Lois Kolkhorst.
Despite the delayed start, Schubert wasted no time in fighting for the values and beliefs held by the residents of the 7 counties he represents. Within a month of arriving in the legislature, Schubert voted to pass a fiscally sound budget that invests significant resources in public schools, boosts formula funding for higher education, invests additional general revenue in transportation, and promotes border security and public safety, all done without raising taxes. The state's two year budget accomplishes these goals while increasing spending below the level of population and inflation increases.
The Texas Legislature also made significant strides with improving the budgeting process by increasing transparency, reducing reliance on issuing debt, emphasizing the need to retire debt and ending the practice of diversions so that funds generated for a certain purpose are used for that purpose.
"The budget that was passed by the Texas House and Senate represents the priorities that Texans have made clear to their elected officials," said Schubert. "Texans demanded that the state live within our means and pass a budget that is balanced, prioritized and does not raise taxes."
The legislature made tax cuts a priority through several important pieces of legislation. Homeowners across the state will see a reduction in their property taxes through an increase of $10,000 in the residence homestead exemption. Members of the legislature also voted to end the state's inheritance tax, a bill that Schubert co-authored.
The state of Texas also adopted a comprehensive long term solution to border security problems. Texas will now deploy an additional 250 new officers to secure the Texas-Mexico border.
HB 11, also co-authored by Schubert, criminalizes the act of inducing a person to enter the country illegally, strengthens state smuggling laws to effectively target the organized criminal element infiltrating our border, along with other reforms. The legislation also protects local control by creating the “Texas Transnational Crime Intelligence Center", which would be staffed by local police and sheriffs to serve as a real-time, around-the-clock intelligence hub for state and local law enforcement agencies.
Texas also took important steps in protecting the 2nd Amendments rights of law abiding citizens. The passage of HB 910 permits licensed individuals to openly carry holstered handguns. HB 910 requires individuals to take the appropriate course in handgun proficiency, demonstrate this proficiency, undergo background checks, and obtain a Concealed Handgun License.
Additionally, Schubert fought and defeated HB 1903 which would have had a disastrous effect on the Blinn College System.
"Representing and fighting for our community and for rural Texas in the legislature has been an honor and a privilege," said Schubert. "This session I was proud to work on the issues that the people in my district sent me to Austin to work on. We were able to focus on the issues that really matter to the people of HD 13."
Representative Schubert represents HD 13 which includes rural central Texas and includes Austin, Burleson, Colorado, Fayette, Grimes, Lavaca and Washington Counties. Schubert is a graduate of Snook High School, Texas A&M University and South Texas College of Law, and is a practicing attorney in Caldwell where he lives with his wife Brittany.