Happening now: Floor debate on campus carry

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      A smart solution for Texas solitary confinement

      by Terri Burke, Special to the American-Statesman—

      The Texas prison system locks up more people in solitary confinement than 12 states combined, costing Texas taxpayers at least $46 million a year. In light of current budgetary concerns at the state Capitol, state Rep. Marisa Márquez, D-El Paso, …

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      Senator José Rodríguez receives Presidential appointment

      EL PASO – Texas State Sen. José Rodríguez has been appointed by the White House to the 10-member Board of Directors for the Border Environment Cooperation Commission (BECC) and the North American Development Bank (NADB). “I’m honored to be appointed by President Obama …

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      Gun proliferation bills pass Senate

      AUSTIN – Senator José Rodríguez issued the following statement regarding Senate Bill 17, the “open carry” bill that passed the full Senate yesterday, and Senate Bill 11, the “campus carry” bill, which passed today: S.B. 17 authorizes open carry of handguns …

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      News Clips for the debate over sanctuary

      compiled from multiple news sources—

      Senate Bill 185, by state Sen. Charles Perry, R-Lubbock, places back in the spotlight 2011’s controversial proposal that seeks to stop municipalities or other local governments from adopting policies that forbid local peace officers from enforcing federal immigration laws. Almost …

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      Houston Chronicle Editorial: Unnecessary proposal

      Listening to the threadbare arguments in Austin these days about the urgent need for so-called sanctuary cities legislation is a reminder that every Texan needs sanctuary – sanctuary from meddlesome ideologues in the Legislature who can’t seem to maintain focus …

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      Dear friend: Today I was able to postpone the Senate Subcommittee on Border Security hearing on SB 185, the “sanctuary cities” bill, which was scheduled for 8 a.m. The notice for the hearing was published mid-day Friday, which gave potential witnesses insufficient time …

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        A former migrant farm worker, Jose understands that education is the key to individual and community success. He’s fought for equitable funding, innovative programs, and access to higher education.

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        Border Issues

        José firmly believes that the future of the Border is the future of the State (and indeed the nation). Jose’s message is clear: The border is an opportunity for Texas and the U.S.

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        Access to healthcare is a critical issue for El Paso, the state, and the nation. We can do better when it comes to ensuring access to affordable, quality health care for million of Texans.

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        Jobs & Economy

        While El Paso is making significant economic gains, its low tax base, high unemployment, and lack of high paying jobs are a barrier to economic prosperity. Young college graduates are unable to find sufficient job opportunities and leave, while other workers find only low wage jobs.

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        Government & Ethics

        Across the nation, including in El Paso, public corruption has grown like a cancer and tested the will of citizens to reign in those who spread it.

        “Pay to play “in the government procurement process, gifts, and other undue influences

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        Public Safety

        Despite El Paso’s designation as the second safest city in the nation, the drug war violence in Cd. Juarez, Mexico has raised legitimate concerns about spill over violence into El Paso. Of particular concern are transnational gangs operating in El Paso that work for the drug cartels.

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        Adequate transportation and related infrastructure remain a critical need in El Paso; without them, El Paso’s progress will be stymied. State transportation funding has literally dried up and our challenge is to find new ways of generating funds to meet transportation needs. 

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