The Capitol Report
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Last week, the Senate Higher Education committee passed SB 2118, filed by state Sen. Kel Seliger, chairman of that committee. SB 2118 would allow community colleges to offer baccalaureate degree programs in the fields of applied science, applied technology and nursing. On Thursday, the House Higher Education committee met to discuss a similar bill, HB 4092, filed by Rep. Sarah Davis – it’s the companion bill to SB 2118.
So…what’s a companion bill? The Texas House states that a companion bill is this: “A bill filed in one chamber that is identical or very similar to a bill filed in the opposite chamber. Companion bills are used to expedite passage as they provide a means for committee consideration of a measure to occur in both houses simultaneously. A companion bill that has passed one house can then be substituted for the companion bill in the second house.”
Additionally, we are thankful that state Rep. J.M. Lozano, chairman of the House Higher Education committee, added HB 971, by Rep. Helen Giddings of Dallas, to Thursday’s hearing. HB 971 is bracketed for Dallas County and would allow DCCCD to offer a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education. Our chancellor, Dr. Joe May, testified in favor of HB 971, along with individuals from Commit!, plus the Dallas Independent School District and Grand Prairie ISD.
Chancellor Joe May testifies Thursday evening before the House Higher Education Committee in support of Rep. Helen Giddings’ bill, HB 971.
Chancellor Joe May (far right) with Dallas Rep. Roberto Alonzo (second from left) and Rep. Helen Giddings (third from left) and with representatives from Dallas ISD (left to right), Commit! and Grand Prairie ISD.
On Tuesday, Chancellor May and Dr. Justin Lonon, the district’s executive vice chancellor, met Dr. Raymund Paredes, commissioner of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, and members of his staff, Dr. Rex Peebles, Dr. David Gardner, John Wyatt and Lizette Montiel. LaJuana Barton, Sen. Royce West’s chief of staff, participated by conference call. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss the potential of a bachelor’s degree offered by DCCCD and the impact of HB 971, HB 4092 and SB 2118.
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The House will reconvene on Monday, May 1, at 2 p.m. The Senate will reconvene the same day at 1 p.m.
Tomorrow marks 100 days of President Donald Trump’s administration, which the news media is covering: CNN, Denver Post, NBC News, Fox News, Business Insider,
Is the federal government open for business? Maybe for a week. Congress returned to Washington, D.C., and had one week to fund the government before it shuts down. Leaders are saying they will pass a one-week fix. It’s like a break-up: “Just give me more time.” Read all about it here: Roll Call, CNBC, The Hill.
Listed below are bills of importance to DCCCD. We track these and other bills that may have an impact on our district during the legislative session. You can view those House and Senate bills by visiting our site.
Interested in learning more about other bills? Visit our legislative bill tracker to learn the status of several bills. As always, please feel free to contact our office with any questions.
Did you know local elections are under way? Elections matter. Go vote in city council and school board races. The individuals you choose will be voting on school programs, neighborhood improvements, safety issues and more. You can vote early today, tomorrow, Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Election Day is Saturday, May 6. For a list of early voting locations, click here. You can find more information about voting on Election Day here. Happy voting!