Abbott pledges to balance budget without raising taxes, lists emergency legislative priorities

Abbott pledges to balance budget without raising taxes, lists emergency legislative priorities

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (The Center Square) – In his state of the state address Monday night, Gov. Greg Abbott pledged to balance the budget without raising taxes. Instead of giving the speech before the Legislature at the Capitol, remarks were televised during prime time and streamed online from Visionary Fiber Technologies in Lockhart, Texas. Some of his remarks reiterated claims he’s made over the last few month in news conferences but some of them were new, including listing specific items he intends to prioritize this legislative session. Under state law, the governor controls which bills can be fast-tracked through the Legislature. Calling them emergency legislative items, Abbott listed key priorities including expanding broadband access statewide, ensuring police departments are funded, protecting the unborn, and protecting First and Second Amendment rights, among other priorities. With the expanded need for telemedicine, Abbott said “broadband is not a luxury – it is an essential tool that must be available for all Texans.” Regarding funding police, Abbott said, “We will not let Texas cities follow the lead of cities like Portland, Seattle, and Minneapolis by defunding the police. That’s crazy. “We will support our law enforcement officers, not demonize and defund them. Defunding law enforcement invites crime and chaos into communities. It risks the lives and livelihoods of innocent people. To keep Texans safe, and to discourage cities from going down this dangerous path, we must pass laws that prevent cities from defunding police.” An emergency legislative item not discussed recently was […]

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