Gov. Rick Perry has set Saturday, March 2, 2013 as the special runoff election date in Texas Senate District 6, to fill the unexpired seat previously held by former Sen. Mario Gallegos, Jr., of Houston. Democrats Sylvia Garcia and Rep. Carol Alvarado will compete to fill the seat in the Texas Senate.
The first supplemental appropriations bill has passed out of committee. House Bill 10 appropriates close to $4.5 billion for acute care, long term care and the Children’s Health Insurance Program. In addition, the bill would give an additional $630 million to the Foundation School Program. House Appropriations Committee Chairman Jim Pitts told House members that the bill needs to be on Governor Perry’s desk by the first week of March so he anticipates a floor debate in the House next Thursday, February 21.
There is a lot of activity around the Texas Capitol. Committees are meeting and in the case of several Senate Committees, passing bills. House Appropriations and Senate Finance have divided up into workgroups and have provided the public notice of when and where those workgroups will be meeting. It is always the “Day at the Capitol” for one group or another. Buses fill the side streets and lines form at the various entrances. The bill filing deadline is a little over three weeks away and then the session begins to hit its stride.