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From the Texas Governor Abbott
What They Are Saying About The Big Three Property Tax Proposal
February 1, 2019 | Austin, Texas | Press Release
Source https://gov.texas.gov/news/post/what-they-are-saying-about-the-big-three-property-tax-proposal. Go to this link for full articles quoted below.
Dallas Morning News’ Rebekah Allen: “Give Property Owners Some Tax Relief.” “Texas's top lawmakers announced the first leg of their plan on Thursday to give property owners some tax relief by placing tough restrictions on local government budgets.” (Dallas Morning News, 1/31/19)
“In a show of unity between the two chambers, lawmakers filed identical companion bills to cap local property tax revenue for cities, counties and special taxing districts in one of the most far-reaching proposals entertained by the Legislature in recent years.” (Dallas Morning News, 1/31/19)
Houston Chronicle’s Jeremy Wallace And Andrea Zelinski: “They (Governor Abbott, Lt. Governor Patrick And Speaker Bonnen) All Threw Their Support Behind Identical Bills In The House And Senate — A Rare Accord On Such A Major Issue So Early In The Legislative Session.” “While Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Dennis Bonnen have generally declared a unified front on reforming property taxes before, this announcement was different in that they all threw their support behind identical bills in the House and Senate — a rare accord on such a major issue so early in the legislative session.” (Houston Chronicle, 1/31/19)
KXAN Headline: “Texas Leaders Release Identical Property Tax Reform Bills” (KXAN, 1/31/19)
WFAA’s Demetria Obilor: “Something Homeowners Will Want To Hear, Property Tax Relief Could Be On The Way.” “Something homeowners will want to hear, property tax relief could be on the way. Some good news. Governor Greg Abbott and other state leaders just announced new bills on that very issue.” (WFAA, 1/31/19)
KVUE’s Ashley Goudeau: “At The Texas Capitol Today, Big News For Homeowners. It Was Just Announced Matching Bills Have Been Filed In The House And The Senate To Reduce How Much Cities And Counties Can Increase Your Property Taxes Without An Election.” (KVUE, 1/31/19)
State Senator Paul Bettencourt: “That Number Came From The Governor Who Wisely Determined With The House At 6 And The Senate At 4 He Was Going To Compromise At 2.5 [Percent], And That's What's Called Real Leadership.”“At the news conference Thursday, Bettencourt made light of the fact that the new plan, which originated from Abbott's campaign promise, was a harder reach than both plans that were rejected two years ago. ‘That number came from the governor who wisely determined with the House at 6 and the Senate at 4 he was going to compromise at 2.5 [percent], and that's what's called real leadership,’ he said.” (Dallas Morning News, 1/31/19)
Texas Public Policy Foundation’s Kevin Roberts: “Give(s) Taxpayers Greater Transparency And A Stronger Voice In The Process.” “The bills will ‘give taxpayers greater transparency and a stronger voice in the process,’ said Kevin Roberts, executive director of the conservative Texas Public Policy Foundation.” (Austin American Statesman, 1/31/19)
Austin American-Statesman Headline: “State GOP Leaders Seek To Limit Property Tax Increases” (Austin American-Statesman, 1/31/19)
LOCAL NEWS HEADLINES
1 February 2019 - From the Whitehouse
Trump Policies Keep Economic Boom Going As Job Gains of 304,000 Surpass Expectations
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) released its first monthly Employment Situation Report of 2019, showing that the United States economy is continuing its historic streak of positive job gains in the new year.
Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 304,000 jobs in January, far surpassing market expectations (165,000) and above the prior 12-month average gain (223,000). January 2019 marks the 100th straight month of positive job growth and the 16th consecutive month of employment growth of at least 100,000 new jobs. Job gains in December were revised down by 90,000 and November jobs were revised up by 20,000 for a cumulative loss to total employment of 70,000 jobs in the previous months. Nevertheless, despite these downward revisions, the 223,000 average monthly jobs created in 2018 remains well above the pace of monthly job creation in 2016 (193,000) and 2017 (179,000).
Numerous sectors experienced job growth in January, including mining and logging (7,000), transportation and warehousing (27,000), construction (52,000), education and health services (55,000), and leisure and hospitality (74,000). The economy has added 4.9 million jobs since January 2017 and 5.3 million jobs since President Donald J. Trump was elected in November 2016.
The report also indicates that wages are continuing to rise. Nominal average hourly earnings rose by 3.2 percent over the past 12 months, marking the 6th straight month that year-over-year wage gains were at or above 3 percent. Prior to 2018, nominal average hourly wage gains had not reached 3 percent since April 2009. Taking inflation into account, real wages are also growing. Based on the most recent Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) price index data from November, inflation in the past year was 1.8 percent, and based on the most recent Consumer Price Index (CPI-U) price data from December, the inflation in the past year was 1.9 percent (the most recently available data).
A separate household survey released by BLS shows that the unemployment rate ticked up by 0.1 percentage point (p.p.) to 4.0 percent in January—but still represents the 11th consecutive month at or below 4 percent. Additionally, the labor force participation rate for prime-age adults (ages 25-54) increased by 0.3 percentage points to 82.6 percent. The last time it was this high was April 2010. Though the unemployment rate edged up, this is largely explained by the 2018-19 partial government shutdown and would otherwise have likely remained unchanged.
While furloughed Federal workers are included in BLS’s establishment survey (they were scheduled to receive back pay and therefore counted in the monthly job number), they were not considered to be employed in the household survey. Furloughed Federal employees who did not work during the household survey’s reference period (January 6-12, 2019) were categorized as being on temporary layoff, a special unemployed category in which individuals are not necessarily looking for a job because they are expecting to return to work. In January, 104,000 Federal workers—an increase of 91,000 Federal workers (not seasonally adjusted)—were counted as being on temporary layoff, contributing to a spike in the overall number of temporarily unemployed individuals (see figure). CEA estimates that had workers not been furloughed the unemployment rate for January would have remained steady over the month at 3.9 percent.
The January employment data depict a strong American economy. With a continued low unemployment rate, historic trends in job gains, and rising wages, this employment report provides further evidence that the Administration’s pro-growth, pro-worker policies are working.
“Reproduced from NFPA's Fire Prevention Week Web site, www.firepreventionweek.org. ©2004 NFPA. This Public Service Announcement brought to you courtesy of local area volunteer fire department and first responders. Used by permission.
HOMELAND SECURITY STATEMENT
on MIGRANT CARAVAN U.S. BORDER CONCERNS
[Washington D.C. 26November2018]
Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen provided the following statement regarding the recent crisis on our southern border.
“Given the activities of the last 24 hours at the San Ysidro Port of Entry, I want to provide an update on what occurred and attempt to dispel many of the rumors and much of the misinformation circulating.
“First, the violence we saw at the border was entirely predictable. This caravan, unlike previous caravans, had already entered #Mexico violently and attacked border police in two other countries. I refuse to believe that anyone honestly maintains that attacking law enforcement with rocks and projectiles is acceptable. It is shocking that I have to explain this, but officers can be seriously or fatally injured in such attacks. Self-defense isn’t debatable for most law-abiding Americans.
“Second, the caravan is far larger and more organized than previous ones. There are 8,500 caravan members in Tijuana and Mexicali. There are reports of additional caravans on their way.
“Third, the overwhelming majority of these individuals are not eligible for asylum in the United States under our laws. Historically, less than 10% of those who claim asylum from #Guatemala, #Honduras, and #ElSalvador are found eligible by a federal judge. 90% are not eligible. Most of these migrants are seeking jobs or to join family who are already in the U.S. They have all refused multiple opportunities to seek protection in Mexico or with the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency. Seeking employment or family reunification are not grounds for asylum under our laws, or any international obligation. There are, however, legal ways to seek a job or to be reunited in the U.S.
“Fourth, the caravan members are predominately male. It appears in some cases that the limited number of women and children in the caravan are being used by the organizers as “human shields” when they confront law enforcement. They are being put at risk by the caravan organizers as we saw at the Mexico-Guatemala border. This is putting vulnerable people in harms way.
“Fifth, we cannot confirm the backgrounds and identities of all caravan members which possess a national security and public safety risk to our country. However, at this point we have confirmed that there are over 600 convicted criminals traveling with the caravan flow. This includes individuals known to law enforcement for assault, battery, drug crimes, burglary, rape, child abuse and more. This is serious. Additionally, Mexico has already arrested 100 caravan members for criminal violations in Mexico.
“Sixth, our Border Patrol agents and officers responded admirably and responsibly to the events on Sunday. It is a testament to their training and professionalism that no one was injured. The accepted use of nonlethal force (also used by the Obama Administration in 2013) prevented further injury to agents and a mass illegal rush across the border. We will not shy away from protecting our people. I ask parents to avoid violent caravan groups and refrain from attempts to illegally enter our country – these acts will put your children in danger.
“Seventh, I want to thank President Donald J. Trump again for the decision to send @DeptofDefense to the border to bolster our ports of entry and provide force protection for Customs and Border Protection. This decision likely prevented injuries to personnel and migrants or additional damage to property. Instead of “a political stunt,” as suggested by some, this was in fact the act of a leader concerned about the rule of law.
“Eighth, this Administration has been working nonstop to fix our immigration system to address the crisis at the border. We have proposed legislation and asked Congress to pass it. The President has repeatedly made clear what is needed to secure our border and negotiated in good faith. It is time for Congress to do its job. Absent Congressional action courts have misinterpreted existing laws and have made the job of law enforcement far more difficult. But the men and women of DHS will continue to do all we can to enforce the law and DHS and U.S. Department of State will continue negotiations with Mexico and our other partners in the region. We are optimistic that cross border collaboration can help make America, indeed the entire region, more secure.
“Finally, this Administration warned about the danger of the caravan. We predicted the violence we saw on Sunday. We prepared to address it with additional personnel and DOD deployments. We will continue to prepare for the next assault while looking for lasting solutions with Congress and our Mexican partners. As always, I want to thank those officers and agents in San Ysidro who, under tremendous strain, used professionalism and restraint to ensure that no one was injured as they were attacked themselves. I also thank DOD and our state & local law enforcement who were on scene to support our people.”