FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 01/17/2017
85th Texas Legislature Convenes, Romans 13:1
- Weekly Legislative Update 1/17/17 -
(Austin, TX) - Beginning this journey in public service in 2010, I started from the simple origin that every Texan is made in the image of God, and thus, being elected to serve God’s people comes with a high degree of expectations and responsibility. I love everyone in Hardin, Jasper, Newton, Polk, and Tyler counties. I am very grateful to the voters for allowing me to serve again in one of the most storied deliberative bodies in modern history: the Texas House of Representatives.
On Tuesday, January 10th, I was humbled to once again take the oath to uphold the constitutions of Texas and the United States and serve the citizens in Hardin, Jasper, Newton, Polk, and Tyler counties. As I took the oath, I was joined by four great Southeast Texans: Pastor Chris Kirkendall, Marvin Whitehead, and Tom & Marivel Fortenberry. Mr. Whitehead also brought along his family who were able to tour the Capitol and see the Opening Day ceremony from the House Gallery.
My floor desk assignment is Desk 77. In each desk in the Texas House, is a Christian Holy Bible. The front and back covers are blue with the Texas State Seal embossed on the front. In the front of the Bible, the member can find out which Texas legislators sat at that particular desk in past sessions, the counties they represented, and a scripture that inspired them through the session. Then at the next available blank entry, the current member has an opportunity to write his/her name, the House District he or she serves, the session number, and a scripture that will inspire him or her throughout the session. After prayerful consideration, I chose Romans 13:1, “Let every soul be subject unto the higher powers. For there is no power but of God: the powers that be are ordained of God.” For earthly government officials this is not a license because all government should be limited, restrained, and righteous. However, this scripture does come with obligation or responsibility.
I am always proud to welcome East Texans to their State Capitol. During the first week of the session, my staff and I devoted quality time to a group of students and teachers from Warren High School. R.J. Gutierrez, the UIL State Qualifier, represented the “Orange and Black” at the State UIL Congress competition at the University of Texas. Kudos to Warren teacher Michael Sanders. He does a phenomenal job preparing students to compete at the highest level. Warren Warriors Alexis Thompson, Hannah Benton, and James Mettlin accompanied Mr. Sanders to support R.J.
Tyler County also featured another student as a State Qualifier in UIL Congress: Andrew Harmon of Colmesneil ISD. His classmate and fellow Bulldog, Rebecca Schulze, joined him as an alternate.
The Capitol of Texas belongs to you and visiting the Capitol during the biennial legislative session is a great experience. To assist in arranging your visit please call Saul Mendoza, my Chief of Staff, at (512) 463-0490. Or, you can email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.