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      Solar rate case is Texas precedent

      by state Sen. José Rodríguez, special to the Rio Grande Guardian—

      For the first time, the Public Utility Commission of Texas will decide if electric companies can systematically overcharge homeowners who chose to install solar panels. A rate case from El Paso follows similar proposals in other states, and will have …

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      Rodríguez: El Paso Electric solar class eliminates choice

      by state Sen. José Rodríguez, special to the El Paso Times—

      With the most annual direct sunlight in the state, Far West Texas and El Paso should be leading efforts to promote solar energy. However, El Paso Electric’s proposal will stifle rooftop solar, crippling small businesses and eliminating consumer choice. This …

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      Bill gives mental health help to veterans

      by State Sen. Jose Rodriguez, state Rep. Joseph Moody, and state Rep. Cesar Blanco—

      In addition to the nearly 150,000 active duty service members based at our state’s 15 military installations, Texas is home to more than 1.7 million veterans. In our region, El Paso is home to about 50,000 veterans as well as …

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      Dear friend: I hope your preparations for the holidays and end-of-year celebrations with family and friends are going well. This time of year is always a hectic time, and like you, my staff and I have been hard at work …

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      Senate Education digs down into charter school facilities

      by Kimberly Reeves, Quorum Report—

      Despite tougher laws on the books to shut down failing campuses, Texas charter schools still face opposition from traditional main-line education groups. In his first hearing on interim charges, ChairSen. Larry Taylor, R-Friendswood, held a marathon session on Monday dominated by discussion of …

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      Rodríguez elected Sen. Democratic Caucus chair

      by Marty Schladen, El Paso Times—

      Texas Sen. José Rodríguez, D-El Paso, has been elected chairman of the Senate Democratic Caucus, the senator announced Monday. Through rule changes and increasing conservatism among Republicans, the power of the caucus has been declining. But a political observer said that …

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      Rodríguez: Program aims at youth voter turnout

      by Sen. José Rodríguez, in the El Paso Times—

      When I first was elected in 2010, I established advisory committees made up of engaged members of the community who wished to deliberate issues and advise my office on legislative and other matters. As any member of the committees can …

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      Editorial: School voter registration good start

      by El Paso Times Editorial Board—

      The Ysleta Independent School District and state Sen. José Rodríguez are launching a worthwhile pilot project next week aimed at getting young people registered to vote. Throughout next week, Ysleta officials and Rodríguez’s Youth Advisory Committee will make voter registration …

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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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