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On the Road to the 85th Texas Legislature

This page is devoted to keeping key stakeholders updated on the happenings of the 85th Texas Legislature as it pertains to higher education generally and Blinn College specifically. Check here periodically for important updates on the road to the 85th Texas Legislative Session. At Blinn, all input is valued and encouraged. Comments or suggestion can be submitted here.

State of Texas Senators and Representatives for Blinn College:
District   District  
3 Senator Robert Nichols 14 Representative John Raney
5 Senator Charles Schwertner 16 Representative Will Metcalf
18 Senator Lois W. Kolkhorst 17 Representative John Cyrier
Representative Cecil Bell 18 Representative Ernest Bailes
12 Representative Kyle Kacal 20 Representative Terry Wilson
13 Representative Leighton Schubert 57 Representative Trent Ashby
 
United States Senators and Representatives for Blinn College: 
  Senator John Cornyn   Congressman Kevin Brady
  Senator Ted Cruz   Congressman Bill Flores

    Congressman Michael McCaul

biennial revenue estimate chart

Link to The Texas Comptroller’s Full Biennial Revenue Estimate - Released 1/9/2017

Lt. Governor Patrick Announces Top Ten Legislative Priorities

Lt. Governor Patrick Announces Additional Legislative Priorities

Interim Committee Charges

House Interim Charges – 2016

Senate Interim Charges – 2016

Legislative Appropriations Request (LAR) hearing

TACC and CCATT Presentation

CCATT Chair Talking Points

Summary Notes of September 26, 2016 Hearing

House Higher Education Committee Meeting Information

September 13, 2016 meeting notice

June 21, 2016 meeting notice

June 21, 2016 Meeting Video

June 21, 2016 Hearing Summary

May 10th meeting notice

May 10th Meeting Video

March 24th meeting notice (Joint meeting with the House Committee on Higher Education and the Appropriations subcommittee on Article III)

March 24th meeting video

March 24th Hearing Summary

March 8th meeting notice

March 8th meeting video

March 8th Hearing Summary

February 11th meeting notice

February 11th meeting - Dr. Mary Hensley testifies before the Texas House of Representatives Committee on Higher Education (Video) - Comments start at 1:00:45 in video

February 11th meeting - Transcript of Dr. Mary Hensley's address to the House


August 16, 2016

Blinn sets legislative priorities in advance of the 85th Texas Legislative Session

Blinn seeks increased funding for community colleges to strengthen workforce training programs, keep student costs low

In advance of the 85th Texas Legislative Session, Blinn College will ask state lawmakers to provide community colleges the resources to continue offering high-impact academic and career training programs at an affordable rate for students.

Blinn’s Board of Trustees approved six legislative priorities for the College at its regular board meeting Tuesday night in Brenham. Those priorities are:

  1. Blinn supports the state funding goals for community colleges as adopted by the Texas Association of Community Colleges (TACC) and Community College Association of Texas Trustees (CCATT). This includes increasing core funding for each community college district by $250,000 per year; funding student success points at a minimum of $185 per point; and increasing state funding for community college instruction by $45 million, allowing community colleges to meet workforce skill demands, increase dual credit courses, and expand educational opportunities for all students.
  2. Blinn College supports enhanced policies, programs and associated funding to strengthen the workforce development services and initiatives as adopted by TACC and CCATT.
  3. Blinn College supports an increase in state funding to further Blinn College’s efforts to provide an affordable higher education for all students.
  4. Blinn College is committed to strengthening its business and industry partnerships and to enhancing workforce development in all of its service area.
  5. Blinn College supports additional state funding to offset the rising expenses associated with Hazlewood exemptions.
  6. Blinn College supports maintenance of the existing level of state funding for the operation of the Star of the Republic Museum.

Increased state support would help Blinn and other Texas community colleges meet expanded demand for their services. Texas community colleges have seen an enrollment increase of more than 70 percent since 2000, and 78 percent of students who earn a bachelor’s degree from a Texas university have community college credit on their transcript.

“These priorities are designed to provide adequate support for community colleges across the state,” said Dr. Mary Hensley, District President/CEO. “These funds would allow Texas community colleges to strengthen business partnerships, enhance workforce development, fund expanded programs and services, and ensure that higher education remains affordable for Texas students.”

Blinn College Legislative Crosswalk
Link to Legislative Crosswalk Flow Charts 2017 (PDF)

Bio and Contact Information for Members of the House Committee on Higher Education
Rep. John Zerwas, Chair Rep. Armando "Mando" Martinez
Rep. Donna Howard, Vice Chair Rep. Geanie W.  Morrison
Rep. Roberto R. Alonzo Rep. John Raney
Rep. Travis Clardy Rep. Chris Turner
Rep. Myra Crownover  

Bio and Contact Information for Members of the House Committee on Appropriations
Rep. John Otto, Chair Rep. Oscar Longoria
Rep. Trent Ashby, Chair Rep. Marisa Márquez
Rep. Cecil Bell Rep. Borris Miles
Rep. Greg Bonnen Rep. Rick Miller
Rep. Cindy Burkett Rep. Sergio Muñoz, Jr.
Rep. Giovanni Capriglione Rep. Dade Phelan
Rep. Sarah Davis Rep. Four Price
Rep. Dawnna Dukes Rep. John Raney
Rep. Helen Giddings Rep. Justin Rodriguez
Rep. Larry Gonzales Rep. J. D. Sheffield
Rep. Donna Howard Rep. Gary VanDeaver
Rep. Bryan Hughes Rep. Armando Walle
Rep. Linda Koop  

Bio and Contact Information for Members of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Article III
Rep. Trent Ashby, Chair Rep. Dade Phelan
Rep. Helen Giddings, Vice Chair Rep. John Raney
Rep. Donna Howard Rep. Gary VanDeaver
Rep. Marisa Márquez  

Senate Higher Education Committee Meeting Information

September 12th Meeting Notice

August 23rd Meeting Notice

August 23rd Meeting Video

May 16th Meeting Notice

May 16th Meeting Video

May 16th Meeting - Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board Testimony

May 16th Meeting - Texas Association of Community Colleges Testimony

April 26th Meeting Notice

April 26th meeting video

March 29th meeting notice (Joint meeting with the Senate Committee on Higher Education and the Senate Education Committee)

March 29th meeting video

March 29th Hearing Summary

Bio and Contact Information for Members of the Senate Committee on Higher Education 
Senator Kel Seliger, Chair Senator José Menéndez
Senator Royce West, Vice Chair Senator Charles Perry
Senator Paul Bettencourt Senator Kirk Watson
Senator Konni Burton  

Blinn College Timeline 2016-2017

Election Day November 8, 2016
Pre-Filing 85th Legislature Begins November 14, 2016
Blinn Legislative Delegation Luncheon November 29, 2016
Legislative Budget Hearings Begin November-December
85th Legislature Convenes January 10, 2017
Committee Hearings, Legislative Visits & Public Testimony January – April 2017
Community College Day February 7, 2017
85th Legislature Adjourns May 29, 2017
Governor’s Veto Period Expires June 18, 2017

Legislative Timeline 2016-2017*

Interim Charges
- House - November 4, 2015
- Senate - October 12, 2015

Blinn College Board adopts priorities for the 85th Legislative Session
- July-August, 2016

Bill pre-filing period
- November 2016-January 2017

85th Legislature convenes
January 10, 2017

85th Legislature adjourns
May 29, 2017

* More dates to follow when published.


Related Links

Senate Bill SB1 Filed - January 17, 2017

Initial 2018-19 Texas House Budget Introduced - January 17, 2017

TACC Legislative Brief - Released 1/13/17

The Texas Comptroller’s Full Biennial Revenue Estimate - Released 1/9/2017

The Texas Association of Community Colleges

The Texas Association of Community Colleges (TACC) is a non-profit association that includes all 50 public community college districts in the state. The General Appropriations Bill and legislation affecting public community colleges in general have been and remain the principal concerns of TACC. The community colleges of Texas understand that the most critical part of their mission focuses on the success of the students who seek educational opportunities at our institutions.

TACC Legislative Committee 2017

TACC Schedule of Relevant Meeting January 2017

TACC-TASA Dual Credit Workgroup Recommendations

Texas Community Colleges Funding Request for 2018-19 Biennium Priorities

Legislative Crosswalk Flow Charts 2017 (PDF)

TACC Legislative Brief November 11, 2016 (PDF)

TACC Legislative Brief December 13, 2016 (PDF)

Community College Association of Texas Trustees

The Community College Association of Texas Trustees serves to provide advocacy and professional development to the members of the governing boards of the 50 Community Colleges in Texas. CCATT partners with the member organization of Community College Presidents and Chancellors. Additional information for the individual institutions can be found on the TACC website: Texas Association of Community Colleges.