I’ll try to put the moratorium rollercoaster plain English…The private toll moratorium saga continues to be VERY complicated. Perry, as promised, vetoed HB 1892 (read more here). Here’s the trouble with overriding the veto…Grassroots HERO, Trans Texas Corridor EXPERT and Founder of Corridor Watch, David Stall, found a legal loophole in HB 1892 that would PREVENT the TTC from coming UNDER the moratorium. Thank you TxDOT. So HB 1892 DOES NOT STOP THE TTC. In order to STOP the TRANS TEXAS CORRIDOR, SB 792 is the LAST STAND. Both HB 1892 and SB 792 have 281 and 1604 IN the moratorium. But the best case scenario, overriding the veto of HB 1892, just became the last resort due to the loophole. The compromise bill, SB 792, was amended in the House to FIX this loophole (read more here and here). So the TTC is UNDER the moratorium in the current language.
SB 792 will not get to the Governor in time for an opportunity to override a veto of it this session. So SB 792 has to be something he’ll sign, which means WE’LL ALL HATE parts of it! He placed many highway lobby goodies in SB 792 that are DISASTROUS public policy which is why he wants this bill. But once Rep. Lois Kolkhorst added Amendment 13 to SB 792 to INCLUDE the Trans Texas Corridor (TTC) in the moratorium, Perry now says it’s a deal breaker. Mr. 39% WON’T sign SB 792 unless Amendment 13 comes out.
To make matters worse, our San Antonio Senators voted FOR the original Perry version of SB 792 last Monday in a rushed vote BEFORE they read or understood the bill (read more here). How many times have we heard Senator Jeff Wentworth and others claim they didn’t know what they were voting on? It’s INEXCUSABLE! They allowed an entire section called “market valuation” into the bill which is a BACK DOOR CDA (read more here)! So this is our senators’ LAST CHANCE to get this RIGHT! They’ve all been called and personally informed of the problems with this language and what we’re needing them to do. NONE have assured us that they’re going to FIX THIS! This is our LAST STAND and it’s NO TIME to be NON-COMMITTAL. Are the grassroots in ANY mood for washy-washy on policy that affects nearly every aspect of our DAILY lives?
The Governor insists this new “market valuation” has to be in the bill for him to sign it, and the North Texas folks want it so their tolling authority can use it to prevent a CDA on Hwy 121 in the Dallas area. It’s a bitter poison pill that WE DON’T WANT! So since the Senate (ie – THE GOVERNOR’S mouthpiece) won’t agree to the House amendments, it goes to conference committee to hash it out. So we’re asking our senators and reps to have the conference committee EXEMPT (or carve out) our region from the “market valuation” provisions in Section 228.0111 in the text of SB 792. If our senators want a get out of jail FREE card, this is it!
URGENT ACTION ALERT!
SAN ANTONIO REPS & DEWHURST NEED TO HEAR FROM YOU ASAP!
Respectfully BUT FIRMLY tell our senators and reps that:
“We the PEOPLE insist you direct the conference committee to EXEMPT our region from the ‘market valuation’ provisions in Section 228.0111 in the text of SB 792. We also INSIST that Amendment 13 be RETAINED in the bill or VOTE TO OBJECT and KILL the bill. We want the Trans Texas Corridor IN the moratorium! We’re counting on you to make this happen!”
If you have access to a fax machine, faxing may be the best and fastest way to get their attention. If not call and email.
Find out who your reps are here: here.
You can contact each representative and find out their fax numbers (also on the web) by calling the Capitol switchboard: (512) 463-4630 and/or you can email them below.
San Antonio State Representatives:
Rep. Joe Farias, email@example.com
Rep. David Leibowitz, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Nathan Macias, email@example.com
Rep. Joe Straus, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Joaquin Castro, email@example.com
Rep. Trey Martinez-Fischer – firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Frank Corte – STREP123@aol.com
Rep. Ruth McClendon-Jones – email@example.com
Rep. Jose Menendez – firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Robert Puente – email@example.com
Rep. Mike Villarreal – firstname.lastname@example.org
Rep. Edmund Kuempel – email@example.com
San Antonio Area Senators who voted FOR the Governor’s bill without reading it:
Sen. Leticia Van de Putte, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sen. Jeff Wentworth, email@example.com
Sen. Carlos Uresti, firstname.lastname@example.org
Sen. Judith Zaffirini, email@example.com
CONTACT Lt. Governor David Dewhurst
He wants to be Governor and he alone has the power to pressure these senators to keep Amendment 13 in the bill and get San Antonio carved out from “market valuation” projects. He thought, as we all did, that HB 1892 included the Trans Texas Corridor in the moratorium. So please ask him to ensure the TTC IS in the moratorium as our legislators, including Dewhurst, intended!
“Please INSIST that the Trans Texas Corridor unquestionably be INCLUDED in the moratorium as you all intended by RETAINING Amendment 13 in SB 792! We’re counting on you TO MAKE THIS HAPPEN!”
Dewhurst contact info:
Via web mail form: http://www.ltgov.state.tx.us/Contact/#email
(512) 463-0001 (his voicemail may already full, but keep trying)