(AUSTIN) - Today, Speaker Joe Straus (San Antonio) appointed Representative Dawnna Dukes (Austin) to serve on the powerful House Committee on Appropriations and the Committee on Culture, Recreation and Tourism. It is the 5th session in which Representative Dukes will serve on both committees.
The House Committee on Culture Recreation and Tourism has jurisdiction over the Texas Parks and Wildlife, Texas Historical Commission, Texas Commission on the Arts, and the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. As a member of the Culture, Recreation and Tourism Committee, Representative Dukes passed significant legislation creating the Texas Moving Image Industry incentive program. The program brought Austin to the forefront of the film and television industry stimulating the economy in the region with 29,633 jobs and expenditures of over $315 million.
The 82nd legislature faces an unprecedented shortfall of $27 billion due to the economic recession and a reoccurring $10 billion structural deficit created by the new business tax. It is important for members of the Appropriations Committee to have experience and expertise with budget matters in these difficult times. House Bill 1 commits deep cuts for neighborhood public schools, endangers the state's most vulnerable children suffering from abuse and neglect, forces nursing homes to close, makes preventative health care inaccessible to Texas children, and places a college education out of reach for many graduating seniors. It will cause detriment to the state's economy with the loss of almost 10,000 state jobs primarily anchored in the Austin area and a reduction of up to 100,000 education jobs statewide.
"I appreciate the confidence Speaker Joe Straus has shown in me by reappointing me to the Committee on Appropriations so I may best serve and protect my constituency," Representative Dukes added, "The budget as written is unacceptable. It is harmful to our most vulnerable Texas children and families taking away much needed services and supports. I take this charge seriously and will work tirelessly to provide adequate funding for our critical education and health and human services programs."
A native and lifelong resident of Austin’s East Side, State Representative Dawnna Dukes is a ninth term member who represents Travis County’s 46th District in the Texas House of Representatives.