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Earlier this month, Southeast Texas was devastated by Tropical Depression Imelda. My staff and I have been working hard to ensure those in Senate District 3 are receiving the help and services they need. If you require assistance, please don’t hesitate to contact any of my offices. Our thoug…

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It’s September, and that means football season in Texas is back in full swing! Like so many of you, I relish spending my Friday nights this time of year under the bright lights of a football stadium, munching on a box of popcorn, and supporting our East Texas schools. From the band to the dr…

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New Texas laws go into effect this Sunday, Sept. 1 which were passed by the Texas Legislature earlier this year. Here are a few of the big ones.

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With the month of September just around the corner, school is officially underway, football stadiums will light up the Friday night sky, and sportsmen and women will finally have a chance to get back in the field with a shotgun for dove season. With that in mind, I want to encourage all of m…

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Newton County Sheriff Billy Rowles was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Sheriffs' Association of Texas at their 141st Annual Training Conference held in San Antonio July 27 - July 30, 2019.  More than 1500 participants were in attendance at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center w…

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Rep. Trent Ashby addressed caller ID spoofing in his column this week. Taking advantage of hardworking Texans has to stop, he says. Warning of what is being called "Caller ID Spoofing."

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As the last days of summer are fast approaching and you are trying to fit in one last vacation, why not look at some of the exciting destinations in Texas? You can visit the Texas Travel Guide online at www.traveltex.com to find a compilation of attractions and places to stay all across the …

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A cool front in late July?  In many areas across East Texas, records were shattered this past week as temperatures plummeted into the upper 50s and lower 60s. The cooler temperatures were welcome relief to many as we were just settling in to the dog days of summer.  As we approach and enter …

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Sabine County Ag Agent Ronald Barlow sponsored a very informative program focusing on invasive plants in ponds both small and large. Many of the species such as Giant Sylvania continue to be a threat to ponds, lakes, and streams throughout East Texas, and Western Louisiana.

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On a hot Summer day in July 1776, members of the Second Continental Congress assembled in Philadelphia to boldly declare that the thirteen American colonies would no longer be subject to the monarch of Britain. The ratification of the Declaration of Independence on July 4th is still celebrat…

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On July 4th, we will celebrate our nation's freedom. The signing of the Declaration of Independence, in 1776, marked the birth of the United States of America as an independent Nation. I hope you are able to celebrate with fireworks, friends and family, as I know I will be.  

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By the time you read this column, the Texas House will have adjourned Sine Die (meaning without assigning a day for a further meeting), closing the curtain on the 86th Legislative Session. While in previous sessions, legislators returned home with the looming possibility of a special session…

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The next time you hear from me, the 86th Legislative Session will have come to an end. On average only about 1 in 5 bills will make it successfully through a legislative session. At the writing of this column, approximately nine percent of the 7,324 bills, filed in the Senate and House, have…

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The saying goes that everything is bigger in Texas. SCR 20, which was passed by the Senate Administration committee this week, would make this true for even our knives. It designates the Bowie knife, made famous by Jim Bowie when he carried it during the Battle of the Alamo, as the official …

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A new study shows that Texas consumers rank 39th for most at-risk states for robocall tax scams from now through April 28.

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​One of the most pressing issues facing the 86th Legislature is dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey and working to prepare for future storms.

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Senator Robert Nichols, District 3 tells us that on Monday, February 25, the Senate Finance Committee will hear the bill layout and testimony on Senate Bill 3, by Senator Jane Nelson. The bill provides a $5,000 across-the-board pay raise to all classroom teachers in Texas. This will be done …

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​One of the things I have mentioned in the past is the work that I have done over the last year as the Vice Chairman of the Sunset Advisory Commission.  I want to use this week’s Capitol Update to tell you a little bit more about the Sunset process.

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East Texas Rep. Matt Krause  filed HB 1145 - which would eliminate the Driver Responsibility Program. It's a program that was flawed in its implementation and has led to ruinous unintended consequences. The labyrinth of fees, surcharges, and fines, has made it almost impossible for some to e…

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The third week of session has been a busy one, with the pace beginning to pick up.  The fun is only beginning for this legislative session.